Wednesday, January 24, 2007

A Modern Day Parable

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Wearily hammering in his last tent peg one bitterly cold midnight at the oasis, a nomad was surprised to hear his camel say, ‘Master, it’s freezing to-night, and I think I’m coming down with a touch of something nasty. Would it trouble you if I were to put my nose through the flap of your tent to keep it from freezing?’Once he’d recovered from the shock of conversation with a humped ruminant, the nomad reflected that if he could tolerate the halitosis, the camel’s warm breath might
help to keep his feet warm in the wee small hours. And so it proved.
The next night as the sun was setting, the camel, sniffing and wheezing to full dramatic effect, declared his cold much worse and wondered aloud if tonight, he might be allowed to poke his whole face inside the flap. His owner agreed (although it was a shock finding that face on the pillow next to him in the morning). By the third evening, the camel claimed to be suffering from a three-day virus. This time the nomad barely slept because the entire front end of his camel was inside the tent, and there was an icy blast too – because the camel’s enormous hump stopped the flap from doing its work. By the end of the week, while the camel snored the nights away, cosy inside the tent, the nomad shivered through the hours of darkness curled up against a sand dune, wrapped only in his djellaba.


My understanding is this is an ancient Bedouin parable with implications to more modern situations. Utah is not well known for its' camels. It is on the other hand it is very well known for its' teenagers. They make up over 30% of our population in this fair state and honestly, I think most of them have been parking their butts in my living room!
Okay, we shall back this truck up a couple of weeks, while JJ was not at school. He had a couple of friends who say they don't have a first or second period, so they would come hang out here.
Are you getting the camel analogy yet? If not, it will happen soon.
Anyway, JJ is now back on his regular school schedule and he is out the door by 7:15. Imagine my surprise yesterday, when after getting Little Man on the bus, I walked out to the living room at about 8:30 and there sat a teenager. But he was chatting with Tank, and JJ and Tank do share some friends, sooo, I didn't think too much about it. Until Tank left for work and left this kid there! Um yeah, it gets better, hang in there. This kid calls some of his other friends and pretty soon there are five, yes 5! teens in my living room, of varying sexes and ages, and NONE of them are mine. Nor is anyone home, besides myself. I tend to tolerate my kids's friends for their sakes, but heavens to betsy, none of my kids were home. At lunch time, JJ showed up, and close on his heels, two or three more kids, which ended up being four by the end. I was a bit aggravated, so I went to my room. Sometime later, it was awfully noisy in my living room, and I thought to myself, that rotten kid is going to be late to his next class! So I go out to the living room, and guess what??? My kid had gone back to school and left these four "friends" in my living room. I was not the least bit happy and wondered how I could get rid of them without being too rude. I finally, at about 2, just told them they really needed to leave. Then I had a major hissy fit when my hubby got home.
This morning, they knocked at the door again, and when Bald Man denied them entrance, they tried to push the door open in a joking fashion. Bald Man was not amused. Today, after some more showed up, I have declared a moratorium on all teenagers at my house during school hours. Although they think they are slick saying they don't have class then, even I can figure out that you have missed pretty much an entire day of school. I will not be party to a bunch of dead beat kids skipping school, especially when mine is at school.
Camels, teenagers. I can see the resemblance. Stinky, foul tempered, pushy, subborn... the list could go on, but you get the picture.
So watch out when the camel asks to have his nose in the tent, before long your living room will be filled with teenagers too!

5 Kids Who Want To Play:

Anonymous said...

My advice would have been to tell the kids, ok, you can stay, just let me call the school and confirm that you don't have class right now. And I'd have called right then and there. If they didn't have class, then they wouldn't mind. If they were supposed to be in class, they'd likely be hightailing it to the door before the truant officers showed up. I wonder if *you* could have gotten into trouble with the law for having the kids there when they were supposed to be in school??? I hope not.

elizasmom said...

Hmmm, see now, tales like this strike terror into my parent-of-a-toddler-who-will-one-day-be-a-teen heart!

TeamWinks said...

Can't say I blame you for not wanting them around. Good grief!

Jenny said...

They can stay as long as they help you clean and then next week you can all go down and volunteer at the homeless shelter together - it's so nice they come to hang out with you and help out when the have down time at school. Such big hearts those kids - LOL

Manuela said...

Ummmm..... Jo.... anyone ever tell you that you're a softy??? HOLY Sh*tsky, woman!!! You're worried about being RUDE???

Look, I know that I don't have kids, so I could totally be talking out of my... ummm... bum. But honestly!!! These kids are ABUSING YOUR HOME! This is utterly ridiculous! You have EVERY right to remove these 'children' from your home, if for no other reason than to refuse to enable their truancy!

I'm sorry, Jo. I just can't believe the NERVE of these kids!

Gah. Going back to hide under my infertile hermit bridge now. grrrrrrrr.