So I am no longer in charge of Slime, which if you’re not familiar with that story I would get yourself a snack and give it a read because…. it’s long. It’s a long, long saga of slime. Instead, they’re having me do the Saturday morning kids classes. Or rather, they’re continuing to have me do the morning classes because… why train someone else to work with unattended small children when we’ve already broken this one’s spirit?
And if you were internetting at the same time I was last night, you were probably aware that my girlfriend and I were making friendship bracelets. Which is very cute, but the reason we were doing that was because today I was supposed to teach little kids how to make them. I’d never made one successfully before and the directions were super unhelpful, so she was showing me how. (Well… it’s still pretty stompin’ cute in the context).
So what I learned last night was that they really are a labor of love because if you tried to sell them at the fair cost of labor, no one would buy it at that price and you really gotta like that person to put in all that work and then give it away for free.
“Oh, how shall I, a mere child, show the bonds of our unending friendship? I shall develop early stages of carpal tunnel syndrome as a symbol of our platonic love!”
This is a childhood experience that I never had. Ostensibly because I was the crafty person in the school and I had all of two (2) friends and … eh. Eh. It was the 90′s and my homework already resembled a mountain, so… eh.
The bracelet that I was supposed to make was a chevron, but it looks more like argyle. Which is a look I dig but I’m mentally preparing dialogue for when someone is upset it doesn’t look like it should.
There is no way in the squishiest layers of Hell that a four-year old is going to figure out how to make this. I’m 30 and I’m screwing up, so I figure I’ll have a couple of simpler options. Basically, I would have them braid their colors together and put beads on it. Seems simple, right?
… ha… haha… oh.
I’m sure that my plan would have potentially worked if there were different circumstances, but here we are…
I had… no students.
11:45, fifteen minutes before I was meant to close up. And then I had two. Then five. Then seven, nine, ten. As soon as I gave kids instructions to pick out their colors, more would come in. So half the room was bored and waiting for me to start and the other half was spending a lot of time trying to decide which color pink they want. One of them has her arm in a cast. Something wasn’t thought through.
It is 11:55 when I finally get started.
“Measure the length from your wrist to your elbow, and then double it.”
Three adults failed this part.
“Fold it in half and tie a knot at the top.”
One kid failed this part.
“Do y’all know how to braid?” A mix of nods and shakes. “Okay, if you know how to braid, go ahead and braid your colors together.”
Three adults failed this part. I had to teach one kid how to braid because his mom refused to show him and eventually just took over herself. None of the parents were willing to help their kids learn, because they insisted that they already knew but clearly did not. I had to teach some of the adults.
About halfway through this, a kid says “when are we going to make the slime?”
“Slime isn’t until one-o-clock.”
“We thought this was the slime thing.”
How do you get halfway through a friendship braid tutorial and realize that it isn’t slime? Did you think we were going to put it in the slime? Did you think that we were going to dip it in borax and it was going to suddenly be slime somehow? Did you miss the part in the beginning when I said ‘are you here to make friendship bracelets?’ Because I said that to literally everyone that came in through the doors.
“Okay, now you’re going to put your beads on.” This part they knew how to do. “And when you’re done, you’re going to put a bead over one end and tie a knot around it, then do the same on the other side.”
All of the adults failed this part.
Around this time, three girls abandoned the craft for their mom to finish in favor of watching whatever mindless children’s entertainment was being played in the baby carriage belonging to a completely different family. So they’ve just left the whole thing to their mother, who is frantically trying to finish because these kids have already learned the age-old art of ‘make someone else do it.’
We’re down to seven people and one of the youngest says ‘face painting.’
“The ad said that there’d be face painting.”
“FACE PAINTING YAY!”
Suddenly they all want their faces painted. It is 12:25, the class ended 25 minutes ago, I’m supposed to clock out in five minutes, and seven kids are now under the impression that we’re doing face painting.
“Face painting isn’t until next week. Next week.”
And now… tears.
The one that brought it up knocked over a bucket of perler beads. The mom is now screaming at her, everyone is upset and I am now ten minutes late to clock out. Some of them are still asking about slime, so now they’re alternating between slime and face painting and the truth is that they want both, but I’m giving them neither and oh man… toddlers are not a pleasant sight when you tell them that they don’t have any choice in the matter.
They finally figure that the best thing to do is leave, no one is happy, and I’m pretty sure the little one is grounded.
All of this- all of this
All of this could have been avoided if you’d shown up fifteen minutes later, but sure- Zerg rushing the teacher seems like a way better plan, doesn’t it?
As I am cleaning up the string mess, a line is forming at the door.
“Is this the slime thing?”
“It hasn’t started yet.”
“I’ll wait.” Haha. I’ve played this game. You’ll wait, but you’ll complain to my manager that we made you wait for the event to open before letting you in.
I finish cleaning up, I get out the door, and the same woman jumps to get into the classroom.
“It doesn’t start until one, ma’am.”
“It said noon!”
“One to three. The event is one til three.”
I know that the color ‘puce’ is hotly contested in terms of it’s actual definition, but her face turned the puciest color I have ever seen. Her son is tugging impatiently at her pant leg. She tells her tiny human that he has to wait longer.
Haha, don’t care. I’m out, kiddos!
This post is brought to you by Children’s Tears.