Your Sister’s (trapper) Keeper

I am my sister’s long-term substitute teacher. She wanted me to have this job. She was excited for me to take the reins while she was gone on maternity leave. I also think she did this because she believed she would be able to keep some of her original power (which she has – I’m still getting a hold of this standards-based grading system). What I think she didn’t realize is that as her younger sister, a person who spent years serving as chief tattletale in the Bunn household, she was bound to get the brunt of my specialties in adulthood as well. It started last week. I was talking to her colleagues and they asked about where I was living, whether or not I was really staying with her.

“Well yes,” I said, smiling. “I’m sort of in the garage but not. I’m more like in the woodshed that’s attached to the garage that wasn’t cleaned out or anything.” A few of them made eye contact with one another, is she serious? They asked. I continued to smile sardonically.

Then today at the lunch table, they were discussing how babies grow up and if you don’t put a blanket in their cribs, they won’t have a ridiculous attachment to the item. “Shelli still sleeps with her droopy dog,” I said to Rhonda. Everyone started asking what a droopy dog was. Some implied that I was talking about an adult toy. I explained that a droopy dog is in fact my sister’s favorite stuffed animal from when she was a kid and that she doesn’t let any of her three kids sleep with it. It is merely hers. Droopy has apparently shared a bed with her for longer than her husband of ten years. No biggie, but as left the lunchroom, I wondered, would Shelli be embarrassed by this.

Cut to the last three minutes of fourth period today. I was talking to a student, thanking him for acting normal and not being a disruption today. “This is what you should always be like.”

He reverted to his typical, loud behavior. “I’m ADHD,” he declared proudly.

“Do you know who else is ADHD? The other Ms. Bunn. But just think of how she’s learned to manage this on her own and how successful she is.”

Another loud, semi-obnoxious student shouted out, “Ms. Bunn is ADHD! Ha! I’m going to remember this…” and thus I have announced a non-written diagnosis for my older sister. She used to tell me that she was ADD or ADHD along with her dear college friend Dirk. But that’s as far as this diagnosis has ever gone. No matter, now her students know.

I’m looking forward to letting out a few more juicy ones. Who knows when they’ll come? As long as I confess to Shell when I get back to my shed, we’re ok, right?

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