Killing me softly, without song.

Were I to be the lovely and gracious Badger -- and it has been authoritatively stated I am not -- I would have started this post with something like:

"Dudes. Oh, DUDES."

And you would have totally gotten the tenor, right away, of the thing in general.

In particular, this Junior High thing will be, indirectly, the death of me. You heard it here first. Here's the problem: Between the change of school, and the change in academic level, and the change in environment (coeducational vs. single-sex and nuns vs. priests) the sort of scholastic hand-holding has come to a sharp, screeching, decisive halt.

By Day 2 he was coming home with copious notes and two hours' worth of homework and reading. The fissure in this situation, as you might've spotted, is that the average 11 year old is not exactly, y'know, keen on doing homework. NOS (who has managed to cruise by effortlessly on raw talent lo these many years) as you may have further surmised, falls within that category. He doesn't particularly fret himself about putting the Spanish notes in the Math binder or following the various and sundry protocols.

Now, TFBIM, being an accountant, does.

TFBIM frets herself rather luxuriantly and given her unique turn of mind, doesn't handle it especially well. For a piquant change of pace, she is currently on the dark side of the moon, cycle-wise (a bit of knowledge utterly lost on NOS) and therefore even more assertive. So, in sum, there is a certain atmosphere in the house.

Pretty much every day brings a new interrogation of which the KGB would be deeply covetous. "Did you do Science Packet A?"
"No, you need to study some more."
"Have you finished your project?"
"Why didn't you tell me you had a Grammar quiz?"
"You have to turn in the absentee permission thing to the vice-principal."

Every once in a while, NOS will answer something (for instance, "Uh, no, I forgot.") and TFBIM will look as if she is trying to decide whether an aneurysm or a coronary would best express her displeasure. When you combine the dicier portions of the cycle with the grave displeasure of a child who steadfastly does not do as he is supposed to do, with the added cultural component of having a temperament that skews towards hair-trigger-livid, it makes for a Perfect Storm. It is not difficult to distinguish between TFBIM in this frame of mind and a dewy spring morning.

It pretty much goes on like that.

Every day.

This makes things difficult for me, as I have maintained the only way for a man to be happy in marriage is to have a wife who is not on the warpath. Nothing good, and many things bad, will happen when one's beloved is in a state of foul agitation. The best I can do is make a chocolate offering to the volcano goddess and then bugger off at warp speed.

This is part of NOS' educational process, though. The part of learning to be husbandly.

-J.

Comments

Badger said…
If NOS's junior high offers the ability for parents to check their students' grades, assignments, etc. ONLINE, I suggest you do everything in your power to make sure your beloved remains blissfully unaware of that feature.

TRUST ME ON THIS.

And also, welcome to the most recent 12 months OF MY LIFE.
Joke said…
Alas, TFBIM is not only aware of said features (which are extensive) but, at parent night, she was the parent who was raising her hand to ask questions and get clarifications.

Yes.

I'm married to that mother.

-J.
Stomper Girl said…
Um, well maybe he'll thank her when it's all over and his grades are excellent?
Joke said…
It's very likely.

If this hasn't killed her by then.

-J.
HEATHER said…
As the product of a Catholic School for 10 years, I can say if everyone survives, NOS will not let you forget for a minute the torture that he has gone through.
Yes, indeedy, every chance I get I throw it in my mom's face about how awful it was(you know square peg/round hole business). (SHUDDERS at the memory.)
It is the main reason, I will be homeschooling the PaddyCake starting next week!
I may need to take this paragraph:

When you combine the dicier portions of the cycle with the grave displeasure of a child who steadfastly does not do as he is supposed to do, with the added cultural component of having a temperament that skews towards hair-trigger-livid, it makes for a Perfect Storm. It is not difficult to distinguish between TFBIM in this frame of mind and a dewy spring morning

and with slight alterations (for textual reasons only)make it into a t-shirt.

I have the chest to carry it.
shula said…
Dude. Oh, Dude,

I'm staying right out of this one.

Because there Is No Solution.

I support the buggering off bit.
olivespearls said…
Sooo much more eloquent than the hackneyed, "If Mama ain't happy, ain't nobody happy."
I was sure I had commented here.

You are writing of the future for us. In six months time our NOS will be off to his Marist Brothers high school.

With one major advantage.

He will be weekly boarding!!!

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