When I was growing up, I loved going school supply shopping at the end of every summer. I'd run through the aisles of the local K-Mart tossing big yellow blocks of Post-its, handfuls of fluorescent highlighters, and Velcroed-shut Trapper Keepers into the cart with abandon. But while my kids start school exactly one week from today I have yet to buy to a single thing, even though both of their class supply lists have been staring accusingly up at me from the kitchen counter since some time in mid-July.
Why the ambivalence? Well, for one thing, I'm the one paying for all this crap now. And with items like scientific calculators, USB flash drives and ear buds on the itinerary, the price tag escalates quickly. Plus, the inventory of necessary goods these days has just gotten so specific. For example, you can't just buy your kid any old binder anymore, it's got to be a 1 1/2 inch blue binder with pockets on the inside and a clear sheet protector attached to the front. And their erasers can't be hard and scented and shaped like candy or fruit like mine were. They've got to be soft rub and shaped like a parallelogram, preferably in white not pink.
And while I get that that last one actually makes sense—because let's face it, who hasn't fallen victim to a hard eraser ceremoniously tearing a hole in our whisper-thin college-ruled notebook paper?—the specificity has taken all the fun out of the supply shopping experience. At least for me. But Jersey mom vlogger Dena Blizzard feels differently. Just check out this hilarious now-viral rant about all us parents who complain about school supply shopping she filmed while walking through her local Target:
"I've been noticing lately that when people are doing their back-to-school shopping, everybody's complaining," she explains in the video. "And my thing is, listen, it is the end of August. I will give you anything to take my kids. I'll get you a yellow binder, I'll get you a red binder, I will tie-dye some shit. You take these kids out of my house, I'll get you whatever you want!"
And that includes orange juice, a microwave, a rug, and a doormat that says "Hello," all of which Blizzard happily purchases for her kid's classroom.
"I have spent hours of my life teaching my daughter math and history," she continues. "I don't know anything about history. And there's a lady somewhere willing to teach my daughter about some history? And she wants a yellow binder to do it? I'm gonna get that bitch a yellow binder."
Pretty funny. And while this hilarious mama hasn't heard from any of her kids' teachers since the clip went crazy viral, she told us she has a few of her own former educators she'd like to give props to. There's her fifth grade teacher Mrs Clark, who is the only reason Blizzard knows math; Rowen University chem prof Dr. Newland, who never yelled at her even though she blew lots of things up in the lab; Piano teacher Mrs Knight, who listened to her complain for years but gave her the joy of music; and Mr. Azores from Camden Catholic High School, who sat on the back of a desk, meticulously pronouncing "superfluous," so the students wouldn't sound like idiots when they graduated high school.
"These small moments happen every day, in classrooms across the country," Blizzard explained to Parents.com. "It's time we gave teachers the props they deserve and do our part to support them."
Hmmm. She does have a point there. Teachers go above and beyond for our kids on the regular and receive little to no accolades for their efforts. So while finding the one 4-inch purple binder left on the shelves of my own local Target is probably going to be annoying AF this late in the game, I am at least going to try to do it with a smile on my face. And if that means I have to resort to swilling vodka in aisles like Blizzard does, so be it—because I think she may actually be onto something there, too.