Monday, March 12, 2007

Big Neil

Approaching Dead Man's Curve, frustration simmered as my speedometer slowed to a single-digit reading. I was stuck behind a rusted pick-em-up truck dropping scraps of cardboard. Semi's to the right and left boxed in my little Celica, and frustration became road rage. I wouldn't be late to class this morning, but I would be rushed, and I hate feeling rushed.

By the time I turned into the school parking lot, I had nearly exhausted my entire vocabulary of nasty words in English, as well as a few choice phases in Polish, German, Arabic, and Croatian I've picked up from various friends, family members, and acquaintances. I rarely ever curse, unless I'm driving. I call it "profanity therapy". I learned it from my father. Mom never approved, but it works.

When I looked to the far corner of the parking lot, my furrowed brow relaxed and I favorite spot, near the building exit, was still empty, and I would have five minutes to make it upstairs to my classroom before the tardy bell rang...the sun was shining, it was Friday and life was good.

As I hurried toward the faculty entrance, I passed the custodian's door. Big Neil, a senior in my first period class, stood in his usual early morning spot, about five steps away
"'re here." He shook his head, but his grin gives him away. "I might be late to class." he adds.

"Good morning to you too. I'll see you when you get there."

True to his word, Neil arrives about ten minutes late. The class was already engaged in discussion, or shall I say complaining, about the results of the Black History Month poster contest. Since Neil didn't complete his poster in time to enter the contest, (and still has not turned his assignment in), he had no interest in the conversation, and changed the subject.

"When was the last time you wrote an article on your web site?" His question caught me off-guard, and I stuttered, trying to recall my last entry.

"October...I think."

"When are you going to write about me? You said you would write about me."

"I think I was kidding. I haven't had much time to write anything lately."

"So what...You said you would write about me."

"Okay, I will."

"Write something today"


"I'm going to check on you."

Hey!...Was this a challenge?
I'll show him...Maybe if I start writing again, I can get Neil to finish his assignments.

Okay Neil, I'll write about you, but now you are going to have to do something for me.

To be continued...


jeff buster said...

Good to see you back in action MB! Give Big Neil the thumbs up for me...

Best, Jeff

Tim Ferris said...

good to see you back, MB, but you're not going to extort the boy, are you?

Anonymous said...

Yay! More MB!