Give me a dumb kid any day.

Give me a dumb kid any day. August 12, 2014

Today, we went for kindergarten screening with my five-year-old (here in the persona of “A Snooty Waitress”)


photo (7)


The teacher showed her three sets of dominoes: a group of two, a group of three, and a group of four.  She asked my kid to show her which group had two in it. Kid points to the group of three and the group of four.

I, being the greatest mother in the world, didn’t say a thing, because this is my kid’s moment to shine, and whatever happens, happens. So the teacher gently encourages her to count how many dominoes are in the group of four. “One, two, free, four.” And how many in this other group? “One, two, free.”  All right, now can you show me which one has two in it? She again points to the groups of three and four.

Then the other teacher points out that my child is indicating which groups include individual dominoes with two dots on them. There are, indeed, two groups with two in them. Ta dah!

This reminds me of my nephew, who went for a well-child check-up. I think he was about five, too. A tricky age! The doctor held up a green crayon and asked him what color it was. He hemmed and hawed and wasn’t sure. The doctor carefully recorded this slightly worrisome deficit.

My sister, his mother, asked him why the heck he didn’t just tell her what color the crayon was. “The doctor was holding her finger over the label,” he explained, “So I couldn’t read if it was Forest Green or Jungle Green. ”

Smart kids. Making us look bad.

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  • Oh, this made me laugh! A Snooty Waitress and a Picky Colorist in one post!

  • rivers

    When my oldest went to kindergarten, their first exercise was to write their name, which my son could not do. Assuming he had some serious delays, the teacher brought him up to her desk for an assessment. On her desk was a manual with various letters and shapes for the child to identify. The teacher asked him to read the first page, so my son closed the manual and began reading the front cover: “Evaluation Procedures for the Assessment of Reading Levels: Teacher’s Copy.”

  • devratorres2

    Not to mention your other niece, who confused the doctor because she knew her ABC’s in English and Greek, giving the impression that she didn’t know them at all.

  • richard

    Doesn’t anyone play in sandboxes anymore.

  • anna lisa

    Okay. I’m over the my-kid-is-a-genius stage. My 27-year-old (who graduated with honors from college) informed me that I put way too much pressure on him. He moved to Portland a month ago, is presently helping weld together a convertible bus/tea house, and is going to the Burning Man festival in a couple of weeks. All I could manage to croak was: “please remember who you are”.
    The five-year-old? The one that runs with wolves? She was sent to remedial summer school for refusing (read: embarrassed and disgusted to be put on the spot like that) to do “head, shoulders, knees, and toes” at the screening, She’s completely ambidextrous and her writing looks like hieroglyphics. Why would I force a 5-year-old to write “Charlotte” at such an early age?
    Her teachers *did* rave about her exciting clothing ensembles, and she only got sent to the principle’s office once.

    • anna lisa

      *well maybe he is a genius–how else do you pull off all of that weird stuff while holding down a good job?

    • donttouchme

      Your son sounds awesome. I always wanted to learn how to weld and go to Burning Man and beat up hippies. Only the fighting hippies, of course, the Occupy Wall Street ones who throw bottles and stuff.

      • anna lisa

        I accidentally responded to myself. My reply is above.

      • anna lisa

        On second thought…my husband worked for a company that traded bonds for the majority of the big shingle banks for over a decade…From what we’ve seen, I’m kind of thinking that the Wall Street types are the ones that need beating up.
        –Got off with a little slap in the pants. The greedy bastards.

        • donttouchme

          The richies never had a good reputation in all of history.

    • anna lisa

      The Portlandians he is traveling with are the disarmingly kind variety of hippy. You know, –the homeopathic-medicine-massage-therapist kind. Even with the best of intentions it would be so hard to knock some sense into all that. My son on the other hand, who works for a crypto currency based business founded by a former FBI agent, is sure to be discovered as an impostor.

      • If one of his fellow travelers is a masseuse named Desiree, I know her and she is phenomenal.

        • anna lisa

          Lol, I’ll ask him, I should at least know their names!

    • jay

      As a Portlander, I welcome your 27 yr. old son to our safe and gentle streets. My 27 yr. old son is busy in your area, Sunnyvale, teaching second graders, and having a great joy of life experience. He is very Portland, and very smart. He has a BS from Pomona college, and a masters in ED from Stanford. He had a great upbringing here in Portland, and wants others to experience this also. Our family is not into homeopathic-medicine-massage-therapist folks, who also are our neighbors, as we provide conventional medicine [my husband is a cancer specialist and I am a nurse with a masters degree].

      • anna lisa

        Thank you! I will pass your kind words on. My son is really enjoying your beautiful city, and can’t get over the warm welcome he has received. He keeps telling me how much I will love it there. (I prefer forests to palm trees) …and I don’t mind rain–not that I can remember the real kind!
        I’m a hybrid–wine, homemade food, and chamomile tea are my homeopathic medicines of choice. My Mom (while not a hippy in the least) serves up what my husband calls “brujerias”. She has a cabinet full of concoctions that make my liver hurt, just looking at it all. She took me in for acupuncture when I needed my appendix cut out. 😀 (God love her)
        My son is lucky enough to be able to work anywhere he wants, from his computer. He was in law school (interned at the most prestigious law firm in Manhattan), but it gave him no joy whatsoever. He is much happier doing his work in the tech industry.
        I commend your son for working to help educate children. That’s such a special calling. Ask him if he has heard the top TED talk of all time. It must be right up his alley…

        • jay

          You will love it here! You will very much approve of your son’s new diggings. We have so many places to hike and bike here, that one can never be bored.

          • anna lisa

            Sounds amazing, thanks for the encouragement. I’m going to twist my husband’s arm to come in Sept. 🙂

  • Anna

    Well, you’d better hope she passes her vision test; otherwise she’ll be the kid in the red cap and that would cause some family disharmony.