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By Raymond Lesser

Hi kids, it’s great to see all your smiling faces back for another exciting school year here at Alligator Junior High! Looks like more than a few of you forgot to put on your sunblock before you went out to wait for the school bus this morning. Remember, at these temperatures, it only takes a few minutes to have your face turn the color of a rack of barbecued ribs. Also, don’t forget to bring your water bottle with you every day as it’s easy to become dehydrated waiting out there, especially when our bus driver, Mr. Quigley, is running late because of a bad choice he made at the neighborhood tavern last night.

I hope everyone had a lot of fun on your summer break. How many of you went to Disney World this year? Don’t be afraid to say it’s not going to go on your permanent record that you’re “woke.” Ha-ha, that’s a “woke” joke. Young lady in the front row, put down your cell phone! No one is permitted to make videos of your teachers in class. At least not while we’re looking right at you.

Did anybody get a chance to go to the beach this summer? Wasn’t that something? If you managed to get past the hellishly hot sand, the water was just as warm as the sauna at my health club. And you didn’t even need to pay to be a member. Wasn’t it fun watching Dad jump up and down and say all those words we’re not allowed to say in school when he got stung by a jellyfish? You may not realize it now, kids, but those are the memories you’ll cherish for a lifetime.

I’m Mrs. Smith, and I’ll be guiding you through all the wonderful new curriculum that our duly elected officials have handed down to classroom teachers this semester to try to make sense of. You’ll be happy to know that we have all newly sanctioned textbooks in every subject. You’ll be the first class to be learning things that I personally have never taught in the past, and in fact, no teacher has taught many of these things for decades, or, in some cases, ever. In American History for example, you may be surprised to learn that slavery in the pre-Civil War era was actually a valuable job training program, and the so-called slaves learned a tremendous number of valuable skills such as carpentry, blacksmithing, animal husbandry, cooking, cleaning, and working without a break from dawn till dusk, that they were able to capitalize on once they were freed by the beneficence of their white masters. In much the same way our school intends to teach you many useful skills that you will one day be able to use to placate and kowtow to your artificially intelligent overlords.

I should mention that because our textbooks have been changed, we’ve had to throw away all the old textbooks. And because the legislature, in its infinite wisdom, failed to provide the funds needed to buy new ones, we don’t actually have any textbooks this year. I’ll pretty much be winging it here in class, so if I say anything wrong, just sue me. Ha-ha. That’s a joke. Young lady in the front row, put down your phone! If I have to warn you again, you’ll be be assigned to learn the valuable skill of mopping the floor after class.

Yes, we are all going to have to learn many more valuable skills this year because our janitor Mr. Ely, took a week’s worth of firearms training this summer and has been promoted to become the school Safety Officer. That’s why he was at the front door this morning to greet and frisk you and why you may see him if you need to use the restroom during class, roaming the halls and waving his pistol. Also, all the teachers were required to do a one-day workshop on school safety, which included fifteen minutes of target practice, so now we’re also packing. Helpful hint: Do not mess with us if you know what’s good for you.

I want to let everyone who was assigned Ms. Petermeyer for math class that there has been a change in your schedules. Ms. Petermeyer left Florida last week for an undisclosed location north of the Mason/Dixon line because her lifestyle choice made it uncomfortable for her to remain here. Ms. Petermeyer is a word that we don’t say in Florida anymore. If you want to know what that word is, don’t ask me, I’ll never tell. The good news is that although Ms. Petermeyer was voted teacher of the year last year by the students, her substitute is equally well qualified, meaning that she also knows how to add, subtract, multiply, and divide. And as a bonus, Mrs. Malarkey is also a Sunday School teacher at Bethany Baptist Church and has told me that she has a very interesting lesson plan involving measurements for building an ark just like Noah’s. And building an ark may become more and more important to your future survival because of a phenomenon that you might have learned about in your science class last year but which we will no longer mention now or in the future, no matter how much coastal flooding occurs.

Anyways, good luck in the coming school year, kids! You’ll need it!

Read the October 2023 Issue Online

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