…”mere moments of time”…

Barrett School    1st grade  58-59 - Copy

At some point in our life we ALL find ourselves doin’ somethin’ that comes just short of Slappin’ us in the back of the head. Hell, sometimes I think as though it has actually Slapped me, cause it was soo real. But then in just as quick as that {{{ FLASH }}} passes thru there’s another one, confirmin’ the 1st one! You realize to yourself, I learned that in the, you fill in the grade, from Mrs Smith or Mr Jones. It’s soo clear & vivid. Then places, names, faces, dates & in some cases Reactions start appearin’, right there behind your eyes just as though it was yesterday. You can see it all. Yeah, some of those details are a little {{{ Fuzzy }}} @ first, but many of’em, sometimes too many of’em, just start fallin’ in place. I have had those specifically about two (2) teachers in particular from my days at Barrett School. No, not for what I did’t like or didn’t learned, but for what I did (on those rare occasions) like & learn.
Mrs. Howell – GEOGRAPHY –
always amazed me & I didn’t know why. It took me thru a “Portal” that so Seriously Energized me I actually loved to be in her presence/enter her room. She actually had Two (2) Classrooms, one inside & the other outside! That is where I came enlightened about the world around me/us. She replied to all questions is such a way I was engrossed in her responses. She owned my mine! Two phrases she used have been burned in my mine!  #1) As we stood by the Double Water Fountains on the Play Ground, all us lookin’ down @ the ground she taught us about the Sun & our shadows and tellin’ time. “At 12 O’CLOCK NOON YOUR SHADOW POINTS NORTH” (of course that was for our time zone) ! Then she would explain how to judge time, not TELL TIME, but to judge time but your shadows, changin’ position as the day progressed. At times in my early life I would catch myself standin’ still lookin’ @ my shadow, my watch (when I had one), & the Sun. I got pretty good at knowin’ the times of day like that. #2) We would be standin’ among the trees that lined Division Avenue studyin’ the Elm & Sycamore Trees there. Differences in Bark, leaves, trunk structures, etc. But what stood out the most, to me was, “Who knows the direction you’re facing? North, East, South, or West”. There was a cluster of answers being shouted out. Come here, stand in the gutter, face the School, What direction are you facin’? If you’re ever lost, and don’t know  what direction you’re headed, look at the trees around you. Look for the Moss growin’ on the tree. She said “MOSS GROWS ON THE NORTH SIDE OF TREES”! Why? Because the Sun doesn’t shine on that side. Now, what direction are you facin’? {{{ SOUTH ! }}}…YES! was all she said. I have always been fascinated by maps as well due to her.
Mrs. McCoy – MUSIC – almost all of us respond to a rhythm, a beat, that sound that moves us inside makin’ us want to move/flow with it. Windshield wipers, cracks in the road as tires roll over’em, that sound of a pencil tappin’ on the desk, your foot tappin’, fingers snappin’, ect. We all respond differently. Some want to dance, some want to play, & some want to sing. Mrs McCoy didn’t teach, she TAUGHT MUSIC! You learned the Notes, what they were, what they mean, the length of each. For the most part we learned “Simple Time”, such as 3/4 or 4/4. We learned the difference in a Treble Clef & Bass Clef. We learned The Scales! Forward & Backward. You could humm’em, you could sing’em. But you learned’em. Then there were those students who “couldn’t carry a tune in a bucket”! But they learned the rest of it all. The down side to her class was that “Damn Pointer Stick” she used. Both on the Blackboard & on the Backs of your Knuckles when she caught you talkin’ or chewin’ gum in her class. I remember bein’ asked to many times in a short period of time “Billy Gray! Are you Left handed or Right handed? “Left handed Mrs. McCoy” I responded the first few times, she got to know me REAL QUICK! Put your right hand on your desk, palm down! {{{{{ WHACK ! }}}}}…my knuckles began to burn inside then throb something terrible. I was lucky nothin’ ever broke. But I damn sure gave her plenty of chances. The good thing was, I think, that she never sent me to the office. She’d just whack those knuckles. I was a Slow Learner! But I did learn to Appreciate  Music. I only wish I had learned to play music. But all in all, she was an interestin’ teacher.
It’s funny lookin’ at all these words used to describe these “Flash Backs” that come & go in mere moments of time…Hold’em Hook”!…..BG>

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