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An Angry Goose in My Kitchen and Other Reasons I Hate School Fundraisers

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Since Connor is in the first grade, this is only our second year of school fundraisers.  It might be our last.  Not because I don’t want to raise money for them, because I do.  They work really, really hard for our kids, and they need all the extra money they can bring in.  I just think there must be an easier way to do this.

Our school’s PTA has chosen cookie dough, pies, and mini pizzas as the must-have items.  I already find the whole process awkward to begin with.  I bring the catalog and order form to work, and pass it among my co-workers, fully aware that we’re in a sucky economy and that spending $14 on a vat of cookie dough is not a priority for most people.  But still, I deliver my sales pitch, complete with my patented doe-eyed stare that silently wills people to support our school by purchasing these overpriced snacks.

And don’t forget, the kids earn PRIZES for selling this stuff, even though the kids never sell this junk to begin with, it’s the parents that do all the work.  Connor doesn’t even understand the concept of “fundraiser”, he just sees the glossy pictures of M&M cookies and tells me he wants THOSE.

The order form and money were turned in, and last week Connor came home with an array of junky plastic items.  He doesn’t even know why he got them, he just thinks that today was “Loud Annoying Plastic Horn Day”.

No, really.  It was a horn.  The kind that looks like he’s summoning the commoners to come and kneel before the King.  Like this:

But it didn’t have a flag.

On Saturday morning, I was in the kitchen at 7:20 a.m., looking around for something with caffeine, when behind me I heard this very, very loud “HOOOOOOOOOOOOOONK!”  Keep in mind that this horn does not sound at all like a horn, but sounds more like a very angry male goose, with a deep goose-voice, about to jump on your head and peck your eyes out.

Will eat your liver with some fava beans and a nice chianti.

So I heard this, sans caffeine, and I did one of those startled jumps that people do, where your body kind of jerks and stiffens, but when I did it, I heard this errrrrk sound in my back, and had a very sore lower back the rest of the day.

What I thought was happening in my kitchen, but really wasn't.

It’s embarrassing to explain to your first grader that they cannot blow their goose-horn early in the morning because Mommy is so old and decrepit that it causes me physical pain when he blows the horn.  And all the while I’m thinking, fuck you, PTA…you couldn’t have quiet prizes like bouncy balls and play-doh?

Then the fundraiser orders came in, and I had to pick them up from the school.  Two big boxes of stuff that I had to take home at the end of the day and play Tetris to fit it all in the freezer in the kitchen, and the one in the garage.

But then, THEN I get to haul it all to work.  And I left one woman’s box of dough at home because I thought I heard her say she was on vacation all week.  But I get to work, and NO, she is not on vacation.  She is here, so I have to explain why I didn’t bring hers, and I will bring it tomorrow.  But her co-worker IS on vacation this week, so I had to put her dough in the freezer in the cafeteria kitchen, and hope that one of these mutant cubicle zombies doesn’t swipe it before the end of the day when I can transport it BACK TO MY HOUSE and back to my freezer until next week.

And all that is why at the next PTA meeting I will be suggesting that next year’s fundraiser is wrapping paper.  It’s lightweight, portable, and easy to store.  I know they’ll listen to me because I’m going to blow that fucking goose-horn to get their attention.


About Flannery

Kid, husband, dogs, my mother, full-time job, maximum stress, minimal relaxation...sooner or later I had to vent. AND we moved from California to Texas. I could start a whole other blog about that.

29 responses »

  1. I don’t miss fundraisers like this at all! I think the last two my daughter did were those tubs of cookies & something weird like flower bulbs/seeds/plants. Both were such a pain in the butt! I thought the flowers were such a great idea …. until they came home and the starter “dirt” that is used stunk up my ENTIRE house.

    Now, that my daughter is in high school the only fundraising they do is with the candy bars for $1 each. We have to sell 340 of them to cover her cost to Washington DC at the end of the year … this school is apparently trying to make me not fit into my pants anymore lol.

    • I’m all about those candy bars that come in a handy carrying case. I will the sell the crap out of those. And wait, you mean your kid’s “prize” is to go away on a trip? You get them out of your house? Glory, glory, hallelujah!!! I can’t wait for that fundraiser!

  2. HAHHAAAAAAAA! Oh this reminded me of last years fundraising fiasco’s. I make my mother buy something. Send out a mass email to coworkers who I think will buy and leave it at that. and then I’ll order some stuff. I hate the prize – it’s always some $1 store crap that values at like $1000 according to the fundraiser folks.

    Don’t get me started on lugging all that crap to this office and having to hand it out.

    I could also rant about the time when I tried to help out my friend with her daughter’s girl scout cookies. AND THEN the girl scout leader stole ALL THE MONEY.

    Good luck 🙂

  3. Cookie dough rocks! sign me up for a tub or two. For sure….

  4. I feel “nickle and dimed” to death by the school. We stopped actively participating in the regular school “catalog” fundraisers years ago. I may buy an item here or there, but I don’t let the kids go sell it. And boy would my younger daughter do just that! School expenses are out of control. Two sets of pictures each year, yearbook, trip fundraisers, trips, classroom supply donations, auction basket donations, restaurant & skating family nights, book fairs, fall festival, tailgaiting spirit night, art show and extra curric activity (i.e. Chorus, sports, etc) fundraisers. I need a job just to pay for it all! Ridiculous!

    Don’t forget collecting box tops, soup can labels, coke bottle lids, old cell phones, and old glasses too.

    So we save our sales pitches to sell Girl Scout cookies. They earn patches instead of plastic Oriental Trading toys, and a portion of the money actually goes to us, for our troop use. So support your local Girl Scouts. 🙂

    I think I need one of those big ol’ one dollar candy bars right about now.

    • Oh wait, you forgot the “teacher appreciation days” that they have each month. Although it’s not a fundraiser, it’s one more thing that involves schlepping stuff back and forth to the school.

      And WHEN did it become TWO sets of school pictures each year???? How is one school photo not good enough??

  5. OMG! I nearly died laughing when reading about the sound of the horn nearly killing you. I can really relate to that with my little niece lol

    And yep, school fundraisers are a pain in the bum!

  6. I never let The Boy participate in fundraisers, telling him that the prizes were junk. Instead, I’d write the school a $20 check and buy The Boy some junky toy myself.

    And now I’m awfully happy that he goes to a private school that does golf tournaments and other high society-type activities for fundraising.

  7. I have really developed a healthy hatred for fundraisers over the years for all of the reasons you mentioned above. I’d rather just write them a check. In the end its cheaper and a lot less hassle.

  8. GEEZ! did they hand out those Vuvula horns at Connor’s school? I’d take that thing right over to the PTA president’s home on a Sunday morning around 6 AM and serenade her!

    p.s.; how sexist am I to assume the PTA president is a “She”?

  9. ugh, school fundraisers are crazy! We have the boosterthon every year, and every year our kids are brainwashed for 2 weeks like zombies “you have to sign on…and pledge money!”

  10. Here’s my idea for next year’s fundraiser – bottles of vino!! The prizes can go directly to the parents – cuz it’s us that buys that s*** anyways. And the prize should be a nice relaxing massage. Now that’s a fundraiser. 🙂

  11. One of the things I love about homeschooling is I don’t have to do those fundraisers. Seriously. I hate pitching things to people, but I felt guilty if I didn’t help out. And hauling the cookie dough to work was the worst! I feel for you!

  12. Oh this was so funny!! Thank you, I could really do with a laugh!! Went onto the Autism Speaks facebook group looking for help since I thought those from that company would be able to guide me finding scientific evidence for this thing I’m having with the local government and instead some guy tries to drag me into another fruitless debate. **sigh**

    Sorry, This is about the post, not my current issues. **lol** Anyway, did you know my in’laws keep geese? So I totally know all about the sounds they make and the MASSIVE amounts green stuff that comes out of their little tails (that dogs can’t seem to resist, by the way).

    i think your idea for the next PTA meeting is good. Failing that, the prize could be a baseball bat? **proudly holds mine up** We just received ours online and they’re great as “armes blanche” to help protect your home. **smiles brightly**

  13. I have a rule. It should be a universally accepted rule of motherhood, so fellow mothers listen up:

    No child should ever be given a reward, gift, toy, party favor, or any other sort of accoutrement that makes noise. This includes, but is not limited to, whistles, drum sets, and angry goose horns.

    We must band together on this, fellow moms, because the next one who almost dies in her kitchen could be YOU! Don’t say I didn’t try to warn you.

  14. Pingback: The funny side of school fundraisers! - The Shop Foundation

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