Wednesday, May 7, 2014

Fuzzy caterpillars and caffeinated ants

First kiddo flunked his eye exam.

He couldn't read the bottom line of the chart. Or the line above that. Or the line above that. Or the next line. The doctor's assistant giving him the exam asked if this had been going on for a while, and I said, no, this is news to me, wondering how soon I could get him to an eye doctor.

"What do you see?" I asked him later, in the car, and he said that things far away are blurry. "When I'm sitting at my desk, I can't read the whiteboard. The words look like fuzzy caterpillars."

I do admire kiddo's accidental poetry.

Why is it kids will tell you all about the Lego truck they're building or the complete plot of an episode of "Paw Patrol," but fail to mention that they can't read the whiteboard at school? Doesn't that seem like the important thing?

But aside from that, Mrs. Lincoln, how was the play?

I can't say I'm surprised really, though I'm kicking myself a bit for letting him go too long between eye exams. My parents figured out I needed glasses when I couldn't read the blackboard at school (I was a few years older than kiddo). DH wears glasses. All of our parents and most of our siblings wear glasses. We are a nearsighted lot. Inevitably one or both of our kids were going to need glasses.

Kiddo seems more or less excited by the whole thing. He's very focused on the box the glasses are going to come in, and whether he'll get a box, and when will he get the box? And he insisted on blue frames. He so rarely expresses a fashion preference of any sort -- if the clothes cover his body, he's happy -- that I went along with it.

Next of course we'll have to drill into him proper glasses care, and not misplacing or tossing the glasses anywhere, and how to clean them with the proper cloth and not your shirt. (I know everyone secretly uses their shirt at some point or another. Still better to discourage it.) I'm sure this will go well. I'm also sure we'll be taking advantage of the one-free-replacement clause, after kiddo attempts to find out whether glasses fly.

When I brought him back to school after the eye exam, we were met with suspicious giggles from the office staff. And a couple of ant jokes. Already I was worried. And then they explained: The previous day, kiddo had been sitting in a front room, not sure why -- maybe to talk to the 504 coordinator -- and he happened to notice a bunch of ants. And he happened to be sitting near the office coffee pot. Which was full of coffee. He decided to kill the ants, and by the time anyone caught on, he had created ant-flavored coffee.

Let me repeat. He put ants. In the office staff's coffee.

"He didn't understand what he was doing," one staffer assured me. "It's a boy thing."

"We do have an ant problem in that room," said another. "It was an organic solution."

Don't you feel like they should've been mad, all things considered? At least mildly miffed? Because if someone spiked my tea with ants, I'd be pretty annoyed. Nothing gets between me and my caffeine.

But no. A third staffer waited for kiddo to walk back to his classroom before, chuckling, sharing the kicker: Kiddo watched her pour out the coffee and said, "Wow, they're all dead. Except that one. He must be a ninja ant."

I bet you had no idea ninjas came in ant form. Oh, the things kiddo can teach you.

The glasses should be ready in about a week, and then we'll have the new, improved, four-eyed kiddo. No word on whether the remaining ants have already skipped town.

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