I dare to show my ever advancing age here. I graduated from high school (1986) and college (1989) long, long before Columbine. When I was in elementary school- back in the dark ages when the apex of technology was the Atari Pong game, and people thought we were “rich” because Dad was one of the first in town to insist upon having the wonderful thirteen channels of Cable instead of endeavoring like everyone else to get the three Columbus channels that were almost impossible to get even with an antenna- we used to sing a nice little ditty in honor of teachers we disliked:
(To the tune of Battle Hymn of the Republic):
Glory, glory, hallelujah, teacher hit me with a ruler / Came in the door with a loaded .44, now teacher ain’t teachin’ no more
I really can’t imagine any kid belting out this little song today unless they really want to be sent to the school psychologist, suspended , expelled or all three. Kids get sent home for having plastic Army men with guns on them. What are the Army men supposed to have? Earrings and tinklebells? I shudder to think of the ongoing wussification of the young, but then again, kids today take statements such as “came in the door with a loaded .44” a lot more literally these days. Back then no one would have actually thought about shooting a teacher- it was merely a humorous visual like the stuff we would see on Tom and Jerry cartoons.
Now I am all about identifying truly psychotic and homicidal rug rats early on, but singing a funny little song is not quite the same thing as displaying elements of the homicidal triad, which are: 1. Bedwetting, 2. Fire starting, and 3. Torturing animals. Usually the schools aren’t in the position to observe those signs, unless the kid sets a fire in the school. We did have a couple of fire bugs when I was in school who set fires in the trash cans so they could get out of school on a fire drill. I think the principal beat one of them within an inch of his life, and the kid’s Dad whaled on him again when he got home. I don’t think he set any more fires. From what I’ve seen of the school system mentality they are so paranoid about a replay of Columbine that the kid who forgets he has his pocket knife in his pants, or a kid who brings an Army man with his harmless tiny miniature plastic M16 to school is subject to extreme prejudice, but from what I see the little psychos go undetected.
Another lovely little song we enjoyed singing that would raise eyebrows today went as followed:
Comet, it makes your mouth turn green / Comet, it tastes like gasoline / Comet, it makes you vomit/ So try some Comet and vomit today!
I can just imagine some little dumb ass trying this one. The lawsuits…
Of course we were not politically correct, either. Few kids got more teasing than the fat kids. Granted back in the day everyone was poor so there were a lot fewer Really Fat Kids. Today there’s a lot more kids in the “fatty fatty two by four” category, so there probably isn’t a lot of fat harassment. The skinny kids, being in the minority, likely get the shit now.
Who doesn’t remember taunting the Fat Kid with:
Fatty, fatty two by four/ Couldn’t get through the bathroom door / So he did it on the floor / Licked it up and did some more/ Fatty, fatty two by four
I usually left the Fat Kids alone though, because being the Biggest Nerd in School who got beaten up everyday and whose wardrobe looked like there had been an explosion at the thrift store, was even worse than being a Fat Kid. Besides, I was very tiny for my age in elementary school, and I was very frail for a long time after I had rheumatic fever. I didn’t want any of the Fat Kids to pin me down and sit on me.
Normal is definitely a relative term. What is normal for me is most certainly abnormal for the rest of humanity, which is fine- I am used to my own parameters and I learned at an early age that the only opinion that really matters to me is my own.
Our household has returned to some semblance of normal since last night. I didn’t think Jerry could bear to let Sheena go, but we were really surprised when someone contacted us from the Craig’s List ad (and yes I am extremely cynical of using Craig’s List for anything) wanting to take a look at Sheena. Come to find out the guy is former military and had experience with military dogs, which is why he wanted a GSD. To make a long story much shorter, we interviewed him pretty heavily. He brought his dog to come and visit and see if he (the dog) and Sheena would get along. I think it will be a perfect fit for her as they have a good sized home and lot up in Delaware County and he has promised to keep in contact with us. He is taking Sheena to the Vet today to get the ball rolling on her vacs, determing health status and hopefully to schedule her spay surgery. He and his kid and their other dog seemed delighted with her and I feel good about the placement. I don’t mind just having two dogs. Clara and Lilo are used to each other and we’ve already gotten past the high-maintenance phase with them. Of course if this guy changes his mind about Sheena we will gladly take her back, but at this place and time I think this is the best thing both for her and for us. We can care for her well enough but this guy is equipped to do even better for her than we can. Fluffy-Butt and Fanny have finally come back up from being in hiding in the basement. It was nice to actually see and interact with all three cats this morning. Isabel isn’t phased by dogs one way or the other, but the other two cats really only tolerate Clara and Lilo. In a way I will miss Sheena- and she is a lovely dog- but I don’t miss playing food referee or going through the attention and territory wars that are inevitable when you add a dog. Heidi was easy because she was old and only really concerned about meals, comfortable napping spots and an occasional roll in the warm grass. I missed the judgment call on that one- I didn’t think Jerry had it in him to let her go- but I really believe Sheena will do as well if not even a bit better in her new home. It will certainly be a damn sight better than scavenging around the campground all winter or being confined in a small pen and left to gnaw on cage bars, which is what would have happened to her had we left her there, or even worse. We may not be the Ritz-Carlton but our home is very dog-friendly. Clara and Lilo are not lacking anything, and I think they prefer their close knit little sorority of two. They complement each other, and they got their fighting and competition out long ago.