International Traumatize A Child DayHow?
How exactly do I find myself getting roped into these things?
I have tried very hard to develop my reputation as the type of person you should not trust a child to. We are all, I'm sure, familiar with my tendency to both drink and make very poor decisions.
One usually leads to the other.
Would you trust a child to me? Would you trust me to take care of your child for a day?
I didn't think so.
Susan barely lets me take care of my own offspring.
Honestly, I can't say I really blame her.
So, you could pretty much assume no one in their right mind would ever, ever, EVER leave their child alone with me.
You know what they say about assumptions. When you assume, some lady is going to show up and give you her kid for the day.
I'm sure, you're all familiar with my nephew Jerry.
Jerry called to inform me that April 23rd is International Take Your Kids To Work Day.
This, I can only assume, is part of the plan by teachers to educate children without teaching them any actual marketable skills or abilities.
No math for you today, Billy. You get to go watch how they make flanges. Yes, flanges.
This will prepare you for the future.
So, Jerry decides to call and ask if he can go to work with his Uncle Dave. Good old Uncle Dave.
I'm sure the fact that his Uncle Dave spends all day playing video games didn't even cross his evil, little mind.
Jerry>> Uncle Dave?
[GM]Dave>> Well, that really depends.
[GM]Dave>> Tell me what you want first.
Jerry>> My school is doing a take your kid...
[GM]Dave>> Domino's Pizza.
[GM]Dave>> Can I take your order please?
Jerry>> Uncle Dave...
[GM]Dave>> My name's not Dave.
[GM]Dave>> My name's... Uhh...
Jerry>> That was a little sad, Uncle Dave.
[GM]Dave>> Yeah, I froze up.
Jerry>> Anyway, my school is doing this take...
[GM]Dave>> Domino's Pizza.
[GM]Dave>> Can I...
Jerry>> I didn't want to have to do this.
Jerry>> Can you put Aunt Susan on the phone please?
[GM]Dave>> Well played, Jerry. Well played.
We decided that he would get to go to work with me.
By "we decided", I mean "Susan threatened to cut things off."
As I happen to like all of my "things", I figured it was best if I just went along.
Apparently, Jerry's dad's job just wasn't exciting or interesting enough. I guess kids just don't want to grow up to be letter sorters any more.
His mom is off work right now and Jerry wasn't allowed to go with her because "Stay at home mother isn't actually a job."
Don't even look at me. That's what the school told him. I know better than to say stupid shit like that for fear one of those stay at home moms decides to iron the side of my head.
Originally, I thought we were going to have a problem. See, Jerry lives in Oakland and I don't, so I really didn't understand how this was going to work.
Luckily, his mom decided to come and stay with us for the night.
What's the opposite of "Yay"?
Don't get me wrong. It's not that I don't like Anna. She's a really nice lady.
Unfortunately, it's hard to appreciate that when she's sleeping in bed with my wife and I'm sleeping on the couch.
I really could have sworn I paid for that bed...
Anyway, Jerry and I got up and went to work together this morning. By which, I of course mean that Jerry was up at the crack of dawn and running around making noise.
I almost killed him, but that would havr required me actually getting out of bed.
Luckily, he managed to find the TV and that kept him quiet so that I wouldn't have to throttle him to death.
Television: world's cheapest babysitter.
When I finally dragged my ass up and went to work, I found out exactly how long the car ride is. I found that out because I stared at the clock the entire time we were driving.
He wouldn't shut up.
Question after question after question. What are we gonna? When are we gonna? How are we gonna?
It might have been cute if I wasn't trapped in a car with him.
As I was, I stared at the clock begging the minutes to fly by and wondering if I could possibly kill myself with the little car lighter.
I do have to admit... Seeing his little face light up when we walked into the office was a real treat. His eyes glistened with joy and hope.
Oh yes, this is really preparing kids for the workforce.
I introduced him around to everyone and then we went to my desk and sat.
Jerry>> Are we going to do anything?
[GM]Dave>> We have to wait for a GM call.
[GM]Dave>> It's a very quiet sound.
Jerry>> You mean that ding sound?
Jerry>> It's been going off every couple of minutes.
[GM]Dave>> Jerry, Jerry, Jerry...
[GM]Dave>> you just don't know how this works.
[GM]Dave>> We make them wait for 26 minutes for no reason.
[GM]Dave>> Then we pretend to listen to the problem.
[GM]Dave>> Throw in a few vague references to and we're done.
Jerry>> Aren't you going to investigate?
Jerry>> You know, find the bad guys?
[GM]Dave>> We don't like to talk about the bad guys, Jerry.
[GM]Dave>> We treat every player as an individual.
[GM]Dave>> And they're all bad guys.
Jerry>> All of them?
[GM]Dave>> Pretty much.
[GM]Dave>> There is like... One guy...
[GM]Dave>> But he thinks this is WoW, so we don't bother him.
Jerry>> Okay, but when do we get to the fun stuff?
Jerry>> Like the video games and the banning people?
[GM]Dave>> Oh, work's not really like that.
It really is like that, but I at least have to teach the kid that school is important.
You know... The school that decided not to teach him and, instead, threw him out into the street.
Okay, bad example, but I'm trying to be the nice guy.
I'm not used to this.
Jerry>> Do you have to do well in school to be a GM?
This is a difficult question to answer. On the one hand, if I say no, he might lose some motivation to achieve.
On the other hand, if I said yes, I'd be lying.
Eh, I lie all the time.
[GM]Dave>> Uhh... Of course you do.
[GM]Dave>> We use school stuff all the time here.
Don't ask where. Don't ask where.
Screw you, Jerry.
[GM]Dave>> Well... We...
[GM]Dave>> Oh, we use math to do our reports.
Jerry>> Like what?
[GM]Dave>> Mostly adding and subtracting.
Jerry>> I already learned all of that.
[GM]Dave>> And we have to do the... Advanced... Calculus...
At this point, a couple of nearby GMs turned to look at me.
There's no point to learning Calculus. There. I said it.
You know it's true.
Jerry>> That sounds hard.
[GM]Dave>> Oh, it is.
[GM]Dave>> George over there is in charge of... Geometry.
[GM]Dave>> Yeah... We have to...
Jerry>> Do you use geometry in the game?
[GM]Dave>> Yeah, sure.
[GM]Dave>> That's as good an answer as any.
Jerry>> This is really cool.
Jerry>> Yeah, I love math.
[GM]Dave>> Well, you better study hard then.
At this point, people are stifling laughter.
Everything was going really well. Jerry was learning a lot and I actually felt like I was helping him learn something, maybe turning him into a better person.
Then... Then, I had to use the bathroom.
I know I wasn't gone that long. I know that and yet, by the time I got back, Jerry was stood on my desk surrounded by people and yelling "Banned!"
The little cardboard sword someone fashioned was a nice touch, I'll give you.
By the time the day was over, I'm pretty sure I had completely destroyed any chance Jerry had of growing up to be a responsible adult. He now believes work is fun and interesting.
I mean, how many people really get to spend all day playing video games?
Oh, shut up. I mean other than me.