Sunday, December 15, 2013


A long time ago, and three jobs ago, my boss asked me to do her a favor.  It was her turn to visit her son's daycare for some kind of parent show-and-tell silliness.  Being a boss and someone who liked to delegate personal tasks to her coworkers (like her Christmas shopping), she called me into her office and ordered me to do her a huge favor.  Mind you, I was much younger then and much less rigid and MUCH less caustic and callous.  She remembered me telling some coworkers about shrunken apple heads and thought this would be a great thing to show the daycare kids.  I kindly protested informing her that it required the use of sharp instruments.  She informed me that I would be doing the cutting, that I would skin the apples and take face requests from each child (I think Michelangelo started out this way).  I'm surprised she didn't make me buy the three dozen apples and other supplies (though I should go back and check my old pay stub).

So it's the morning of the big show and I figure I'll wear a button-up vest and a bow tie...  You know, for kids.  My coworkers called me Chester the Molester.

So off to the daycare I go, without my boss.  SHE MADE ME GO ALONE.  I entered the building with a big bag of apples, a bottle of vinegar, and a collection of knives.  I should have taken hostages.  But I went in and faced a room full of kids excited that some weirdo just showed up with knives.  I hope I said something like "I'm Joey's mother's slave-man, and when you grow up and work in the real world, you'll be juuuust like meeeeee."

So I explain what I'm about to do and the kids start shouting their requests:  "GIANT EYES ON MINE!" "HUGE MOUTH ON MINE!" "SHARP TEEEEEETH ON MINE!"  And I nervously (for I was truly nervous in that setting) carved their little apples for them.  After each was carved, I would have each child take their apple and roll it around in a bowl of vinegar.  It's supposed to prevent mold as the apple dries in the sun (lemon juice works too).  So one kid starts licking the vinegar off his apple...which causes all the other kids to do the same.  Then the screaming starts as they react to the unholy flavor of the cheapest vinegar on the market.  I can see that this is some kind of act beings that most of them are laugh-screaming.  I remember saying "p..p...please-don't-do-that" very quietly to the horde.  They ignored Uncle Chester's requests.

I left the daycare center after all the kids balanced their freshly-carved heads on the tops of small plastic cups along the window sill.  From what I remember, my boss was very pleased with me, and I think the kids had fun.

My mother still has the apples we carved as kids tucked away in an old box of Halloween decorations in her attic.  Hopefully some of those kids kept theirs.  I'd like to think some young adult visiting their folks during the holidays opens an old drawer in their old room and takes out a prune-sized fruity head and says "Ewwwww...remember THIS thing?!"

Image by rwpeary.


Anonymous said...

HA. Man, that was a great story.

Knowing that you are a quiet and to yourself kind of person, I could see you in that position. I would of had to take several Xanax before I went.

Uncle Chester. Love it.

Willow Cove said...

Hilarious! Imagine if you did that today. "Hey kids, who wants to make a rotting corpse?!"
After your background/arrest record search and security pat-down, of course.

Mr. Macabre said...

Being that I was an elementary school art teacher for a stint, I salute you sir.

Damian Michael AKA HalloweeNut said...

Hysterical! Great story. It also reminded me why I'm never having a kid. Ever.

Sara said...

You can't make this stuff up. That is one hilarious, crazy story.

Rania said...

hahahha! That is awesome!

ShellHawk said...

Great story. Totally made me laugh.

Especially since you could look just like Peter Dinklage...