Today is a sad, happy, well let’s just say it’s a day here at EXAIR. It is back to school time throughout most of the country and sadly enough, it is the last day of our Co-Op’s final quarter semester as a Co-Op.
We like to think that we have given our Co-Op the experience of a lifetime. The truth is, he has learned a good amount about compressed air and how to save it, mostly thanks to The Professor. Below is Prof. Penurious in his casual Friday dress with the Co-Op and his trophy of things that didn’t make it through his time of use here at EXAIR.
We all wish him a great final year at the wonderful University of Cincinnati, along with a great future even after he graduates. Hopefully for him it will be far away from the Professor.
Just a couple of weeks ago the “last day of summer” was upon my kids and the first day of school loomed. I am happy to report they have successfully made the transition, excluding any whining about homework. They have quickly adjusted to a new routine and we have all begun ramping up for new obligations which replace the more flexible summertime choices.
This morning was our first real test, or should I say my first real test? I am generally out of the house while a kid, maybe two, is leisurely eating breakfast. Today we needed to get two kids to the orthodontist before school. Yep, another kid on the ortho’s invoice. And among the madness of preparing coffee for one and breakfast for four others, I recalled my experiences with having braces…none of them good.
Even upon having my braces removed at the age of 13 my happiness of getting this hardware off for good was quelled. Because along with the leftover bracket cement on my teeth, the large scraping tool the unfeeling hygienist used to remove the cement can apparently also scrape away happiness.
And the beginning of the process was just as bad. The first thing they did was make a mold of my teeth consisting of pouring pink rubber into my mouth. But I couldn’t swallow it or choke on it or decide for myself when it was over. I remember breaking into a sweat trying not to throw up all over the same hygienist who would eventually scrape cement from my newly straightened teeth. Looking back at it now – I should have let it fly.
But the worst of all was the actual gluing of the brackets on to the teeth, and an occasional replacement bracket. This process insists upon removing all traces of the natural state of ones mouth by introducing a constant blast of hot, dry air which pillages any moisture. I never realized braces could actually prepare you for being stranded in the Sahara. Chinese water torture has nothing on Orthodontic torture – empires could be toppled with the tools of the orthodontic trade.
And they look so good don’t they? Nothing compares to the bright smile of a kid. But smack some glue, brackets and wire on their teeth and they all look like this…
I chose to keep those wonderful memories and opinion to myself upon sending them off to the orthodontist. Things like this are best kept between you and me, I think. And after making it through the Jaws from Moonraker stage, the result of a good smile is worth it. Even I will agree to that.
Not much changes at EXAIR during this new school year transition. Because we continuously make minor adjustments and improvements to our obligation of providing quality product, great customer service, and excellent delivery.
Today is the last day of summertime freedom for my kids, school begins tomorrow. It is no longer OK to not know what time it is or sleep until 9:00 or 10:00 or 11:00 in the morning. No more sleeping in a basement fort on a Wednesday night. The daily events and zoo camp and vacation have all been recorded. The excitement created by the ice cream truck is gone…
But my kids are showing no signs of changing their behavior. They spent all day running around with the neighbors with no sense of responsibility for what was upon them. And more power to ’em…carpe diem!
Here are the creatures which greeted me when I got home, in no less-than eight containers from aquariums to bug habitats to jars with holes in the lids: Three big wood bees, two butterflies, one moth, one giant grasshopper, two little green grasshoppers, mating bugs, crickets, a red and black beetle, assorted dead bugs, one cicada and two cicada shells.
Along with the creatures were five kids. Four of whom struck me as quite loud compared to hearing co-worker volume levels all day. The fifth was merely quiet due to the kid tribe pecking order of speaking and his inability to shout anything bug related before I put the hush down on the unruly group of entomologists. I found myself thinking if they could only shout out the genus and species of these crawly creatures, they may be on their way to a worthwhile skill. Though I did hear a kid say “we know it’s a moth because it has those feathery antennae and he’s fat”.
I was also pleased that no one inquired further about the mating bugs, regardless of a clear “the birds and the bees” environment (though telling a kid to go ask her mother about it isn’t quite as hard as I make it out to be).
It also struck me that it is a good call to begin school on a Thursday, these kids clearly need a couple of days to adjust their behavior and wrap their heads around a whole week of school. You just don’t say goodbye to summer the same way you greet it – kids spend weeks daydreaming of summer so they greet it like an old friend with whom no time has lapsed and get right into action. They say goodbye with kicking and dragging feet, composing themselves only after it is no longer visible.
As “grown-ups” we can be happy we don’t have to make that slap in the face adjustment, but not so much that we wouldn’t enjoy a couple months off work. It is a slighter adjustment to move out of Cabinet Cooler system season and closer to Static Eliminator season during colder, drier weather ahead. But our kids will find that out soon enough. I am sure none of them is willing to give up that slap in the face adjustment at the end of summer in return for a job. Besides, at some near point in time I will arrive home to frustrated home-working kids and my seize the day opportunity to learn about feathery, fat moths will have been recorded as well.
Here’s to an easy transition back to school kids. Enjoy yourselves.