Monday, January 2, 2012

Mrs. MacDonald (Straight Off The Farm)

It was the first day of school and murmurs from gossiping children echoed throughout classroom twenty-four.

I was a second grader now and I'd finally made it to hall number two.  Hall two was a big deal for me because Mr. Dominic Hart was a teacher in it.  He had to be the funniest, most understanding man at Sigsbee Elementary School.  In fact, to me, he was the only man that existed at Sigsbee.  I loved him.

Terminating my thoughts on Mr. Hart, Billy Harvey's scratchy voice yelped, 
"Oh, yeah, and I wonder if she has a farm, too!"

Although scratchy, his voice aroused my thoughts and I enquiringly added, 
"What are you talking about, Billy?"

Now see, I was allowed to interrupt the steamy gossip ring, as well as Billy Harvey, 
because he happened to be my first boyfriend and the first boy I'd ever kissed.

"Don't you know, Mandy? Mrs. MacDonald is our new teacher," Billy stated.

"So what?  What's so bad about that?" I asked.

The whole class seemed to hold their breath as he concluded the conversation, 
"You'll see, Mandy.  Oh, you will see," he said with a hint of caution in his tone.  

Two seconds later, the fattest, most stern-faced old lady wobbled into the classroom.  With her cream colored, fifty pound patent leather purse in hand, she paraded into the center of the room.  Plopping into her rocking chair, she seemed to have captured the attention of the whole class.  

No words; No sounds.  Just that one "PLOP!" 

I feared for my life.

From the bucket chair in the front of the room, she began the introduction speech and after a while, I thought it would never end.  Her high pitched, old lady voice matched the drawl of a Mississippi native's voice.  

I couldn't help myself!  I had to get out!

"Oh yeah," I thought to myself, "Ten minutes to recess."

I sat impatiently in my desk, staring at the deformity of the apple shaped clock on the wall.  
When the minute hand started ticking backwards, I knew this would be the longest ten minutes of my recess worshiping childhood.  

The bell sounded, "Riiinnnggg!" and Mrs. MacDonald's entire class jumped up in relief.  
We must have all dragged out those ten minutes together!

"Sit down class!" Mrs. MacDonald shrieked.  "You aren't going anywhere."  

Through the helpless gasps of my classmates, I proclaimed, "WHY?"

"Recess is a time of ignorance, therefore, nap time is what we shall do instead," she answered.

I couldn't believe my ears!  I pleaded, "But Mrs. MacDonald, we like recess!!!!"

"Irrelevant. You are too young to know what is good for you!  
Now lay your heads down and it won't be as painful," she demanded.

Obeying orders, the class slumped in their desks and laid their heads down.  This was not fair!  
Recess was our time; the only time of the day to be free, other than P.E., of course.  
We were left with only one other choice...revenge.

Thinking everyone was asleep, Mrs. MacDonald rose from her seat and wobbled out of the room.  Little did she know, we were ready for the attack.  

About that time Billy got up and declared, "This is war!"

The whole class agreed and in a few short minutes, we derived a plan.

Taking charge I asked, "Now who's going to get the tacks?"

Peewee, the smallest boy in the second grade, volunteered to do the dirty work.  Grabbing a handful of thumb tacks from Mrs. MacDonald's top desk drawer, he scurried over to the rocking chair and placed each tack "on guard" for the perfect puncture position.  

From the door Billy cried out, "She's coming!"

In a matter of seconds, the whole class returned to "nap" mode and Mrs. MacDonald entered the room.  

She flipped on the lights and whispered in her crackly old voice, 
"Class, nap time is over.  I shall continue my introduction now."

As she headed toward the chair, snickers and giggles slipped from everyone's mouths.  
The only thing on my mind was "Revenge at last!"  

She stood in front of the chair and "PLOP!"

The class held their breath.  No words; No sounds.  Just that one "PLOP!"

I feared for my life.

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