|Very similar to, but not actually Mrs. Kevetko"s|
Mrs. Kevetko. I wonder what happened to her. She was my fourth grade teacher, with her rhinestone encrusted cat's eye glasses. Of course, I did not know they were rhinestones, I thought they were diamonds. I was in awe of her. So glamorous. So imperious. So stern. (The boys never acted out in her class, not like Mrs. Conrad's.)
|My desk looked just like this|
She was one of those teachers that silenced a room with a glance.
Everyday, as I sat in the last seat of the fourth row, I made sure, I did not give any cause to attract her attention.
You must know what I mean. So penetrating, you feel her gaze cutting through you like a lazar. I was terrified/amazed by her every afternoon when we would file into her class for social studies and math. Though, I loved the quiet orderly nature of how her class was conducted.
Once in a while there was a film strip, of far off lands, that had a "soundtrack" that was played on a phonograph as the film strip was advanced, manually through the projector. It was considered a very high honor to be the one that got to turn the knob to advance the pictures.
|The evil machine of my undoing!|
One day, much to my amazement, I was chosen for the task. I carefully threaded the film into the projector, as I had been keenly observing others do throughout the year. The projector stand was stationed next to my desk so I had a bird's eye view of the process. After that it was all down hill.
The record would emit a small "beep" to signal the move to the next frame. Well, you would if you could see where one picture ended and another one began. It was painfully obvious to Mrs. Kevetko, even before it was to me, that all was not well.
From her large wooden desk, the kind with the heavy drawers and scratched finish, she barked: "Can't you see? Stop!"
It was also at that moment, tears trickled from my eyes. Filled with shame, as though this was a personal failing, I turned away from the class and tried to stifle my sobs. Failing miserably.
Another thing happened at that moment too: Mrs. Kevetko got up from her chair, walked over to me with a tissue in her hand, gently wiped my tears away, as she quietly spoke: "there, there, not to worry. You will get glasses; you will see a whole new world and all will be well."
What she did not realize was at that moment; I saw a whole new world: in her.