She blinked quickly to stem the tears specific to first-year teachers who still expect days in an elementary classroom to be filled with magic, learning, and unicorns. The little teacher had planned curriculum-based activities, extensive treats, and a visit from her dog for today’s Valentine’s party; the principal even attended what turned out to be a fiasco visible from Pluto. One child suddenly developed a phobia of dogs and wet her pants while hiding under the desk; another had eaten so much candy that he threw up all over himself and the student next to him, causing a chain puke involving four kids. With furrowed brow, the principal took the line of sick children to the nurse, and the disheartened teacher hauled the rest of the class and the dog off to the playground. Just as she managed to take a deep breath of sanity, the dog squatted and took an enormous dump on the pristine mulch beneath the swing.