A short story in the memoir genre.

I am greeted by identical twin girls gleefully running up to me in their matching red sweaters and long golden pigtails. Wow, they are so nice. And it’s so cool that they look alike. They seem a little juvenile for running in public like that, but nonetheless, I appreciate their friendliness. I guess they will be my new friends. I hadn’t had the best kid interaction up until now. Okay, I hadn’t had much of any kid interaction up until now. All of the children are quite lovely here. This is much better than I had anticipated. I mean, the whole idea of going to school to learn a bunch of things that my parents had already taught me seemed odd, but I guess the adults must know what they’re doing. I’ll stop complaining now that I see it looks fun.

We all take seats in this massive room and oh-my-god, I cannot believe my eyes. Toys. Everywhere. There appears to be a large section of the room designated for indoor recess time. It is hard to concentrate on alphabet matters when tricycles and big wheels are only a short distance from my desk. After what feels like an eternity, it’s finally time for recess! We all make our mad dashes to the toys, but I stop short. The boys are running to the left side of the toy area and the girls are running to the right side—well, the wrong side. Are they confused? I am deeply aware that I am supposed to follow the girls. Those are my people. It would be weird if I didn’t follow them. But. The tricycles and big wheels and building blocks are to the left!

I must have stood in the middle too long. Lisa, one of the twin girls, eagerly calls me over to the area far away from the toys with wheels. I begrudgingly approach her. She is giddy. Gripping a toy iron, she leads me to its matching ironing board. I immediately think of how unhappy my mom is when she irons. What is the idea here? How did this get tossed in with the toys? Wait a minute. In a dizzying few seconds, I ascertain that I am standing inside of a miniature kitchen—complete with a refrigerator, stove, and sink. Good god, why is Becky pretending to wash the little, plastic dishes? They’re not dirty, and there seems to be no plumbing in this setup. I need to speak with my parents about bumping me up a couple of grades. Did the girls miss the announcement that it is toy time? Time to play? I must tell them. Motioning to the left, I explain, “If you will all listen up for a moment, I’d like to suggest that we take this free time we have been given to go play with the toys. As you can see…”

Lisa interrupts me, “These are toys, silly!”

I stand quiet in disbelief. Ryan pedals by us on a squeaky tricycle and chucks a plastic hamburger past our heads. Normally, I would be outraged at this sort of behavior, but frankly, we deserve it. The girls are pretending to do housework with no plumbing or electricity, and during toy time no less! We must look like complete idiots. Maybe a hamburger to the head would knock some sense into us. The girls scream at Ryan and are back at “pretend” house duties in no time.