Tag Archives: high school

Dear Mr. Clark

Dear Mr. Clark,

I am writing to inform you of an unfortunate event.  This event will not involve orphaned children, eye-shaped tattoos or carnivorous leeches.  It will not end in you being chased by a mob of people with pitchforks and torches.  It will most likely not cause you to fall while ice skating, step on a Lego, get a paper cut or contract malaria.  In fact, this event occurred about nine years ago, so it probably won’t affect your day-to-day life in the least.

It all started with Six Flags Over Texas.  Actually, that’s not true at all.  It all started with a boring assignment given to me in boring World History class in the boring tenth grade.  I had to read a boring book about boring Athens and write a boring one-paragraph book report in order to complete the assignment.  In reality, all you really cared about was the book report, so I suppose you won’t be very concerned about what I am about to tell you.

I procrastinated reading A Day in Old Athens.  In fact, I think I only got about thirty pages into the book, which contained at least one hundred more pages. And then I went to Six Flags Over Texas, reasoning that I could read it that night.  I’m pretty sure by the time I made this decision, the paper was due the next day, so I had already procrastinated substantially.  What I’m about to admit really shouldn’t be surprising, all things considered.

Regardless, I do have a confession to make: funnel cakes and Six Flags’ signature Pink Things are both supremely delicious.

Also, I didn’t actually read A Day in Old Athens.

Yes, I turned in the assignment.  Yes, it was written based entirely off of the titles of the chapters of the books and a small amount of text skimming.  Yes, you barely noticed the lack of quality in my work and you gave me a B.  But, I felt guilty for years.

At first, I reasoned that I would read the book sometime that week to make up for the fact that I didn’t read it before writing the assignment.  Then I didn’t do that, but I decided I would read the book at some point.

I’m writing to you today, nine years after the fact, to tell you that I still haven’t read the book.

I’m sorry if this letter disappoints you in any way.  If it helps, I never pretended to read an assigned book again.

Until I got to college and realized my teachers didn’t really care.

But that’s another story.

I hope this letter doesn’t come as too much of a shock.  I’m glad to finally get this off of my chest.

Thank you for your patience as a teacher with a class full of students who hated Greco-Roman history as much as you loved it.