Mrs. Hillbilly Mom is thinking about changing her name. She might just as well call herself Mrs. Not-A-Janitor. Her Newmentia neighbor two doors down, Mrs. Not-A-Cook, would surely approve.
Mrs. Not-A-Cook got her name when she was sitting in the cafeteria one year enjoying lunch with an early incarnation of The Semi Weekly Meeting of the Newmentia Lunch Time Think Tank. Just so happens that it was the Christmas season, and the kids from Elementia were bused over to practice their performance for the concert that night. Their teacher walked through the cafeteria, and stopped to ask Mrs. Not-A-Cook, whose name at that time was Mrs. Whipley, some trivia about the kitchen. Mrs. Then-Whipley said, “I don’t know.” And the music teacher said, “What do you mean you don’t know? You’re a cook, aren’t you?”
Let the record show that Mrs. Then-Whipley had been teaching here, in this same district, with that same music teacher, for about 10 years. As if a cook would actually be sitting at a lunch table chatting with the teachers during lunch time!
So…on Wednesday this week, when Newmentia was holding an assembly sponsored by a certain club which some ne’er-do-wells used to refer to as Future Cooks and Cleaning Ladies of America…a pupil rushed into Mrs. Hillbilly Mom’s room.
“Do you have…um…something…like a big roll of paper towels? We were carrying a big pitcher of lemonade into the gym, and spilled puddles of it all down the hall.”
Let the record show that the Newmentia pupil restrooms do not have paper towels. They have blowers that sound like jet engines, and make me wonder if those hygienic pupils should be issued ear plugs lest OSHA come down hard on Newmentia if they find out.
“No. I only have what I need.” I gestured toward the file cabinet, where a formerly big roll of paper towels sat, now of a circumference smaller than a rolling pen. “You might try the janitor’s closet. Next door down. They usually have it propped open. They probably have paper towels. Or a mop.” Serves them right, always blocking the hall with that giant door, exposing the innards of their closet, with all the tempting cleaning chemicals, to the inquisitive eyes of adolescents.
Seriously. Why would a pupil come ask ME for paper towels to clean up a mess? When the janitor’s closet is right next door, open and inviting. Yes. I think I need to change my name.
I wonder if Newmentia will spring for a name tag at this late date.