A reader commented the other day that I could probably kill someone and still be forgiven by my readers. Therefore he was sending me a “list” ha ha. Now I’m trying to think if there have actually been people I would like to see “taken care of,” as Tony Soprano would say.
Hmmmm… Well for two whole years after my sister pulled down my pants in front of the neighborhood boys I prayed we would move to a different town so I wouldn’t have to see them ever again. I was only seven and no, I didn’t wish them dead but maybe wishing to wipe them forever from your radar isn’t much better.
Here’s the thing: generally the people you want to ‘wipe’ are the ones who stir up anxious feelings in you, not so much because they have hurt you but because you have hurt them; because you have done them some kind of wrong that you’re reminded of every time you see them.
I once caused a student of mine to be permanently removed from my classroom. This poor kid just hated me, she couldn’t disguise the fact and her perpetual side-of-the-mouth remarks were poisoning things for everyone else. I explained all this to her guidance counselor who simply switched her to another English class that met the same period. I remember that she cried when she heard the news and begged to be allowed to stay.
It did kind of feel like I’d put out a contract on her.
Sending her away like that was a failure on my part I now feel. For sure my veteran-teacher-wisewoman sister-in-law Miriam (pictured above) would have found a way release the child from this bondage of hatred but I was young and lacked the skills to effect that kind of turnaround..
Speaking of awesome Miriam, take a look at this project for which she was the faculty adviser: the whole Medford (MA) Class of 2011 made a video to raise funds for cancer research in which as far as I can tell every senior, teacher, guidance counselor and staff member participated. I bet you know the song! Click here and then press the ‘Play’ symbol to see the cutest tribute video ever with the voice of Taio Cruz and more spiffy pairs of gloves than are owned by Mickey, Minnie, Donald and Goofy combined.