Tuesday, May 5, 2009

I'm Raising a Bunch of Criminals

A Shady Character

My son is in the seventh-grade and this trimester is taking French. He adores his teacher and is enjoying the class. His grade is 120%. Yes, 120. He didn’t just give an extra ten percent. No. He gave twenty. So, yes, he’s doing well in school. Now you might think a kid with straight A's would remember to bring his French grade report home. You’d think he might even want to show this particular grade report to his parents. But, though intelligent, my son is not organized. Not at all. It seems all three of my kids were born with the why do it now when it can be done later gene. There is such a gene. It's all nature and has nothing to do with nuture; i.e. it not my fault. Nope. Nuh-uh. Never.

At any rate my son forgot to get his grade report signed and a signed report was worth five points. FIVE POINTS. And since my son was intent on gathering points like a miser hoarding pennies he signed the paper himself, in my name. Yup - forgery. Now it seems that the twelve-year-old and his, ahem, slightly older mother have disparate signatures. My son got caught.

Bless his heart his first instinct was to call me from school and tell me everything. That afternoon my husband and I conferred and decided this incident was not entirely our son’s fault. After all we allowed him to sign our name on a note so he could ride the bus home with a friend. And he wasn’t trying to hide anything bad. So my husband called and talked both with the French teacher and the principal. It seems the school was less willing to brush off this incident. I do see their point; forgery and plagiarism are serious crimes. My son was given a day of in-school suspension. We tried to explain to him that the other notes he signed were more like powers-of-attorney because we had knowledge of them and had given him permission to do so. In this case, however, we were not consulted and therefore it was wrong.

I also told him he might see Molly Ringwald during detention. But, because I AM SO OLD, the reference went right over his head.

Well it seemed one out three kids was a criminal. Not bad. I mean statistically one of them was going to be a bad seed, right?

My son did his time, we exculpated his record and left for our weekend getaway. Since we were on vacation (probably the largest vacation we’ll take this year) we lightened up with our frugal regulations. Each child was given a souvenir budget with the understanding that once spent there would be no additional purchases.

My youngest daughter immediately spent all her money on a webkinz from the local toy store. Really I'd rather not talk about it. A webkinz. But it was her money to spend.

Middle daughter brought us to a pet store where she purchased a dog biscuit cookbook. My son elected to save his money until he found just what he was looking for. Now while in the pet store my youngest daughter spied a mouse. No not a real one. A toy mouse. She wanted this mouse for our cats. She needed this mouse for our cats.

Ah a perfect learning opportunity
I thought and told her no, her budget was spent and perhaps next time she’d not spend it so readily. Easy enough. Having imparted an important life lesson I proudly walked out of the store.

We left to pick up their father from his conference and go on a chicken coop tour (The Tour De Coops). Halfway through our tour my son yells out from the backseat, “Hey?!! Where did you get that?!!” (think Target Lady)

Yup, you guessed it. My daughter had the mouse. Filched. Purloined. Stolen.

She immediately began to bawl, refused to talk and refused to leave the car. She bellowed for forty-five minutes. During this period said mouse also disappeared (thrown out the window I suspect).

That evening we returned to the pet store to pay for the missing mouse. The shop owner said that was a first and thanked us for our honesty.

We, the parents, may be honest but it seems we're raising a bunch of criminals. The way I see it if this morals thing doesn’t work out we have the makings of a mafia style business. I’m just glad no one’s yet wielded a gun.



Molly said...

oh shalet, this is hilarious! i've been thinking about a post regarding my resident potty mouths - i think our kids should get together and form a bleeping merry band of bandits.

Donna said...

You made me laugh out loud. Our children have a special way of keeping us grounded don't they....so we don't get too carried away about our parenting skill and expertise.

TAMI said...

Ah, if there's any comfort in being "normal" you should definitely take it!!

Tammie said...

i think your son is very, very cool.
honestly, i see the point of the school administrators, but really...i think they should put more energy into other things. if the worst thing a kid is doing is not getting his awesome grade signed by mom, the kids doing pretty well. was this a slow day at the school?

Gayle said...

Shalet, that is so funny! I hope you can save your other daughter from beginning a life of crime!

LaughingFamily said...

I am laughing out loud at this post, too! She stole a toy mouse?! REALLY? The logic in their heads just cracks me up...I love the explanation of "power of attorney", by the way. Never too early to learn that lesson!

kraftykash said...

Im blown away that they put him in in school suspension! Its not like he cheated to get the 120%. Loved your blog today, made me giggle.

Jodi said...

Don't worry, the kids will grow up to be great people with good morals. You're a great mom doing the right thing. Although I do say I was cracking up reading this post.-

SE'LAH... said...


Suspension for that? I guess they have a lot to give out these days? No child left behind and all...

margie said...

shalet, too funny, not funny, but life is neither, it just rolls out one episode after another. it is not easy raising criminals!!