but there are other things about this place that just aren't up to snuff. Like the fact that there are hardly any sidewalks. Anywhere. There's 84,000 people in this town, and most of the town has no sidewalks. The elementary school in my neighborhood is on a pretty busy residential street, and there is a sidewalk for two blocks on the opposite side of the street, then you have to cross the street to catch the sidewalk in front of the school for one block, then cross back over for the sidewalk for two blocks to the next arterial. All over the place there are sidewalks that stop in the middle of some one's yard, halfway down the block. Like the sidewalk inspector was coming through in a fancy automobile and the city workers quick, threw up some sidewalks halfway down all the blocks from the main streets. He'll never know!
Okay, but this isn't about sidewalk, not really.
This is about the local homeschool group- yes, its true, there is only one, and yes, it does have the word "Christian" as part of its name. How'd you guess? There is a class at the YMCA for homeschool kids, kind of a PE class and swimming class, kind of dismal attendance but good value for 20 hours of swimming lessons and a chance to play group games. Fine. Except that last week there was a new homeschooling Mom (First Mom) and her 7 year old son, and I overheard her talking with a Second Mom about activities, karate and things. Second Mom got her interested in the Friday classes that this homeschool group organizes. Fine. At the end of gym class, when the lady who happens to be one of the directors of the homeschool group arrived to pick up her two awful, snotty girls (who were in the changing room right then threatening to kill each other if they didn't shut up and reminding each other that they were freaking annoying ugly beasts and little brats and that they hated each other) Second Mom introduced the First Mom to Director Mom. Now here's the kicker- First Mom has a name that sounds like it might be Jewish- Bernstein or Goldmaier, something like that. Director Mom hears her name, turns from friendly smiley lady to hard and mean, and gives her the coldest up and down stare ever, and says, in the snottiest tone ever, "Well, are you CHRISTIAN?"
Of course she was, and spent a few minutes explaining her church attendance and involvement, what her son was doing in Sunday school, etc.. The thing is I know there are at least a couple Jewish or mixed-religion families in the group. So what the heck?
Like I said, maybe I can buy 60 pounds of produce for $19, but you can't buy tolerance, civility, human decency, friendliness, or a welcoming community culture for any amount of money.