I remember my first day of kindergarten fairly vividly. I had turned five years old two months earlier and knew that if I wanted to have my Die Hard script taken seriously I would have to go through the rituals of school. My first memory is getting yelled at for pulling my pants all the way down to my ankles when I pissed. I have no idea why I did this, but that’s how I pissed back then. What the hell did I know? Hey what am I, a goddam doctor? I was standing at the john pissing, Toughskins at my ankles, when a teacher walked in and yelled at me for my pissing modus operandi. It’s very comforting to know that back then a teacher could walk in on a five year old whose pants were down at his ankles and stand there having a conversation with him...My class was the last one in my county to only go to kindergarten for a half-day…I’d watch the 700 Club, Happy Days and then head outside to catch the bus. I am not making the 700 Club part up, by the way. I guess I felt a comfort in knowing that as long as people kept sending enough money in, God would be good to us all. Of course, I also seemed to believe that a guy could snap his fingers and beautiful women would come runing, so maybe I was a fucking idiot. Now, I don’t know why they decided to go full-day the next year but, ironically, my graduating class went on to be labeled as the smartest class in the history of our high school. Lesson learnt: never do a full job when half of one will do...Also, two school buses carried us to class each afternoon. Bus 7 had about 60 kids and Bus 48, my bus, had 8. I don’t know who the wizard was behind that, but it suited me just fine. I think I was the only white kid on Bus 48, on which we had characters such as Fat Melvin, who introduced us all to the “Boy-Boob.” Joe, who would be famous for dropping dead cutting grass at St. Margaret’s a few years later. And of course Tony, Joe’s friend. All we did during the entire ride was point out different cars on the road and claim them as our own. “Mine.” “That one’s mine.” “Mine.” This actually came in handy our first trip to Porky’s, interestingly enough. It was also on Bus 48 that I made my first friend, Mark Braxton (details here.)
I could already read before I got to kindergarten, which blew since about 97% of the entire year was spent learning the letters of the alphabet, courtesy of inflatable letters such as “Mr. T the Toothbrush!” and Mr. A the Apple!” I was gonna use a “Mrs. Q the Queef!” joke here, but I don’t wanna ruin these memoirs for the pre-teen crowd. (Side note to my college girlfriend: yes, I heard it. And yes, that’s why we broke up.) Also, I’ve noticed that the literacy rate among children has dropped 20% over the last 25 years, so there has to be something said for teaching by way of little blow up dolls, right? Lord knows I do my part to keep "learning."
The other thing I remember about kindergarten was how we were fed. We didn’t have “normal” lunches; every day at lunchtime we’d sit down and one of the teachers would haul out a big hefty bag. “Ohhhh, what do we have today??!!” she’d coo, with all of us hanging onto our seats. She’d open it up and Oooooohhh!! Peanut butter crackers! Or rolls. Whatever if was, it was a Hefty bag filled with one thing. Very strange. Not especially flattering either, throwing food at us like we’re little pigeons. Though actually I guess we’d be big for pigeons. Huge, literate (some of us) pigeons blinging out knit shirts with sailboats. Mmmmmmm. Would been great if one day she reached into the bag and pulled out a live rabbit. "Get the boning knife, we're eating meat today!"
Thursday, June 26, 2014
Speaking of Kindergarten...
...an old Xmastime classic from my memoirs:
at 10:52 PM