I had a parent this evening screaming at me on the phone. This isn’t exactly uncommon in my job, and it’s definitely not uncommon with this parent. She was giving me a piece of her mind, and I was staring out the window with the phone about three inches from my ear, waiting for her to stop.
Full volume with only occasional pauses for air, this is what I heard:
“I CAN’T BELIEVE YOU’RE SUSPENDING HIM AGAIN! YOU CAN’T DO THIS! YOU’VE GOTTA KEEP HIM! YOU’VE GOTTA LET HIM COME TO SCHOOL BECAUSE I DON’T WANT HIM IN MY HOUSE! I TOLD YOU NOT TO CALL ME ANYMORE! I DON’T WANT TO HEAR ABOUT ANY OF THIS! THAT BOY CANNOT BE GETTING SUSPENDED! I THINK YOU’RE GREAT! ISN’T IT LATE FOR YOU TO BE AT WORK? YOU SHOULD GO ON HOME NOW AND HAVE A GOOD NIGHT!”
Did you have to re-read those last few sentences? Because if there were such thing as an audio-double-take, that would be what I did.
Very often, people confuse anger at their children with anger at me, but it is very rare that someone manages to disentangle the two mid-yell. This woman has a skill.