Wednesday, October 28, 2009


There is a bug hiding under my 4 key.

Want to watch me try to kill him?


He isn’t dead. He’s trying to make it to 5. He’s mocking me.

Which leads me to an interesting question: why are there so many bugs on my desk? Yeah, the cockroaches and lizards suck, but I think everyone here will agree that the real nasty things are the tiny little ants.

Thankfully, for the most part, they go where the food is. That makes sense, right? I don’t eat in bed thanks to my suffocating fear that I wake up and ants will be crawling all over me. So they pretty much stick to the trash and the kitchen. Except for my desk. There are at least 15 crawling around every time I sit down, and I don’t eat here either! I keep looking underneath my desk to make sure someone didn’t tape a banana under there as a cruel joke.

Why would anyone tape a banana under my desk?
Christ. I need more human contact.

So today was my Halloween party! I have been prepping and planning for weeks. I mopped the floor. I lit spooky candles. Thanks to Mrs. Bower’s idea and my pathetic overabundance of free time, I decorated the whole house in an orange, black, and white paper chain. I paid $6 for one of five small pumpkins I found in the entire city of Palembang.

It turned into quite the elite get-together. I’m certain that this was the most exclusive party I have ever been to. And I threw it! Obviously, I don’t have the money or space to throw a party for the whole school. I decided to invite the English Club, about 18 students. It would go like this in class:

Student: “Miss Katie, are you having a party?”
Miss Katie: “Yes, for members of English Club after school.”
Student: “And people get to come to your house?”
Miss Katie: “Yes, that’s where the party is.”
Student: “Can I pleaseeee come, too?”
*English Club member overhears and butts in*
EC Student: “No! You can’t come! It’s for English Club members ONLY!”

Then I say not to be rude and I’m sorry, but it IS only for the English Club. But if he wants to start coming to English Club on Monday and Tuesday afternoons, he can definitely come to the other parties I’ll have throughout the year.

EC Student: “Hah! See, I told you so. I can go and you can’t!”

This happened at least four times. Is it wrong that it made smile that so many people wanted to come to the party? I didn’t want to let them down.

The students were extremely excited about deciding which Halloween costumes they would wear. Rumors began circulating about a mad scientist outfit that would blow everyone away. I decided to be a cat. I was almost a bunch of grapes (an incredible, inexpensive outfit I saw once where someone taped a bunch of purple balloons to a t-shirt), but I decided I needed to be able to move around.

Since I have Wednesdays off, I spent all day getting ready. Finally, everyone arrived.

And not a single one of them was in costume. Not ONE.

Miss Katie: “What happened to the mad scientist… and everyone else?!”
Them: “We forgot.”
Miss Katie: “…Oh. Well, that’s ok…”
Them: “Are you supposed to be a mouse?”

I was a CAT.

But aside from the severe lack of outfit enthusiasm, the party went splendidly. They’d never celebrated Halloween before, and it was touching to see how excited they were about the games.

And oh were there games—

Bobbing for apples: Not the smartest choice in my life. The girls wearing jilbabs couldn’t very well shove their face into a tub of water. Only four of them were willing to try, but everyone cheered and loved watching. I now have 25 apples leftover. (Hmm… how can I make cider?) I politely declined to play because it might have smeared my lipstick pink cat nose.

Ghost suckers: This went fast, but they liked having a souvenir. You know the one… a tissue over a sucker with a ribbon tied around it.

Scary Sam’s Food Story: They LOVED it. You’ve probably played this before, too. I told them a scary story about how Sam went walking alone one night and no one ever heard from him again. That is, until I found the body. No peeking, just touching! Brain=spaghetti, fingers=carrots, heart=peeled tomato, teeth=little candy pieces, eyes=peeled grapes, liver=hamburger meat. There was shrieking and laughter the whole time.

Guess how many pieces of candy are in this jar?: Also not my brightest moment. I bought the cheaper container at the store, not realizing that it was only SORT OF airtight. I counted out the candy the night before, and those blasted ants had claimed all 616 pieces of it by the morning. So I just had them guess from that jar, and I gave the winner another prize.

Guess the circumference of the pumpkin with ribbon: (I need catchier names for these last few games.) They got really into this one! I held the pumpkin and walked around to show them. They had to eyeball and cut a piece of string they thought would fit just right around it. One girl got it dead on.

Toilet paper mummy game: They REALLY liked this one, too. It’s so hard to pick a winner, but a girl’s gotta do what a girl’s gotta do. I chose the one that put a toilet paper bow on top.


  1. Those damn ants!!! They claimed all 616 pieces! I'm glad you didn't decide on 666 pieces, you crazy girl.

    This sounds like the best party in the entire world. I can't wait to hear how many people show up to the next English Club meeting for hopes of being on the elite list for the next party!

    Your games are AMAZING!!! Just. Like. You!

  2. Wow!! You sound like a real teacher and planning every activity down to the movement of every student and each action. Good job! Some things work and some do not, you never really know unless you give it a try. Excellent answer on the student that wanted to come and now he will start coming to English Club after school. This principal observing a first year teacher would give you an "A".

    Love, Dad

  3. Your Halloween this year reminds me so much of that old movie we used to watch together, The Halloween That Almost Wasn't. Your Indo mummies would fit right into the end of the movie! Who knew?!

  4. Rule number two of Banana Defense. Always know where you are in relation to the banana!