Saturday, August 25, 2007

Flashbacks Before 40

Ok, I must confess that I turn 40 on Monday and it is bothering me a little. On one hand, I thank God for watching over me and keeping me safe as I have traveled many different paths over the years - some good, some bad. On the other hand, I must realize that my life is about halfway over and time is running out on the things that I want to accomplish. I have to get busy.

With doomsday on the horizon, and school starting back recently, I have been reflecting on a lot of things that have occurred in my life, as well as the people who have been a part of it, both past and present. A few nights ago, my wife and I were at a pre-season high school football game having fun and reminiscing about last year’s team that finished runner-up in the state championship game. (We should have won, but I will save that story for another time.) Anyway, as the last seconds were ticking off the clock, we got up to leave and that is when I noticed her sitting a few rows down from us. She got up about the same time we did, and I realized that after all of these years, she still gets to me. I immediately flashed back to my 9th grade year in high school, and immediately became ticked off all over again. You see, this person that I saw……that I wanted to just push down the bleachers……was my 9th grade History teacher, Ms. Coyner.

This lady was one of the biggest witches a student could have for a teacher. No wonder that she did not get married until she was almost 50. This is a small town and it took almost a lifetime of people moving into town before that one right person came along for her. Poor guy. His hometown must have been smaller than this one. I could have told her when I was 14 years old that it was going to take her awhile to find a husband. If I had, maybe she would have moved away and my brothers could have been spared.

Miss Coyner’s favorite action was cutting people’s deportment grade. She was the witness, the judge, and the juror in every case. "Jerry, that’s five points," would be how she would state it. You knew it was five points less and not five points more. She once said that to my buddy, Greg, and they got into a deportment auction.

"Greg, that’s five points," she said.
"Good, now I have a 105 average," he responded.
"That’s five more."
"Make it ten."
"Okay, now it is ten points."
"Make it twenty."
"Okay, now it is twenty."
"Good, now I have a 140."

All of this went at about the pace of an auction.

One day she called us up to the front of the class one by one to check our notebooks. We were only allowed to have History work in our History notebook. The night before, I had ran out of paper in my Geometry notebook and had to finish my Geometry homework in my History notebook. When it was my turn to have my notebook checked, I did not bother to hide my Geometry work because I knew that she would understand because I have always respected her wishes and never put anything in the History notebook until now, and I had no choice. I was wrong.

She asked, "What is this?" as loud as she could. It embarrassed me. "My Geometry homework," I responded. She snatched it out, balled it up, and threw it in the garbage can next to her desk.

"Don’t you ever put anything in MY notebook again unless it is History," she screamed.
"I had to," I whispered to her.
"Do not argue with me. This is MY notebook and it is for History," she commanded.
"This is MY notebook," I responded.
"No, this is MY History notebook," she yelled.
"No, this is MY whatever-I-need-it-to-be notebook that MY parents bought – not you," I said, this time louder because I had gotten pissed. Not only was she embarrassing me, she was making a big deal out of nothing.
"Go to your desk before I take five," she said.

Furiously, I went back to my desk and sat down. Donnie, who sat I front of me, turned around and whispered, "That is not right."

Miss Coyner heard him and said, "Ok, Chris, that is five points for talking under your breath about me." I replied, "Miss Coyner, I did not say anything."

"Now it is ten," she responded. Donnie just laughed.

I should have pushed her down those bleachers.



I had a HS advisor just like her. Just HATED her. We all did. Since I was part timing it on the pro bowlering tour my senior year I didn't have enough credits to graduate. So, when bowling fizzled I went to the local community college. About 1 year later I received my HS diploma in the mail. That advisor we all hated keeps track of the kids that didn't graduate and if they attend any type of college she makes sure they got their diplomas. Just like she did with me. Turns out she may have been a crusty ol witch, but somewhere within her was a heart of gold.

Ya never know.


Oh yeah, happy birthday old man.

However, I'm 50. And by now your life is too far gone to do anything about it.

Camiseta Personalizada said...
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