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Thursday, November 10, 2016

Hard blue butt aches

More chairs.

I got more chairs.

The flexible seating gods are smiling on me.

Last week, I finally reached my squeaky chair breaking point.

I've had two extra office chairs in my classroom for about a year.

One belonged to a previous co-teacher who left it behind.

The other, the squeaker, was mine.

My boyfriend gave (well, loaned anyway) me a much more comfortable chair.

I kept the old one for students.

I have tried everything I can think of to stop that squeak.

Nothing worked.

WD40 sort of worked for a while, then not so much.

Instead, the squeaking just kept getting worse.

Probably because the kids love rocking that chair.

No matter.

That noise grates on my nerves.

It grates on my students' nerves.

Now that we are writing and there is often very little chatter or whole group work, it is much more noticeable.

So, the chair had to go.
I asked the nice young custodial worker who helped me acquire a round table.

He told me there were several and to go down and help myself.

Yeah, that didn't happen.

I got busy, and distracted, and tired.

Instead, on Thursday after school, I placed the offending chair in the hallway with a note:

"Would you please trade this chair for one that doesn't squeak? I would also like a couple of cloth chairs without wheels, if you have them. Thanks so much!"

In the morning, the chair was gone.

Another perfectly functioning chair was in its place.


Later in the day, I noticed I had a phone message.

During my plan period, I finally had a moment to check it.

At the same exact time, our lead custodian came to my room.

It was almost like an echo: his voice in my ear and in front of me.

Once I realized what was happening, I deleted the message without really listening to it.

He had come to ask me about the chairs.

Apparently, the evening staff had exchanged chairs for me, but hadn't remove
d my note.

So, he came to ask me what I needed.

I explained that the office chair exchange had already occurred, but I was still interested in others.

He smiled and said "I'm glad you asked. We getting rid of most of that stuff this weekend."

It took me a minute to reply.

I probably gaped at him like a fish.

Finally, I replied "Really? Ok, well, that's awesome. I was wondering if there were some cloth chairs down there without wheels."

We went back and forth a few minutes to clarify.

"Office chairs?"



"No, cloth arm chairs."

"No wheels?"


"Wait, you mean the red ones?"

"Yeah, there are some blue ones too."

"Ok, how many you want?"

The moment of truth. How greedy could I be? How many could I actually use?

Given that the chairs in question were earmarked for destruction, why not go for the gold?

"Um, all of them?" I responded.

He laughed, said ok, and asked me where he should put them.

I asked him to leave them in my room and I would take care of it.

He told me they would be delivered later in the afternoon.

After school, as I was working in my room, the aforementioned evening custodian came back.

He said hello and I thanked him again.

Then he asked me if I had gotten the other chairs I wanted.

I told him I had spoken to the lead custodian and he was taking care of it.

He grinned and told me I had better go mark what I wanted because the truck was coming in the a.m.

I assured him I would.

On my way out of the building, I stopped by the storage area, tape and marker in hand:

Only to discover a note already placed on TEN neatly stacked cloth chairs with no feet.

TEN relatively comfortable chairs to replace the standard hard blue butt aches.

Ten chairs, just because I asked.

I know I make a special effort to be nice to our custodial staff, but not that nice.

Like, how sweet is that?

Not one, but two different members of our staff, sought me out to make sure I got what I wanted.

That is such a good thing, I don't even know what to say.

P.S. They weren't there the next morning. I almost had a coronary.

P.P.S. Happily, they were safely tucked away downstairs awaiting delivery.

P.P.P.S The kids love them.

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