Funny story. I was in my classroom this morning, not ten minutes after the tardy bell rang, and our school librarian comes in to tell me that the girls' school is on the phone because my daughter had snuck a snake to school.
That was my first alarming thought. Just back up the bus and run over me again, because I thought I just heard you say that my daughter took a snake to school.
My second and third thoughts came hurtling right after that first one, and they went something like this.
1) The snake is not real. It can't be real.
2) This has Stinkerbell's name written all over it.
I told my sweet librarian that there is no way my daughter could have a snake in her backpack and that somebody needed to look a little closer because we don't have a snake, we don't have access to any snakes, and we don't like snakes. Or something like that.
So the librarian goes back to the office and then comes back just a few minutes later. At this point she can hardly contain her laughter so she gestures for me to step into the hallway. Apparently the snake is real, and my daughter is afraid to talk to me because she thinks I'm going to freak out.
Darn straight I'm going to freak out. I'm already formulating the tongue lashing and its accompanying can of whoop *%$ in my mind.
"You had your school call my school and pull me out of my classroom to hear that you snuck a snake to school and I'm not supposed to freak out? Really?"
So I go to the office to talk to the other school. By the time I get there, someone has managed to gather their wits about them and investigate further to find that, yes, the snake is really rubber. RUB. BER.
Yep. The snake is rubber and Zoe Bug (Zoe Bug?!!!!) is blubbering in the background "Annika put it in my backpack, blah, blah, blah."
Ah ha! That little
brat, er . . . spirited child.
And I ask you this, do you think we call her Stinkerbell for nothing?
I told the school secretary to throw the book at her and I went back to my classroom. End of story.
Now, I'd be lying if I told you that I was not just a tinsy bit amused by this whole adventure. In fact, I couldn't wait to get home so I could get to the bottom of the whole convoluted story. And while I don't think I'll ever have the whole story and its accompanying shades of truth, this is what I did manage to gather from my thorough investigation.
First off, I asked Stinkerbell in my calmest, most unfreaking out voice, "Do you want to tell me about the snake?"
"Uh. Yeah. Good," replies the Stink.
"I'm sorry, but that was not a complete sentence."
"Mom, can I have something to eat?"
Now I know that this sort of verbal exchange is quite typical between a parent and their teenager, but my kids are six and eight, so why is the communication not flowing on a two way street here?
Let's try this again.
ANN-IK-KA. Why. Did. You. Have. A. Snake. At. School?
Sheepish grin alights. S-l-o-w-l-y followed by her version of the truth. "I gave the snake to Zoe at Mattie Cake's house and she just forgot."
Reeeeee-ally? (said in a slightly . . . okay very, sarcastic voice with a bit of shriekage on that last syllable)
Apparently Zoe cannot stand to listen to the sewage spilling forth any longer and she blurts out "She did not! Annika snuck it in my eyeglass case and I did not know it was there and I opened it up and I thought it was real and my friends saw me cry and I was a little embarrassed."
So now we're going from not complete sentences to run-on sentences. I'm getting dizzy. Let's just go straight to the evidence, shall we?
This eyeglass case.
And this snake.
This snake that so does not look real to me.
Now, I can sort of put myself into this little scenario, and it's not difficult to imagine the drama and confusion. Zoe Bug is the Freak Out Queen and she very well could have been hysterical. Plus, she, apparently, prolonged the confusion when she managed to explain to the office staff that the snake wasn't moving because it was nocturnal.
But seriously, if I'm lyin,' I'm dyin.' Does this snake look real to you?
As part of my formal investigation, I measured him, and when I pulled him taut to eliminate his bendy sections, he was a whopping eight inches long.
And because I'm so mean, I looked very closely for a stamp that might inform me that he was MADE IN CHINA, but there was no such thing to be found.
Dang it. That would have been so cool.
So, Grandma, if you're reading this, the Snake Charmer wants to come visit and she wants to know if she can bring her snake.