For Those of You Who Aren’t Spilling Blood For A $2 Toaster…

I realize many of you are currently engaged in heated battle for that ever-elusive Black Friday item but for those of you who are still with us, here is a little childhood recollection from my hall of memory.

Public schools are all about slave labor; in my educational career every teacher I ever met was underpaid, undersexed and overbearing. Naturally, I clashed with most of my masters, and of course, these conflicts rarely went my way. One of my earliest adversaries was Mr. Borden. (He was a real pip; his motto was “I’ll beat the rambunctiousness out of your kids – with learning.”)

You know the saying, “spare the rod, spoil the child”, or as it was originally written, “He who spares the rod hates his son, but he who loves him is careful to discipline him.”?  Well, “Bad Borden” was never in danger of spoiling a child, and he certainly never spared a rod. Don’t get me wrong, he certainly never behaved inappropriately with any male students, but the man once showed up on a Monday morning wearing more rouge than our Home Ec teacher, Miss Burnnitt. 

He once insisted I divert time from my stalking adoration of Cindy Day (Cheryl Williams wasn’t the only game in town), to post pages from various comic books on the classroom wall as part of some half-baked lesson plan.

(You see, kids, in the Seventies, “posting pictures to your wall” required slightly more exertion than it currently does, ya lazy pricks.)

As a lifelong comic book fan and a horny young male, I was mortified. And since 90% of my blood supply was moving away from my brain-box, I was also hopelessly under-equipped for the task at hand. When my feeble attempts at pressing pins through the pages and into the bulletin board proved fruitless, my Master demanded I use the stapler instead. His exact words were quite subtle:

“Hey, Hookey, we don’t have all day! Snap out of it, you slacker! Use your brain and the stapler!”

And so, as Cindy Day and the entire classroom looked on, I picked up the stapler and used it to hammer the pins through pages of what would have someday been classic issues of Peter Parker, The Spectacular Spider-Man.

Needless to say, I didn’t spend my recess swapping spit with Cindy Day in the schoolyard tire fort.

Oh well, I’m certain I ruined her for other men, at the very least.

Stop giggling, it may have happened!

See you in the lobby, but not the Black Friday sales, shoppers…

About The Hook

Husband. Father. Bellman. Author of The Bellman Chronicles. Reader of comic books and observer and chronicler of the human condition. And to my wife's eternal dismay, a mere mortal and non-vampire. I'm often told I look like your uncle, cousin, etc. If I wore a hat, I'd hang it on a hat rack in my home in Niagara Falls, Canada. You can call me The Hook, everyone else does.
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19 Responses to For Those of You Who Aren’t Spilling Blood For A $2 Toaster…

  1. Ned's Blog says:

    I believe my seventh-grade teacher Mrs. Spanksalot and Mr. Borden may have dated. I just remember hearing the sound of flesh getting spanked coming from the teacher’s lounge. Anyway, I actually have that first issue of The Spectacular Spider-Man you showed. As I read this, I cringed at the thought of those staples going through the cover and pages. If I had been there, I would’ve given you some of my plastic covers to use.

  2. susielindau says:

    I don’t have any of my old Archie comics, but I bet someone does. I bought a garbage bag of baseball cards and have never looked at them since. As I recall the weren’t any holes in them.
    It’s amazing that you realized the value of it back then! I was clueless!

  3. I would have been sent to the office for my refusal to do that. I hadn’t learned about picking battles at that age and would have fought it.

  4. I would have been the teacher’s pet handling you the stapler. I like myself so much better these days.
    BTW: Loved the comic exchange between you and Ned. Two more people I’m thankful to have in my bloggy life 🙂

  5. curvyroads says:

    No effing way would I be out shopping on this, the blackest of days.

    It’s amazing what little tidbits we remember from childhood, isn’t it?

  6. I draw the line at the bottom of my driveway. No way will I compete with any wild mobs at the mall. Anyway, I already have a toaster. 😀

  7. Paul says:

    I actually had pretty good luck with teachers – a few eccentric ones but none tending to violence. I did have a grade tree teacher – Mrs. Bell – who must have been close to 70 when she taught me (and that would have been about 48 yeras ago, so 1966 – damn that means she was born in the 1800’s – whew! never did the math before) and she used a bluing in her hair. What wasn’t blue faded to green at the ends. Fascinating for an 8 year old. And her pet saying – which I can still remember clearly nearly 50 years later – was “nice means precise”. So, nicely done but not a nice (kind) person. Ha!

    I too was the teachers pet like Mama. Although as I got older I had more conflict with teachers. I got quite inventive so for instance in chem lab, I pnce put small chunks of sodium metal in the drains of the lab sinks when i knew a freshman class was next to use it. Sodium metal, when hit with water breaks the water down into hydrogen – which is explosive- and oxygen – which encourages burning- and a heaping helping of heat. The end result was: turn on the tap and a tongue of flame bursts from the drain. And the more water you add, the bigger the flame gets – ha! A real crowd pleaser for new. skittish lab stiudents.

    Anyway, i can empatize Hook with being in trouble. My “Cindy Day” was Suzzanne Foster – I followed her everywhere.

  8. Nice of you to open up an old wound for our amusement. But…isn’t that what writing is all about? Isn’t that the tried and true recipe?

  9. Not even if they were giving away Coach bags or flat screen TVs FOR FREE would I go shopping on Black Friday or any other day that weekend for that matter!! Nu uh! I despise shopping ANY time let alone the weekend after Thanksgiving!!!
    Love the story about your teacher. I somehow managed to get through 12 years of school without a single paddling!! (from a teacher) but I wrote about a million sentences!! HA HA HA!

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