My seventh grade biology teacher Mr. R_____ was British and drove a
tiny green import. He was tall and couldn't draw his body to full
height when he was driving. He let me on the soccer team even though
the season had already started. It got me out of seventh period math
three times a week, which was good because the kid behind me kept
flicking my ear. My ear still hurts in the winter where he flicked it
all the time. For that alone, I count Mr. R______ one of the good guys.
Twenty years later and this is the stuff I think about. But last night
on Facebook I saw some of my classmates could only remember when Mr.
R_______ set his tie on fire, or when he gave that ear-flicking kid a
pass to the bathroom and the kid came around the rear of the classroom
and pretended to hump the window behind Mr. R_______. These Facebook
people said: What a joke, that Mr. R________. What a waste of skin.
Three o'clock in the morning, I'm reading these things out of nostalgia
for people I didn't like the first time around. Why would anyone want
to teach middle school?
- - -
Read KM's story, "The Prerogatives of Posthumous Self-Improvement."
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