Wednesday, January 7, 2009

Tales of a Bad Ass

I am changing the name of this blog. Gone are the days of the wimpy Ginger Files. Oh, no no no. Today, I became a Bad Ass, and the title of this blog need to reflect that.

It was a typical day in the halls of my school. We're coasting into the end of a semester next week, so my students are working on final projects, book reports, stuff like that. Pretty low impact teaching, to be quite honest about it, but that's okay because I'm using that not-in-front-of-the-room-teaching time to get ready for auditions for the school musical next week as well as sketching out a preliminary set design. (Have I mentioned before that it's a one-woman department at my school? Yeah . . . .I know)

So after "enjoying" a lunch of yogurt and an orange, I was standing outside of my classroom to greet students to my fifth hour class. Suddenly, I heard a noise down the hall and turned in time to see two girls hit the floor in a blaze of flying fists and hair.

Girl fight -- the most dreaded of all high school discipline challenges.

The students immediately were circling, meaning I had to fight my way through the crowd to break the fight up. As I got closer to the eye of the storm, I suddenly realized that I was wading into this thing alone. I turned and saw one of my speech team kids and said, "Go find me help!" Almost immediately, another teacher was at my side. We reached the "ring" to find one girl on the floor with the other on top, fingers ensnared in each other's hair, fists flying. Another teacher was there already beginning the process of pulling one of the girls away. The other teacher and I headed to the other girl. While the other teacher hit the floor and started pulling, the fists continued to fly. As if in slow motion, I saw one of the girls rearing back to throw the fist. As it began its trajectory towards the face of her opponent, my hand came out and grabbed her around the wrist and began pulling it away. Of course, the entire time, the voice inside my head was saying, "WHAT THE FREAK ARE YOU DOING?!?!?!?" But then another voice was saying, "GO BAD ASS GO! STOP THAT FIST!!!" As the other two teachers held the two girls apart, I began the process of wading through the crowd to find administrators to deal with all this. When I returned, I noticed the blood on the floor -- emanating from the nose of one of the combatants. Yeah, this was serious stuff.

So I learned today that I can be a bad ass and stop a fight.

I also learned something else. I would make a bad witness in a trial. After it was all over, both the principal and assistant principal came to me since I was the first teacher to see the fight begin (although I didn't see the very beginning of it) and was one of the first people on the scene to break it up. I was of absolutely no help! I didn't know who the girls were (I've never had them in class); I couldn't even remember which girl's fist I had grabbed. I told my speech kids after school that the lesson of THAT was that they could commit a crime in front of me and I wouldn't be able to testify against them because I would probably describe them as 50-year-old black men instead of 16-year-old white girls.

A bad ass would have a good eye for detail and make a good witness, right? So I guess maybe changing the name of my blog isn't such a keen idea.

Well, at least I was a bad ass for a few shining moments anyway.


Danielle Mari said...

I am so proud to be your friend right now!

And I think you should tell people that you blacked out in anger, and that's why you couldn't remember. All part of your bad assishness.

Jen said...

You go! I'm not at all sure I'd be as willing to wade in to break things up. As for remembering exactly who did what to whom, I think Danielle's got the right idea. Someone else can worry about the mundane details, you're too busy kicking ass to concern yourself with that!

NICKI said...

Wow! You go girl! (And I'd watch out for those speech kids now that they have the green light...)