There’s only one reason I like going to school. I love math – NOT. I like going to school to be with my friends. We all think school is boring. The only person I know who doesn’t think school is boring is Evan Thomas. He raises his hand with the answer even before Mrs. Navis finishes asking a question. At least three times a day she says, “Evan, I know you know the answer. We have to give the other children a chance.” Evan would be more popular if he’d let us copy his homework. One time Toby Marks asked him if he could copy his math homework and Evan told Mrs. Navis. Boy, we all got lectured that day.
Even though school is boring, I find ways to have fun. Today, when Mrs. Navis was teaching us math I thought I was going to go crazy. I couldn’t sit still. Whenever I feel this way, which is at least four times a day, I raise my hand and ask Mrs. Navis if I can go to the the boy’s room. I told her I really had to go. I really didn’t. I needed a break. Math is boring and Mrs. Navis makes it more boring.
Mrs. Navis gave me her evil look. This is the look when she moves her glasses down to the edge of her nose and stares at me over the top of them. It’s creepy. Once it gave me a nightmare. It’s like she wants me to confess to something I didn’t do.
She said, “Are you sure this is necessary, Vincent?”
I answered, “Oh yes, Mrs. Navis. My stomach is killing me.” I made it look good by rubbing my stomach and making a face. Rubbing my stomach and making a face always works with adults.
“Vincent, don’t ask me again today. I have a feeling you are taking advantage of me,” said Mrs. Navis.
I said, “Who me? What if I have an emergency. You know, I really, really, really have to go.” The class started laughing. Mrs. Navis looked at the class and the laughing stopped.
Mrs. Navis shook her head like I was feeding her nonsense, which I was, but I wouldn’t admit it. “Don’t take long. And, don’t forget to wash your hands.” She handed me a block of wood with our room number carved into it, 107.
I politely said, “Thank you, Mrs. Navis. I’ll be back as quick as I can. I don’t want to miss anything important. I promise to wash my hands.”
There was the look again. I smiled at her and left the classroom. Teachers are really not too bright. If they were bright they wouldn’t trust a third grader to walk directly from the classroom to the restroom. First, the restroom is at the end of the hall. Room 107 is in the middle of the hall. I took the scenic route, which was the opposite way from the restroom. When I got to the end of the hall I took the flight of stairs to the second floor. I wanted to see what the 5th and 6th graders were doing in class. The doors to their classrooms were closed. I read a couple of the bulletin boards. I drew mustaches on several photos. I circled the principal’s name, Dr. Janice Crossman, on a notice and drew a skull and crossbones next to it. I went down the stairways back to the first floor. I thought about going outside and walking around the building, but wasn’t sure I could pull it off. When I got to the restroom. I went in because I didn’t want to lie about having to go. I was the only one in restroom. I flushed three toilets and four urinals. I turned the water on and off in four sinks. I washed my hands in the last sink and tossed the paper towel toward the trash barrel. I missed. I took another paper towel, wadded it up and tried it again. I made the shot on my fifth try. I picked up my miss shots and put them in the barrel. I did this because I am a nice kid.
On the way back to class. I stopped by Mary Ellen’s locker. She always brings her lunch in a brown paper bag. I opened her locker, took her lunch bag and walked to Jason Foggel’s locker. He’s another one who always takes his lunch. I switched lunch bags on them and returned to class. When I walked in the classroom, Mrs. Navis stared at me and then at the wall clock.
I handed her the hall pass and said, “You saved my life, Mrs. Navis. Thank you.” The class started laughing until she turned from me to stare at them. I went to my seat.
You should have been at lunch. Mary Ellen started hollering, “Who stole my lunch? I hate peanut butter and jelly sandwiches. I had a tuna sandwich.”
Jason had the tuna sandwich but he didn’t dare say anything because he was afraid of Mary Ellen. The principal, Doctor Crossman, came to Mary Ellen and asked her what was wrong. Mary Ellen complained loud enough so everyone could hear. Doctor Crossman clapped her hands to get our attention. She said, “Alright, children. Switching lunches might seem funny but a good citizen never does this. I’m going to walk out of the lunch room and when I return I want Mary Ellen to have her real lunch.”
Since I bought lunch, I wasn’t part of the problem or the solution. Jason got up and brought the lunch to Mary Ellen. He said, “I didn’t switch, honest. This was the lunch in my locker. I really like peanut butter sandwiches.”
If it wasn’t for me, all my friends would die of boredom in school.