The Prank

Although I gave my speech class a free day, they were more than obnoxious than usual. One of the newspaper articles featured a picture of a beautiful blonde. “Hey, Miss, can I borrow those scissors?” Was I born yesterday? “No.”

“C’mon, Miss, why not? No one cares if I cut out a picture.”

I do. I’m not going to help you with your scrapbook of blondes. In fact, I wish I didn’t know anything about it.

A roll of the eyes, he leans forward and says something about that woman because he knows I am listening. As soon as I bend over my grading, he switches back to the b-word, like I suddenly can’t hear. Both of us finally exasperated with each other, he went to the bathroom. The whole hour was like this, and they all contributed their fuel to the fire.

Two decided they didn’t really want to be part of the clan of disrespect and came to linger at my table. They were both in my English 10 class in which we’re practicing specific sentence structures. I have a pile of “Ticket Out the Door” slips on my desk for this purpose. Before leaving class, each student is supposed to write a great sentence on one of these papers.

The trouble makers have never been in one of my writing classes and don’t know the first thing about my “Ticket Out the Door” expectations; and the slips have nothing to do with Speech class. Nevertheless, my student, perusing the contents on my desk had a delicious idea. With a smile and a wink he said quietly, “Hey Miss, watch this.” As he counted out five slips, my other student questioned me with his eyes, and I slid my chair over so he would block my view from the other students. Then I waited.

I could hear Mr. S. walk to the back of the room and hand out the papers without a word. Finally someone noticed: “Hey, what is this!”

“You gotta write a sentence using one of the FANBOYS,” he gestured to the list of coordinating conjunctions on my wall. Even though they objected vehemently, he persisted.    The student I was hiding behind saw that I wasn’t going to object to the prank, so he turned to help. My TA, who despises this class, also moved to the back of the room to get my students to write. It was taking too long, I thought I was going to spoil everything with an eruption of laughter. Finally, the sentences trickled in, and they ambled out at movement. I could lean against my whiteboard and laugh. I hadn’t said a word the whole time.


About hey miss

A teacher. A prison guard. I used to think that was like oil and water. Like lightening and metal. Some days it is. Some days it's magic.
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