Thursday, June 11, 2009

Grouch

I am very cross right now. Here's why:

1) Several months ago, I signed my kids up for soccer, having been promised (a) that they would be on the same team, and (b) that Bub's friend Jake would also be on their team. I had visions of warm summer evenings, sitting around with Jake's mom on a blanket and eating the kids' watermelon while they ran around on the field. Instead, Pie and Bub were placed in entirely separate leagues, and although the two leagues play on the same night, they are in opposite corners of the high school field, so I sit by myself watching one team while hubby sits by himself watching the other team. Meanwhile, Jake's mom hangs out with all our other friends who signed up late but managed to be placed on the same team.

2) I have so had it with soccer already. The universal consensus (and by "universal" I mean "the consensus between my husband and my mother") is that this makes me a bad mother, unwilling to sacrifice an hour of my time once or twice a week so that my children can Get Exercise and Have Fun. What I see, on Monday and Wednesday nights, is not children having fun. It is children being miserable and being forced by parents to "get back on the field" with arguments like "we paid good money for this" and "if you don't get back out there we're not coming back" and "if you don't start playing right now we're not getting any ice cream!" Why, exactly, are we doing this again?

3) Several months ago, I signed Pie up for kindergarten, filling out multiple forms both at the school and at day-care so that Pie can be placed in a morning class, with on-site care after school. Then, a few weeks ago, with no warning or consultation with anyone, the principal decided to scrap the morning and afternoon classes and move all kindergarten classes to the alternate day system. Not Mondays, Wednesdays and alternate Fridays or anything like that - alternate day: Monday, Wednesday, Friday one week; Tuesday and Thursday the next. As far as I can tell, nobody except the principal actually likes this system, but as an added bonus, Pie has been assigned to a class that conflicts with the on-site day-care, so every other day we have to drop her off at the Catholic school on the other side of town, while all her friends from day-care this year remain together in the on-site class.

4) The courses I've been offered to teach for the fall are in conflicting time slots, and after two weeks I am still unable to get any clear information about whether the schedule can be modified. Textbook orders are due on Monday, and I still don't know for sure which courses I'm teaching or what my schedule will be.

Why must I continually be subjected to minor inconveniences? All I ask is for sharks with fricking laser beams attached to their heads!

35 comments:

Hannah said...

It's the "little" inconveniences that are the most annoying, I find.

That alternate week / day thing for preschool just sounds... dumb. I can't imagine what practical reason there would be for such a system.

Omaha Mama said...

Those don't seem little to me. I don't like when things don't fall into place! Grrrr.
Sorry that it's going that way, I know just how you feel. I hope that you get a turn in luck SOON!

Kyla said...

I would be cross, too!

Magpie said...

#2 is why I've avoided all organized sports thus far.

But what's with the sharks with laser beams on their heads?

Nicole said...

Yikes! The sharks would be a good idea. Also...one MILLION dollars.

Soccer has been the bane of my existence this spring, what with the howling winds and freezing cold nearly every single soccer night.

Man, that's frustrating.

buttercup said...

Oh, good lord, those are not minor inconveniences...those are giant sticks in the spokes of your year! It's such a pain when you plan ahead and then other people come in and mess everything up. I hope you find a mom who's fun to hang out with on the side of the soccer field:)

Jess said...

OK, I'm grumpy about this now too! I think it's time to call some people and complain. Demand that they switch Pie's class and switch someone's soccer team, too. This is just ridiculous.

Anonymous said...

So, when do you want to go to St. Jacob's? :) That might make you less cross; it always works for me!
Laura

niobe said...

I guess this makes me a bad mother too, but are things organized so both you and your husband need to go to watch the kids play soccer?

Basking in the disapproval of all the other parents, I used to drop Gray off at whatever organized activities he had and then go for coffee or do some shopping or hang out with Jake's mom (not really, but you know what I mean) and pick Gray up when he was done.

It wasn't nearly so bad when I didn't have to sit there watching. Just an idea.

kgirl said...

The kindergarten thing totally sucks, and would probably spur A Very Angry Letter from me, and maybe even a transfer (if possible).

But the soccer thing? I'm totally surprised anyone guaranteed you a spot on the same team for both kids - teams are always done by age, as far as I know. But yes, I would be annoyed too.

Soccer is not quite the little kid joy-fest I thought it would be either, but Bee seems to enjoy it a bit more each week. Partly because we got smart, and on game-day ALWAYS have 1) a nap 2) dessert and 3) watermelon for when she's sitting on the line. It helps tremendously.

the new girl said...

Just reading that makes me feel annoyed.

On your behalf, I mean.

Bea said...

Kgirl - I can certainly understand why they'd want to divide the 3-5 year-olds into two leagues - I just wish they'd made that decision before the sign-up date, because I would have waited a year to sign up the Pie if I'd known.

Niobe - Both of my kids are still a bit too wander-y to be left without some responsible adult watching them. The coaches are too busy to keep an eye on everybody, and if I knew the other parents it would be fine to get one of them to keep an eye on my kid, but for now we're both stuck going, and not even together.

Magpie - The sharks are from Dr. Evil from Austin Powers. And/or to eat up the school principal. Either way.

Margaret said...

Wow! That really stinks. I mean really.

Be strong.

Mouse said...

We did soccer for one 6-week session last spring. Scooter has not asked to go back. And I'm glad, since I didn't really enjoy listening to parents yelling "suggestions" from the sidelines non-stop.

The high school here does an alternating day schedule, but it works since they're supposed to be there everyday. When you're only there half the days, it's really hard to keep track. Not to mention figuring things like what happens when there's a snow day. And that's not at all minor since it messes with childcare--who else has a schedule like that for little ones?

Jennifer (ponderosa) said...

Long ago I read a book about an archaeologist living in Africa who explained his decision to move there by saying, "Living in America is like being stabbed to death with a butter knife." Of course you're in Canada but I believe these sorts of things are exactly what he had in mind.

Beck said...

Soccer, vomit. Once was enough.

My kids have all (well, so far) been in the all day, every day thing. It's had some good points - earlier literacy and stuff - and some bad points, mainly being that you have an exhausted four year old stumbling home white faced every night. NICE.

ewe are here said...

These don't sound like "little" inconveniences; in fact they sound "quite" inconvenient! I'd be rather pissed off, too.

mayberry said...

blargh. I hated soccer. Luckily my kid did too. Good thing her appendix blew up and we got to miss the rest of the season.

The kindergarten thing would have me spitting nails, though!

Oh, The Joys said...

Those are more than minor. I'm on your side. Down with the principal AND the soccer league. They have stuck it to you in a big way.

Jaelithe said...
This comment has been removed by the author.
Jaelithe said...

You know, when I was a kid I thought that most school administrative officials, based on my experiences with the ones I encountered, were generally power-hungry dictators who liked to change rules and schedules on a whim without regard to how much it might inconvenience students (or their families) just to throw their weight around.

Then when I got older I thought I must have been overreacting due to my youthful, rebellious nature, and that school officials couldn't really have been so bad.

Now I have a kid in school and I am back to my original opinion.

Christina said...

First off, Pie in kindergarten? Where has the time gone???

And those are pretty major inconveniences in my book. I'd be gathering up other kindergarten parents to protest that change. I can't imagine trying to figure out childcare for that arrangement.

Mary-LUE said...

Just another voice adding to the choir of "that IS inconvenient" and "organized sports is aggravating."

The soccer thing is the soccer thing. It is frustrating but typical. The school schedule thing? That schedule penalizes families that have two parents working outside the home and is ridiculous. There's somebody who that system works for and so everyone else is having to suffer through it.

I hope the teaching thing gets sorted out for you soon.

Aimee Morrison said...

A lot of these are in fact the diet coke of evil: minor, but C'MON! Super unnecessary of your world to make your life so complicated.

Boo. I would actually be too enraged to sit still, if I were you. A ground tone hum of seething anger ...

kate said...

{oops - left this sitting open for 24+ hours while I thought)


Those are all VERY annoying. I'm really doubting the value of organized exercise.

kittenpie said...

those are not minor inconveniences, my dear. What is that principal thinking? He is not being your "pal" at all. The fact is that anything else you want or need to do is based on one-week schedules, so he is totally screwing up things like daycare, courses, or work with that really quite stupid arrangement.

painted maypole said...

a friend of mine once gave me the advice not to put my child into soccer if I ever wanted to see the inside of my house again.

and so the May Queen participates in... basically... nothing. well, stuff at church, and camps when I am working and she gets free tuition.

totally works for me.

that Kindergarten schedule is INSANE

painted maypole said...

(and by the way, i'm up for ANY shark reference, even if it is austin powers)

Karen said...

sharks with laser beams would be a clearer target for your frustration. This is just too crazy. I hate it when I have too many places of frustration. I have no idea how to focus my energies in order to make the world just the way I like it!

wheelsonthebus said...

those are not at all minor and quite unprofessional.

HarryJack's Mom said...

ditto the not little comments, and I'm in your corner with the over-soccer experience. We opted out this spring, and you'd think we stunted their growth when you hear other parents' react, solidifying my theory that it's for the grown-ups more than the kids at this point. We did sign them up for a short t-ball session, tho :blush: Here's to grouching it all out and more convenience this summer!

b*babbler said...

Oh, I'm so with you on all of these, but the kindgergarden thing? How very ridiculous! How does the principal expect parents to find alternate care. Is he/she allowed to make unilateral decisions on something as significant as this? Is there any way you can fight it?

The soccer thing makes me SO glad we avoided soccer this year.

Lisa b said...

These don't seem all that little to me.
I would be beyond irritated, but that's just me.

trudymorgancole said...

Those are genuinely frustrating things that would have me banging my head against the wall.

We tried soccer for exactly one summer when my kids were 4 and 6. They weren't crazy about it, and I too was freaked out by the parents who seemed to take it so seriously. Especially this one guy with four-year-old twin girls on my daughter's team. He had a couple of older boys who were big into sports and he was the classic overbearing soccer dad, yelling at these tiny little girls to "Get back in the game!" and "Get the ball! Get the ball!! Shoot for the net!!!" in incredibly aggressive tones while the other girls, including my daughter, were wandering around looking at dandelions and being surprised if they encountered the ball.

Some years later, I was telling this story to a friend and I mentioned the names of the two little girls that the father kept bellowing across the field. My friend started laughing, as she recognized the names; the family lived near her. She said one day she'd seen them out playing street hockey and the father was yelling at one of the twin girls, then about seven: "If you can't take a puck in the face you shouldn't be playing the game!!!"

Kelly said...

Sharks with frickin' laser beams is not too much to ask.

And yeah, that would seriously annoy me.