I came up with the title last night as I was talking to my friend, Nikki about her situation at work. I know that’s an unusual title, but just wait a minute and as usual, I will bring it around.
This is a pretty long story. It began with my husband was telling me the story of why his cousin, Sheila the bartender, moved back to the small town in Texas (where the family originates), from Philadelphia. She really didn’t want to move back, but she got into a little trouble.
Here’s the story. Like to hear it, here it goes. Sheila was serving drinks to a woman who’d had enough. She cut the woman off and the woman got mad and tossed a drink in her face. Sheila, being the hot tempered person that she is, threw a drink right back in the woman’s face. The woman, in her drunken stupor, keeps going on and on, really hurling insults left and right. Since Sheila is around drunken people night after night, she can see that things are not going to end well. So she packs up her stuff and prepares to leave. The straw that broke the camel’s back was when the drunken woman tossed her glass at Sheila. Again, being the hot-tempered person that she is, throws a glass back, goes around the bar, beats the woman silly, and tosses her out.
But, don’t leave yet. The story doesn’t end there. After the drunken woman gets her behind kicked and thrown out, she’s so humiliated, she wants to get even. So, what do you think she does??? Well, what do you think??? I’m waiting! Ok, I’ll tell you. She calls the cops. Even though she started it, she calls the cops. Sheila gets arrested and spends 6 hours in jail because the glass she threw nicked the lady since she had better aim. Ya’ know, since she wasn’t drunk like the drunken woman who threw the glass FIRST.
Now, this applies to Nikki because the parents at her school are so demanding and are always complaining about one petty thing or another. But, instead of coming to her, they go the Assistant Principal-who’s sort of like the police at school. So, I asked her how she thought the situation might change if she went to her A.P. FIRST and explained her side before the parents.
“You know what? I’ve never thought to do that,” she said. “I’ll do it and see.”
“Well, I think you should try it,” I said. That way they can’t make her look bad. The A.P. will know of the situation before the parents come to them with their complaint. Sometimes it doesn’t matter what the truth is. Sometimes, all that matters is the way things look; and right now, with all the complaining, she doesn’t look good. She knows she’s a good teacher. The A.P. knows she’s a good teacher, but all the complaining looks VERY bad. So, in order to avoid looking bad, she needs to explain her side of the story to the A.P. first (i.e., call the police first) because as I illustrated in the story about Phillip’s cousin, the first one to call the police wins!