Her e-mail to the class:
I was just thinking that in another month or so Zach [the expectant] will be a Dad! What do you think about celebrating a bit during our end of year party, throwing them a shower, and/or getting a gift from the class? It would be a fun surprise.
Let me know if you're interested and would like to help plan.
My reply to the class:
"Meredith (and everyone else),
How exciting! (It's real this time.) I think all three of those ideas are excellent! Of course, by "all three", I really mean "only two". In my ever-present attempt to be the one who sucks the jam (or cream filling, if you're one of "those types") out of everyone's donuts, I vote not to have a shower (assuming that means being 'happy' and entails individual gifts). I say this for 3 reasons. These are they:
1.) There are some of us in this class who did not have jobs prior to matriculation or prior to August 25. There are (or 'is') also some (read 'at least one') of us who did not get a living stipend for whatever reason and now have (or 'has') to make their (read 'his') last $200 stretch until the end of the semester/beginning of June. Some of us (read 'I') fall into both categories. Gifts are expensive, and I learned just last year that money indeed does not grow on trees. (In that same time, it was also revealed to me that 'pussies' don't grow on pussy willows. Weird, I know.)
2.) If we collectively buy a gift and if the gift turns out to be 'wack,' the blame can be diffused amongst, and the defense effused from, all of us, jointly.
3.) Does anyone really like pregnant women?*
With that, in all honesty, I think that it would be best to present to Zach and his baby's mother a gift from all of us, while celebrating at the party. It serves as a vehicle to get our point across while providing the lovely benefit of giving Zach (do pregnant women carry things?) fewer items to carry back home.
Jeremy [the administrative assistant], I apologize for making you a party to my shenanigans, but at least you get to experience firsthand some of what you've been missing throughout the year. They say it's worth its rhetorical weight in white gold. I don't know exactly who 'they' are, but I know 'they' exist.
A. Elijah Green
NYU School of Law, Class of 2010
* I'm kidding! I'm very aware that there are people out there who like pregnant women. My mother is one of them."
So, after I sent the e-mail to the entire class, many of classmates responding with something to the effect of, "OMG that was hilarious! I can't believe you just said that!" My professor, however, wasn't as thrilled as everyone else, but she wasn't completely broken up about it. She then proceeded to remind me that she'd just given birth to her first child not but some months ago and then went on to inform me that she may or may not be pregnant again. There was definitely a certain "tone" about her response to me.
Moral of the story: As my mother, in her infinite wisdom, would say, "Perhaps [I] should watch [my] mouth, before it writes a check that [my] ass can't cash."