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  Book excerpt:

Miscellaneous Philosophy: The Underclassman Years

By Stefan Koski

From Chapter Four: Biology Class: My Old Arch-Nemesis

  If you’re not confused, you’re not paying attention. —Tom Peters

I’m not saying that it’s a boring class. Well, I am, but it’s just that with all the other things that we have to deal with on a daily basis, it’s nice to be able to space-out for once through something that’s largely irrelevant. Or at least you try to. We have a biology teacher who is a little out there.

Good teacher, mind you. I just think that when God was handing out brains, our biology teacher got one that had a little label on it that said, “Do Not Use if Seal is Broken.” And it was. And he did.

It does keep things interesting. Every now and then, you’ll be dozing, trying to find a comfortable position at the impossibly uncomfortable desks. I had one of these old school desks left over from the sixties (as evidenced by the substandard workmanship) in the back of the room.

The seat was a bland, yum-yum yellow shade, and the legs curved down and around the basket. It was more or less a table mounted on top of a sled. The temptation to steal it and take it down a frozen, snow-covered hill was enormous. (Unfortunately, someone else stole it before I got the chance. Possibly one of the janitors.) You’re sitting back there, your eyes barely open, your head pressed against the side bar as you slouch down as far as possible. You’re just at that point that you might fall asleep, and you hear the teacher say something like, “People! It’s hard to kill a deer with a stick!” Okay, I’ll bite – what is it that you’re trying to teach?

You would be amazed as to how easy it is to fall asleep in that class. At no time was it easier than at the beginning of the year, when the heat of summer and the wearisome lecture of the day made for an unmitigated snooze-fest. “Fallasleepa-palooza,” if you will. No matter how hot it was outside, it was forbidden to open the windows, so as to not let the hot air in. This, in our instructor’s logic, kept the room cooler. How, then, did it become the most sweltering enclosure in the entire school? I’m not sure if this guy is familiar with the theory of the greenhouse effect, but I think someone should enlighten him. The whole thing made drowsiness unavoidable. I remember sitting there in the back of the room on one such day, during fourth period. We weren’t allowed to put our heads down on the desk, so I was doing my best to prop my head to the side on my right arm. In that position, the Sandman was more than happy to come over and slap me silly.

What felt like several hours later, I awoke from an otherworldly getaway. My first speculation was that, judging by what my senses told me, it was sixth period, and that this day was lasting for several eons on end. I then noticed that I was considerably famished, and wondered to myself as to how I could have possibly forgotten to eat lunch during fifth. Then I looked at the clock. “Dammit! We’re still here? We’ve been here forever!”

Two years of high school was all it took to mess up every aspect of my sleep cycle. At the same time, my dreams started becoming more realistic and reality started becoming more unreal. Yes, I will admit it. Call me crazy, but I’m having more and more difficulty distinguishing the difference between what’s reality and what’s not.  

Read more about Stefan Koski and his book:

Terryville teen pens book on high school life

Click here to purchase the book for $16.95

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