That is, don’t let them chaperon if they are the type of parent that doesn’t see pulling your pants down in public as something that could be harmful to your self-esteem. But I’m getting ahead of myself.
Back in third grade, my mom accompanied me on a school trip to the Long Island Game Farm. For the most part, the experience was fun. Then some of my classmates “convinced” me to go into the hay barn despite me shaking my head no. When I saw it, something in me screamed “don’t do it”. It wouldn’t be the first time I ignored my instincts and lived to regret it.
Hesitantly I stepped in the little barn. The only light came from the door I had just come through and peaked through some beams in the back. I was surrounded before my eyes could adjust . Within seconds multiple hands were shoving hay down my shirt, down my pants, and into my hair. I tried to escape but couldn’t. I was screaming like a banshee so much that it alerted one of the adults just outside the doorway. I heard shouting. People rushed past me. I ran out and into my mother’s arms thinking she would comfort me.
Instead, as I did what looked like the pee pee dance trying to recover from the effects of the ambush, my mom pulled my pants down. I knew she meant well. Hay+bare skin=excruciating itchies. And yes, I was crying like a baby from embarrassment and physical irritation. Trying to pull out the hay just wasn’t working. It seemed to push the hay further down my pants, in my underwear. Oh and my mom had a habit of insisting I tuck my shirt into my underwear, so yeah that was a nice touch to the impromptu strip show. She was so hell-bent on relieving me of the hay; she was about to pull my underwear down! Somewhere I found my voice and screamed for her to stop as I pulled my jeans up, hay stabbed me like thorns.
I don’t remember how, but I made my way to a restroom to de-hay myself in private. Even at the door of the stall my mother was trying to direct me.
Oh and my teacher got the “dance” on camera. Later, when he played scenes from our trip for the class, he sped up the hay scene. With the accompanying music, it resembled a Charlie Chaplin movie. I was the butt of many jokes for some time.