Nine People at a PTA Meeting

Corporate Carla

Yes, we know what you used to do…

Carla was a big shot before she had kids. She knows that. You know that. We all know it.  Her resume’s impressive, no doubt about it.  Managing mergers and actuating acquisitions? Pfft. Easy peasy. And if you ever want to buy out a Fortune 500 Company, Carla’s your woman. But sometimes Carla focuses too hard on the bottom line of the bake sale. When she suggests incorporating the car wash or talks about a hostile take over of the fund-raising committee, one thing becomes clear: it’s time for Carla to go back to work.


Alice of the Agenda 

From start to finish, opening items to abrupt adjournment, with Alice, it’s nothing but business for the next sixty minutes. Asides will be brushed, concerns cancelled, non-agenda items nixed. Alice wields her gavel like Thor’s hammer and sticks like hot-glue to the plan in front of her. Allergic to ad-libbing, there’s no go with the flow where Alice is concerned. And woe betide the member who tries to introduce an idea that’s not listed. With Alice of the Agenda, minutes are kept…to the second.

Inclusive Irma

Irma–ah, bless! All Irma wants is to make the PTA inclusive. She dreams of making sure everyone is represented, from the gluten-free families to the Ramadan fasting, to the one kid who doesn’t even go to her school but might show up for the trunk or treat–you remember, the who had that weird full body hive reaction to the fiber in the rug of one of the trunks? She tries hard and means well, but she might just drive herself crazy trying to please all of the people all of the time.


Dapper Don 

Hey, ladies!

Don rocks up to any meeting ready to flirt, treating the PTA like his own personal Tinder account. Handsome, winsome, and immune to the eye-rolls happening behind his back, Don generally believes his own hype and figures that as one of a handful of men on the PTA, his accession to the higher echelons of committees and chairpeople is all but assured. Don’s oblivious to the fact that the role eventually given to him was made up, mostly to stop him from being so creepy with the younger moms.

Searching Sylvie

A super fan of Bad Moms and Bad Moms 2, Sylvie joined the PTA hoping for wine, a friend, and the possibility of talking to someone other than her pre-school aged kids. What Sylvie’s usually searching for is some sort of meaning outside the day-to-day grind with young kids. Sometimes Sylvie finds fulfillment in the fundraising. Sometimes she fills the void with volunteering. Sometimes she wonders if her time is better spent plucking dried play doh out of her hair. If she’s lucky, she’ll latch on to another like-minded soul and the two will sit at the back of the room, giggling and texting their way through monthly meetings.

Opinionated Orla

Orla.Never.Shuts.Up. She’s got an opinion about everything, and more often than not, it’s an ornery one. Whether she enjoys playing devil’s advocate or simply thinks she can do a better job than Chairperson Charlie, it’s hard to tell. Maybe she’s born with it, maybe it’s Maybelline, maybe she’s in the midst of an existential crisis. Whatever it is, Orla’s an expert on everything, especially at raising the hackles of everyone around her. The sad part? It’s not that she’s wrong or her ideas aren’t good, it’s more that as soon as she opens her mouth, everyone else stops listening.

Fall-back Farah

Seriously, no one else can do this?

Can’t find someone to woman the panini machine? Call Farah! Last minute ticket sales need a boost? Have no fear, Farah’s here! From decorating to field trips, class funds to teacher appreciation gift baskets, if no one else volunteers, you can always rely on Farah. What you may not realize is that Farah harbors a seething resentment as she smiles and feeds your kid a slice of pizza she may or may not have spit on while she was sorting it all out…by herself. Again.

Retro Rochelle

Rochelle has seemingly been part of the PTA for the last forty years. You’re pretty sure her last kid graduated in 1998. She prefers paper to email, waxes about faxes, and believes a good, old-fashioned candy drive solves any problem. Rochelle can often be found going head-to-head with Environmental Emmy, who bemoans the palm oil in the candy-bars and the environmental impact of wrapping paper sales. Sometimes you’ll find Rochelle in a corner, regaling new-comers about the bake-sale record the school smashed in 2001.

Passive Agressive Patty-Anne 

I’ve put you down for 2. I’m sure that’s fine, right?

Patty-Anne’s a team player, but there’s always just a tiny hint of meanness to the things she says or does. Having trouble recognizing Patty-Anne? Statements like “Oh, that’s a great idea, Orla, but imagine if instead…” are usually a dead give-away. Patty-Anne will confront a complaining parent and sweetly ask them what time slot for the bouncy-house works best for them, and inform another she’s put them down for some kale-cups as they were so unhappy with the Rice Krispie treats. All with a smile on her face. She’ll cut you and you won’t even know you’re bleeding until she walks out of the room. The rest of the PTA puts up with Patty-Anne’s sometimes snide remarks because frankly, she’s worth her weight in gold in other ways.

In all seriousness, join your local PTA. They do good work!


10 thoughts on “Nine People at a PTA Meeting

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    1. I suspect you are 100% right! These posts are always fun to write because I usually recognize myself in at least half of them–and I always have folks messaging me asking if they were the inspiration for one or two….


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