Friday, September 20, 2013

Val Builds a Not-As-Good Mousetrap

Sometimes Val's life is like a Seinfeld episode. Sometimes Val's life is like a game of Mousetrap. Yesterday, the universe was in a Hasbro mood.

As you might have guessed, or heard from some ne'er-do-well tattletales, Val does not like her things touched. She can tell if they are repositioned even a smidgen. As Even Steven would have it, a young man approached Val's desk with a question about a double-line graph. Because some students sitting along the back row had made themselves comfortable by shoving their chairs back and stretching their legs under their desks, the main walkway had narrowed. Mr. Graph-It accidentally bumped his hip into one of the tables that hold my rack of recently-used files.

The file table bumped my control-center table, which holds a three-tiered stack of amplifier, DVD player, and VCR. Resting upon the VCR is an InterWrite gadget that is missing a cable or part, which is not used. Upon that InterWrite is a stack of current grading keys, and time-sensitive forms and announcements. Upon that paper stack rests my glasses while I am not actively doing close-up work in need of bifocals.

Such an unfortunate chain of events. The tower-topping InterWrite is wedge-shaped. Apparently, the zealous custodian had been moving that upper echelon of educational accoutrements slightly each evening while dusting. The vibrations from the hip-checked table caused the InterWrite to topple off its penthouse digs, form a ramp, and act as a 45-degree slide for my prescription eyewear. The glasses slid to the bottom of Mount InterWrite, skipped across the only inches of white plastic tabletop not covered by electronics or a web of wires, and into the three-inch gap between table and wall that is left for electrical wire access.

I heard my glasses hit the tile. Against the concrete block wall. Under my four-foot table. I fetched my wooden meter stick from the top edge of the whiteboard frame, and fished out the windows to the windows to my soul.

Not quite as exciting as a bowling ball falling through a bathtub to knock a plastic diver guy into an old-fashioned washtub, but still an impressive display of cause, effect, and gravity.


  1. Do what I do. I have built a 12-foot tall wall around my desk, and a moat around the wall. No nine-year old has been able to swim across the moat AND climb the far.

  2. We all deal with gravity in one way or another. I hope you have a terrific weekend.

  3. It is like, "If You Give a Mouse a Cookie".

  4. Sounds like the perfect way to get the attention of the entire class. Quickly.

    Critter Alley

  5. A lot of teachers hate having their stuff touched. Some even have a masking tape line on the floor that the kids can't cross, a la Jan and Marcia Brady.

  6. Sioux,
    Obviously, they are being deprived of physical education minutes.

    Many have tried, but nobody successfully breaks the law of gravity.

    Oh! I meant to sneak in a reference to that as well, but I was rushed because I had a scant two hours to post something before heading out for the evening.

    Sadly, most were oblivious to my personal work-space encroachment, and the resulting vision crisis.

    Masking tape! My custodian would have my head if I put that sticky stuff on the shiny waxed industrial tile!

    Are you trying to trick me? I think that was Peter and Bobby. If it was Marcia/Marcia/Marcia and Jan (on the advice of her boyfriend George Glass), they stole that tape idea from Lucy and Ricky Ricardo.