Tuesday, August 18, 2009

A Thief Is Among Us

This morning I was in a hurry to get my materials ready for 1st hour. It was not even the #1 son's fault, as we left home at a reasonable minute. I should have run my copies the day before, but I didn't take the time after my after-school walk. I was in a hurry because I had to stop by the pharmacy. And also buy a PowerBall ticket.

Lucky for me, I have my materials in folders in the top drawer of my file cabinet. That's what I did for a week after school was out, while #1 was in summer school P.E. I grabbed the three originals and headed for the workroom. There was not a soul around. I thought I saw a tumbleweed blow behind the snack machine. It was already 7:55, and the first bell rings at 8:11. I ran 90 of my one-sided copies and set them on a table near the copier. I straightened out a crooked side of one of my originals, then started the two-sided copies. In the meantime, I saw a performance event transparency that had been left on the copier. It looked good, so I hoisted it over to the other copier, the one that had a man laying behind it yesterday, and ran myself one paper copy. Making the most of my time, I stacked it with my one-sideds and originals, and went into the bathroom. You never know when you'll get another chance until lunch.

While sitting on the toilet (hope that's not too much info), I heard someone come in and start using the copier. I also heard the men's toilet flush, and somebody leave the workroom. Don't jump to conclusions. That doesn't necessarily mean that a male teacher had used the facilities. Some females regularly partake of the man john, though how they can stomach it, I'll never understand. After flushing three times (not because I left a doody, but because those toilets would even try the patience of Sheryl Crow, that environmentally conscious ol' Missouri gal with the idea of only allowing each individual one square of toilet paper), I washed up and went out to get my copies.

THEY WERE GONE!!! Everything! No papers on the table, no papers in the copier, nothing on the glass. Gone with the wind. Gone, baby, gone. Vanished. By now, it was creeping toward 8:05. Mr. EndofHall, Mabel's school neighbor, was running copies. I asked him if he moved my papers. "No. I didn't notice any papers. Someone was just here. Huh. Who was that?" Mr. EndofHall is slow and steady. Usually, it's a virtue. For my purposes this morning, not so much. He finally murmured that maybe it was MyCousintheLunchInquisitor. I took off for her room, which is clear down on Mabel's end of the building, but before I got far, I spied her in the AD's office. "Did you move my copies in the copy room?" Slowly, she turned. Hey! If they want privacy to discuss the dance team, they oughta close the door. "I have not been in the workroom this morning." I apologized, explaining that Mr. EndofHall had fingered her as the culprit. I turned to find him in the hall right behind me. "Maybe it wasn't her. Now let's see...who was that?" Just then, a student walked by. "I saw Mrs. ScienceBuddy leaving that teacher room a while ago. She went that way." He pointed to her room--the last one at my end of the hall.

There she was, walking towards me. "Did you take my copies out of the workroom?" She slowed to an Olympic record-setting racewalker speed. "I don't think so. Let's go look." Well. In her room, she had at least 10 stacks of future torture laid out for her students. She has a plethora of countertop space, having half a lab at the back of her classroom. She perused her vast surface area. "Oh. Are these yours? I don't know how I got them." I snatched them up. "You're killin' me!" She apologized. At least she's a well-mannered thief. I got back to my room right as the bell rang.

Between 1st and 2nd hour, ScienceBuddy trekked back to the workroom. That's not the unusual part. She goes every hour for the bathroom. But she said, "Hey, somehow I didn't make enough copies for my class."

It's karma. Behold the Stevening.


DeadpanAnn said...

You just took me back, HM. Back to a place I never want to go again. While reading your account of the copy thief, I actually got the same tense knot-in-my-shoulders feeling I would've had if it'd been me realizing that my barely-copied-in-time copies had disappeared into thin air. Sheesh. I don't miss not having enough time to do things, then having people throw every obstacle in front of me to up the chances of me not making it happen in time. Glad you found your copies.

Hillbilly Mom said...

Miss Ann,
I knew you would feel my pain.