Monday, May 28, 2007

Tell me if you're not here

Yesterday, I stopped by the ATM to pick up some cash. On the machine was the following sign:

Audio instructions available for the visually impaired.

So my question is this: who exactly was the sign for?

Tuesday, May 22, 2007

Are hamburgers supposed to be that color?

This past weekend I decided to visit my incredibly handsome twin brother Ron and his family. (After all, I am my niece's favorite uncle.) A few weeks ago, Ron asked if I wanted to come up on Thursday so that I could go along with him on a field trip with Shayla's school. Naturally, I said yes.

Well, he found out a few days prior that he misunderstood. It wasn't a "field trip"; it was a "field day" where the kids get to do various outdoor events to celebrate the coming end to the school year. Even so, I still planned on being there.

Ron failed to mention that he volunteered us to work one of the events for the morning shift. We ended up running the obstacle course. Every 10 minutes, a group of kids would arrive at our event. Ron would go over the course while I demonstrated, and then we had the kids start. Occasionally, Ron and/or I would be challenged by the kids to race them, so we HAD to comply. (And yes, we let the kids win. Most of the time.) Once their time was up, they moved on to the next event, and we got the next batch of kids.

Once the morning group was done, the kids with parents there had the option of going home for the day. Shayla decided she wanted to eat lunch in the cafeteria, so we stayed. I enjoyed a hearty lunch of milk and an unusually-colored hamburger made of a meat-like substance.

After lunch, Shayla again had the option of going home, but one of her classmates was having birthday cake later that afternoon, so she wanted to stay. We watched a movie and then headed to the playground for recess. After recess, things got interesting.

As we were walking back to the classroom, an alarm bell sounded and an announcement was made that the school was being locked down. All the kids and teachers (and dads and uncles) had to rush to the classrooms, lock the doors, and turn out the lights. The kids each sat in their individual cubbyhole.

While sitting in the dark, we adults found out that a man with a gun was within a 30 mile vicinity; thus, the lockdown. He apparently had shot a police officer and stolen a car. He abandoned the car in a nearby town and took off on foot.

In an ideal world, the kids were supposed to sit in their cubbyholes in the dark until the lockdown was over. However, after about 30 minutes they started to get antsy, so they quietly had the birthday cake in the dark, and the teacher read them a story.

After another 30 minutes, the school started letting kids out of the classroom if their parents were there to pick them up, so we headed home. We planned on swimming at the nearby community pool that afternoon but decided to stay inside until after the gunman was caught. As far as we know, he never was.

Thankfully, the rest of the visit was much quieter.