Monday, October 24, 2011

Adventures in Babysitting (Part I)

Last week I was on the computer at the library, when I heard somebody call out my name.

I looked up and a good-looking blonde guy was waving at me. I scowled at him because I don't like it when strangers acknowledge me, but he continued to wave and then eventually came over.

"I can't believe it's really you!" the hot guy gushed. "It's been so long!"

Oh shit, I thought, did I date this guy? I racked my brain over my past relationships and dating disasters. Perhaps it had been so traumatic, my brain simply destroyed the memory!

"You were the best babysitter I ever had," the boy continued. "You are just as beautiful now as you were when I was ten."

A smile froze on my face. The strapping young gentleman standing before me was none other than Scottie, one of the kids I used to babysit when I was in college.

Holy shit.

Am I that old?! Well, I must be.

In honor of this blast from the past, I have decided to share my babysitting experiences from college with you.

Spoiler alert: They're not boring.

My stories are too lengthy to put in one post. So, I will be doing a three-part series.

You're welcome.

My first story revolves around: Scottie.

Scottie lived in a huge three story house located a block away from my parents' home. He was absolutely adorable, with a mop of shaggy blonde hair and big blue eyes. He was in fourth grade.

An hour before his bedtime, Scottie announced he was going to do his math homework.

I was pre-med at the time, juggling 18 hours of advanced calculus, physics, chemistry, and biology lab that semester.

I smugly told Scottie that if he had questions with his little fourth grade homework, I would be more than happy to help.

Sure enough, ten minutes later, Scottie called from the living room to say he needed my assistance.

I walked over to the coffee table and looked over his shoulder.

The problem stated:

"Jane ordered five pounds of chicken, two pounds of beef, and a half-pound of turkey from the butcher shop. The chicken was two dollars per pound, the beef was three dollars per pound, and the turkey was fifty cents per pound. She gave two-thirds of the chicken to her mother, who reimbursed her for half. Jane had $20 in her pocket, but dropped a $5 bill on her way to the store. How much money did Jane have left in her pocket when she got home that night?"

Are you fucking kidding me?

"I thought you were only in fourth grade," I said, wearily.

"I am!" Scottie responded.

I rubbed my temples and sighed.

"Scottie, I think you've been working so hard that you need a break!" I said. "Shoo! Shoo!" And I waved him out of the room.

He looked at me strangely and slowly walked up the stairs.

"But I only just started," he tried explaining.

I shooed him away again.

As soon as he was out of sight, I ran into the kitchen and grabbed the phone book.

I dialed the number for the nearest butcher shop.

Thankfully, it was still open.

"Hi, my name is Jane and I would like to purchase five pounds of chicken, two pounds of beef, and a half-pound of turkey," I told the employee when he answered.

"Oven-gold chicken or honey-roasted?" the man asked. "And would you like the beef 93 percent lean?"

Shit. The math book hadn't specified!

"Um, whatever is two dollars a pound," I answered, meekly.

"Our chicken is $4.27 a pound," he said. "Honey-roasted is a dollar more."

Wait, what?

"I need to give two-thirds of it to my mother!" I stuttered, practically in tears.

"Excuse me?" the man asked.

I hung up quickly.

What the fuck was I going to do? I couldn't admit to Scottie, or have his parents find out, that somebody studying to be a doctor couldn't even help him with his fourth-grade math homework!

So, I did what I did when I had calculus homework I couldn't figure out.

I called my father.

Surely, a physicist could figure out this stupid shit.

When my father answered, I asked him if he could help me with Scottie's math homework.

He was disgusted. "You can't figure out a fourth grader's math assignment?" he asked. "You're taking Advanced Calculus!"

I explained the homework assignment over the phone. There was silence on the other end.

"That's retarded," he dad finally said. "I'm coming over."

So, my dad came over and had a look at the math book. He was dumbfounded by the complexity of the problem for a fourth grader. It only took him a few minutes to figure it out and he left before Scottie even knew he was there.

When Scottie came downstairs, I proudly showed him the solution. He was impressed.

"Now you can go to bed!" I said, cheerfully.

Scottie shook his head.

"No I can't," he said. "I still have 24 more math problems just like it!"

Yes, my friends, it was a very long night. When Scottie's dad got home around midnight, we were still trying to figure out how much Jane had left in her pocket after the clumsy little bitch dropped five quarters outside a flower shop.

Anyway, it was a delight seeing Scottie again after all those years. He informed me that he is graduating from high school in May and he even took me to the parking lot to show me the brand new Mercedes convertible his parents bought him for his 18th birthday.

He said he is applying to colleges, but he isn't sure what he wants to major in yet.

"Maybe you should major in math," I said, snorting with laughter.

Scottie smiled politely, but I could tell he didn't understand the joke.

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