Today is Theme Thursday. Can you believe it? It is Thursday again? My how time flies the older you get. This week’s theme is History. Yes as in “I don’t know much about His-tor-ee, don’t know much Bi-ol-o-gee…” to quote Sam Cooke. I do know that where you have been shapes who you become. So I’m not talking world history here or even ancient history, unless of course you are close to my age, I’m talking about personal history.
Oh and speaking of history go to my post yesterday and leave me a comment on THAT post. That will put you in the pot to win Erin Bried’s book “How to Sew a Button”. It is a great book and I have to tell you I have absolutely loved reading your comments about what your parents, grandparents, aunts and uncles have taught you. Absolutely riveting!
Now on to my tale of history. I know you can’t wait can you?
Gladys sat in her history class listening to Mr. Osborne drone on and on about the First World War and how some weirdo named Prince Ferdinand got himself whacked. Mr. Osborne acted as if this was something terribly important in the fate of where our country was in the 1970’s. She was not following how something that happened a bazillion years ago in Austria had anything to do with a little town in Texas. Heck, the only thing she knew about Austria was the hills were alive with the Sound of Music. Then it happened. Fred Farkle came into class with his high-water pants and his pocket protector firmly ensconced in his upper left pocket. That wasn’t what was so miraculous; he looked like that every day. Fred was a nerd of major proportions and the smartest kid in school. No what made angels sing and children laugh was he was carrying a dozen, dozen Jack and Jill donuts. He had sprinkles, chocolate covered, jelly filled, cake and plain old yeast donuts in that box. He smiled showing his newly tightened braces and forced out through the forty-seven rubber bands holding his jaws together like a vice “mha mhuhm whamted mhu tho hah dhesh sinssssh I’m thardsh.” Mr. Osborne lit up like a Christmas tree and slid the boxes onto the radiator box. “Well Mr. Farkle I think this more than makes up for you tardiness. Class you may each come and get a donut and we will resume our lecture on Ferdinand.”
Fred looked longingly at the boxes of pastries and instead turned and took his seat knowing he would never be able to force a smidgen between the vice grips of rubber band and he would never be able to restring them if he undid them. He sighed heavily and watched as the rest of the class took their share and his. Mr. Osborn sat down at his desk and consumed several jelly filled delectables and then sat back in his chair.
Mr. Osborn was not a young man. He had in fact been one of the participants in the Great Escape, yes as in the one they made the movie about. Gladys did not know this tidbit until a couple of years later when she had him for another class. He was almost completely deaf and if he turned his hearing aide off he could sit in absolute peace and quiet. This is exactly what he did after he devoured his morning delight. He instructed the class that they could go by two’s to the water fountain and get a drink of water then they would resume the lecture.
The class was as orderly as a bunch of teenagers can be got up and went out to mess around in the hall and pretend to be getting water. They filed back in the room by two’s each one passing Mr. Osborne until finally Johnny said in a hushed tone “his eyes are closed and his hearing aide ain’t whistling. I think he’s asleep.” That is when the majority of the class as quietly as possible gathered up their belongings. Then two by two they slipped from the classroom. Mr. Osborne was satiated and sleeping in his chair oblivious to the fact his class was dwindling in number as he beat out his breathes in a rhythmic snore. Eventually there were only two left in the room. Gladys and Fred looked at one another. They eased from their seats both sore afraid they would be caught ditching class. They gathered their belongings and as they eased passed the snoozing professor he snorted. Gladys began giggling from nerves and hey it was funny to hear your teacher snort and snore. Fred had just reached the door when Mr. Osborne’s eyes popped open he looked around at the empty room and said “Where is everyone?”
Gladys froze in fear. They had been caught. They were going to take the fall. She knew this was going on her permanent record. Oh the shame! The tragedy! He was going to punish them and make them read some horrible dry book on history and how some Australian had caused the war to end all wars, but worse it would be on her permanent record. The record that would follow you through life. The one that the teachers threatened you with your whole school career. She could see it now. There she would be standing in front of the crowd waiting to be awarded the Nobel Peace Prize and they would pull out a big yellow folder marked GLADYS MCGUILLICUTTY: PERMANENT RECORD. They would open it up and say “Oh there has been a mistake. It says here in your permanent record that you ditched history class. Sorry we are going to have to take back that prize.”
Gladys was panicked. She looked at Fred as he stood in his frozen deer in the headlights stance. She looked at Mr. Osborne as he huffed and puffed and fidgeted with his hearing device. Then Fred opened his mouth wide sending out a barrage of rubber bands. As the rubber projectiles sailed toward the ducking teacher he said the only the he could say “Mr. Osborne, the bell rang, we have to get to our next class.” Then he grabbed Gladys’ hand and darted out the door.
This is why I don’t know much about history. I do know if you feed your history teacher enough donuts you can ditch class. I also know that Fred was fast on his feet and went on to be a brilliant cardiologist and that’s all I know.
Saturday at the Maul
15 hours ago