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My allergies were really acting up the last day before Christmas Break. I tried my best to stifle the sneezes and to fight away the itchiness of my eyes. But I was a dribbling, spraying mess all morning.
My students continued to invade my personal space. They moved in on me and surrounded me in a circle. The circle moved inward – tighter and tighter.
“Ahhh…ahhh..step back everyone…ahhh…ahhh…”
Still they encircled my desk. “Mr. Ramsey! Mr. Ramsey! Mr. Ramsey!”
The adolescents continued to chant: “Mr. Ramsey! Mr. Ramsey! Mr. Ramsey!”
“Get…ahhh…ahhh…back…ahhh…ahh…please…” I turned my head so as not to sneeze on anyone, by everyone was in a position to share.
“Mr. Ramsey! Mr. Ramsey! Mr. Ramsey!”
“I…ahhh…am…going….ahhh…to…sneeze…ahhh…MOVE!” I implored.
But the little robots stayed put, now chanting questions, complaints, requests…
“Can I go to the restroom?”
“Where are the colored pencils?”
“Wyatt is making a mess all around my desk!”
“When do we go to go to specials?”
“Can I go to the library?”
Anxiously, I surveyed the constricting circle of children. I rubbed my eyes and willed the sneeze back a bit. I wiped the dribble from my nose with my finger. The tissues were beyond the circle!
I could stand the pressure no longer. “Get. Back. Now!” I hollered.
Two of the teenagers laughed. One asked why I was in a bad mood so close to Christmas. The other one asked if he and his friend could deliver a Christmas card to their sixth grade teacher upstairs.
I glared at them through watery eyes. “Not…ahhh…right…ahhh…now!”
They glared back. They stayed put with their friends as a human wall around me.
I continued, “Ahhh…I…ahhh…ahhh…ahhh…am…ahh…ahh…going…ahhh…to…”
I’m pretty sure I drenched the glaring boys and the girl looking for colored pencils as well.
“Ewwww!” they all screamed as they scattered away from my desk. Quickly, I opened the once-blocked top drawer and yanked out my allergy pills. I popped two in my mouth and took a long swig of water from my bottle.
“How gross!” hollered Wyatt from his messy area in the back. “You should have better manners, Mr. Ramsey! Cover your mouth the next time!”
Copyright, Tim Ramsey, 2019.
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