Saturday, May 30, 2009

Morning Coffee and .....

It is a gorgeous day here in Mount La-La Land.

My wife is off at work and the only assigned tasks given were to put the canvas on the now three year old Gazebo and to "shape those bushes".

I'm blogging and drinking coffee.

Not out of rebellion mind you, I just am getting ready to greet the day and this how I do it. I'm working up to it.

I have a food shopping trip, lawn work, laundry and an assortment of other fun activities ahead as well.

Yesterday we were dangerously close to a melt down on the WWOOF farm. I was on a rather heated conference call in the afternoon at work about upcoming weekend IT activities when my cell rang with Oldest Son's number. He was saying something about how he felt like he was alone and that his friend Tyler was coming to the farm unexpectedly.

Tyler apparently found the worst Hostel in Italy in Montagnana. They locked him in and then shut off the water and electric. Finally, he checked out and headed to the farm ahead of schedule.

Oldest Son must have felt like he was between Tyler and the folks that run the farm since having guests must not be in the WWOOF charter.

In the end everything turned out OK and we got a much better report later that night.

I pick him up Thursday.

His brother got a letter in the mail from the High School about unexcused absences. Yes, we knew he was out sick and had given him notes but apparently that's not good enough in NJ any longer. A parent is allowed to write one note per semester. If a child has other absences the notes must come from a Doctor or from a college if you were on a visit.

Since when does a kid have to go the Dr for every sick day?

Honestly he was not quite sick enough to go to the Dr and not quite well enough for school. 4 times. Now he may have to do extra time in the summer to make up for it.

This is beyond ridiculous.

First of all, I just about guarantee you that every one of his teachers phones it in from here until the end. It'll be movies and TV shows until June 18th.

Second of all, the kid made up the work. That is what you do. You make up the work. That's what happens when I'm sick at work. The email doesn't stop, I have to catch up. I don't have to come in on Saturday to sit there.

So I wrote a flowery letter to the career counselor who apparently is the arbitrator in these unexcused absence cases. Exactly how is this person qualified for this, I don't know.

If he's anything like my High School Guidance Counselor, he's nuts anyway. Mine looked like a bald eagle and once suggested I read "word power" from Reader Digest. Where exactly is a 16 year old going to find a Readers Digest? Nuts. He should have been telling me about a career as an actuary.

Youngest Son says the Counselors always just sign off on the absences anyway, thus making the whole process a sham.

So the letter is off, faxed in fact and we are waiting to hear if the summer routine will be disrupted by the state of NJ putting it's nose where it shouldn't go.

I'm sure that the law makers had good intentions, making this crazy law about parental notes up but the problem is that these things almost always have unintended consequences. Let's review what they have done here: Taken the authority away from the parent, who loves and understands the child and given it to a career counselor who would have a hard time picking the kid out of a police line up. (I think he's number three but I'm just not sure. Number 3 could you step forward).

Suddenly I realize I'm ruining the beautiful day in Mount La-La with thoughts of the evil state and school. Back to my happy place.

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