Thursday, February 19, 2009

Medical Jargon and Five Year Olds

The following is an actual event that occurred today at work. It is so outrageous that even I am reluctant to post it, which is saying a lot, as I am not easily embarrassed. Okay, here goes.

One of my students walked into class this morning and announced loudly, in front of everyone,

"I think I have yogurt in my penis!"

I froze, as other children started to snicker, or say, "Ewwww he sais penis!" before I collected myself and quietly said, "Ummm...okay, let's not talk about that during Circle Time..."

"Well, my penis really does hurt!" he retorted, as I tried my absolute hardest not to laugh and to distract the other children with the "Buenos Dias" song. "We'll talk about it later..." I whispered to him, silently praying that he would just drop it, which he did.

Later on in the day I pulled this student aside to revisit the conversation we had had earlier in the day. Here's how it went:

Me: Hey, (insert name here), I wanted to talk to you about something.
Child: Okay.
Me: Well, I remember you saying earlier that your private parts were hurting. Is that still true?
Child: Yeah!
Me: Well, did something happen?
Child: Yeah, well, you know how when you pull back the extra skin of your penis and it is usually red inside?
Me: (desperately racking my brain for the correct way to answer a five year old who just asked a woman if she ever pulls back the extra skin of her penis) Ummm...yes?
Child: Yeah, well, I did that, and when I did it was all white.
Me: (Trying not to lose it) Okay. Did you tell your dad?
Child: Umm, I don't remember
Me: Is it okay with you if I tell your dad?
Child: Yeah, but it really does hurt!
Me: Yeah, I believe you. You don't have to participate in dance class today if you are not feeling well.
Child: (While performing a gyrating hip movement) It hurts when I do this!
Me: Okay, then just go sit down on the big chair.

He proceeds to the corner of the room where the big chair is located, but not before he turns to the entire class and announces to his peers as well as the dance teacher, "I'm not dancing today because my penis hurts!" This was followed by more laughter, to which he screeched at one child, "HEY! How would you like it if your penis hurt and someone laughed at you?!" Good point, my friend. I would hate it if my penis hurt and someone laughed at its expense.

So, just to recap, I had a conversation about possible yogurt being in a student's penis. I want to die. I don't know that I will ever have a more hilarious/awkward conversation in my life.

Afterthought: While I felt uncomfortable having this conversation, I can only imagine how humiliated this child's father was after he received the Your-son-claims-he-has-yogurt-in-his-penis-call. Eeesh.

Sunday, February 15, 2009

How Do I Become a Member of This Secret Club?

I am just going to admit it: I don't know a lot about music. I really don't. I mean, I enjoy music, and I understand the concept of music, and I once even played the clarinet in Fourth Grade for three whole weeks, but there is a lot about music in general that escapes me.
First of all, I have no idea how people discover "great new bands!" I can recall numerous occasions where I have heard friends/people I was eavesdropping on say, "Oh, have you heard of (insert nonsensical band name here)? They are sooooo great! Seriously, their music changed my life." Now, I just cannot help buy wonder, where do people find these great, new, life changing bands? From their friends? From hours of browsing on itunes? From a daily e-mail chain that I have yet to subscribe to? Or is it something far more sinister, like a list of band names sealed inside an unmarked envelope slipped underneath their front doors at an unknown hour every night?
Whatever the case may be, I am definitely out of the loop, and certainly not a member of the Secret Envelope Club. I am the person who says, "Oh, have you heard of Counting Crows? They're that great band that wrote a song for Shrek 2! I love that movie because there is a talking cat in it!"
Or maybe this knowledge of the latest and greatest music comes from going to lots of concerts, which is also very problematic. I have been to a few concerts and here are some observations that I have made:
1. You cannot sit down for the entirety of the show.
2. You cannot hear anyone you came with, as the music is usually deafening.
3. Any drinks that you buy are outrageously expensive.
4. All venues are FILLED with a thin haze of pot smoke.
5. Everyone in the crowed, while they are not permitted to sit, must awkwardly sway in time with the music in order to fit in.
6. More often than not, one cannot understand any of the lyrics being sung, either because the acoustics are bad, the crowd is too loud, or the singer is drunk.
7. Shows always start 2 hours after their advertised times.

These observations have lead me to this: I don't like concerts. There. Now everyone knows that I think concerts are pretty much miserable. It's crowded, smoky, you can't sit down, you can't talk to anyone, you can't sing along to any music because you usually can't hear it, and you have to do the awkward-sway for the duration of the show. And, really, why do they always start late? What the hell are these band members doing all day? Oh, I know, getting drunk so that they cannot sing the lyrics of their own songs, that's what.
So if I am not a member of the Secret Envelope Club, and I don't really want to go to concerts, what am I going to do? How will I ever know that the song *"Feather Words" by *Baby Toe Spin Project is the greatest love song that has ever been written, at least for this week?
Finally, I don't know why those who do seem to have the "insider information" on Life Changing Bands seem to always think that any British band that blends some sort of weird synthesized keyboard noises into their music is actually worth listening to. A majority of the bands on people's Life Changing Music lists are just this sort, and I am always left scratching my head, wondering, "Why am I listening to a man with a Cockney accent whine to the accompaniment of Techno beats?" Bueller?

There is one thing about music that I do know for sure: Show tunes are the greatest things that has ever happened to music. I love, love, love musical theater, I love show tunes, and I could watch one hundred Broadway shows and never grow tired of it. So while I may not be a member of the Secret Envelope Club, I have absolutely no problem paying money to go see a musical theater number where I can sit down, there is no pot smoke, the audience is quiet, the lyrics are clear, and the shows always start on time. Plus, they usually additional bonuses, like a green witch, special effects, and talking cats.

*"Feather Words" and "Baby Toe Spin Project" are names that I made up, but all of you know they could just as easily be real song and band names. If they aren't already...

Saturday, February 14, 2009

Onion: The WORST Secret Ingredient

This Valentine's Day my coworker Rebecca and her husband, Bill, had a few people over for an Iron Chef-esq type competition. Everyone threw the names of secret ingredients into a hat; however, only one was chosen: ONION. Every single dish in the competition had to feature onion in some way. While I do like onion, I like it sparingly, and I have never eaten six courses all completely devoted to a plant that makes you cry AND smell bad. While I would have opted for some other secret ingredient, I was a guest, and was not about to cause a stink.(Pun intended)
The evening was a outrageously fun. There were pots boiling, onions flying through the air and falling on the floor, and lots of wine being consumed. I received the wise words from one of the "Head Chefs," "Do not be afraid to bruise an onion!" I nodded in understanding, as I was just a lowly sioux chef, and listened to the words of the resident Onion Master as I attempted to caramelize about 50,000 onions at once. Time was not something any of us factored into the event, and we were still eating well until 1:30 am.
When it was all said and done my team emerged victorious. While our onion pudding with whipped cream nearly blew it for us during the dessert competition (it was seriously the worst thing I had ever eaten), what our dish lacked in actual edibility it made up for in presentation, something that our drunk judge Katie seemed to really appreciate.
Iron Chef was a hilarious experience to say the least, one that definitely carried over into the next day, as everything that I wore to Bill and Rebecca's house now WREAKS of onion. I mean, I smell like the back of a taqueria in the Mission, and not even one of the good taquerias, more like one of the super shady we-always-fail-our-health-inspections ones. Looks like tomorrow is laundry day, big time.
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