Monday, May 12, 2008

You must have holes in your head.

Friday at work I got to say something that I have never said before. Did you ever have one of those moments? You say something, and then you think to yourself, Hey, I bet nobody has ever said that before.

It happened like this: Carlos (not his real name) came up to me and asked me if I had any jumbo-sized paperclips he could have.

Normally, this is not an issue. I am a teacher. Carlos is a student. There are papers. Hence, paperclips.
However, Carlos has a 17% and an announced intention not to do any work and just chill until he can get his GED. He also likes to fling and shoot things. So I asked, trying not to sound too suspicious, What for?

"To put through my lip. This is irritating it." He gestured to what appeared to be a small zip tie he had somehow threaded through his lip piercing.
Carlos, you need to disinfect that. Paper clips aren't hygenic. You need something make from stainless steel. It's not a good idea.

He thought about that for a moment. Then,

"So you're not going to give me a paperclip?"

The ASL interpreter coughed to cover her laughter.
And that's when I said the sentence that I bet nobody else has said. And here it is:

"No Carlos, I will not give you a jumbo-sized paperclip to stick through the hole in your lip."

Now, earlier in the week a couple of kids were comparing gauges - in case you don't know, there is a whole speciality of products designed for making you look like a member of African tribe. There are, for instance, special tapers for gradually making the holes in your ears bigger, because when it comes to holes in your head perhaps size does matter, and as you may have seen at the local coffee house or grocery store, you can also buy little plates that snap across the large plastic holes in the ears. Perhaps that's to stop the whistling noise, I don't know.

I try not to make too many judgements about people who do this sort of thing even though, quite honestly, I think it looks stupid and the thought creeps unbidden into my brain that, perhaps, the wearer might be, too.

So Carlos and one of his buddies were daring each other to extend their gauging, and eventually approached me and asked if they could go to the nurse's office because, oddly enough, their earlobes hurt.

Let me get this straight: you've spent this class period trying to stretch even bigger holes in your head instead of working, and now you want me to send you to the nurse?

"Yeah, that's right."

I pondered for a moment and realized that legally and ethically, I had to send them, and so I wrote this pass out:
I heard that after the nurses finished laughing, they put the pass up on the bulletin board for display.



  1. Serenity Now. School's almost over.
    Funny how kids think doing something insanely stupid should be fixed by someone else.
    I'm glad my sons never got into the whole piercings thing. I do personally harbor the desire to put a little gold hoop through my eyebrow. I haven't figured out yet how to balance that into my professional image yet, so I haven't ever acted on that urge. Maybe someday.....

  2. Too funny! Makes me glad I only have to deal with grownups in my line of work. Some of the stuff that comes up is pretty off-the-wall, but nothing like that!

  3. Nice. Size mattered when I was in school too, but not with regard to body piercings . . .

    which might explain why i never went out much for team sports, but that's a whole 'other story.

  4. Just think... in your new job you can work with kids like "Carlos" to get to the bottom of WHY they do things like that. So much fun!

    By the way... it's snowed each of the last three days here in Idaho. Don't think that water is getting any warmer.

    Just thought you and the hubby would like to know!

  5. Wonder if they read the note.. HAAHAHAHA!
    I just want to live long enough to see all these middle aged pierce-freaks walking around, ear-lobes flapping, wrinkled tattoos, will be entertaining in my old age as I sit in the mall.
    The big business of the future tho will be how to close all these holes up and wipe the tats clean.
    There can only be so many guys and gals working at coffee houses.
    And I don't think you can raise a family very well on the if they want to go "mainstream" (nasty thought) then they will have to comply to some rules.

  6. hey... are you still coming to town for the marathon?

  7. Love the note. I bet they about fell out of their chairs!

    I am the biology teacher, so I get to see all these lovely piercings and homemade tattoos when they are infected. Student: "Um, do you think it is infected?" Me: "I am no doctor, but the pus is a good indicator."

    I had to send a student to the office once for sticking a ball point pen cap in his tongue piercing after he lost the end to his piercing (he didn't want it to close up) Interestingly enough, it hurt like hell and he needed help removing it. Sorry kiddo, they don't pay me enough for that. You are going to need to see an administrator about that one!

  8. I'm am all for expressing ones self, be it tattoo's, piercings, clothing, whatever.. and I've seen some beautiful works of art in the form of tattoo's, but what ultimately stops me from that sort of self expression, is how the hell will that cute little bird on my back look when I'm 90? Or do these kids stop to think what or how they will be looked at when they are 30 and trying to lead a professional life????

    Love the note!

  9. My mother often says that the next big careers will be closing holes and getting rid of tattoos. I was a residence hall director with college freshmen for 7 years and I am amazed that there are still things that I've never heard in the stupidity department!

  10. Seriously just cracking up over here!!

  11. They are so lucky to have someone like you for a teacher

  12. This reminds me of the time I picked my son up at school and shrieked when I discovered he had a saftey pin hanging from the cartilage in his ear. I demanded he remove it IMMEDIATELY, chided him for doing something that could infect his ear and leave him Van Goughed and took him home. That was the end of his spontaneous piercings. Okay so he got his tongue pierced by a pro when he turned 18 but I can't control everything!

  13. I never did get into the piercings... too many holes... I do wonder what my tattoos will look like when I am old and my skin is wrinkled. I say that laughing cuz I used to think 35 was ancient, my definition of old and wrinkled keeps changing... I many never be old and wrinkled! Let's see been over 14 years since my first tattoo. I remember going to my parents house to show them (I was in college, or just out? hmm have to do the math!) and the look on their face was hilarious! Truly horrified that I had done this willingly to my body! My dad said "this is the proudest day, the day my daughter got a tattoo" can you hear the scarcasm? I just recently added two more... hey no one can see them but hubby so it is all good. Ofcourse if pants get any lower, you all can enjoy my butt (I mean lower back) tattoo's I was told recently by a "young kid" it is now called a tramp stamp... nice, real nice!

  14. Funny, I think that what's my pass to the medical tent said something like that after IMLOU..."this idiot pushed to the outer limits of heat stroke and now she needs some IV fluids..." ;-)

    I think I remember seeing my 8th grade teacher there, too, but that could have been the glycogen depletion induced hallucinations...

  15. I love it!!! The buzz phrase at my school is also "You can't make this stuff up!" Along with "Just livin'the dream" and "I'm a dedicated educational professional just trying to make a difference." I stumbled across your blog and love it. I hope it will give me inspiration to get back to the gym. This might make you smile....overheard in a "retread" world history class..."What was Hitler's last name?" Seriously, you can't make this stuff.

  16. Hi, remember me?
    I'm just an old friend of yours from high school, who wanted to remind you about the stupid things you did when you were Carlos's age. Yess... you thought those secrets were hidden beneath the rubble, but I know them all. You think that you can erase those high school events from your memory but you can't; now you and I are old farts but we don't have the right to cut up teenagers.

    You have a very negative outlook on teenagers, so why are you a teacher?

    Well, you haven't seen the last of me.

    Furthermore, those holes are in the ears not the head. Spongebob has holes in his head. Carlos has them in his EARS.

  17. Nope, don't know you. More importantly, you don't know me. You're just some pathetic loser who stumbled on my blog and decided to lay your little egg. Have a nice day.


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