December 22, 2013

The Jerks Among Us

Way back when, circa 1978 or so, I had a college student for a bus driver.  The last time he drove us, was the day he finished his classes and knew he was going to graduate.  As a celebration, he made a very slight detour that took about 20 extra minutes, and treated all the kids on the bus to an ice cream cone.

I never saw him again, so I am not sure if it was intended to be his last shift, or if they fired him for it.  I was a latchkey kid, so my 20 minute delay didn't affect anyone other than my dog.  I doubt my mom even believed me if/when I told her about the ice cream cone. It was a nice thing to do, but certainly not the best decision, going rogue with 30 kids in tow.  Today, that guy would likely be in jail for kidnapping, with a dozen civil suits filed against him for buying little lactose-intolerant-nut-allergy Johnnie some Rocky Road.  Sad days, indeed.

For 15 years, a nice mom in Minnesota has been baking cookies each Friday for the occupants of the bus her kids ride on
Every Friday, Anne Tabat has met the school bus in her subdivision with a basket of cookies. It began as a thank you to the bus driver. And, Tabat said, she couldn't give the driver a cookie without giving one to every child on the bus.

Tabat said the cookies were also a way to get to know her neighbors.
Recently an anonymous complaint was filed and Tabat can't hand out cookies anymore.

I am a little fuzzy on how the school can prevent a person from standing on, what I assume to be, either a public sidewalk or a private citizen's property, not to mention the lack of a basis for telling people they can't give something away on said property.

If you are the killjoy that doesn't want your kid to have a cookie, tell your kid to NOT take a friggin' cookie.

Better yet, meet your own damn kid at the bus stop and walk them home without taking the friendly cookie offering.  No harm, no foul.

Tabat sounds like a really nice person.  After 15 years of handing out cookies, she has made friends, been to the bridal showers of prior cookie bus riders (and gifted them with cookie making equipment for their kitchens) and hosts an annual cookie party so the neighbors get to know one another:
Anne Tabat uses flour power to break down the walls that separate people.

“I didn’t live in the suburbs until I turned 40,” she told me yesterday, while baking some of the 200 dozen cookies she’ll need for her family’s annual cookie party for anyone who wants to show up.

“Look at the way these houses are designed here,” she said. “They’re not designed with a friendly neighborliness community in mind. I haven’t been in most of the houses in my neighborhood. People live such busy lives; you don’t talk to your neighbors, you don’t know your neighbors.”
We need more cookie ladies in our world, and fewer anonymous complainers.

1 comment:

CenTexTim said...

No more cookies? Seriously? And at Christmas time, no less.

"If you are the killjoy that doesn't want your kid to have a cookie, tell your kid to NOT take a friggin' cookie."

The same thing applies to Big Gulps, cigarettes, drugs, homosexuality, SUVs, healthcare, and so much more. The world would be a much better place if people didn't try to cram their beliefs down the throats of everyone else.