School furnished me with no tools for coping with life and its dilemmas. I was a very stupid boy who believed that the most important knowledge came from books, when in fact, they contained only the barest information about anything, important or trivial. Paradoxically, I hated the discipline and(more) confinement of the classroom, the jockeying for the teacher's favor, the ritualized setting down of newly absorbed facts onto paper so as to earn as high a mark as possible.
Many someones convinced me that if I were to persist through this mostly joyless grinding away, I would get a good job that paid good money, because I had earned a degree from a good school. For some this was undoubtedly true, but for me, whom I've already told you was an incredibly stupid boy, this did not happen. Worse, I continued to believe what people told me regarding other things extending beyond just school.
I would need to meet a nice girl and get married and life would eventually consist of a continuous chain of achievements growing better by the year. I'll have nice things, because that is very important, and have nice thoughts, because that is very important, and be looked well upon by my friends and strangers alike, and I would most definitely contribute to the alumni association.
None of this came to pass, because even though I believed it to be true, I had no desire to pursue it. I was so wretchedly stupid I couldn't even lift my hands the slightest bit to receive the mantle of privelege so dearly purchased by the efforts of my father, his father, and the line of diligent achievers that receded backward through the mists of time. Progress stopped with me, who had become useless as a clockwork orange.(less)
Sometimes the only warning Gotou got was the creaking of the couch.
He didn't even have time to look around, as a solid weight collided with his back and side, heavy enough to make him stagger to one side but not fall. "Got you!" Keiko crowed, faded ol(more)d orange blanket tied around her neck. Gotou lifted his arm and craned his neck to see her.
She was, unsurprisingly, wearing only her cape.
"Why are you naked again?" Gotou asked, and Keiko frowned.
"Not naked! I have a cape! See!"
Masayoshi emerged from the hallway with the clothes that Keiko had once again escaped. "There she is," he said with a sigh, and held out her clothes to Gotou. "Your turn."
"Nooo!" Keiko moaned, and clung to the back of Gotou's hooded sweatshirt.
"Masanori's down for his nap," Masayoshi said. "But Keiko wouldn't settle down, and I turned my back for a minute..."
Gotou finally managed to unhook the cape-wearing nudist from his back. She half-heartedly squirmed in his arms, but papa wouldn't let her go when she was naked, unlike /daddy./ "I sure hope you grow out of this soon," Gotou grumbled, and Masayoshi smirked.
"/You/ did," he said, and Gotou glared at him.
"Never bring that up again," he said icily, and Masayoshi grinned wider. "I'm not letting you talk to my mother ever again, either."
"She tells me all /sorts/ of interesting things though," Masayoshi said, in a gentle teasing voice, and Gotou snorted. Keiko squirmed in his arms again, then tugged the knot that kept the cape wrapped around her shoulders, pulling it free and using Gotou's sudden confusion to slip out of his hands and run away down the hall.
"Annnd she's loose again," Gotou said as he dropped the blanket.