Okay so we’ve gotta fight now I guess.

HatfieldClanHere are the rules of Raking Leaves.  Well, the Rule of Raking Leaves, because there’s really only the one rule: you are responsible for the leaves in your yard, period.  The location of the tree does not matter, because leaves blow.  We raked leaves last Saturday.  There were leaves in my yard from oak trees, and I don’t even know where the nearest oak tree is.  Nevertheless, because I am a Good Neighbor, and because the two trees in the front yard I share with my immediate neighbor (in the sense that they but up against each other with no fence as a divider; it’s one big chunk of grass) are both in my lawn, I did my best to blow as many of “his” leaves as I could into our pile.  The majority of them fell off of my tree.  I use an electric leaf blower, and if you had looked right after we did it you could pretty neatly delineate exactly how far my cord let me get into his yard, because those areas were bare of leaves.

My neighbor’s wife and son are outside right now, blowing leaves.  They (or, rather, she, because their son is in a different part of the yard) are blowing the leaves not to the foot of the lawn, where the city can pick them up, but into my yard.  Where the wind is just gonna blow them right the fuck back into their lawn.  And I’m, like, right here, in my living room, and I can see her doing it, because the tree is right outside my living room window.  Plus the city came by and sucked up leaves today, so they won’t be here for at least a week and this is a pointless endeavor right now anyway because there are literally probably still a million leaves on that tree that haven’t fallen yet.

I do not understand people.

On basic human courtesy

I have a stupid job, or maybe I have a nonstupid job and I’m just a stupid person.

As I was driving to the gas station on my way to OtherJob this evening, praying for the fumes in my gas tank to keep the car moving until I got there, I drove past a couple of my students. They all know what my car looks like, so I honked the horn and waved and pulled into the gas station, maybe a block or two farther down the road from where they were.

Two minutes later, as I’m filling the tank and cursing how much the price of gas has jumped over the past week or so around here, they come running over to say hello. They ask where I’m going and I tell them OtherJob; they say they’re on their way home and are supposed to be home by five.

I look at my watch. It’s not too far from five already.

“Soooo….” one of them says. “Can we get a ride home?”

And here’s where my job is stupid. Any other person in any other situation upon running into a couple of people who he knows and likes and who happen to live along the way he’s already travelling would say yes to this instantly. It’s common bloody goddamn courtesy. But since I’m a teacher I have to go through this stupid mental calculus where I weigh how much I trust these two girls and whether I can trust their parents to not be stupid idiots before I throw all that to the wind and decide to treat them like they’re people and not my students and agree to give them a damn ride home, like somebody who isn’t a complete asshole.

Note that this may actually have broken the law. Not a joke.

It isn’t until I’m pulling out of the parking lot that the real bullshit of this transaction hits me: I’ve just had two teenage girls run up to me in the parking lot of a gas station, they’ve gotten into my car, and I’ve driven away. I make a joke about it and look around for blue-and-whites; luckily, no one official appears to have noticed. Which is a bit of a relief.

The drive home takes all of five minutes and is uneventful. Then I nearly kill one of the little idiots when she darts in front of my car after getting out instead of going around behind it like a sensible person.

That would have been fun.