Wednesday, August 04, 2021


My Teachers: Mr Taylor

 Middle school is pretty tough for most of us. I had a special challenge, because through some quirk in the zoning, I ended up at a far-off middle school (Brownell) when most of my friends from elementary school went to a closer one (Parcells). I had five or six miles to travel to school every day, and when I got there I did not know more than a few people.

And, of course, I got into the same kind of trouble I did at other points of my education. Though I was a Christian (and still am!), I objected to the 10 Commandments posted in the hallway of the school. I tangled with my social studies teacher over his dubious takes on history. And I ran an underground newspaper which was ... well, you can imagine what an underground paper written, edited, and managed by a 7th grader would be like. At first I used carbon paper to make a few copies, and then after a few months I somehow managed to find a way to run it off on a mimeograph machine somewhere, allowing for a much larger print run. I would leave it in various corners of the school for people to find.
The underground paper eventually got a fair amount of notoriety and there was a lot of speculation as to the author. My secret seemed safe, though.
Until Mr. Taylor, one of my favorite teachers, pulled me aside during passing time. Once we were in his room, I knew that he had figured me out. 
"I know about your paper," he said, as my heart stopped, sure I was about to be expelled (school administrations tend to be pretty thin-skinned about these things).
There was a moment as I awaited my fate.
"And you need to know something: You only capitalize what comes after a colon or a semi-colon if that would be a complete sentence on its own."
And then he clapped me on the shoulder, sent me on my way, and apparently never told anyone about my secret project.
Thank you, Mr. Taylor.

Oh my goodness! What a fabulous thing Mr. Taylor did for you. I want to see this whole escapade made into a short film.
Post a Comment

<< Home

This page is powered by Blogger. Isn't yours?