Friday, May 01, 2009

Remove the hat, son

I went to a lily-white-assed high school in the suburbs. Before arriving freshman year, we warned that there was a new principal and that’d we better be watch out. Rumor had it he used to teach at an inner city school and didn’t take any crap. It was the kind of school that Morgan Freeman would the principal at. People got shot for their Starter jackets. And he was suspended by the city superintendent for refusing to allow an accused rapist to return to class before his trial. He also was supposed to walk with a limp because he hassled some gang members so they threw him out of a window for revenge.

Surprisingly, all the rumors turned out to be true. He was a hard-assed principal from a bad-assed high school. Fortunately for him, though, he faced none of those issues when he arrived in the suburbs. Besides the normal frustrations presented to any high school principal, the only ongoing issue he dealt with resulted from his No Hat regulation. We were told this was a residual policy relating to his views on gang colors but it meant that any hat worn in the hallways was to be confiscated. Naturally, it became a game.

By the time senior year rolled around we’d become each other’s foils. Let’s just say he did not stand for sthe leniencies that I was afforded by some of the teachers and coaches. But the levels of animosity never reached the levels of his old school. The most abuse he received has a few bad impersonations. Also, I published an underground newspaper mocking his policies that resulted in the senior class thinking school was canceled for the day.

He left the year after I graduated and took a job at a school in Maryland. The company line was that he wanted to be closer to his family. I think he missed me and wanted a new challenge.

It seems he got one. According to the police, two students at his new school were a day away from breaching a gas main, throwing a bomb into his office and blowing up the building.

Fucking amateurs.

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