Truth, Equality & #2’s Way

Some of the comments on my post today got me thinking about some of the escapades of daughter #2.  She has always been way big on JUSTICE and equality.  She wants everything equal. I remember when she was younger and we were looking for a new house, she INSISTED that she and #1 had to have equal sized bedrooms.  I tried to explain to her that it might not be possible and if they were different sized bedrooms that most likely #1 would get the bigger bedroom because she was older.  She insisted that this was NOT fair.  Even when I explained that once #1 left home she could move into the theoretical larger room because she’d have it the extra year before SHE left for college.  Still wasn’t good enough.  All the arguing was a moot point since we didn’t move until after both #1 & #2 had left for college and then #3 got the bigger bedroom which was a WHOLE nother argument with #2…but I digress…

#2 is EXTREMELY smart.  I mean genius level smart.  Probably too smart for her own good (you know the old adage about all book sense and no common sense?  I rest my case).  When #2 was in 7th grade and #1 was in 8th grade, a few weeks into the school year they moved #2 up from her Pre-Algebra class and put her in #1’s Algebra 1 class.  At the end of the school year on 8th grade Honors night, #2 got the Algebra award for the school even though she was a grade below the rest of them.  When she was in 8th grade she had already taken Algebra so they had her PC (Program Challenge) teacher go back to school to take a “brush-up” course in Geometry so he could teach her Geometry.  Her class consisted of herself and her PC teacher.  He, himself, was a genius but he readily admitted that she was the greatest math mind he had ever met.  He still says that to this day.

When #2 went into 9th grade she skipped over the normal Freshman class of Geometry because she took it in middle school therefore they bumped her up to Algebra II and you guessed it… AGAIN with her older sister.  I feel the need to explain just HOW smart #2 is… when you put one of those long ass equations on the board?  She knows the answer immediately.  She doesn’t even need to work them out.  She doesn’t even know how she does it.  She says she just “knows” it.  Unfortunately for her, on the very first day of THIS class, the teacher put a problem on the board as an example for the class and she made a mistake in her equation and had put the wrong answer on the board.  I say unfortunately because #2 being the child she was, and having not yet learned the fine arts of tact and diplomacy, proceeded to correct the teacher….. in front of the WHOLE class.   As you can imagine, the teacher was quite embarrassed and dismayed.  And developed an immediate hatred for #2.  The kids immediately realized that #2 was smarter than the teacher and the teacher set her sights on #2 as a target for the remainder of the semester.  She did EVERYTHING in her power to “fail” #2.  She went so far as to change answers on some papers that #2 turned in so she could give her a failing grade.  Fortunately for #2 she had shown me the paper BEFORE she turned it in and I had to go to the guidance counselor, the principal  and a mediator with the teacher.  She reluctantly changed the grade BACK to an “A”. 

Sweet but devious?

After a couple of weeks of this teacher singling her out and as #2 put it – “torturing her” – and #1 pretty much corroborating it, #2 decided she did NOT need the teacher.  She came home and announced “I am going to PROVE to her that I am smarter than her and that I don’t NEED her.”  When I asked how she planned to do that she informed me that she was going to sleep in class every day and that she WOULD earn 100+ in the class for her NON-efforts.  I told her I understood she could pass the tests but what about class participation?  She informed me that the teacher refused to call on her anyway even if she was the ONLY one with her hand up and #1 confirmed it was true.  

I remember that #1 would come home several times a week in a tizzy because #2 was sleeping in class every day and still had the highest grade in class.  I told her that #2 must just be pretending to be asleep but she was probably still paying attention.  Her reply?  “No, Mom. She is literally drooling on the desk asleep and she’s still passing every test.  It’s NOT fair!”  No, life isn’t always fair but true to her word, I believe the end of the semester grade was like 103….with her asleep every day in class.

The next year or maybe the year after, in her AP English class she had a teacher I will call Betty Boobs.  Or BB for short.  I call her Betty Boobs because I think her first name WAS Betty and she had HUGE fake boobs.  In this class also (as well as most of her other classes) was a Canadian Korean (Korean Canadian? Not sure what the correct terminology would be… She was from Canada but happened to also be Korean).  #2 and this girl were around each other a LOT… This girl also happened to be very tall.  She was probably 6’1” to my #2’s almost 6’.  They played basketball and volleyball together (they called them the Asian Twin Towers – this was pre 9/11) and were both vying for Valedictorian along with another girl from the first semester of 9th grade.  Anyway CK (CanadianKorean) was in her AP English class. 

The Asian Twin Towers flanking the other starters

At some point during the year they were assigned a project.  In this project there were a number of things you could do to earn your grade. You could make a poster, write a poem, write a paper, do a slide presentation… you get the picture.  CK printed stuff off the internet and glued it to a poster board and did a paper and turned it in.  I feel I should mention that CK’s parents pushed her VERY hard.  She had tutors every Sunday and once or twice a week during the school week.  I did NOT push #2.   For this project #2 did a poster also but she adorned it with original artwork, she wrote an original poem, a paper and she did a presentation. When they got their grades back, CK had gotten a higher grade than #2.  #2 was LIVID! I mean L I V I D.  She was so angry she couldn’t even talk at first.  She came home and ranted for HOURS about it.  I told her she should go talk to BB if she was THAT upset and find out WHY CK had gotten a better grade (mind you it was only a few points… they both still had an A –  but you know… it’s all about JUSTICE and EQUALITY).

She's thinking about that talk

So, #2 goes in to talk to BB about the grades and BB informs #2 that she gave CK a higher grade because that was the best that CK could do.  I wasn’t there but from what BB and #2 both told me later, I can imagine that the conversation went something like this:

#2:  I would like to know why you gave CK a higher grade on our project than you gave me.

BB:  I gave CK a better grade because that was the best she could do.

#2:  That doesn’t make any sense… I did a better job. (I told you she’s not all PC)

BB:  I agree that your work was better but CK tried harder and she did the best that she could do.

#2:   How do you know she did the best she could do?  Were you there?  How do you know I didn’t do the best I could do? I don’t remember you being there when I did my project at home.

BB:  No, I wasn’t there, but I know that you are capable of better work than that and you didn’t give it your all, therefore I gave CK a higher grade because she did give it her all.

#2:  That’s ridiculous.  You have no way of knowing who was giving it their all therefore it is ridiculous for you to make the assumption that I could do better.  I did a better job, therefore I deserve a higher grade.

BB:  I already agreed that you did a better job but you didn’t push yourself therefore I stand by my decision to give CK a higher grade and I am NOT going to change my mind.  Discussion is over. The grade stands as it is.

#2 came home livid AGAIN.  She vowed to get her revenge.  She said she was going to wait for the perfect opportunity and she was going to get her “free” grade that she was cheated out of.  I wasn’t exactly sure what she meant by “free” grade but knew better than to argue with her when she was in that state of mind.

A few weeks, maybe a month went by and #2 came home grinning from ear to ear.  I asked what was up and she informed me that she had gotten her “free” grade.  I asked exactly how that worked and this is what transpired.

She must have just heard about the A

#2:  Well, Ms. BB handed back our papers we turned in Friday and I got an A!

Me:  Well, that’s not surprising. You always get an A. Did you purposely do a shoddy job thinking she would feel guilty and give you an A anyway?

#2:  Not exactly .  She (#2 making air quotes) “lost” my paper!

Me:  How did she lose your paper?  What do you mean?

#2:  Well, she handed out all the papers and the bell rang and I went up to her desk and told her she didn’t hand me my paper back.  She told me I hadn’t turned one in and I told her I most certainly had.  That I had put it in the box and I remembered because I set it right on top of CK’s paper.  She looked at me kind of weird and said she didn’t remember seeing my paper when she was grading papers so I looked at her with my big brown eyes and loudly said {YOU LOST MY PAPER???}  She kept insisting she hadn’t seen my paper and I kept insisting I turned it in and then said I can’t BELIEVE that you LOST my paper!  Do I have to go back home and print out another copy and bring it BACK to you? I mean YOU are the one that LOST it!  And then she said… Oh… NO, no… that’s not necessary…. I remember now… I DID see your paper.  You got an A.  I must have misplaced it between home and here.

Me:  Well, that’s good that she remembered and gave you the A right?

#2:  She lied!

Me:  What do you mean she lied?

#2:  I didn’t turn one in!

WTF????

#2:  I KNEW that she would be too proud to admit that she had lost my paper and that she’d give me an A!  And if she DID insist I bring in another copy, I would have just come home and done one tonight and turned it in tomorrow, but I would STILL have had 3 days more than anyone else so either way it was win/win for me!  I just “read” her and knew she was the kind of person that would rather look like she hadn’t made a mistake than to chance it!

At that moment I honestly didn’t know whether to be appalled by her behavior or proud of her for coming up with something so ingenious!  My insides screamed…. Be afraid…. Be very, very afraid!  But my outsides were grinning with her!  Right then I KNEW I wouldn’t have to worry about her out in the REAL world because she could take care of herself!  I did tell her she should go and fess up to BB and she insisted it would be over her dead body because BB owed her that grade for denigrating her on the previous project. 

If I have learned one thing in my many years as a parent… it is this:  You don’t come between #1 and her beer or food, you don’t come between #3 and her food or boyfriend, and you don’t come between #2 and her pursuit of justice, equality and the American way!

They may look innocent enough but don't mess with them!

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About pegbur7

South of the Mason/Dixon Line
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24 Responses to Truth, Equality & #2’s Way

  1. OH, that’s good!
    Beautiful girls. Who doesn’t love brains and justice?

  2. suzicate says:

    I knew my sweet little quiet girl had to have a devious bone or two…GO # 2!

  3. Spot says:

    Glad to see that someone raised an evil genius and survived! Whew! That’s a load off. I’m raising one myself and worry constantly. =]

    That’s some story. She really had a one track mind. And btw, your girls are beautiful!! Beauty and brains is a deadly combination!

    ♥Spot

    • pegbur7 says:

      Tell me about it! So far we’ve all survived… I told my husband they are either going to keep me young or kill me before my time…right now I’m leaning towards killing me before my time! 😦

  4. Ron says:

    BRAVA #2!

    You GO, girl!

    Don’t ever let anyone mess with ya!

    I’m the same way…tee, hee.

    Peg…all your daughters are GORGEOUS!!

    Wonderful post!

  5. Beauty and Brains! All those girls are absolutely beautiful! Wow!

  6. Hadassah says:

    I’m with #2! Whoot Whoot!

  7. suzicate says:

    I will have an award for you on my blog in the morning!

  8. terrepruitt says:

    Ok, I think that BB’s reasoning is wrong. So anyone that does their best will be scored higher than something that is actually better? Um . . .no. I think BB actually did that other child a great disservice in possibly leading her to think that life it like that.

    I think #2 was justified in being livid. But her actions actually frighten me. But . . . hopefully I will never cross her.

    My husband’s son is math smart like that. Amazes me.

    Oh, and, I don’t think they look innocent, but they are very beautiful. Lovely family! (Three girls though, poor you!) LOL!

  9. LisaF says:

    Oh my, I laughed all the way through this post! My #1 daughter (Army Wife) is the same way. Pulls no punches and is rarely PC. I would never want to be on her bad side. As for BB, how stupid is that reasoning. The real world does not work on effort alone. You don’t get points for “trying harder.” Maybe the teacher should get out into the private sector and learn a few things herself! 🙂

    • pegbur7 says:

      I think #2 lost a LOT of respect for he a a teacher AND a person after that! In the REAL worl you only get points for trying harder if you’re a brown noser and a suck up and your boss LIKES those kinds of people …other than that… results count!

      • terrepruitt says:

        I agree with you and LisaF and I can completely see how #2 was angry.

        Like I said I don’t think BB helped the other student and she certainly didn’t help herself, she is on #2’s “list” from now on, I bet!

      • pegbur7 says:

        You Betty she is! LOL (yes, I know that was corny but I couldn’t help myself.)

  10. Gretchen says:

    Man, she’s a piece of work! I mean that in a positive way! She must just amaze you daily. And I agree, she will absolutely always be able to take care of herself. It’s amazing that there are these teachers out there who are so threatened by a teenage girl. Geez.

    • pegbur7 says:

      There were many teachers in our past that were stumped by #2. Some got exasperated and would tell me she plain out drove them crazy because they didn’t know how to answer. Some through their own insecurities just treated her like crap and there were the few, bright shining mentors that embraced the fact that she was as smart or smarter than they were and they leapt to the challenge to mentor and teach and mold such a great intellect. BTW… she always said she considered her father and I of “average intelligence” I told her she had to get it from somewhere! 🙂

    • pegbur7 says:

      Oh, the really funny thing about this is that after I posted it and #2 read it, she SWORE she never did that. It’s awfully funny that her dad, sister and I ALL remember it very vividly! She’s almost 25 now and swears she doesn’t remember doing it!

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