Wednesday, October 1, 2008

The Vegetator

To those of you who tuned in to hear more about the fake Russian man in space, I promise I WILL get to him. Maybe around Friday or Saturday. Right now, Mrs. Hillbilly Mom has bigger fish to fry. Take, for example, The Vegetator...

Our faculty lunch table is close to the student tables. We don't have to eat in the cafeteria, but we do. Then nobody is left alone on weeks when they have lunch duty. Besides, it's our way of keeping our finger on the pulse of the throbbing student body. And a way to warn others or catch up on who might be stirring things up on any particular day. Forewarned is forearmed, I've heard.

Only yesterday, a green bean sailed across the short expanse of speckled tile and landed behind Mrs. B. I looked at the table, and judged by the trajectory and smugness factor which student had launched the legume. Mrs. B has duty this week, and so lectured the table. I have the boy in class right before lunch. Today, I told him that I was onto his tricks, and the vegetable catapulting must stop. Every day, you see, a different healthy food item flies with the greatest of ease to land near our table. I actually think the target is a student at the launching table, but the flinger is just a bad shot.

I told the lad, "I know you threw that green bean yesterday. No, don't argue. I saw where you were sitting, and where the person you are blaming was sitting, and you are the only explanation for the trajectory of that bean. Today, we are having baked beans. There had better not be a bean in my future." He agreed. But I went on. "Every day some form of vegetable comes flying our way. It needs to stop. You are an instigator. In fact, I am going to give you a new name: The Vegetator. That's because you are an instigator, and your weapon of choice is a vegetable. It will stop, or I will take further action. Are we clear?"

The Vegetator hung his head. He nodded.

At lunch, right as I was in the middle of my story about the christening of The Vegetator, a baked bean landed behind Mrs. B. She really needs to sit somewhere else. Anyhoo, Mrs. B turned and lashed out at the table. The Vegetator had an alibi. He was sitting where it would have been impossible to launch the baked bean, unless it took a sharp turn in mid-air. And besides, not 5 minutes earlier, I had told him I was onto his tricks. The principal had heard the Vegetator story. After Mrs. B was done, he turned to that table. "You can stop laughing. YOU are not innocent, Vegetator!"

The Vegetator turned a lovely shade of red, starting with his ears. I think he learned a lesson today. If not, at least he got a new name.

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