Do you remember when you used to hide your face when your parents said or did something embarrassing? I have become the embarrassment.
Here is a little background: Our school district consolidated and closed an elementary school. The result is more traffic at each of the remaining schools. There is limited parking. To avoid any frustration I usually wait around the back and make my 7th grader and his friends walk to me. Unfortunately, another kid needed to hitch a ride in the swagger wagon. So, I had to pull around front. The crossing guard was standing directly in front of the building, frantically directly traffic. She is clearly devoted to her job. I really do appreciate her efforts to keep kids safe. That being said, she may be a little too obsessed with the flow of traffic.
I had to stop at the intersection to allow my son’s best friend out of the car to fetch this other kid. Apparently, I am supposed to throw children from a moving vehicle because the crossing guard went bananas. It became an episode of Modern Family. She started screaming at me to move. “Go, Go, Go, Go!” Veins were protruding from her forehead. I expected her, at any minute, to turn green. Crossing Guard, Angry! (On that note, can someone tell the Hulk that capris are so 2000. He needs to get longer pants for his fits of anger.)
The door of the swagger wagon wouldn’t open. The minivan has to be in park. I can’t figure out how to switch the child safety lock. I am not sure that I want to. I fell out of a car when I was younger. My Mom was driving. My sister, her best friend and I all insisted on sitting up front. Who needs seat belts? Wind up the window, light a cigarette and let’s go! My mom was turning around in a parking lot when the door swung open and I ate pavement. To this day I get flashbacks whenever I see a Caprice Classic. Back to my story, we had now been at the stop sign for all of 10 seconds. The crossing guard was losing her mind. I put the car in park, fumbled for the lock and my son’s friend jumped out. Then, I put the window down. I got into a war of words with a lady wearing a neon vest. It was like a flashback to high school. “You need to calm down!” I hollered. “Calm down! He was trying to get out of the car.” She fought back. “You need to keep it moving,” she shouted. “There are buses that need to leave, children need to cross the street!” I went on about how I was sick and tired of being screamed at by crossing guards. (It happened earlier in the day at another school. I won’t even go there.) A group of teenagers standing on the corner began to cheer. Another Mom in a SUV raised her fist out the window and yelled (I swear to God) “You tell her!” Was I leading a movement?
I glanced in the rear view mirror. My son and his friends were slouched in their seats, hoods up to hide their faces. I couldn’t explain to pubescent boys that it was that time of the month. (I would have addressed the situation a tad differently) I wiped the spit off my chin and drove away. I am not sure who looked crazier, but I know the crossing guard will never do that again.