…that’s what the Head of the School said to me today at Field Day. As I was running here and there, Mr. Head of School walks by and tells me I’m in trouble. It’s not the first time I’ve been in trouble with him. I’ve loitered in the staff lounge (even though I was given permission to drop something off in a teacher’s mailbox). He stopped me to tell me that the sign that reads “Staff Only” does NOT include me. Prior to that, after I had lost my two younger children while engaged in a deep conversation with another parent, he called me into the same area to show me the outcome of their water cooler experiment (imagine pools of water on carpet and four little feet doing the squishy, squishy dance). Hey, maybe that’s why that “Staff Only” sign was posted the next day.
Anyway, I am no stranger to Mr. Head of School being a little annoyed at me. Let me note here that he’s my friend. His wife is my friend. His kids play with my kids. Yet today, his look meant all business. Today the “You’re in Trouble” comment had a bit of a sting to it. Found out it involved a student, a smallish third grader. I was an accomplice to her crime. Actually, maybe instigator is a better word. But wait until you hear the entire case before you decide whether she or I should be handed down the “You’re In Trouble” charges.
As tradition would have it, Mr. Head of School (HOS) stands in a designated circle (actually a hula hoop on the ground) and kids wait in a line for their turn to throw balls drenched in water at him. The problem is…. Mr. HOS moves around and it’s nearly impossible for the younger children to hit him. I’ve even seen him slyly hook his foot under the hula hoop and move back. So I happened to walk by one of the 3rd graders – who was standing behind Mr. HOS and his hula hoop to retrieve the balls – and I said loud enough for Mr. HOS to hear, “It’s okay, Susan (not her real name), if you ACCIDENTALLY hit him when you’re throwing the ball back to the person in line.”
Well, Mr. HOS was probably busy pushing the hula hoop backward when I made the joke, which Susan took as a challenge I might add. Off I skipped back into the school to deliver lunches to the classrooms and lo and behold, who should I run into but Mr. HOS himself. And as I scurry along, he stops and says those three words in this post title.
YOU”RE IN TROUBLE… then he adds: “Susan hit me from behind and I told her she had to sit out for the rest of that event. I didn’t know YOU suggested it to her. She started crying and then I found out that YOU told her to do it.”
Now. Now. Could you have just told her to stop? Cool it? Give her fair warning? Noooo, she had to sit out of the coveted event and then, from what I have been told, she broke into tears. That’s what kills me. It’s one thing to get in trouble for my own shenanigans but another to involve an innocent child in my ploy to get Mr. HOS wet on Field Day — as much as you can get someone wet with a little ball soaked in slimy water unlike the complete and utter soaking he would get if our meager budget didn’t prohibit us from getting the traditional dunk tank that other schools use to douse their Heads of Schools (not sure which should be plural so I made both words plural). So I ask you: Wouldn’t you find a way to help these sweet school children get their trusty servant leader as wet as can be on the one and only day they could dare do so?
After I got the three words, I found Susan – smiling at the next event, thankfully, and I apologized and asked for her forgiveness. In all her sweetness she didn’t hesitate to forgive me. I gave her a big hug and told her again how sorry I was that I had caused her to get in trouble.
As for the getting in trouble part, I’m sure it won’t be the last time. In fact, I can’t wait to see what Mr. HOS does next year when I personally finance the dunk tank with the words:
Mr. Head of School… Step Right Up Because You’re Goin’ Down!
And Susan, I guarantee, you’ll be first in line!