by Roy Hodge
I was in the seventh grade at Theodore Roosevelt Junior High School in Syracuse when word was spreading that the world was going to end on a particular day that was coming up soon. Whoever was spreading the news even gave us a time: 11 a.m. I don’t know if it was Eastern time, Pacific time, daylight savings time, Howdy Doody time, or what.
Other than that, the bearers of the grim news didn’t furnish details – not any that I remembered anyway. I did know that I was supposed to be in Mr. McLaughlin’s study hall at 11 a.m. on that day. Mr. McLaughlin was a mechanical arts teacher, which translated to the fact that he taught shop.
I liked Mr. McLaughlin. He was a nice man, and besides being a teacher, he lived in my neighborhood, was very friendly and was generous to the neighborhood kids at Halloween.
In shop, he taught me to make a scissors holder and even though I thought it looked like a block of wood with a hole in it my grandmother let it hang on a wall in her kitchen for 20 years.
But it seemed to me that for an important day like this we could have a history teacher or a science teacher, or even a gym teacher – someone who could explain this whole thing to us.
I was very concerned about the time table for that day. If something like that had to happen, why at eleven o’clock in the morning? Here we were in school; I hadn’t even had my lunch yet. Well, I guess it would have been worse if it were Saturday and had interrupted our playground adventures.
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