By the time we got to the school, all the other parents had cleared the halls and filed into their kids’ respective first-period classrooms. Our first stop was orchestra, where the parents who’d arrived before us filled the whole room except the front row.
I stifled the urge to bow as Mike and I passed in front of everyone to take our chairs seconds before the bell sounded and a video started of the band playing a halting Star Spangled Banner. Afterward, the orchestra teacher used a baton to emphasize each point she’d written on a PowerPoint slide.
This was Colin’s junior high school open house. Speed-dating for parents and faculty. Members of the student council directed bewildered parents through crowds between sessions wherein each teacher had exactly eight minutes to describe themselves, their strategy, curriculum, graded assignments, homework, rules of conduct … hopes and dreams and zodiac signs, ruminations on the state of affairs in the Middle East, and whatever else they had time for.