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Parent Teacher Conference.

Yep. I have the best kid. Ever. Well, not exactly.

I survived the dreaded parent- teacher conference. I always get nervous for these meetings. Not that I am worried about what they might have to say about my son, but the whole idea of being back inside of a school, walking down the narrow hallways, and subjected to those tiny chairs, is cause enough for the unease in my gut.

Besides the fact that I have to get there an hour early, just so I can secure a parking space, there seems to be a lot of new gossipy mothers who I don’t get along with, nor do I enjoy spending time with them. I am positive the feeling is mutual. I could ramble on about the Stepford Moms and all their do-good-for-the-school-glory their lives seem to be built upon, but I digress.

Instead, I will talk about another way I managed to embarrass myself this week.

While the teacher was talking to me about my son being disrespectful and or disruptive with his snarky comments, I received a text message. And of course I had forgotten to shut my cell phone off. Nothing says rude like the sound of nuclear loud and obnoxious alarm bells that is my ring tone.

I tried to ignore the noise. I tried my best to be discreet in my efforts to retrieve the cell phone. I tried to maneuver in that small chair, unnoticed, in order to shut it off. I did not want to appear as if I cared I had received a text message by picking up my phone. I was interested in the meeting. But, you see, my cell phone has this ‘feature’ for lack of a better word, which keeps sounding off the nuclear loud and obnoxious alarm bells that is my ring tone, until you OPEN the phone and acknowledge receipt of said text message.

Nice. Right?

As I squirmed around in the way too small for my body chair, it tipped over, leaving me flat on my ass. All the while my phone emitted sounds as if it were the end of the world.

Teacher: Not Amused. Me: Embarrassed.

(Side Note: the text message sent to me was from my high school best friend of 20 years, Leslie. Yep. She is still capable of getting me in trouble in school…even after all these years. Thanks!)

Anywhoo, my son is doing a great job this year. At least as far as his grades are concerned. He is one of those kids. You know that kind? The ones who don’t even have to try, or study hard and they just ace everything. Yeah, that’s my son. He is the complete opposite of me. So far he has all A’s and one B+. Barring any unforeseen tragedy, it looks like JCH will be making Honor Roll for the first marking period.

However, his ‘tude’ is not so great. It hasn’t gotten out of hand yet, but since he is getting more comfortable with the classroom, he has been more forthright than restrained when it comes to things, comments or ideas, that should be kept to himself.

It is not entirely my son’s fault that he doesn’t know when to draw the line. I mean, he lives with me. I have the kind of relationship with my son, where we do joke around with each other and we tend to take things way too far.

So, we had to have one of those talks about what’s appropriate and what’s not appropriate ‘in school’ behavior. I think JCH heard what I had to say, but who the hell knows now that he is a ‘teenager’. I guess I will have to cross my fingers and hope for the best that some of what I said sunk into his skull.

PS… Um… Has any one else noticed that the teachers are getting younger and younger? Or am I just getting older?

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  • The smart kids sometimes get bored and need to entertain themselves with comments and snark. It’s the teacher’s responsibility to keep them interested.

    Yeah the teachers are getting younger, snottier and more flippant…or at least that’s what I’ve been seeing.

  • Lol. I love the way you write I could picture the entire scene. Must have been so embarrassing this happened to me in class. Normally I always have my mobile on silent but that day as luck would have it, I forgot and of course Mr Murphy had to prove that the veracity of laws. The teacher asks me a question and just as I am about to answer my mobile starts to ring and a pretty similar scene as to the one you write about ensued. So I feel for you 🙂

  • I know this feeling – not with a teacher but in sales meetings. I have decided never to put my ringer on again – so it is on vibrate all the time – it really is too bad you don’t have pictures would have loved to seen it!

  • glad to be of service! hee hee

  • JCH is just smart and getting bored…it happens ALL the time.

    RE: The Young Teachers
    My daughters teacher is young and always looks like she just stepped out of a fashion shoot…it throws me off so much cuz I’m used to the white haired-knitted vest-type, ya’ know?

    “…there seems to be a lot of new gossipy mothers who I don’t get along with, nor do I enjoy spending time with them. I am positive the feeling is mutual. I could ramble on about the Stepford Moms and all their do-good-for-the-school-glory their lives seem to be built upon, but I digress.”

    GRRRRRRRR I was just having this same this conversation about the Fem-Bot Moms with another blogger too!! MurderDeathKill is all I have to say about that….

  • He sounds like me at that age; I got very high grades during school, but was always getting in trouble for “unsatisfactory attitude and behavior”.

  • I seriously think that if I were the teacher and you had come to see me and your cell phone was ringing and you fell off the chair…. I would have been doubled over in laughter! How could she keep a straight face???
    Don’t worry about your boy… sounds like a normal teen to me. My daughter is the queen of snark… wonder where she gets that? 😉

  • That’s a scene straight out of a movie. You should write it. You could write a movie script, make a bazillion dollars and buy your PARENTS a new house — somewhere near the lovely house you will purchase for yourself and your son.

    Because I have a girl with similar issues (high grades and a mouth that enjoys being open), I feel you, sister. My teaching sister-in-law suggests that my daughter is b.o.r.e.d. and that maybe if the teacher would give her something remotely challenging that she would close her mouth long enough to get it done.

    ‘Tude is a never-ending lesson to be learned as far as appropriateness, but you and I can take heart in the fact that they’re bright enough to get along in this world. You go, mom!

    (And I so second you on the Stepford Wives thing. I just can’t seem to enjoy the company of other moms on any kind of regular basis. Why *is* that?!)

  • I believe there’s an age difference here, but my son seems to be interupting his teacher lately to try to help teach the class! He’s in Grade One…

  • Meleah

    Hammer:

    I think you may be onto something. My son is pretty damn smart, and VERY bored in class. And THANK YOU; the teachers ARE arrogant these days.

    Random/Amber:

    Isn’t that the worst! The one time we don’t want the cell phone on it rings!!

    Beth:

    When I buy my new digital camera, (the one that will be attached to my person at all times) I wont ever miss another photo op like that. Although I am not sure this teacher would have enjoyed me taking a photo while lying on her floor with my phone ringing.

    Leslie:

    I love you. Forever.

    SomeGirl:

    He is smart. And he is BORED. He chose the book Lord Of The Flies to read, while everyone else is reading Thomas and the Train. C’mon!

    Yes, these ‘new’ teachers are freaking me out. Where are all the old bags that used to teach us?

    Fem-Bot Moms … ha ha ha ha ha. I can’t stand them.

    BobG:

    Then I guess you can really understand my sons frustration. And you understand why I didn’t really come down too hard on him.

    Dawn:

    She sat there like a STONE.

    My son is definitely ‘my’ child.

    Angela:

    Oh I love the idea of buying my parents and myself new homes for scripting a movie about falling off of a chair during parent teacher conferences…. HA HA

    I agree with your sister-in-law teacher. My son and your daughter are BORED. When my does get some wok, he rushes through it because its too easy for him.

    I cant give my son too much of hard time about having the appropriate tude all the time since I am 33 and still behave inappropriately. What can I expect from an 11 year old!

    I have no idea why we cat seem to find ‘normal’ other mothers to hang out with.

    Mark:

    You might have your hands FULL with that!

    Aw….1st grade. That was such a sweet time. ENJOY it.

  • Meleah

    AN EMAIL FROM MICHAEL C (who I love)

    I couldn’t leave a comment on your post today for some reason,
    But the idea of:
    1. the whole phone issue during the parent/teacher conference and
    2. you falling during said conference

    are classic. This stuff really needs to be adapted for TV!!!!! 😉

    And yes, I have noticed how young teachers are these days. If I had teachers like some of the ones I see today when I was in school, Van Halen’s ‘Hot For Teacher’ might have actually made sense to me when I was in elementary school!!!!

    Hope all is well,
    -M

  • Meleah

    MichaelC.

    I hate when my comments dont work! 🙁

    Speaking of made for TV….I cant wait to see your NAME on the SNL credits.

  • That story is absolutely hilarious. It sounds just like something I would do. I so dread the parent-teacher conferences. My son started off the year badly (too much talking, not enough working) but his teacher now seems to ‘get’ him.

    I agree with Michael, this story is perfect for a sitcom. You couldn’t have written it any better if you tried – falling off the chair, that was the clincher! And the teachers are getting younger but at my son’s school not one of them is HOT. Not one. It’s an aesthetically pleasing wasteland, that’s for sure. Loved your story…

  • HollyGL

    First of all, those gossipy mothers can just go to Hades. My God, some people just never get a reasonably grown up clue.

    Mereb, I love the falling over in the chair part. SOOO what I could have easily accomplished in the same – or various other – situations.

    Don’t even get me started about how teachers, coworkers, doctors, everybody-under-the-sun-but-me seem to be getting younger. Its a sad, sad state of affairs, and I’m so sorry to tell you that it only becomes more apparent with each passing year. 🙁

  • All young guys around this age get snarky. It’s a right of passage. He’ll be fine. I’d love to hear this phone sound. I’ve had similar situations where my phone (for some unknown reason) is set to LOUD. I never set it to that but I guess I switch it on while trying to fish it from my pocket. It will only be set to loud and go off if I’m sitting in on a one on one meeting or in a really quiet place. I love the embarrassment.

  • ME.OLLY

    I was the same way .
    I used to bring my stuff home folded in my back pocket.
    Folded nice on one sheet of paper.
    Never really studied.
    All A’s + B’s and the teachers knew I was capable of much more
    and got pissed because I never expressed an interest to overachieve . I was a wise ass too.
    Your video is precious like you and your family.
    Love you bunches.
    xoxoxoi

  • Meleah

    Selma:

    Really? The school my son attends is full of Victoria Super Model types. Dood.. I am considering coming to Aussie and switching his school district!!

    Holly:

    I know. I see them everywhere. Younger, Hotter, Smarter. Oh well. At least I have experience = knowledge.

    Ricardo:

    It must be a GUY thang. Although, I was quote the snarky ass at that age myself.

    Olly:

    Yes you were just like my son.

    I wonder what my son would be like IF he really DID study / try hard? I think he’d be an unstoppable force. But, he’s doesn’t have the ‘drive’ to work that hard. (and THAT isn’t my DNA). I work my ass off and have set working HARD as an example for the last 5 consecutive years. *sigh*

    On the other hand, I will take responsibility (claim as my DNA) for his sarcasm, and wit, and brains.

    xxoo

    Ps…. Olly, I am so glad you finally got into the movie. That baby MASON is BEAUTIFUL.

  • I know where you’re coming from. I was at conferences tonight and it’s so wierd to have the academically struggling-talks too much-speaks before he thinks kid along side little miss perfect. And yes. The teachers are SO young. In fact, I’m sure my 16 year old must be absolutely in love with his gorgeous young math teacher.

  • I’m glad we didn’t have parent teacher conferences when I was growing up, lol I don’t think I would have made it past 13.

  • My youngest son’s teacher this year is FRESH out of school! can’t be over 22, handsome as hell and so sweet. I think I am in love! I just hate when he calls me “Mrs. xxx” but I have him trained now and he calls me Beth! You should do what I do, when those conference announcements come home, I write on them that I don’t feel the need for one but if they do, to let me know. So far, no teachers have taken me up on it. We just email when there is a problem on either end, seems to work just fine for everyone and I don’t have to waste my time and my energy attending a live conference. Then again, perhaps I should be trying to meet up with this newbie teacher just so I can stare at him!

  • The best friend

    Yes the teachers look like highschool students nowadays.
    Yes JCH is the best kid ever.

    NO nothing sunk in, and he will continue to be who he is…& I will continue to love him for it. even if it gets him in trouble. (please dont show him this though as I dont want to encourage his attitude.) YES I am talking about the “Attitiude” that might just be SARCASM misconstrued. but thats just my take.

  • Stepford Moms…

    When my kids start school I am bringing a vial of holy water with me to the drop off. *yuck* I hate those women that think that being on the PTA and emulating Donna Reed gives them the right to look down and snub other parents. I’m so going to want to slap them.

  • Jon

    They’re getting younger and that’s why they’re in trouble all the time. 😛

  • Parent-Teacher conference! Is it that time already? Oh criminy.

  • this is classic.. i love it.. and me miss bad boy lover thinks it is excellent that he has a “visible tude”… but then that is precisely why i am not somebody’s mother……LOL

  • HA! Great story! And lately I’ve noticed ALL authority figures are beginning to somehow look younger than me! What’s up with THAT?!?

  • Meleah

    Terri:

    I bet that is very distracting for a teenage boy with full blown hormonal rage. I hope when my son is 16 he gets a really OLD and UGLY ass teacher…otherwise he might be too distracted to LEARN anything!

    Ps… Thank you so much for taking the time to watch and comment on the Baby Mason video. That really means a lot to me.

    Rolando:

    Really? You didn’t have parent teacher conferences? I did. I was always grounded for a week afterwards!

    Beth/Blah Blah:

    Oh man! Why can’t my son have a HOT guy teacher? Now that would be awesome!

    Anti Barbie:

    Yes…you will need holy water, and garlic, and all kinds of tools to hold them Stepford / Fem-Bots at bay.

    The Best Friend:

    I also LOVE his sarcasm / ‘tude’. But there is okay ‘in-school-talk’ and NOT okay ‘in-school-talk.’ I toad-ily encourage him to be himself and speak his mind, but he does have to curb some of that when talking with these teachers. Even if they are only 12 years old.

  • “You’ve Just Been Ghosted — Come Over and Grab A Puking Pumpkin!”

  • We had a parent-teacher conference earlier this month. Paula always has trouble getting engaged in the first couple of months of school. She gets distracted so easily. And truthfully, the way they teach stuff in most schools is supremely boring.

    When your son is in college, his attitude will actually be just the right thing to have. Better to be the voice of dissent than a content drone. Work with him on the language and in knowing when it is appropriate to speak his mind, but definitely celebrate that quality, which is obviously a gift he received from Momma.

  • I tell you woman. The last 3 or 4 times I’ve tried to leave comments on your blog, the comments are closed. I am totally going to have to camp out no only to comment, but to not be so late to your blog parties. And that’s what they are. Reading your comments are a complete hoot.

    I promise to try harder to be first in line. Hell. To be in line at all.

    And I loved your description of the small chairs, and the moms at the school. TOTALLY HILARIOUS and so very true. I wish I had a photo of you on your keester after falling out of that chair.

    Nice job on the boy!

  • Meleah

    Olga:

    Yes! good! So itsnot just me!! I really dislike being the oldest one in the classroom.

    Paisley:

    Oh I let him run with the tude all the time. I dont shut him down, but…he will get into trouble if he doesnt knock it off soon (at least in school.)

    BOSSY:

    Yup. Cant wait to see your post on that subject.

    Jon:

    Yes they are.

    MsShmitty:

    Oooooohhhhhhh…. coool!! Thank you

    Ingrid:

    Thanks Ingrid I remember reading on your blog about Paula and the back and fourth letters with your daughters teacher. I agree with you, I also think y son is more prepared for college then he is middle school. ha! I just hope these young teachers dotn break my boys spirit.

    KellyPea:

    (see how I got your comment in here!)

    But yes this blog IS having comment issues. Michael cant. BFD cant, You cant…a few others ….I am hoping to have the issue fixed shortly.

    The comments over here ARE like a party. Sometimes the comments are better than the posts.

    And, yes, I think I am doing a nice job with the boy…Thank You.

  • Okay next time you have to go to a conference here is what you do. You get yourself a pair of glasses…if you don’t have them already and a nice portfolio with equally nice pen.
    Don’t break eye contact.You use phrases and questions like “I see” “Ah ha” “When exactly was that?” “interesting” and “and how did you feel about that?” all the while madly scribbling on your pad where she can’t see and just before she ends the conference you stand up and say something”Well I think that is all for today…I’ll be back in touch.”

  • That was beautiful!! Hilarious!

    I have been on both sides. The teacher delivering the news…the mother in the small plastic chair hearing about ‘tude.
    Hmmm…I have actually been the horrible teenager expelled for degeneracy…

    Having been all these things I can assure you, sadly, that the whole tude thing only gets worse. Much, much worse..
    Sorry…but then it gets better..but only after deep humiliation, an alcohol dependency and addiction to the calming influence of prescription drugs..

    Hee!

    It’s sad indeed when all these figures in authority are so much younger than we are…

    xox

  • Loved your conference blog…I used to teach before I came home to homeschool…lol…I made a comment, but I think there was a glitch…Things you may want to say nexxt time you you have to visit the seventh circle…

    Wearing glasses and using a portfolio for notes use phrases like, “I see” “uh huh”, “Why do you think that is?”, “And how do you feel about that?”, “Hmmm”, “interesting…interesting”, all the while be madly scribbling just out of her sight in your portfolio.

    Don’t forget to ask her to repeat words and to slow down once in a while…Just before the woman decides to wrap things, up get the jump on her, stand up and say, “Well, I think that is enough for now. I’ll be back in touch.”

    That’ll fix her.

  • snarkiness certainly is not limited to either gender during the teenage years. i get it from both of mine. i was going to comment the other day but it would not accept my comments. ironically, today arrives and I had a 7:15 with the school councelor because the teener got snarky (her word) with the computer teacher. seems the teener was bored in keyboarding class. like, wtf? high school kids have keyboarding class? no wonder he’s superbored. the teener has had that every year since 5th grade. doesn’t excuse the disrespect, but. … I like Hope’s suggestion. Might get me in trouble, tho.

  • Meleah

    Hope:

    I am doing THAT at next the conference. Great advice. THANK YOU

    Minx:

    I am already DREADING his TeenAge Prime. (This is also why I only have ONE child)

    Sauerkraut:

    I think GIRLS are WORSE than the BOYS, especially when it comes to being ‘snarky’ or making sarcastic remarks.

    Im glad you were able to comment today. Thanks for sharing.

    I like what Hope had to say too,

  • Hihi,
    1. I hate Stepford Moms. I’m not a mom yet, but I hate them already. I had to deal with them for swimming lessons. I feel your pain, but it’s their loss if they don’t like you!
    2. I find sarcasm/snarky to be a trait of a smart individual. I used to love it when the teachers didn’t get what I was saying, but the other sarcastic kids in teh class did. Man that was great!
    3. Yes, teachers are infact getting younger. I ran into my Mom’s latest “participant” (what they are calling student teachers now) at a bar I sometimes work at…you need an armband to drink there and frankly she didn’t have one! She started teaching this past fall.

  • Meleah

    Courtney:

    AMEN. Thank you! I feel much better.

    Great. Its nice to know that 20 year olds teaching. Thats why I feel so damn old around them.

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