Yes, boys and girls, it’s time for another round of educational roller-derby, aka Parent-Teacher conferences. Tonight, I will be wrassling with my 13-year-old son’s teachers. That’s right…middle school.
Now, I know full well how my son is doing, since I received his report card 2 days ago. I believe the school does this to soften the blow or allow for the initial shock to wear off so that you can regain full consciousness and chat somewhat intelligently with the academics who rated him.
After fully reviewing the grades with my son, I retired to the lab (i.e., my basement) to work on my strategy for tonight. I find that a preemptive strike works best as it catches teachers off-guard. So, I might just look one in the eye right off the bat and inquire,
Do you think China is in the market for additional child labor? Just asking.
Sometimes, I meet my match in terms of preemptive strikes and the teacher ends up making the first move, typically by saying something provocative like,
Hi. So you’re [redacted]’s father…
As you can imagine, I don’t usually stand for this line of questioning. In such a case, I generally will issue a quick and pointed retort like,
No, that would be the milkman—as per the recent paternity test. I am his mother’s husband.
And lastly, there are times in which I am completely overwhelmed by their insinuations, such as when they say,
You know [redacted] would do so much better if he studied a little more. Or even showed up for class…ever.
In these situations, I tend to reply,
I think you are mistaken. I’m not here for a conference. I’m actually the custodian. I was told to clean up vomit in Room 517. Is this 517? It’s not? We don’t even have a 5th floor? Silly me.