Sunday, July 22, 2012

The Last Laugh

     My whole teaching career was with Middle School kids. They have their own perception of life and it doesn't  go much further than the next hour. If you get to understand a little bit about Middle School kids you can see their sense of humor and play along with them and have some fun.


     In my late twenties to early thirties I developed some pattern baldness. There was a noticeable part on the back of my head where the hair was thinning. Well, did the boys have fun. Almost every day somebody would say, "Mr. Kline , you're going bald!" Now this was a line that one could play with. There are many replies to this one. Also in my head was the idea that I was going bald. But many times I teased these little guys that some day they would be balder than I am. They could never get this one. Some of these guys gave me more static than others. And some didn't mention the topic.


    Now I still live in the community that I taught in. I taught in the same school for 28 years. By the end of my career about 20 % of my students were children of former students. I still live in the same district so from time to time I see former students like my optometrist.  Many of my former students are active in the community.


     Now what really got me writing this post was I saw a picture of John who was teaching kids to fish. I haven't seen John since he left gr. nine but I see his folks once in a while.Well guess what?  John is very hair challenged! 


    One kid Dan, pestered me more than any other. Dan was completely shiny before he turned thirty. 


    I don't know what the percentage is for pattern baldness but what ever it is my former students are in it. 


    As for me , I've stayed the same with the thin hair patch...no more no less. I remember all my great uncles and Grandpa had exactly the same place where their hair was thin. 


   So guys I guess I get the last laugh!

26 comments:

  1. That's funny, but kind of sad that baldness is such a big deal to so many guys. Maybe they thought if they teased you about it, it wouldn't happen to them! :-)

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    1. You have a point about baldness being important to males. How many comb overs are there?

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  2. Yes you do. I taught 8th grade for one year when I was 28. I hated it. I'm best with 3rd and 4th graders.

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    1. I think we each find our own niche.

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  3. I find totally bald men very attractive! Did you know that God made some heads perfect..the rest of them he covered with hair:)

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    1. Love your joke. I'll remember it.

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  4. Congratulations on holding on to your hair. You did get the last laugh!

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    1. It also means I have some fun with some of these guys when I meet them.

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  5. I cannot imagine teaching middle schoolers! Maybe because I was such a "rule-follower", I have never been able to relate to kidding and joking. Made me much too serious much too young! But, you were the kind of teacher that every kid liked - someone that had rules, but was able to see the fun in life too. Nice story this morning!

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    1. I was not the most popular teacher. I was not a great stickler on rules. I always said that 20% of the time the kids were in control, 20% of the time I was in control and 60% of the time it was even.

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  6. We've been going to some funerals lately and these seem to be the places that you see people you haven't in years. It's amazes me how much they've age......but then I look in the mirror ;)

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    1. Yes, sometimes it's hard to look in the mirror . I find the photos have more of an effect.
      At my Dad's funeral I saw most of my buddies from school.

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  7. What a lucky life to see the adults of those you mentored years ago.

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    1. Yes , it's been a positive experience. Some of them I've been on various boards with.

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  8. My youngest daughter loves teaching in Middle School ---- she enjoys everything about the age...their stretching of wings, trying to find themselves. the whole nine yards. My son-in-law is just now promoted to high school, but he was the Assistant Principal at another middle school, where he says grow is the main function of kids that age...high school is bringing it all together.

    Great post!


    Linda
    http://coloradofarmlife.wordpress.com
    http://deltacountyhistoricalsociety.wordpress.com

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    1. Yes, many ties the comment has been made that we don't teach middle school kids anything. We just let them get three years older. I think there's a lot of truth in that statement.

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  9. Isn't this just the truth! Well written!
    Greetings from Cottage Country!

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    1. They are like everybody else where they have good days and bad days. You'd better know when they are having a bad day.

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  10. oh my gosh...I bet you know more than most therapists!! I have 2 middle school kids...I cannot even imagine teaching a whole bunch of them! I guess you learned not to believe their home stories just like I (finally!) learned not to believe their teacher stories...

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  11. I really like this comment. You've discovered a very important truth. You have to put your judgement in your pocket and let these kids bump into things and make some discoveries.
    Yes, it seems hard to believe I was in a sea of 700 Middle School kids at times.

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  12. I used to never give it a thought with a full head of hair.Mine has thinned a bit, but I worry more. LOL

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  13. Good story Red. I always tease guys who are very conscious of their hair (or lack of it) ha ha :))

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