There was never a child so lovely but his mother was glad to get him to sleep. Ralph Waldo Emerson

If you haven't time to respond to a tug at your pants leg, your schedule is too crowded. Robert Brault

Whats driving a bus like? Seventy of your kids in the back seat going to town. Mr. Brandon

Thursday, March 21, 2013

“Check the Chart”

After being told to sit down for the eighth time the student immediately jumped back up to show me his treasure of treasures that he had purchased at the book fair, a mood ring. He started out, “Here Mr. Brandon try this on and let’s see what kind of mood you’re in”. “Well,” I replied “I’ve asked you to sit down eight times, I’ve asked him to sit down eleven times and have asked his buddy to sit down ten times, just what kind of mood do you think I’m in?” He looked at me, “Try it on and let’s see”. I swallowed, “Let me save you some trouble.” “Is there anything on that color chart that says, Wants to beat every child on the bus?” He actually looked at the chart, “No, there’s one that says, stressed how about that?” “Close enough, sit down” I replied through gritted teeth.

Wednesday, March 20, 2013

“Friends to the End”

As the kindergartner stood there I asked, “Did you have a good day?” “Well, not to good we had to go to the principal’s office” she replied. “To the office?” I continued. “Well, me and my friend got in trouble in P.E. and had to go to the office”. The usual P.E. offences ran through my mind, fighting, throwing something at someone, not following direction. I mean how much trouble could two, little, sweet kindergarten girls get in? She continued on and relived my curiosity, “Well, she pulled down her pants and showed her hinny so I decided I would too”. Not exactly what I was expecting. Looking for a reply I respond, “Well you know that’s not something that good girls do and I’m sure you just did it because you thought it would be funny”. “Yes, it didn’t turn out as funny as we thought it would” she said. It’s hard to talk about correcting bad behavior when you really want to crack up laughing.

Friday, March 15, 2013

“Athletic Endeavors”

You have to take sports challenges where you find them. They are not all found on the grass fields or hardwood courts of play. Yes, sometimes the field of play is a school bus. Often those that ride the bus have an opportunity to demonstrate their athletic skill in a rather hot and upcoming, little known sport. There are those that use the flat footed approach and hop, rabbit style. There is the more stylistic skip, which is achieved with a one foot takeoff and a one foot landing. Then there is the gymnastic approach this requires the athlete to grip the back of opposite seats with their hands lifting themselves and swing forward. It is the most athletic and can result in higher scores due to difficulty factors. Like most sports, participants are eagerly cheered on by enthusiastic onlookers and a moan of “Ohhhh” goes up with each unsuccessful attempt. It may not be well know, but for the next Olympics we will be suggesting every bus driver’s favorite sport “Jump the Puke”. The main drawback to the sport is field prep. This is usually achieved with a quickly eaten breakfast and bumpy roads.

Thursday, March 14, 2013

“Call of the Siren”

As the high school girl passed down the aisle the young boy said, “Man, she sure does smell good, I could follow her around all day”. “If I could just follow her around all day without her knowing”. It seemed to disappoint him when I informed him such a thing was called stalking and was against the law. From what I could observe from the high school boys in the back of the bus I might need to have a little talk with them also.

Wednesday, March 13, 2013

“A Pause Can Kill You”

He stepped up and calmly said, “Mr. Brandon I just touched my dangly, hangy down thing”. He paused, I quit breathing. “With this finger”. Another pause, still not breathing. “You know that hangy down thing in the back of your throat”. Ok breath.

Friday, March 8, 2013

“Old Man”

The young man behind me said in a very slow and shaky voice, “Helloooooo Mr. Brandon……… how are you doing today?” “I’m good, what’s the matter with you?” I asked. “Well……. I’m an old ……… man” was his reply. “How old are you?” I asked. “Well I’m fifty years old.” “So that’s how a fifty year old man sounds?” “Yes it is because they are so old.” At this point I added, “Do I sound like that, because you know I’m older than fifty.” I lost track of the number of apologies that came my way.

Thursday, March 7, 2013

“The Older Woman”

When she stepped onto the bus for the first time it was like a new Ferrari driving onto a used car lot, all eyes were immediately focused on her. A high school girl, on a bus with elementary school boys. A hush fell over the bus because young boys quit breathing. She walked down the aisle to the back of the bus and little boys with missing teeth smiles and goofy haircuts turned as if their head were mounted on a swivel. After she passed they could smell her perfume which they knew immediately was better than the smells they usually smelled on the bus. Even a six year old can tell when an older woman has got it all going on. The bus moved forward, they turned their wide eyed dreamy looks back to the front of the bus. Then the silence was broke by a rather excited first grader with an astute observation, “Ohhhh Mr. Brandon, girls sure are pretty”. Not able to disagree with such sound logic I said, “They sure are.” “Mr. Brandon” he continued “is it fun to kiss a girl?” Looking at him in the mirror I said, “Not till you’re eighteen it’s not”. A smile formed on his pale, pudgy face and he said, “I don’t think I can wait that long”.

Friday, March 1, 2013

“Intervention Needed”

Hot Pickle Boy leaned in close and said quietly, “You know that little station over by that old store?” “Go in there and that Mexican guy named Jose, behind the counter, can get you what you want”. “That’s where I got this”. “Here take some and try it”. Then he slowly reached into his backpack and quietly handed it to me. Yes, it was just what you suspected, a beef stick. Just like any good supplier, he has given me free beef sticks for two days. I know now that the beef stick monkey is on my back it’s going to cost me. I’m currently looking for a place that specializes in beef stick rehab.