Two years ago, I googled a friend from college in the hopes that I could reconnect with him in some way. Not necessarily to communicate with him again, more to simply find out what he has been doing with his life.
I do this quite regularly and usually to no avail. However, when I typed in Danny Evans' name I was rewarded by finding his blog, Dad Gone Mad. It was a great find. . . I was able to learn that he is married with two kids and working in the marketing business.
But more than just finding out about his personal life, I found out Danny is still Danny. I really enjoyed hanging out with Danny in college, and by reading his blog, it felt like we were hanging out all over again.
Three to four times a week I read his blog and I really admired him for being committed to it. We share a common thread in that we both were journalism students at Fresno State and yet neither of us are working in the journalism field.
I loved the fact that he had found an outlet for his writing bug and I often wondered if I too could start a blog of my own. Two weeks ago today I finally said, "Fuck it, I can do it."
As much I have enjoyed writing, I still love to go read what Danny is up to.
Yesterday, Danny wrote about a gift that he has in being able to identify the age, the sex, and sometimes even the name of a person that he hears fart. As moronic as this may sound, I have to admit, it was a great read.
It made me think this morning about a gift that I have and always have had. The gift of gab, wit, and sarcasm. A co-worker calls me the walking one-liner and I really enjoy finding humor in situations or in people.
It has been with me throughout my life, and has sometimes gotten me in a little bit of trouble. I embrace it though and find that it entertains me. I really try not to use it to hurt other people, but sometimes when the mood strikes, I can't control it.
As a high school teacher, there are times when a student says things to you that you would never dreamed of saying when you were in school. Things like, "Fuck that, I am not running a lap. You run it fat ass."
This can have a way of getting you a little amped up. So, I usually fight fire with fire. I almost always win and the problem usually goes away when the rest of the class is in uproar with laughter after I have turned the tables on the student with my tongue.
It is not often the student a gets payback, but one certainly did last night.
Shortly before the start of our school's girls basketball game, I walked into the stands to talk to a group of students. I love interacting with the kids and hanging out with them. I was surprisingly in a good mood and I really enjoyed being in the stands with the students.
(I say surprisingly because as some of you read, I quit smoking Wednesday night and have yet to go back. It has been a bitch, but thanks to the many tips and encouraging words I have gotten from you, I have handled it better than I thought I would.)
After ten minutes of talking with kids and having them all laughing hysterically, I started to head down to the bench for the game. As I was leaving, the students were laughing louder and I couldn't help but think how cool I was.
Then a student yelled over the laughter, "Hey, Coach?" It was one of the students that I had a problem with this week. One of the ones that I humiliated after he had some unpleasant things to say about my mother.
I turned around and headed back up, anticipating round two.
"What's up, Jeff"
"Coach, what are you doing?"
I started getting a little irritated at where this was going and knew I was taking his bait, "What do you mean, what I am doing?"
"Are you trolling or something?"
"Yea, I mean your zipper is down. You advertising to all the mom's that you want something... are you trolling, Coach??"
I would like to say that the laughter in the gym wasn't that loud and noticeable as I turned away and quickly zipped. But, it was deafening. Everyone was pointing and laughing and all I could do was laugh back.
That shouldn't really count as getting me back, though. I served it up to him. It was like pitching a professional baseball player an underhand pitch... he better hit a home run. But, I gave credit, where credit was due.
"Jeff, it seems you got the last laugh. Congrats. That doesn't happen often to me"
I walked back to the court with whatever dignity that I had remaining and resumed my role as an assistant coach. Throughout the game, I could hear a small group chanting, "Zip it Up, Zip it Up, Zip it Up."
It was unpleasant and funny at the same time. My only hope is that it will remain at the basketball game and be forgotten after a three-day weekend.
I doubt they will forget, though.
Turning a Light on Loneliness
1 week ago