“Daddy, “said Paula. “Can I please get a job after school?”
“Honey,” said Father. “We’ve been through this a hundred times. You need to bring your marks up in school.”
“But,” said Paula. “I need some money.”
“You bring your grades up in school first,” said Father, taking a sip of his coffee. “Now, I’d like to enjoy my coffee and read the paper in peace. Paula went over to her friend, Erica’s house. Erica lived just up the street in a bachelor apartment all by herself.
“Got a smoke,” said Paula when she flopped herself on Erica’s sofa-bed.
“I take it that it didn’t go so well,” said Erica, handing Paula a cigarette and her lighter.
“You guessed right,” said Paula. “He won’t even discuss me getting a job until I bring my grades up.”
“That is not a big deal,” said Erica. “All you have to do is cheat.”
“Cheat,” thought Paula. “That is an awesome idea. I know just the person that I can cheat from.”
“Let me guess,” said Erica. “Your future room-mate.”
Erica sat right behind Paula at the next test they had in English. Erica held up her test paper, pretending to read it over, while Paula copied the answers from it. Paula got the results from that test and took it home to her Father so he could see it.
“Well Paula,” said Father. “An 80%. I’m so proud of you. However, the next time you and Erica cheat on a test, you are grounded.”
“How did you find out?” asked Paula, knowing there was no sense in lying about it.
“Mr. Rutherford, your English teacher called,” said Feather.
“Oh,” said Paula.
“This girl Erica is a bad influence on you,” said Father.
“No she isn’t,” said Paula. “She is actually a very good friend. In fact, that is why I want to get a part-time job. I want to move in with her.”
“I see,” said Father. “Okay, go ahead.”
“Really!” exclaimed Paula, gave her Father a hug. “Thank you!”
Paula and Erica prepared Paula’s resume and within two weeks Paula had a job working at the grocery store as a stock-girl. For two weeks, Paula worked after school. She would never admit it, but the job was wearing her out. She found that she was falling asleep in class. She couldn’t go out with her friends because she was either working or sleeping.
“So when are you moving out?” asked Father when Paula got her first pay cheque.
“I’m not,” said Paula. “I quit my job today because I’m just too worn out and I have no time for my friends.”
“A very wise decision,” said Father, giving Paula a big hug.