I have joined a fantastic group of ladies, who are involved in a weekly blog project. Every Thursday, we will dazzle you with our insight on various topics. And each week, we take turns coming up with the idea for the blog topic. Please check out their blogs as well, listed under my Blogroll section. Just click on:
Froggie (Tracey): An experiment in knitting, writing- and life
Merry Land Girl (Melissa): Tales of a suburban mom who likes to talk about pop culture, books, Judaism, family, friendship and anything else that comes to mind.
Mom Of Many (Susanna): One Mom’s perspective on life, raising kids, knitting and other unrelated topics.
Melissa chose for this week: Who was your favorite teacher (any year of school) and why?
Hands down, it would have to be Mr. Hughes. He was the first teacher that had come to mind. I wish I could say it was due to something poetic or inspiring that he had said to me, or that he led me on the path to excellence.
The fact that he even put up with me is what made me think of him.
I was a HUGE pain in the ass in high school. I started out quite studious, don’t get me wrong. I was an A and B student clear up to my sophomore year of high school. Then I started rebelling. A lot was going on in my world. My life was scattered and a little dysfunctional. Not to mention I started to hang with the typical “wrong crowd”, but it felt oh so right at the time. Skipping was never beneath me. In fact, it was spot on. I remember classes I’d been enrolled in that I never showed up to. I’d walk right by the class, and the teacher had no idea because he’d never seen me before, and I’d smile and wave at him as I quickly headed down the hallway, down the stairs, and out the doors.
Mr. Hughes taught Economics, a class designed to teach us children how to behave and act like adults in the real world. He was a short man, and had this way of shaking his head a little when he’s say something, almost Dennis Miller style. He’d have a piece of chalk in his hand, that would bounce lightly while he spoke to us. He had a lot of little quirks. And even though the class I was in was filled with trouble makers, you could tell deep down he enjoyed us. I think it kept him entertained.
One guy in particular caused all sorts of trouble. His name was Adam. Of course, I had a huge crush on Adam. He was the Spicoli of my high school. He’d constantly interfere with Mr. Hughes. He’d show up late to class with donuts. He’d order pizza and have it delivered to the class. And so many times, Mr. Hughes would stand as straight as a nail, point to the door, wiggle his head Dennis Miller style, and say, “Adam… go to the principles office.”
We had a class presentation, where we needed to come up with a product to show to the rest of the kids. My group came up with something quite clever. A Mr. Hughes doll. At the time, Ren and Stimpy were popular, and there was a commercial on the show for LOG:
We started our demo with two kids, telling each other how bored they were, and how they wanted a new toy. Out came the Mr. Hughes doll. One of my friends was able to capture the essence of Mr. Hughes beautifully. He shook his head a little. He played with chalk in his hand, and he even sent Adam to the principles’ office. He dressed in a sweater vest, with a button down shirt underneath, and khaki pants. He made sure to have his hair meticulously brushed. He was a carbon copy of Hughes. We pulled it off without a hitch, and even priced the Hughes doll, and told the class what our target audience was. Kids and adults would love our Hughes doll!
Mr. Hughes tried hard to hide the smile creeping onto his face. Our presentation was awesome; the paperwork side of things lacked. He gave us a C, respectfully.
Mr. Hughes also allowed me to aide in one of his other classes, which meant I would just sit, and grade papers. Or do nothing. A friend of mine and I would take that time to write letters back and forth, and we called these letters “comics”. We would draw various comics of our lives, and I swear Mr. Hughes saw this behavior, and not once did he lecture us, or stop us, or tell us to throw the comics away.
At the time, and for the chaos I was experiencing in my life, Mr. Hughes gave me just what I needed- a place to relax. A place where the atmosphere was more laid back. I never skipped his class. I always made it a point to be there, and to be there when I was an aide. I know, it wasn’t conventional, and maybe he should have been more tough on me. But I have pleasant, fond memories of that class- which I think Mr. Hughes would have wanted.