75 minutes on a Friday

Holy cow, the stock photos you find when you Google “School fights” are totally hilarious.

There’s a lot that isn’t stock photos, of course, but I feel like taking a picture of somebody’s baby about to get their ass beat and putting it on my stupid little website maybe isn’t the move.

Let’s talk about my Friday.

I basically eat school lunch every day. It’s fast, it’s easy, it’s relatively inexpensive– the entree they give the kids costs the teachers $4 and I typically buy two, so $8 a day– and shut up, everything generally tastes just fine. Plus I don’t have to think about it (at all) or go anywhere, and I only get half an hour for lunch so anything that cuts out bullshit from that time is just fine. I walk my kids down to the cafeteria, grab my lunches, precariously balance one atop the other, go back to my room, and eat there, alone and in peace.

(Weird thing about this building: every other school I’ve taught at, the teachers generally eat together somewhere. Not here. Everyone retreats to their rooms. I generally don’t mind the quiet, but it would be nice to have someone to talk to once in a while.)

Friday, 1:00 PM. I have my lunches and am preparing to exit the cafeteria when I happen to glance to my right and see one of my students stand up, lean across the lunch table, and punch another one of my students directly in his jaw. There’s some power behind it, too; the kid’s head snaps back and I can tell he’s hurt. Amazingly, he doesn’t stand up or attempt to retaliate.


Without putting my food down, I manage to get the hitter to take his own ass to the office and check with the kid who got punched, who, unsurprisingly, wants to see the nurse. Who isn’t in her office, so I need to find her, still with the kid in tow. I find the puncher trying to leave the office already and usher him back in, explain what happened to the secretaries, and tell them that the security guard also saw it (which is true) and that I’ll get it written up as soon as I find a place to put the hit kid, who for the purposes of the rest of this post I’ll call Hosea.

I find the nurse and get the kid taken care of. He’s in my fifth and sixth hour, which is right after lunch, but at this point I’m assuming I’m not going to see him. I get the office referral written. I have sixteen minutes left in my lunch. I eat. I do not have time to piss.

I get down to the cafeteria to pick my kids up and they start lining up when I perceive a ruckus taking place behind my line. I investigate to discover several of my 8th grade boys holding back another of my 8th grade boys. I look around for the other fighter and can’t find them, but it’s clear this is serious– if they let go of this kid he’s going after someone, I just can’t immediately figure out who it is that he’s mad at. At one point he gets loose and then I get to hold him back for a minute, but mostly these two particular kids have him under control while a bunch of others hoot and holler and generally make asses of themselves. I dismiss my line of kids with a wave and holler at one of the custodians to radio somebody— I don’t give a fuck who, but I need somebody higher on the totem pole than me down here, or at least the security guard, who is in the hallway.

We eventually get the other kid calmed down, and figure out who he’s so pissed at– a student who has, wisely, disappeared from the cafeteria– and I bring the holder-backers up to my classroom so I can write them passes to class, since they’re good and late by now but I figure it was for the right reasons. I discover the principal in my classroom; he heard about the ruckus on the radio but was already on the second floor and so, wisely, realized that I wasn’t going to be up there to cover my class so he sat in until I got back up there.

I like my boss, have I mentioned that?

A class period passes, and during passing period between 5th and 6th Hosea comes back into class. He doesn’t have a pass with him, but it’s not like I didn’t know where he was, and besides, it’s passing period, so I figure the nurse or whoever just held onto him until passing period and sent him up to me. No big deal; I explain what we’re doing. A few minutes later we take a bathroom break (due to the continuing saga of Devious Licks, we’re still on annoyingly modified bathroom policies) and I, as usual, am having to monitor kids in three different places.

I walk into the boys’ bathroom to see Hosea– Hosea, this time– punch an entirely different kid than the one who he had issues with previously, in the face. Hosea has his back to me and the other kid sees me come into the bathroom and witness everything, so once again, magically, I have a kid not fighting back and just letting the adults handle bullshit acts of violence. Which I appreciate; the kid he’s punching was suspended last week for fighting, so this is a minor miracle.

(As an aside, my building is not nearly as violent as this post is making it sound. Today is absolutely an aberration. This situation in the cafeteria is the first time all year I’ve had to put my hands on a kid during a fight or a lead up to one.)

Hosea, of course, denies everything. There’s a whole other post with this kid that I don’t want to get into; needless to say he is 1) one of the most consistent and 2) one of the worst liars I have ever met. He has never done anything wrong in his entire life and he will literally deny anything. The pencil in his hand? Not his. The website on his computer, which is open in front of him? He didn’t go to that website. The water bottle in his hand that he’s taking a drink from? He doesn’t have a water bottle, and he’s not drinking. Frankly, I’m willing to bet that his getting punched in the face by the other kid earlier was completely deserved, as he also lies on the other kids with astonishing regularity(*) and they all hate him. I spend as much time defending them from him as I do him from them, and it’s fucking. exhausting.

Anyway, Hosea didn’t do anything, and he won’t go to the office because he didn’t do anything; he’s not even in the bathroom, much less punching kids in the face, and the rest of them are sort of just standing there because they know good and well I was right there and saw the whole fucking thing. I hand him over to his paraprofessional (he’s also special ed, because of course he is) and get everybody else back in class and within a degree or two of functioning.

Fifteen minutes later, his para brings him back into the classroom, which, no, he punched somebody in the fucking face, I told you that, he doesn’t get to come back in the room. I glance at the clock and there’s about ten minutes left in class. I spend a brief moment contemplating whether this bullshit is worth it– a quick glance at the kid he hit shows that the dude doesn’t appear to care that Hosea is back in the room– and then, suddenly, the principal is back in my room again.

“Have you seen Hosea?”

“Yeah, I did, he’s right there. Did you see the referral already?”

“What referral?”

I’m confused at this point, because there’s no point in the principal being in my room to collect this kid if he doesn’t know the kid did anything, at which point I find out that Hosea wasn’t supposed to leave the office in the first place. He tries to play the “I’m not going downstairs” move with the boss for all of two seconds and I’m pretty sure the boss leans over and tells him that his ass is going to be in the office in the next five minutes whether the rest of him is attached to it or not(**) and he makes the decision to go. And I give the fuck up on class for the rest of the fucking day, because Jesus, this is enough bullshit for one Friday.

(*) AN EXAMPLE: Hosea is also in my advisory, and the kids eat breakfast during advisory. In homeroom on this same Friday, moments after the bell rang, I walked in and was informed by Hosea that a group of other students threw an apple at his head. The other kids immediately begin vocally denying that this has happened. I am by the door, and glance in the trash can; no apple. There is one (1) apple in front of one of the students he’s accusing; it is in pristine shape, with not a mark on it, which is not something you would expect from an apple that had been thrown at someone’s head. Nor is there any sign that an apple– an object with a lot of water inside of it that tends to splat when thrown at a hard surface– has bounced off of 1) Hosea’s head; 2) the whiteboard behind him; 3) the wall below the whiteboard; 4) the floor. I ask Hosea where the apple they threw is. He doesn’t know. I look around. No apple. He’s lying through his fucking teeth, for no clear reason at all. This happens every single day, except for the part where because Hosea is such an asshole to the other kids all the time, sometimes he’s telling the truth, because they do actually both 1) pick on him unprovoked sometimes and 2) frequently respond to his provocations. For example, it’s not at all beneath him to see the kid’s apple sitting in front of him and claim that the apple was thrown at him so that the other kid would pick up the apple and throw it at him.

(**) Probably not his exact words.

I can’t tell if this story is sad or funny

11138588_10206547522310491_2102370222246627824_nAnd the answer may very well be “both.”

(There is another Star Wars post coming.  Soon, I expect.  This will not be that post, but I could not pass up this image.)

A couple of months ago one of my sixth grade boys attacked me in the office.  I didn’t mention it here.  It wasn’t a big deal.  The kid was in the midst of a massive emotional meltdown and he has trouble controlling his temper on the best of days.  I wasn’t mad.  We had to put him up for expulsion, but when a kid’s special education disability can be found to have caused the behavior that led to an expulsion, that kid is frequently sent directly back to school and everyone involved knew that that was exactly what was going to happen and it did.

(I understand that this policy may prove controversial.  I’m not super interested in defending it or denigrating it at the moment.  It’s just how things work in our current system.  Roll with it.)

At his expulsion hearing, I went over what had happened and spent a few minutes talking with the kid about things he could have done to make the situation work better.  I made it very clear to both him and his mother that if he’s in a situation where he feels like he’s about to lose his temper, I want him to come talk to me if he needs to, and that under most circumstances my office door is going to be open to him whenever he needs it to be.  Since he came back, I’ve checked in with him on my own two or three days a week, and he’s been referred to me once or twice a week as well.

Basically what I’m saying is I see this kid every day for one reason or another, and I spend a fair percentage of my copious spare time talking him off of ledges.  But!  He hasn’t gotten into a fight or hit anyone since he came back.  In fact, to the best of my recollection he hasn’t even had a day of home isolation since he came back.  This represents incredible progress.

He needs a name.  We’ll call him David.

So today I got a phone call from one of the special ed teachers that David had been sent to her room by another teacher on a time-out and that he was insisting on talking to me.  I went to the classroom and found him in the hallway about halfway to meltdown mode– hands clenched into fists, breathing heavily, pacing around, the works.

I got the story out of him fairly quickly, and this is the part where telling this story gets a bit difficult, because I don’t quite know how to describe this other boy, who we’ll call Jonathan.  Jonathan is probably gay.  He certainly acts the part; he’s noticeably effeminate and he plays up his effeminacy (is that a word) to a degree I have literally never seen from a twelve-year-old before.  He gets picked on by the other kids from time to time, which will surprise no one, but what may surprise you is that we’ve had to deal with him for sexual harassment issues before.  For example, we had a big fooferall on Monday just this week because Jonathan was blowing kisses at several of the other boys in the room– a fact that they did not react to with calm equanimity.

Put the pitchforks down.  As I’ve said many, many times, bullying is an infinitely more complicated issue than society is ever willing to admit, and frequently what people might want to point at and screech “bullying!” is actually a situation with multiple bad actors.  This is absolutely one of those situations.

At any rate, David has gotten into an argument with Jonathan, and rather than punch Jonathan in the face he’s left the room, gone somewhere else, and asked to talk to me.  He’s upset with Jonathan because he doesn’t like “that gay stuff” and blah blah blah garden-variety middle-school homophobia.  Am I happy about it?  No, absolutely not.  Am I willing to pass over GVMSH because at this precise moment with this precise young man right now we’re working on don’t punch people in their faces, a lesson that he seems to actually be learning?  Yes.  Yes I am.  Judge me as you see fit.

I get a description of what has happened out of him.  As it turns out, what specifically set him off was Jonathan telling him, loudly, in class, that he was going to “do a booty porn” with him.

You read that right.  Booty porn.  David does not want to be in a booty porn!  In fact, he quite badly wants to punch the faces of those who suggest that he should be in booty porns.  But he has been told not to punch faces, so instead he left the room.

I deposit David in the office, tell the office to sit on him and let him calm down for a few minutes, and go find Jonathan.  I have a problem here; I can calm David down easily enough, especially given a few minutes.  What I can’t do is put him back in the classroom with this kid, and if Jonathan really suggested he was going to fuck this boy in the ass and videotape it– because hell if I can figure out what else “do a booty porn” might mean– then we’re right back to sexual harassment issues from Jonathan, and my day, much like an erect penis, has just gotten longer and harder.

(I’m very sorry.)

I talk to Jonathan in the hallway.  A bunch of the boys realize immediately why I’m there and a bunch of hands shoot up from kids who want to tell me what happened.  I wave them off.  Jonathan comes outside.  His story is largely the same as David’s in terms of the mutual harassment and name-calling that started the dispute, and then he says something that stops me dead.

“I told him I was gonna do a bully report, and then he got mad and left the room.”

Say “bully report” a few times really fast.  Now say “booty porn” a few times really fast.

oh what the hell am I doing with my life.

Now, here’s the thing: Jonathan is just clever enough that he could be lying.  And David, as much as I like the kid, is just volatile enough that he could have put the worst possible spin on what he thought Jonathan was saying.

Do you see where this is going?

I had to pull, one by one, and at random, about half of this poor teacher’s class into the hallway, to ask them if they heard the words bully report or booty porn.

The results?  50/50.

And then I had to go talk to my boss, and say the words booty porn to him a bunch of times, and explain to him why I was resigning immediately and refusing to deal with any of this nonsense any longer.

The end.

what is this i don’t even

Sitting on the couch in the living room right now, watching Hank Azaria do his impressions of Grover and Cookie Monster and Elmo, and really really hoping that as the Jimmy Johns in my belly digests it’s going to take some of the stress away. I don’t know how likely that’s going to be.

Things that happened today, or in the last few days: (this will format poorly. I will fix it later when I’m on a computer.)

  • It seems like about a third of my kids are suspended right now for one reason or another. At least one, a kid with a seriously nasty past who was pulling As for most of last quarter, has gone from being a student in pretty good standing to up for expulsion in something like two weeks, for two rapid-fire instances of theft (an iPad from another student and then some food from the cafeteria) and then beating the hell out of the kid who snitched on him for the cafeteria theft and then cussing the assistant principal out when he got busted for it. Note that each of these incidents took place on the day he returned from the previous suspension. He was only at my school because he got expelled from another school last year; it seems highly unlikely that I’ll be seeing him again.
  • A full-scale meltdown from one of my BEST kids (I don’t know what “BEST” stands for and somehow in seven years in this district have never learned; it basically means crazy kids and criminals, and should not be taken to refer to anything positive) involving having to be physically restrained by somebody about four times his size in the hallway and then causing no manner of destruction on his way down the hall– for, apparently, the second time in a row. This happened prior to my class; I don’t know exactly what triggered it.
  • I’m getting another new BEST kid in that same class tomorrow; apparently the two I have aren’t enough and someone downtown figured that if the first kid was getting expelled I deserved another disaster behavior student in that room. Occasionally these kids aren’t actually that bad and I can’t figure out why they’re in the program; this kid is coming to me after being kicked out of another school so I don’t have high hopes.
  • Meanwhile, my favorite student is moving to Arizona on Friday and another top-tenner is transferring to another school, also on Friday.
  • No less than four three-day ISS suspensions for girl drama related stuff; I’ll give you three guesses who might have been involved in that and the first two don’t count. If you said the blowjob-denier from a couple of weeks ago, give yourself a cookie.
  • The two Kids Who Are Suspended All the Fucking Time are both suspended again; note that these two kids aren’t the kids mentioned above. One of the two has still not made it through a single week of school (this is week… eleven?) without at the very least a day of ISS and for most weeks there has been out-of-school suspensions involved. Apparently he grabbed somebody’s tits in ISS. His mother continues to insist he’s a misunderstood angel. This also happened on Friday while I was out. I’m not sure what happened with the other one.
  • I wrote up one of my Algebra kids this morning for a situation that he could have ended at any of half-a-dozen points up until the point where I lost patience with his bullshit and wrote him up. There were something like six or seven other kids involved; all of the rest of them saw the wisdom of managing to go a few minutes in the morning without being idiots until they were no longer under my direct supervision. This one… did not. He spent the day in ISS; I found out from the assistant principal that afternoon that she’d been subject to a long harangue from his father about how all I ever do is pick on the kid and it was my fault he was written up. This student, by the way, is only in my Algebra class because we’re trying to keep him out of trouble; I am overstuffing my Honors class to keep this kid away from the shitheads he hangs out with who would otherwise keep him in trouble even more than he is. I made the point to him, and I’m happy to make the point to his father, that if he wants to transfer to a school where he will be allowed to hit anyone he wants, no one will stop him. If his father is foolish enough to pull this move with me instead of with my AP I’m going to take his damn fool head off.
  • (One of these things is not like the others, one of these things is not the same) I bought a Fitbit Force. I’m wearing it right now. Thus far it entertains me but I’m not convinced of its utility in the long run (which is shitty, because it was expensive) and you should expect a longer review after a couple of days.
  • OH RIGHT:  Fleas.  Everywhere.  Mutant apocalypse indomitable indestructible fucking fleas, because I’m a fucking peasant in a hut in the English countryside circa 1658 and not a middle-class twenty-first century American in a goddamn six-figure house.
  • That line came before I added the video.
  • I just found a recipe for egg drop soup.  I didn’t know I wanted egg drop soup.  I’m startled at how happy this makes me.

It’s Thursday, right?

In which something entirely unexpected happens!

middle-finger-poster-flag-6185-pHave you read yesterday’s post yet?  Of course you have!  You read everything I write, right?  Sure.  So you know all about the sexual harassment issues that blew up my third and fourth hour and then ate most of my prep.

Remember the bit at the beginning, the bit that I almost deleted on account of it was the Same Rant All Over Again and wasn’t entirely connected with the rest of the post?  The bit about how bullying is a Huge Fucking Deal until the very second the kids are best friends again and then oh, wait, we were filing formal complaints on each other?  Never mind.

Yeah, keep that shit in mind.

Today’s highlight involved confiscating a note from the threesome-wanting blowjob-denier in the first story, who threw the whole school into a tizzy and wasted several hours of the time of at least three different staff members by filing a formal complaint of bullying against two other students, one of whom was her ex-boyfriend and the other of whom was his best friend.

The note was passed through the second girl in the first story– the one who everyone was mad at because she supposedly started everything– to the non-ex-boyfriend, to be given to the ex-boyfriend.

Note that I barred the two boys from class today, hoping that a day without them would help to calm things down a bit.

The note was asking the ex-boyfriend to please please please take her back so that she didn’t have to give up on true love.

I took it to the counselor.

“I cannot deal with this without using words like idiot and moron, and I probably also cannot deal with this without pointing out in clear language to this young fool that this boy thinks of her as nothing but pussy.  It is therefore your problem.”

I have nothing else to say about my day.

I’m in this job for the paperwork

paperworkRandom, before I start: my neighbors have big (thirty feet? I’m bad at estimating distances) columns supporting a portico (or are the columns part of the portico?  I’m also bad at architecture) in front of their house.  There’s an honest-to-god woodpecker at the top of one of them; I heard the bastard when I got out of my car after getting home this afternoon.  He’s wailing whaling (bad at homonyms!) away up there.  Is that something I should tell them about?

Anyway.  It’s bullying awareness week, or some such bullshit.  Or maybe it was last week; I’m not aware enough to be sure.  Here is how most people think bullying works:  A bunch of children mercilessly pick on one poor bullied student, causing him to be very sad and blah blah blah.  Here is how bullying actually works, most of the time: everyone involved is an asshole and a bad actor and everyone involved is doing their best to make everyone else involved miserable as best they can, and the ones who are either the sneakiest or the quickest to file paperwork get to be the “victims” while everyone else gets to be the “bullies.”  Oh, and every time the word gets used I have a legally-mandated two days to “do an investigation” and a bunch of complicated paperwork to fill out, only to find out that Suzie told Allie that Shelly said that Sammi said that Sharon said that Allie said that Sheryl was a slut, only it turns out that Shelly didn’t actually say that, Sharon said that Allie said that to Shelly but Suzie is dating Sammi’s ex-boyfriend and Sharon’s mad at her because of it so Suzie actually said that Sammi was a slut because she was defending her on Facebook and today this is a world-ending crisis and the very second I’m done with the paperwork they’ll all be best friends again and oh never mind we worked it out until they hate each other again next week.

If you think I’m exaggerating, you’re not a teacher.  I have been doing this job for twelve years and I can count the number of unambiguous instances of clear bullying that I have witnessed on one hand.  Everything and I mean everything else has been mostly-mutual teenage bullshit of some kind or another.

That said, one of the events I’m about to describe so far may actually be pretty clear-cut, but I haven’t done my investigation yet.

Keep in mind, by the way, that these are seventh-graders.  Thirteen-year-olds.

My third and fourth hour got wrecked because of some vile combination of the following events:  1) One student suggesting to another student that she’d be open to a threesome with her ex-boyfriend and one of his friends; 2) That student reporting to the ex-boyfriend and the buddy that said threesome was a possibility; 3) Upon being asked about the possibility of said threesome via Facebook message (I’ve not seen this message, but other staff members have) the original young lady replied “No… well, maybe… LOL” and then was 4) surprised somehow when the two young gentlemen in question told everyone they knew that this was going to happen.  And then during art today there was apparently 5) an attempt to get the threesome bargained down to some oral sex for the non-ex-boyfriend while the ex-boyfriend, apparently, watched.  Throw in a different ex-girlfriend of the same dude doing her best to keep her nose in their business and one of the two guys deciding to try to get everyone to ostracize the second girl in the first conversation and you have eaten my entire day, as all four of the principals involved are in my third and fourth hour.

Note that, legally, this isn’t bullying, and I know this because we just had a meeting where we went over the legal definition of bullying in great detail.  And also note that none of it took place in school and yet it destroyed not only my entire day but at least two other staff members’ days as well.  (And while we’re noting things, note that this still qualifies as sexual harassment and it’s not being ignored.)

I’m leaving the school counselor’s office after spending the first half of my prep period with her and one of my paraprofessionals hashing all this out and making sure we’ve written down everything and notified everybody we need to notify.  I’ve done no actual preparing during my prep period.  I never do any preparing during prep; that’s Fireman Hour.

I walk to my room, sit down at my desk, and start composing an email.  The teacher next door walks into my classroom with another kid in tow– a student who I had in sixth grade two years ago who I just last week had referred to a risk-assessment psychologist on account of she’s cutting herself.  The student is being disruptive and making her job impossible and can she stay in my room for a bit? Sure, why not, this email’s gonna take me a few minutes and I’d prefer to have a good excuse to stay in my room if I can have one.

Less than five minutes later, I’m taking her back to the nurse because she’s started shrieking and ranting about how ridiculous it is that anyone thinks they can stop her from hurting herself because it’s her body and she’s gonna hurt herself if she wants to.  Well, fuckin’ great, let’s go talk to that psychologist again.  I go get the counselor (whose office, remember, I’ve just left) again and that eats another fifteen minutes of the only break (to do everything else I have to do but teach) that I have each day.  I have just enough time to run down to my room and get something that I need to have photocopied by the morning; I make it down to the photocopier as the bell is ringing and discover that the photocopier is broken.

Well, great.

Off to the gym, where I make the seventh and eighth graders sit where they’re supposed to and call off buses as they arrive.  I spot one of my (7th grade) homeroom girls, normally the sunniest, biggest-smiled kid you’ve ever seen in your life, sitting in the stands, bawling her eyes out.

No goddammit don’t ask this can only cause trouble what are you doing jesus this day is long enough don’t you NO GODDAMMIT YOU DON’T WANT TO KNOW WHY ARE YOU WAVING HER OVER JESUS STOP IT NO NO 

“What’s wrong?”


I consider simply replying “Bullshit” and don’t; there are a few buses gone by now and there are a bunch of other teachers in the gym, so I can pull her into the hallway without officially abandoning what I’m actually supposed to be doing.

We go into the hallway.

“Let’s try that again.”

She takes a deep, shuddering breath.  Sobs again.

“Sweetie, there’s absolutely no way I’m letting you get on the bus like this.  Tell. Me. What. Happened.”

“(Eighth-grade dumbfuck) won’t leave me alone.  He asked me out yesterday and I said no and he just keeps asking and he’s been bugging me about it all day.  I can’t get him to stop.” And she starts bawling again.

Which: again, not bullying.  But is, again, at least at first blush, a pretty damn clear-cut case of sexual harassment.  By some sort of divine providence, the dumbfuck in question is part of the reason that the wrist-cutter earlier got put into my classroom; the two of them were feuding about something too.

I note that he’s already left and ask her if he has her phone number and if she thinks he’ll be calling or texting or Facebooking or anything like that tonight or if he knows where she lives or if she will be quit of him until school starts tomorrow.  She confirms that he has no way to get in touch with her and I tell her that we’ll talk about this tomorrow morning.  I reflect that she has many older brothers (like, seriously, at least four, plus at least one sister) and consider simply making sure that they have this kid’s address.

I put her on the bus and stop in the counselor’s office on my way out, asking her if she has any room on her lap left, and (as I am mandated to do by law whenever I encounter instances of sexual harassment or bullying) notify her as to the content of the conversation I’ve just had and that I’ll be following up with my official within-two-work-days investigation during homeroom.

At least I know what I’ll be doing during seventh hour tomorrow.

OH WAIT SHIT I FORGOT THIS PART edit:  I end the conversation with the counselor early because there is a parent in the office who is screaming at the attendance secretary so loudly that I can hear it halfway down the hallway through two closed doors.  As it works out, both the principal and the assistant principal have been out of the building all afternoon at different meetings and so there is really no one in the office who the secretary can refer her to.

“Yeah, I’ll talk to you tomorrow, I’mma go deal with that,” I tell the counselor, and leave her office, attempting to summon my Calm Face.  Luckily for (very likely) everyone involved, by the time I got down there another teacher had intervened already and maneuvered the lunatic into the hallway and out of the office.  As it turned out he was apparently who she was looking for anyway; I hung around for a minute until I decided he didn’t really need any help (turns out that kids who are angry psychotics tend to have angry psychotic parents; who knew?) and went down to my room to get my stuff, the music of her discontent accompanying me the whole way.

The end.