Did you know that happy people are healthier than people who are always ticked off or negative? Maybe that’s why I’m so healthy. The happiest – and healthiest – time of my young life was when I was in school, so it must be true. Some of my teachers didn’t appear all that healthy. Take, for instance, my Grade 10 history teacher Miss Carter. Now there was a case of unhappiness if I ever saw one. I’m not sure what her problem was, but I assume her students were at the root of her unhealthiness. Seeing as history was a study course, and a bit of a boring one at that, most of the students weren’t too ambitious. I recall the one day after we got our test results that Miss Carter was quite upset because most of the test results were pretty bad. I’m not bragging here, but my score was the highest in the class: 65 per cent. The next highest was 50 per cent, so I can understand why she was frazzled. That day must have brought her to the end of her rope because she said we all drove her nuts and if we didn’t smarten up, she was going to jump out the classroom window. Being the class clown, I jumped up and opened the window. She was too stressed to notice my offer, but my classmates got a chuckle out of it. That’s one case where humour can save your life.
Casey’s advice last week suggesting students should attend every class was right on the money, but sometimes I think teachers would prefer parents kept their children at home. My friend Diane had two sons who she admitted were kids from hell; they never gave her any rest. We all lived in the same apartment building in London, and Joey and Junior were always doing something that drove everyone nuts. Joey enjoyed hanging off the third floor balcony, which always gave us heart attacks. Junior wasn’t a daredevil, but he must have had a bladder problem because he was always peeing in the apartment stairwell. The boys were in school for about a week, and I asked Diane how the boys liked it. “Not too bad,” she said, “but I’m a little upset today.” “How so,” I asked. “I’d think you’d be overjoyed to get a bit of a reprieve.” “Well, I am,” she replied, “but I just got a call from Joey’s teacher complaining about his behaviour in class. Can you imagine the gall she has? He’s only been back to school and already she’s whining.” I asked why that surprised her. “It doesn’t surprise me,” she said, “but what annoys me is that I had Joey all summer and I never called her once to complain that he was misbehaving.” The poor woman had a point. Teachers, hang in there and keep smiling. Some days have to be better than others. Stay happy and healthy.
The Sunday school teacher was describing how Lot’s wife looked back and was suddenly turned into a pillar of salt. “My mother looked back once while she was driving,” little Jamie contributed, “and she turned into a telephone pole.”