Well folks, it's Friday morning, which means it's time for me to grab my ear plugs and head down to the library for M-'s story time, where we all get to huddle on the outskirts of the crowd gathered in relative safety about 15 feet away from the (very nice) ringleader herself.
The first week, a few of the other 2-year-olds understandably plopped themselves down right up front when things started, but, being creatures who act on instinct at all times without care for others' feelings, they unsubtley hit the deck when the volume dial broke off at 11 and didn't let up.
It came right as I was wondering how they could take it while I was struggling all the way in the back of the tragically tiny room-- all three kids simultaneously threw themselves backwards (in that way little kids do) outside the blast radius of this woman's voice.
Every week since then, that radius has been marked out by a field 2-3 cushions deep, which this lady must lay out in the vain hope that she's offering plenty of room and comfort to that one special boy --half deaf in his one functioning ear-- who will drift in from one of the nearby parks, as foretold in the prophecy, beckoned to the library by the siren song of a children's book read at a volume that finally allows him to turn off his hearing aid.*
Lest you think she's just one of those rare perky people who's raring to go first thing every morning, I assure you she is far from it. Rather, I believe she simply has to keep shouting as loudly as possible in an effort to keep herself awake, or possibly not dead. Kind of like that stupid Jason Statham movie Crank.
I'm thinking of asking the police department if they might be able to rig up their speed-monitoring trailer to instead measure decibels, so I could drag it into the back of the room like a scoreboard. I might be able to make some side money** wagering on this...
Hopefully I can make enough to cover the ear surgeries.
* And then ask her if she might speak just a little more softly.
** By side money, of course, I mean my only money.