Friday, December 17, 2010

The Twelve Days of Festivus: Day Five


Day Five: Grade Four

Ah, good ol' grade four. Mr. Hodgins (known to his students as Mr. Hodgikins...we thought it was funny) was a decent teacher and it was a period of change for us students...we were the big fish in the pond that was R.J. Hawkey but soon we'd be shipped off to Meadowbrook School and become tiny once again. I don't remember a lot from grade four, but that's not necessarily bad. That just means it was uneventful for the most part. Yes, that was the year that Sam and I got in shit for laughing at pictures of penises and vaginas during a sexual education course (come on, we were eight or nine years old). And yes, that was the year of the epic King Tit drawing that nearly got me the strap a second time. That was the year that the Olympic Winter Games were in Calgary; the school had a relay around the city of Airdrie, each student running about fifty feet before passing the lame red candle to the next student. Good times, those. But there was one time that was a bit less good.

In the spring of 1988, I was attending one of Mr. Ingle's (spelling?) science classes. We were learning about butterflies and he passed around a frame with several different species of dead butterfly under the glass. I distinctly remember this because it was while holding the frame that something began to go very wrong. While holding the frame and tapping on the glass (just to make sure the butterflies weren't actually alive), my stomach began to turn. I wasn't sure what was going on but I thought that I had to go poo. Passing the frame along, I concentrated to try and keep whatever was happening at bay. After all, I was in the back of the classroom and I didn't want to have to run wildly with my hands covering my ass walk past all the eyes of my fellow students! So I focused and suppressed whatever was going on down there.
I felt better for the remainder of class and assumed that whatever was going on had now passed for good. However, as the bell rang and I retrieved my books from my desk tote (you remember those plastic drawers that went under your desk to store your crap), things started to go very wrong. My stomach began doing what I can only describe as a headstand and I realized that it wasn't #2 that I had to do (lawl) but rather a regifting of my breakfast topside.
If you can't crack my code, I mean I had to throw up. Barf. Technicolour yawn. Ralph. Spew. Bile geyser. Toss my cookies. Blow chunks. Heave. Vurp. Show a chunky rainbow. Upchuck. Puree spray. Unswallow. Puke. Review breakfast. Hurl. Basically, I had to vomit! And it was coming FAST!
I pushed through my classmates to the door and into the hallway. Students were milling about on their way to class unaware of the urgency that I faced. I began a race to the bathroom so that I could hop aboard the porcelain bus in time to pay my fare. Sadly, I didn't make it. Shit, I didn't make it five paces from the science lab door.
BLLLLARRRRRRRRRGGGGGGGGG!!!! I woofed my breakie in the middle of the busy hallway. Dave-yack erupted from my mouth in a steady stream of chunky puce that I didn't think would ever end. It hit the floor. It hit the wall. It hit easily a dozen innocent passersby. I had leggo'd my Eggo in a big way. The children screamed and shouted and scrambled every which way. Tears poured down the faces of some girls that had a front row seat to my de-chumming as my stomach emptied of Cap'n' Crunch and 2% milk. I ran as fast as I could, ignoring the pleas of a teacher not to run in the halls. I got into the washroom and locked myself in one of the stalls. I had never been so embarrassed (except maybe after my failed sand experiment a couple of years before). I might have stayed there forever.
While I was hiding, and yes, crying, two boys entered the washroom. One kid I didn't recognize by voice and the other was Chris Steele. The first kid began to make fun of me and talk about how funny it was that I yodeled cream in the hallway. As the kid continued to laugh and insult, Chris stopped the kid and said:

"You know, you shouldn't laugh about it. It could have happened to you. And [Dave's] in here, you know."

The other kid stopped talking and they both washed up and left the washroom.I remained the bathroom for what seemed like forever. Mr. Hodgins came in and asked if I was all right. He had a spare shirt from my cubby hole locker thingy and told me to get washed up and come back to class. I got washed up but I went to the office and said I wasn't feeling well instead. I stayed in the little infirmary thing until it was time to go to the babysitter's house. Bad, bad times.

I'm not sure if Chris defended me because I needed the help or because I was in the bathroom and he just felt bad, but it was still nice of him to say something. Nine year old boys aren't renowned for their tact and sensitivity, so it was great that Chris bucked the trend.
I always viewed Chris as a pretty good guy from that point on. You would think, therefore, that I'd feel guilty about Mike and me drawing a comic strip in grade eight that centered around Chris (Chris was a super villain with the luck of Wile E. Coyote and the name "Footballhead Kid." - in real life, Chris' head was slightly elongated from front to back, making for great caricature fodder). To be fair, there were a lot of students in Mr. Anderson's class in grade eight that became a part of our comic strip (sorry Kris haha). Hell, Mike and me also had a HUGE "mental institution" drawn on halfscap (half a piece of foolscap) pieces and taped together that featured basically EVERYONE in our grade and all our teachers too...we weren't all that big on paying attention in class, you see. Both the comic strip and the institution I still own. Maybe I'll scan and post them for everyone to see.
Anyway, I stopped feeling bad about the comic strip in grade nine when Chris ruined the ending of Alien 3 for me the day I was planning to watch it. Ass. I spared his life, but only because he stood up for me those many years ago when I was a devastated kid hiding in a bathroom stall.

The goulash gush is never something anyone wants to do in front of others, especially dozens of judgmental little twats in grade school. Fortunately it never happened to me again (in fact, I haven't fertilized my feet since 1994...that's right, NOT ONCE since early 1994). The only piece of advice I can offer students who are feeling ill today...don't worry about running out of your class early to use the washroom. It's a much better alternative to waiting too long and painting your peers with stomach spray. It's best to provide an offering to the porcelain goddess when you're actually in front of her, you know?

The moral of the story? Don't fucking ruin the endings of movies for people! It pisses them off!
See you tomorrow for Day Six!

No comments:

Post a Comment