Science Fair and Dog Shit

Yesterday evening, Bear’s school held a science fair. When Bear saw Gary and me, he walked up to us brandishing treasures from his pockets: two toy cars, which he proceeded to drive all over Gary’s arms, chest, and legs. When I became the imaginary driver of one of these cars, it ran off the road amidst wild shrieks and much exaggerated simulation of losing control of the wheel. Have I mentioned that Gary and the kids are hilarious?

Everyone met in the school cafeteria before separating to classrooms to see the kids’ experiments. Wow, what a gathering that was. The town the kids were taken to is not a small town in the idyllic, cozy little town style. No. It is ass-backward, ignorant and inbred territory. It is difficult to distinguish males from females, since most of the town is grossly obese and long ago morphed into androgynous, unattractive lumps covered in mandatory camoflauge clothing (if leaning toward male) and outdated, Kate-Gosselin-wannabe butchered haircuts if female.

Teachers chomped gum like cud, and so many people there had a dull-eyed, disinterested expression. And these are educators, coaches, parents?

Bear and his science partner, a little girl, performed their science experiment by mixing baking soda and vinegar in a bottle, then attaching a balloon to the mouth of the bottle. We did the same experiment in the front yard together once. When the results were not terribly impressive, we tripled the amount of the ingredients until the gases burst the plastic bag we mixed them in. Since we were in a classroom that I am assuming the teacher would prefer without a bubbling, vinegary mess on the floor, we didn’t alter the recipe terribly much this time.

The kids hear so much garbage, smack talk, and lies about us, I am always concerned how comfortable they feel when Gary, me, and Gary’s ex are all in the same place. Bear, thankfully, seemed to feel just fine last night. He gave me a kiss and a hug when we were leaving the school, and as always, he told Gary to make sure we get home safely. He doesn’t like that we have the hour-long drive home, and he asked Gary to call him when we got home.

Spending time in that town is like walking through dog shit and getting it stuck to your shoes: it takes a while to shake off the feeling and the smell of it. As Gary and I headed home, I was again saddened by the environment in which the kids are trying to learn and grow. There are far better schools in the town they lived in before the divorce. Being taken to that hick hellhole and having their lives hindered, just to make someone else happy and responsibility-free, is nothing but sickening.

Kids should never be the sacrificial lambs for someone’s selfishness and pettiness. I suppose only good parents got that memo.

About TheSmirkingCat

I am endlessly trying to make sense of a world that has completely and unapologetically lost its mind.
This entry was posted in kids, sad, school, science fair. Bookmark the permalink.

4 Responses to Science Fair and Dog Shit

  1. Amy says:

    I moved my kids to a small town too. They went from a high school that had 40 kids in any given class and teachers who's mantra was “I have x amount of kids, I don't have TIME to deal with fill in the blank” to a high school where my son has maybe 50 in his graduating class. And while camo and cowboy boots are sometimes considered formal wear ;), and there have been some things here that gave me pause in the last 2 years, we have also been lucky enough to find a good home and a good fit here. Only here can you go to the tiny gas station in town (that sells everything from deli meats to plumbing supplies) and have a stranger walk up to you after you've been taken by ambulance to the hospital and they introduce themselves, ask how you are and offer to bring food and/or help.

    Fortunately, while the electives here are not as extensive as what was offered in the bigger school, the educators here have been mostly good and this is the first time in 19 years of putting kids thru school that I can dial the cell phone number to the athletic director and get it answered by the 3rd ring and politely.

    I'm really sorry that she picked the town that she did because small town life CAN be something really special and neat.

  2. Smirking Cat says:

    No matter the size of the town, the size of the minds within that town is the limiting factor. And in this one in particular, the majority of the minds are unbelievably, horrifyingly small, with no ambition to expand or think beyond what they are told to think. Who wants their kids learning to be told what to think, and to accept that as normal, in any size town? No parent with genuine concerns for the children would keep them in a place like that.

  3. Crys says:

    I'm glad to hear that Bear was able to put any negativity and nervousness behind in having all three of you in the same room. That stinks about the town though. When I was in high school I was moved to a small town, however the adults in it were much more supportive and serious about our education. I hope that the kids have opportunities to help make up for the lack of interest on the adults in the area.

  4. lamadrastra says:

    Bear's going to recognize the difference between his family's households soon enough. And he'll appreciate how fortunate he is to spend time with you and Gary. Sho'nuff.

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