Saturday, January 18, 2020

What goes around does not always come around



Once, and for a long time, there was a public elementary school in Peninsula, across the street from the post office. For the most part, they rubbed along, amicably. How could they not, you ask? Well, parents of elementary students sometimes had as much self-control as their children, and thought nothing of commandeering the post office parking lot for important events in the lives of their children, like Christmas concerts, spring graduations, spring concerts, grandparent lunch days, and so forth and so on.

Posting notices to please not use the post office lot for overflow parking did not work; on the whole these parents seemed not to use the post office. So Sue, the Postmaster, took to posting signs outside. Eventually they had to include the threat of ticketing and towing, but grammar school parents learned to parallel park on the adjacent street, and taxpayers could again use the post office.

Then the school district completed its jillion dollar plan, and moved the elementary school to the educational campus on the old Quick Orchard. The building did not stay empty, no indeed. The elementary school building was sold to the Cuyahoga Valley Christian Academy, which opened the Heritage Classical Academy, preschool through sixth grade.

The Academy opened a year ago. A year ago I seldom used the post office, so the resurgence of rude behavior went unnoticed by me. Until a recent Monday. I played cards, from one to three. I did not go home; I continued on to the post office, with towels to mail. I turned from Riverview to Bronson, to a dead halt in a line of traffic to turn into the school, two blocks away.  Not to worry; they would not block the entrance to the post office, I decided, and proceeded cautiously up the hill.

Well, yes they would! I “double stopped” next to the car behind the post office drive. When the blockage car cleared, that car surely would notice my right turn blinker and let me in. Wrong. She pulled up to block the drive. I pulled beside her, rolled down my passenger window, to let out maximum noise, and blew the horn loudly. Eventually she cautiously glanced over. I extended my left index finger and stroked it a few times with the right. Surely any elementary school parent recognized the universal “Shame On You” notation. She looked away.

I made as much engine and brake noise as possible in half a block, turned right onto Emerson and right into the post office exit. I said to the nice young man, in the slew of turnover since Postmaster Sue, “Is your drive often blocked by parents at pick up time?”

“Oh, yes. They do it all the time.”

“You need a ‘Do Not Block Drive’ sign,” said I. “I’ll call the mayor.” And I came home.

I was barely in the door and my phone rang, with a call from a Restricted Number. I wonder how they do that?

The caller identified himself as The Mayor. “My god, that got through town awfully fast!” said I.

The Mayor said he actually wanted to talk business with me, but was mighty curious about what went through town so fast. I explained the rude young parent problem; he promised to bring up the sign to the Planning Commission, and now, he would like to ask me if I would be interested in the position of Fiscal Officer.
And I told him, had he asked me last June, when I was casting about for something meaningful to do again, I very likely would have told him “Yes.”

“But now, I have a job I like very much.”

Oh, the irony. I was the township fiscal officer for thirteen years, until the accident in DC.  What goes around does not always come around. Hopefully excepting curing elementary school parents of rudeness.





34 comments:

  1. Timing is everything. I think weaving is the better of the two occupations. Regarding the post office, people suck, they really do.

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  2. Stick to weaving...let them solve their own problems....and why don't the brats walk to school?

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  3. It never ceases to amaze me how groups develop a sense of entitlement. These parents are not teaching lessons in good behaviour to their children.

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  4. Your story doesn't surprise me. Parents' actions regarding their children quickly become filled with emotion and disregard for the outside world. Not a good example for the children.

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  5. Interesting about the job offer. I'm glad you're happier with what you're doing now, though.

    As others have said, pushy and entitled parents are a poor example for their impressionable kids. I'm not sure signage will cure the basic problem, but it will help mitigate the effects.

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  6. What a coincidence that he would call you right then.

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  7. Most businesses here in that situation would a crossover marked Do not block on the road. But 'Kiss and Ride' lines are the bane of anyone living near a school here.
    Householders have been known sit on the grass verge outside their homes with signs saying - do not block my driveway - they've even stood by the line of traffic taking plate numbers then gone to the principals office to complain.
    Even then the car creep still goes on - moving slowly, stop start, behind the one in front, not taking any notice of where they stop.

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  8. I am glad that your talent was belatedly recognised. And gladder that you are happier with your current work.
    Self entitled people breed more self entitled people. I do hope this particular manifestation can be curbed if not cured.

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  9. It must have felt good to be asked about taking the old job again.

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  10. The job offer is a complement to you but something tells me you would be happier weaving. The parking situation is ridiculous and in my opinion should be taken up with the city/police, the Post Office and the school principal or person in charge. How can they teach childen when blatent law breaking is being tolerated in front of the children.

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  11. I would have thought the original signs would be still left there, like politicians heads on stobie poles weeks or months after the voting kerfuffle is cleared.
    It's nice the Mayor offered you the job you were so good at. I hope the person who takes the job is just as good.

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  12. Nice to know that you were missed and that they wanted you back as fiscal officer. Not sure about the timing of it though. Common sense should have told parents not to block the driveway into a public building like a post office. Hopefully signs will work???

    betty

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  13. I am glad they asked you to be fiscal officer again, even though you no longer want to do this. Joanne, on January 13th I sent a request to buy 2 more towels but never heard back from you about paying...Did you get this email? I wanted two cerise ones.

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  14. what a story! Glad that you made noise and glad the mayor phoned you and am especially glad that you have another job better than anything other! I am selfish and the towels are my favorite thing.

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  15. Hari OM
    It's the same the world over... my pet peeve in a similar vein is that of mums and prams. Especially in shopping malls. Privileged parking spots, and absolutley no sense of give-way even to an elder with a walking stick. Hope your mayor is good on word re posting signs. And clearly they have had difficulty filling (or keeping filled) that post!!! You're much better out of that, methinks. YAM xx

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  16. Timing is an amazing thing that sometimes happens, you made the right decision.

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  17. The world is full of what my husband calls "Main Events." I see that an herbal specialist has a similar sense of entitlement when it comes to posting comments on your blog.

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  18. I would not have recognised the stroking the index finger sign either. Maybe she was English.

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    Replies
    1. The stroking finger is well recognised here in Australia where it is often accompanied by a frown.

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  19. what irony indeed. as for the cars blocking the entrance to the post office I imagine a day or two of police giving tickets to those who block the drive would solve the problem. plus the sign. having had to force my way through Houston traffic to make a left hand turn more than once was enough to teach me to be considerate and not block intersections. too bad it's not a lesson as easily learned by others.

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  20. This all comes from kids no longer walking or biking to school, like we did back in the day. Now they have to be driven everywhere!

    Congrats on the job offer! It's always nice to be asked, isn't it, even if you don't take them up on it!

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  21. Unbelievable - both events involving the mayor. I have turned down all job offers in the past month due to health issues. Sad but needs must.

    Selfish narcissistic parents raise the same kind of children, right?

    XO
    WWW

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  22. It seems our problems here are the same Joanne - no children walk to school these days however near they live - and parents happily stop where they like - parking place or not.

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  23. I love that they once again need you. Foolish, foolish government for letting you go in the first place.

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  24. I'm guessing the Academy brings in students from all over town (hence the long line at carpool time). In addition to speaking with the Mayor, you may also want to have a char with the school principal. They may be able to bring the issue to the parent's attention in a more timely manner.

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  25. The blocking of all and everything happens here as well now. The parents feel no compunction about double parking their autos, many leave their engines running, while waiting for the school kids to come bouncing out of class.

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  26. I remember enjoying the walk to school with a couple of friends. If it was very cold my mother would give me a sweet 'to keep me warm'.
    But, of course, there was hardly any traffic then; trams, buses and the odd horse and cart.

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  27. And how do we think children learn bad behavior? Oh yes, from their parents.

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  28. Oh my! You are in demand, Joanne! What a shame. We have a similar problem here with the elementary school though the post office is not close by. The school needs to come up with a better solution for parents picking up children.

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    1. I googled up the Academy yesterday, and the only way to contact them via email was to fill in a request to consider a student form. At the bottom was a small box for parent comments. So, I filled in myself as the parent, Old Lady as the new student and at the bottom gave my complaint, including talking to the mayor.
      This is the elementary school; the Academy has another school in a somewhat bigger city, which is administration. They got my note, agreed blocking drives is illegal and will deal with it at once! I await their solution.

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