I was on my way home from work tonight, talking to Joe. I call my parents a lot on my walk home; if you ignore the sirens and car horns, it's actually a delightful time to catch up. Tonight Joe had to ignore the fact that I somehow contracted the Black Lung around 5th Avenue and coughed pretty much throughout our conversation.
"Are you sick?" he asked.
"No," I cleared my throat. "I think I just inhaled street fumes."
Seriously, it's been 40 minutes and I'm still coughing.
Joe has been substitute teaching for 6th graders for two weeks, while their regular teacher is on maternity leave. At least, I think this is true. He might tell me that he has really only been subbing for three days and the regular teacher is getting her tonsils out. I don't know. The street fumes have made me woozy.
He told me about the trip the 6th graders went on today. A 2-hour boat ride in Chicago. They had quite the spread of food: chicken, pasta, hamburgers, desserts galore. And there was a DJ, so they danced.
As soon as the word "danced" came out of Joe's mouth, I had an immediate memory of 7th grade, when I was a student at the school where Joe taught Social Studies. We had a school dance, and lots of people were there. Including Joe. And his small robot, Robie, who was yellow and ate pennies and danced when you fed him the pennies. And Joe put Robie on the ground in the middle of the room and danced with him.
I was mortified. I went up to my Language Arts teacher. "He's embarrassing me!" I complained. She nodded, "I'll talk to him."
So Joe and Robie left the dance. And although I think I apologized to Joe later that day, I feel guilty and a little bit sad when I recall that experience. But I also have to laugh at the idea that I thought it was my Dad who made me a dork in 7th grade. Really, I did that all by myself. I'm ok with it, though. I have still never danced with a robot.
Jack is TWO!
3 years ago