Tuesday, April 10, 2012

beauty sleep

A few weeks ago, I got an e-mail notice from the high school of a mandatory meeting for parents of seniors.  Mandatory?  Really?  I took a bit of umbrage at that word "mandatory".  "What happens if I DON'T go?" the rebel in me wanted to know.

We won't know because the shut-up-it's-not-worth-fighting in me went with Chaco to the meeting last night.

Other parents there had the looks of people feeling the same way I was.  Looks that said, "Okay, I came to your presumptive 'mandatory' meeting, this better be worth it", or "I graduated high school a long time ago, what you mean 'mandatory'?!"  or "Clock's ticking.  Speak and I'm outta here".  It was a relatively painless power point presentation with the vice principal reading stuff to us from a handout packet.  Stuff about the few weeks between now and graduation, rah rah rah. 

I've been to my share of meetings.  Some have been good and worthwhile, but a few (read:  lots of them) have been quite boring.  And I used to work with a guy who was narcoleptic.  Interesting people those narcoleptics.

He fell asleep in just about every meeting I was in with him.  The first time it happened, I didn't yet know that he was narcoleptic and I thought he was just really studying the notes in his lap.  Then another coworker told me, "Nah, he's asleep". 

He was also newly married and his narcolepsy was causing problems with the wife.  It embarrassed her that he'd fall asleep while they had guests over.  I was a little more concerned about what happens when he drives.

I remember sitting next to him at a large meeting - a sort of pep rally - and the Big Wigs would be there pepping us up.  He and I were sitting near the back, and he requested that I elbow him good if he fell asleep. 

"Oh, okay Ross (his name was Ross)", I told him.  I knew I wouldn't do it.  Let the guy sleep, and I didn't like the idea of elbowing him "good".  As he drifted off with his trademark looking-at-lap posture, I contemplated ways I could make it look like he was awake (this gave my brain something to do during the boring meeting).  Ross was a nice guy, and I also wanted to help with the wife troubles.

I wish I'd thought of this guy's solution:



  1. I don't have and kids yet but when I do, i'm gonna dread having to have to go to "mandatory" parent teacher meetings :s. Also, the guy in the photo's idea is clever xD! I guess that still counts as "present" xD.

  2. We had those mandatory meetings at my kids' high school too. I had the same reaction. The minute someone tells me "you have to," my instant reaction is, "oh yeah???"

    But just like you, I went. Grudgingly. I went. I didn't want to lose my good standing in the "good" parent department with the school.

  3. Okay - I'm not as good as you and Terri. I pick and choose the mandatory meetings I go to. Most often, these days especially, I send an email back stating that unfortunately we will not be able to attend the meeting, and then our kid will bring home the notes of what we missed. I get the info without having someone read it to me. I'm getting to be more and more rebellious the older I get. :)

  4. I think there is some sort of left over paranoia we have when we get those "see the principal" notes from the school (Uh Oh, I'm in trouble or What did Junior do now?). Still, it is hard to ignore those "summons". Like you, I've participated (slept through) my fair share of meetings. I really hate the ones where they give you handouts and then show you the same info in a PowerPoint presentation and proceed to read the slides to you.