I must confess that I am not really a fan of Halloween. I have always hated costumes and dressing up. In fact, I got married on Halloween  just so I wouldn’t have to wear a costume on Halloween any more. (We bolted for Vegas in the little red Porsche she had at the time and we went to one of those chapels on the Strip.) My wife says it was because it was the scariest thing she had ever done. The bartender at the place where we waited for the “limo” thought we WERE dressed up for Halloween. But ever since we had the boy, I’ve had to do Halloween again.

I do like the candy part.

The kids think Halloween is bigger than Christmas. No lie. I think they’d give up a week at Christmas to have Halloween and the day after as holidays. I can’t cope. Every year it’s the old…

“Are you going to give us homework on Halloween?”

“I’m gonna double up. Halloween is NOT a holiday! Besides, you’re too old to trick-or-treat. Sixth grade is the cut-off. Escort your little brother or sister and take your percentage of the candy, but you’re too old to trick or treat.”

They can’t believe their ears.

“What? I LUV trick-or-treating. I’ll be doing it until I’m dead.”

“You come to my house, I’ll send you packing, and tell you you’re too old. Trick-or-treating is for little kids. You’re the nerdlingers we threw eggs at in junior high. You guys are no different than those bums downtown who ask me for spare change. ‘Got any spare change?’ ‘Trick or treat.’  Same same. You want candy? Go to the dollar store and buy yourself enough to barf.”

“I’m coming to your house!”

“We’re giving out pencils this year. And they’re not even shiny. Got ’em at the dollar store. I think they might have Pokemon on them. Maybe Dora. They might even have clowns on them.”

Luckily Halloween is not on a school day this year. Some districts around here have given in and rewritten their calendars so that Halloween, and /or the day after, IS a student holiday. They plan an in-service or whatever, to avoid the nightmare.

Anyway, it was supposedly “Teacher Appreciation Day” today, and our “Leadership” class set out a Halloween-themed spread of parental baked goods, salads, sandwiches, various other luscious treats, and…buckets of candy. I hoarded a bunch for later. Wait, I’m drifting. The point was, yesterday they made an announcement over the PA in Homie Base that today was going to be TAD, and that students should try to show their appreciation for all the hard work that we do. Then the homies start saying, “Thank you, thank you. I really appreciate you…” and so on. Very sincere. So I say,

“Why don’t you show your appreciation in a more tangible (vocab word) way? How about all of you who want to really show their appreciation bring me a dollar tomorrow?”

About a dozen of them immediately start saying stuff like, “Got change for a five?” and proffering bills at me.

Today I get six bucks. One of them even had “Happy Teacher Apreciation (sic) Day!” on it, written in Sharpie.

“Thanks for the offers, but no thanks. It’s the thought that counts. It’d actually be better if you knew how to spell appreciation.”

Then I sit down to check my e-mail while they do the Friday Mental Floss, and I see that Mrs. G (she of smelly nuts fame) has forwarded me something. It’s an e-mail to her from one of the newbie counselors we have interning. It’s a short message saying that the counselor will be keeping a kid in her office, and so the kid would be late to Mrs. G’s class. After a glance, I’m wondering why Mrs. G would forward me this, saying I might find it funny. Then I read the last line:

“I’m sorry for the incontinence.”