Wednesday, November 25, 2009

Volunteering. Need I Say More?

Yesterday, I tried to get some Christmas shopping done before volunteering at school. Unfortunately, since the amount of time I had was even shorter than usual, I felt a little rushed and didn't have very much fun. I was so disoriented at one point that I found myself staring at The Cake Bakery for a full two minutes before regaining enough common sense to walk away from the end cap. At least I knew that Zoe's appreciation for my appearance at the Kindergarten Fall Festival would compensate for the fact that I was going to spend an hour surrounded by sticky kindergartners instead of shopping. Plus, it could even be fun since I was volunteering with a friend.

After having my I.D. verified for the three M-rated games I was buying for the boys and stopping at home to drop off milk, I headed to school a few minutes early. My strategy was to get there before anyone else so that I would be able to pick the party game that required the least amount of involvement. I believe in putting a lot of effort into playing sports, cleaning a house, or slamming a beer. But "The Corn Kernel Race?" Not so much.

I scanned the list of games and everything seemed to require a lot of smiling and exuberance: "Strut Like a Turkey," "Bowling," "Pumpkin Relay," and "Musical Chairs." All of them except one: "Hang Hat On The Scarecrow." I grabbed the bag of materials and waited for my friend to show up, somehow managing to avoid Fanny as she rushed around trying to organize everyone.

The game turned out to be a variation of "Pin The Tail On The Donkey." But instead of tacks we had masking tape. And instead of birthday party attendees dressed in festive clothes, there was a girl wearing the shortest miniskirt I've ever seen and boys dressed in sweats that smelled like fried Spam. Oh, and since we didn't have a blindfold, we had to say, "Shut your eyes tight! No peeking!" before we spun them around three times. I wasn't looking for an explanation as to why we didn't have a blindfold, but when the teacher said, "We aren't allowed to use a blindfold anymore because of lice," I decided that the kids could probably handle spinning around all by themselves without my having to touch them.

Towards the end of the party, one little boy started telling me about his pet turtle, or about his upcoming trip to grandma's house, or how he really likes anchovies on his pizza. I really have no idea what he was talking about because I was so distracted by the gumdrop-size green booger embedded in his left nostril. All I could think about was grabbing a crowbar and prying that sucker out of there. Too bad I didn't notice him a few weeks ago at the Halloween parade, because then I could have borrowed Zoe's.

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