Thursday, February 04, 2016

Memory Lane with Xmastime

(Reprinted from November 2007)

I took Physics in 11th grade when I was in high school. We had a new teacher that year, her name was Mrs. Bame. She was probably all of 26 years old; her being a teacher of course made us assume she was older than the hills. Looking back now, she mighta been the one teacher we had that I might've allowed to seduce me with amorous relations.

Let’s just say I wasn’t a Physics genius. I reckon I topped out in the sciences the year before, when for my “science project” I flipped a coin 500 times to determine if the theory of probability was true. Answer? “YES.” I got a single piece of posterboard; on one side I wrote “HEADS: 249” and the other side was “TAILS: 251.” Hey, I didn’t wanna make it too obvious that I hadn’t bothered actually flipping the coin by putting 250 on each side, so I mixed it up a bit. Clever. I should’ve won an Oscar the next day when Mr. Young tried to insinuate that I hadn’t worked very hard on the project with the cleverly disguised critique of “It looks as if you did almost zero work on this.” To which of course I flipped out, indignation raging. “what?!?!? I flipped a coin 500 TIMES!!!!” I guess after that experience, I soured on science. What can I say.

So the next year, about 6 minutes into my Physics career I realized “this MIGHT have been a huge mistake.” So I did what any smart, resourceful young student would do in a time of crisis: start badgering the teacher to let us play kickball. Every day in the beginning of class I’d start the whining. “Come on Mrs. Bame, it’s so nice outside! Let’s all go outside and play kickball! Camon! Camoooooooooooooooon!” Her being so young and inexperienced she was easily rattled, so I was able to keep this up for bout two weeks. Whenever she’d make the mistake of calling on me in class I’d act distracted, staring out the window “…wha? I’m sorry what was the question?...I was just thinking boy, it’s too nice outside, we should be out there playing kickball…” I was, in a word, relentless. I knew that unless I spent the next 9 months distracting her with kickball dreams she would realize I knew nothing about physics and therein my dreams of failing out of community college would be down the shitter. The one thing I did understand the whole class was when one day, for no conceivable reason, she brought in a tape of “Mystic Pizza” and we watched it. I have no idea what that had to do with Physics, unless it’s has something to do with how Annabeth Gish’s career disappeared into outer space. “The Ione Skye of 1988.”

Luckily, I only had to keep it up for about 2 weeks; I finally cashed in my chips and dropped the class.

Fast forward to months later, there’s about 2 weeks left in the school year and I’m sitting at a table in one of my record-setting 14 study halls for the day. Prolly putting together my endless lists of “Favorite Ramones records, In Order” over over. Or theorizing a way people could use a system of interlinked, hypertext documents accessed via their networked computers to communicate with each other. Either way, I’m pretty sure a paper football was on the table. So I’m sitting there and I see Mrs. Bame walking in. Big smile, little wave, she’s walking over to the study hall “teacher.” I’m kinda watching for no reason, they both laugh while looking at me. I’m like, are they talking about me? What the fuck? What’re they looking at, is my dick hanging out? I looked down at my shoes and saw no, it wasn’t. Mrs. Bame walks straight over to me. We exchange hellos etc and then I’m finally like so….what’s…up? I can still see her beaming smile, I can still see the LL Bean tote bag she then reached into, pulling out a big red rubber ball. “It’s so nice out. Let’s go play some kickball.” My class roared from out in the hallway where they had been waiting, and I rose up – I can still feel the smile cracking my face as I walked to them, and then we all ran outside and spent the next 2 hours playing kickball. Fucking awesome.

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