Monthly Archives: February 2011

The Quiet Game

Overall I think I see the world with the view of the glass being half full. But there are still a few things that I really take issue with: hidden traffic cameras , big government and the Quiet Game.

I have a world of issues with the Quiet Game.

First of all, it’s not even a game. Let’s just get that out in the open right now.

It’s an act of deception some preschool teacher that had her girdle laced too tight came up with. She thought it would be ok to trick the younger and less intelligent children that were entrusted into her care.

Shaaaaame.

For those of you who may have gone to private or some alternative school, the Quiet Game works like so:

One person starts out as “it”—usually it’s the class brown noser that has about 19 gold stars by their name while you only have like 4.

So, everyone sits there while the “it” person grazes a judging eye over their fellow students.

 

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Then who ever the “It” person decides has been the quietest, (usually their best friend), they choose that person to be the next “it.”

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The teacher always spent this time taking care of important business.

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Now, I’m not the brightest crayon in the box, but somehow I figured out real quick before everyone else that this game was just a trick to keep us quiet and make everyone think we’re having fun..

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I couldn’t read yet, so what the heck did I care?

Later, in elementary school, anytime someone would suggest the Quiet Game, I would ruin the whole conformist charade simply by not playing.

Please take note of the illustrated example of Calm Active Resistance at it’s best:

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 When I was in the 6th grade, I thought surely my days of the Quiet Game were behind me. That was until we got to the last day of school.

During the 5th and 6th grade at my school we had this

“creative” system of delayed gratification and punishment.

It was called: The Bulldog Buck System of Justice.

Our mascot was a bulldog and the school administrators couldn’t resist the alliteration.

Basically the system worked like this:

When you were good, you get a bulldog buck:

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When you’re bad, you got one taken away.

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At the end of every six weeks you get a count of your bucks. If you have $15 or more, you could buy a “bulldog movie ticket” and watch a movie in a teacher’s classroom.

If you had below $15 then you could purchase another prize and go to Study Hall to read books, play games etc.

But if you had below $5, then you had to go to jail.

In jail, they made you sit and do busy work like copying sentences or writing a paper for hours and hours. Usually it was filled with all the thugs and special Ed students.

I got put in jail twice.

I think, once, I probably had about negative eight bulldog bucks.

Actually I know for a fact I did.

So, it was the very last day of school in the 6th grade and I was in jail.

I sat there and didn’t do an ounce of crap for about 4 ½ hours.

I was so bored, I literally was about to swallow my own tongue.

Finally they released us from class a little early.

And I had a dangerous amount of energy bottled up inside of me and was almost ready to blow.

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School was over. Summer was in front of us. We’d be in Jr. High next year at a different campus. I was ready to put this Intermediate School behind me.

So, I had just gotten out of “the joint” and was looking for some action.

But first I had to join some of my classmates in line to wait for the buses to come.

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My teacher was standing in the hall watching us but then she got called into the principal’s office.

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Of course Mrs. Parker thought this idea was just dandy.

I, on the other hand was not standing for it.

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But there was nothing she could say or do. I had served my time and was just minutes away from freedom.

It was a moment exactly like in the movie “Double Jeopardy” when Ashley Judd is face to face with her ex-husband who had faked his own murder and she had already done the jail time for it.

I’m going to pause now, so the drama of the situation can waft over you..

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So Mrs. Parker just appointed Katrina as “it” and left.

There we were.

We were reproductively mature but were still playing the effing quiet game..

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Just then, I noticed the door was open.

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 Glorious sunlight was pouring through. Sunlight, I had not seen in hours.

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I tried to rally the students

ME:  Hey guys, the teacher’s gone. Let’s all go outside.

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ME: Come on! It’s the last day of school.

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ME: What are you afraid of? They can’t punish us all. Let’s make a break for it!

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I was on the verge of boiling over.

And then something going on out front caught my eye.

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The 4th graders were outside having an ice cream party for doing well on some state standardized test.

And I wanted a piece of that action.

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I was the shortest kid in my grade, and I knew there was a strong possibility I could pass myself off as a 4th grader.

ME: Guys, come on! Before the teacher gets back!

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They couldn’t hold me back even if they wanted to.

No one could.

I made a break for that door.

And bee-lined straight to the 4th graders huddled around the ice cream stand.

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I scurried away and the 4th grade class was none the wiser.

I gobbled up my ice cream and like in Shawshank Redemption, I savored the sweet taste of my freedom.

Except I wasn’t knee deep in  a river of prison doo.

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The world around me seemed to dissolve away until a distinctive sound snapped me back into reality.

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In my blissful state of mind, I had neglected to notice the buses had come and gone leaving me behind.

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Which meant I would have to go back into the school…..

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Call my mom…..

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And wait for her to come pick me up…..

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After she got off work of course.

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