Thursday, November 17, 2005

Palmetto Bugs, Cheating Husbands, and a Class Full of Kindergarteners

A kindergarten teacher (I'll call her Gwen) in Florida (home of large cockroaches known as palmetto bugs) found out that her husband was not only cheating on her but had an entire separate family of two children with his girlfriend. It had been going on for YEARS and Gwen had had no inkling of it. Gwen and her husband and their two children had just moved into a new home, it was the first of a new school year, and she was exhausted. The news of his long-standing affair was the last straw. She confronted him but he was unrepentant. He told her that he was leaving her because he knew she was stronger than the girlfriend and she would survive. To say that she was devastated would be an understatement. He left. She was furious with no outlet to express it. The next day, Gwen went to school as usual - not knowing how she would make it but determined to keep life as normal as possible. As the morning wore on, one of the children told her that there was a bug in the "home living" part of the classroom. Gwen grabbed a fly swatter and went into the kitchen area where the enormous palmetto bug was crawling across the floor. Thoughts of her cheating husband combined with seeing a repulsive and gross cockroach in her classroom was too much. She snapped. The bug became her husband, and she started slamming the fly swatter against it and yelling at it: "HOW COULD YOU DO THIS TO ME, GEORGE?" "TAKE THIS, GEORGE!" "HOW DARE YOU, GEORGE?" "GEORGE, YOU'RE SCUM!" She kept yelling and hitting the roach over and over and over until her fury had dissipated. Spent, she stopped, took a deep breath and turned around to see the children standing behind her, fixated by the spectacle. As her heartbeat and breathing slowly returned to normal, one little boy timidly asked, "How did you know the cockroach's name?"

And, friends, THAT is a TRUE story! I swear.

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