The lunch recess monitor rushed in to tattle (God, I got sick of her), and Billy was sent into my office, again.
“Why are you here, Billy?” I asked the kid sitting with his legs sticking straight out of his seat.
“I was pwaying too hawd on(more) da pwaygwound.” He explained, catsup still on his cheeks from his chicken nuggets.
“Ah. What happened?”
“Well, we pwayed twywanasawus wex and I was the wex. Jimmy and Maffew wew stegoswas and David was a wapto. Me and David pwayed wuff and Maffew cwied.”
Billy was an honest fellow.
This being an opportunity to teach about the world of herbivores and carnivores, I sentenced Billy to a week of being a recess herbivore. I finished the interaction with a call to his mom explaining Billy’s visit to the principal’s office. I had handled the incident well.
The next day Billy was back in my office, and he was mad.
“This sucks!” He shouted. “I hate being a stupid oobavo and I hate you.”
“What happened?” I asked.
“Look!” Billy opened his lunch box and showed me a carefully crafted lunch of carrot sticks, celery strips, snap peas and ranch dressing.
The worst part was the people walking by. I tried to look upset - make my eyes water. Maybe then they'd think I had been bullied or hurt. I kicked at the grey synthetic carpet with my wet runners, slow dancing internally to the squeaky symphony.
(more) A steady gaze from a secretary cut short my musical career. There was no fooling her with my puppy dog eyes. She had seen my walk of shame at the principal's heals and witnessed his stern words ushering me to my seat. She could see me for the convict that I was.
The room was sterile. Asphyxiating. I I found myself choking on my thoughts.
I tried to remember why I had done it. The only thing that came to mind was white rage.
I thought of my mother and felt sick.
Some of the other kids had said something about a black book. If your name got written there it would never go away. A black stain on your past.
I thought of my dad and felt worse.
The infernal tic tocking was enough to drive a person mad.
Yes, that was why I did it.
Luna-tic tock, tic. tock. tic. tock...
I pretended to have magic powers. That I could crawl into people's minds and curl around them. Maggot my way into their hearts. I wish I knew what I was supposed to say.
My powers changed and I was invisible. The only thing left behind was a peaceful shiny aura. At least this way I don't leave behind a sour taste in their mouths.
My eyes willed Mr. Goffman's door to the wall. Welded the hinges shut - imprisoning.
I went to a private christian highschool so even though the principal's name was Fenema, almost nobody used the obvious nickname. Saying "Principal Enema" would have gotten you skinned alive, or so we thought. Though nobody knew for sure how far punishment from the new principal might go. He(more) was a bit of a mystery and it took serious and compounded amounts of trouble to get into his office. It took me half the schoolyear to land there.
When I walked in he asked me to sit. He didn't speak for a good five minutes and I looked him over nervously. Nothing to fear in his appearance. He was big and could have been imposing once but now he was overweight and exhausted. A shell of some former self with two teenage sons (one in my sophmore class), a wife that no one ever saw and a new job he didn't seem to relish.
"Okay I'll make this short and sweet. You need to apologize to your French teacher and I will not expel you. What you said about her daughters was inapropriate in any language. Those that understood it did not find it funny. You will not be credited for the oral report, regardless of the accuracy of your grammar. Do we
understand each other?"
And I was out the door with absolutely no clue how I could get off the hook so easy.
Months later we found out it was because Principal Enema was sleeping with my girlfriend at the time (she was a junior). I guess he'd felt sorry for me, in my ignorance, which kind of
made me feel weird. Though, just one year later I would find myself finger-fucking a very pregnant classmate in the school parking lot. I think that felt weirder.