The 40 Year Old Bat Mitzvah

Everybody Panic

Posted in Uncategorized by Juliet on October 31, 2011

Jews are funny. We can be absolutely about the gravest matters (death, politics, religion, suicide bombers), while we get completely wound up about minor things (lukewarm coffee, confusing freeway onramp signs.) We’re incredibly earthy, earnestly discussing life and death, but then we get all sidetracked by whether someone accidentally mixed Skittles and M & Ms in the same candy jar.

So anyway.

I’m working a volunteer shift selling bagels to the school kids at our temple. It’s a fun job and the time goes by quickly, though they do insist on serving “I Can’t Believe It’s Not Butter.” (Heresy! Bits tried some on a day when they ran out of cream cheese, took one bite, and handed it back to me in disgust. “What IS this?!”)

As our shift is winding down, the school director walks by. “Earthquake and lockdown drill in five minutes.”

Okay, so that’s normal. We live in Southern California, and we have regular earthquake drills. I get it. Lockdown drills might be a bit more unusual, especially for schoolkids in Poway/Rancho Bernardo, bit it’s not unheard of.

But a gunman scenario? Nobody told the kids in advance. “How can we tell how they’ll do if we warn them?”

Wow. Admirably uncompromising. And I do love temple. I don’t think these drills will traumatize the kids. (Me, maybe, but probably not the kids.)

The other bagel mom and I were advised to “find someplace to hide and lock the door.” Also we were lucky because (A) we had five minutes to plan where to hide; and (B) there’s not a real gunman. (And really, isn’t (B) the main reason we are lucky?)

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