Wednesday, January 31, 2007

Wise Cracks

Yesterday I received a telephone call from a childhood friend that lived in my old neighborhood on the southwest side of Chicago. I hadn’t seen nor heard from him since my cousin’s funeral in 1973. He found my number through a Google search of my name. We spent more than an hour chatting about the “good old days”. In particular our school days where we shared many classes together.
He asked me if I had ever pursued my childhood dream of becoming a Stand-up Comic. He mentioned how funny my classroom retorts once were and also my ability to mimic and do impressions of famous people.
In Grammar School I was always considered to be the class “cut up”. This is not to be confused with the class clown, the class buffoon, the class fool or the class idiot. A class “cut up” would interject humor when the teacher posed an inane question to the students in the class.
My dad would call this wise cracking. And I would receive the back of his hand to my jaw when I did this at home, especially at the dinner table. I quickly learned that my dad, as most adults, had a very limited sense of humor.
For those of you unfamiliar with the term “Grammar School”, in pre 1960’s Chicago, it was what the Public School System called grades 1 through 8 or Elementary School. Back in those days the emphasis was put on learning the English language, therefore it was called Grammar School. What a concept!
In High School, grades 9 through 12, I continued to be the “class cut up”. Most of my fellow classmates admired my classroom behavior. My irreverent and often comic comments were usually well appreciated and welcomed by many students as well as a few of my teachers (because my comments were usually of a humorous intelligent nature). It broke up the doldrums of sitting in the classroom. I used both wit and charm to win my fellow classmates friendship. Needless to say I became a fairly popular person in High School because I shot barbs at some of our stodgy educators.
Of course my actions did not go without paying a penalty. I was the King of Detention during my junior year of High School. I spent most of my detention hours in the Library studying and doing homework. This pleased my parents. However they never knew the real reason why I was spending those extra hours at the High School. Had my Dad found out the truth, I would have gotten his famous backhand to the jaw more often.

The Beach Bum

14 Comments:

Anonymous Jimmy Jr. said...

Do I know the "long lost friend'?

Sat Feb 03, 10:04:00 AM  
Anonymous Anonymous said...

http://tramadol-sqllt.blogspot.com/
Dont forget!

Sun Feb 04, 07:23:00 AM  
Anonymous Anonymous said...

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