(His beloved flat is a few miles down the coast from Surfer's Paradise.)
The large raven flies everyday in the school courtyard.Where does she reside? Is she waiting for the chess board to be finished? G sees her every morning and wonders if he/she is a sign from the gods?? The Romans talked of the ravens flying over the left side as sinister. Sinistra is Latin for left, the root of the word. Does he see her on the left or the right?? Left is evil according the right wing neocon fascists but so were the Jews in Hitlers Germany. Folks fear anybody that can think. Despite being in an intellectual environment humans still are intimidated by intelligence or a new better way of learning.
He overhears Bettylou whining about her treatment when she caused a scene yesterday again about "her" computer. She claims that hers doesn't work so she "acquired" another sped computer that could be used to help students with math skills? Every other day she nags him in front of the students about using it to help the students learn skills yet she is on their more than any other assistant. She is effectively talking to the library assistant(who often sleeps on the couch) to all go visit the superintendent and school board to complain. I have noticed that these folks are very good at whining while making no effort to improve on their own.
Clay was on an hour long angry tirade about how much he hated school, the teachers, and even Betty Lou. He called everyone including G all sorts of names. G asked him once or twice to do some math!
"You are always forcing me to do math!"
"I asked you once or twice.How is that forcing,Clay?"
The 17 year old junior cusses angrily using the F word in every other sentence. G tells him he won't argue and then resigns to having another day without teaching Algebra first hour. He realizes that he is in viscious circle and he is happy that he will take a few days off.Will he have hell to pay when he gets back??
Chess is his saving grace and will be the saviour of the village. There is so much anger generated from this one lady and others. He wants to teach them that if all the pieces work together we can achieve a common goal of checkmating George Bush and his "No Child left Behind Bullshit"!
He's finally had closure with everything before his well earned time off!
The class makes some muffins with the organic apple from a local friend's tree. He shares the muffins with the principal, the secretaries and even a peace offering to Betty Lou. Yep, G, that is the strategy:
Just shower them with kindness when you are angry with them and suddenly you feel good! A weight has been lifted and you suddenly notice yourself smiling at this Navaho lady.....you remember when you gave her wildflowers every time you were angry at her!
He's written all the lesson plans, made all the worksheets of math for different levels, cleaned up his room and secured everything!
He's secured his hovel, put away his precious mountain bike, taken his very important piece of equipment for evidence of his brief journey (relative to next year's(?) walkabout in Oz!), and put his beloved Buffy in her kennel. He needs to buy her some dog food with glucosamine so her genetically dislocated hip won't bother her when she reaches G's age in dog years (7?). His neck feels so much better when he has one or two glucosamine sulfate tabs daily! (The pain was a result of getting shot in the neck in his previous life a by southern redneck during the civil war while walking over the "dead man zone" at Andersonville Prison. (at least according to the beliefs of a deranged witch he dated several years ago)