Sunday, January 24, 2016

Anger Management

Normally, Raphaela and I walk to school, but today the heavy rain and the frigidity of the air decided differently, we drove. (They are maybe expecting snow in Jerusalem later this week.)

Quite close to the school, they have a designated drop-off/pick up parking area, where it is expected that parents will stay there no longer than ten minutes in the morning or the afternoon.  As I pulled into one of these spots, so as to avoid getting soaked on the way into the building, one of the teachers from the school (whom I did not recognize) stepped in the way of the car.  I rolled down my window and she said, with a smile frozen on her face, "Were you going to park here?"

"Why yes," I said. "I will be out in five minutes."
"Well," said the teacher, with that odd smile still stuck there, "my friend wants that space.  And she says she was here first." 
I pointed out that the laws of space and time would dictate that if she were here first, her car would already be parked there, and I would have to find another space.
"I SAID," the teacher continued, not budging an inch, "MY friend WANTS this space.  She is going to park here all day."

As it was getting closer to the school bell, I begrudgingly agreed to move my car.  Not because I avoid confrontation;  Israel has cured me of that.  But rather because I knew that someday my daughter might have one of these two teachers, and telling the truth of this situation ["Fucking Teacher Mafia" and "Selfish Bitch" come to mind] would bring harm upon Raphaela some day, in the way that she would be treated by a teacher I am meant to trust with my child and her education.

I spent the next few minutes re-parking, taking deep breaths and muttering, "Let it go, let it go..."  As Raphaela and I were walking up to the school, this pair of teachers happened to be right in front of us.  They looked back at me with defiance and guilt, and I could hear one say to the other, "I wanted that spot. It was mine! Really, I wanted it. "

A less mature me would have walked up to her and said, "Oh, it was your spot? I didn't see your name on it."  A more mature me would have walked up to her and said, "If you have to spend ten minutes justifying your actions, you must know it was wrong."

The mature me said nothing.

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