Jerome A. White
I stared coldly into my bathroom mirror, facing my arch nemesis for a final showdown. One of us had to go, and I had no intent of letting that blonde rogue hair on my forehead get the better of me. Like an Old West gunslinger, I swiftly unholstered my tweezers and fired off a fatal pluck. In the blink of an eye, the duel was over, and I had once again proven my self victorious. The landscape of my forehead was once again beautifully barren and undisturbed.
Okay, let’s see what’s up today.
Yeah, I know I’m in charge of the log today, thanks a bunch to Cathy! But I felt like I left y’all hangin’ last time with my rogue hair story.
Jessica mentions that last night, a big goofy stranger had his hand on her butt at the Balcony Bar. Supposedly he reminded her of me in some way. WTF Jessica?
I eagerly sit on the edge of my chair, hoping that this story will end with the revelation that this is actually a socially acceptable means of gaining favor with the ladies. It turns out Jessica was somewhat put off by this drunk or simply rude behavior. Shoot, back to the drawing board.
Discussion shifts to the inadvertent inclusion of an incorrect address for Dedra on recent email distributions. Having left drjnola out of our exclusive group, we are now wondering if the esteemed Dr. Nola will join us for our GNOWP grand finale. Everyone in this discussion seems to assume that Dr. Nola is a dude, but what if the good doctor is in fact a hot chick? If that’s the case, I think I’ll smoothly walk up to her at the party and place my hand on her butt.
Reem enters, hyperventilating. Dressed very professionally in black and white, with a black hijab, Felix comments that she “looks like a nun.” Well Felix, nuns are usually held in higher moral regard than Sister Reem.
After all, last night Reem’s criminal endeavors within Jefferson Parish continued. After a diligent Kinko’s employee heroically thwarted her attempt to illegally reproduce copyrighted material for her demo lesson, she fled and sought refuge in a local Office Depot, undeterred in her efforts to break the law.
It’s not even 9am, and Felix is already going back for his second helping of cinnamon rolls. Hey Felix, did you know it takes precisely 113,988 steps to walk off the calories from just one cinnamon roll? Ahhh, it’s worth it though, isn’t it?
Half our facilitators are gone. Where’s Ken (if that’s what he wants to be called now)? Ever wonder whether he’s out gallivanting with some cute young floozy Writing Project? When he comes back to join us, ever notice that he has fresh ink and white out stains on his collar?
Margaret is due to deliver today. Tara reports that Margaret was in a frog position last night, trying to make the baby turn around. Dang, the baby’s not even born yet, and she’s already trying to get it to do tricks. I had a premonition last night of Margaret in the delivery room, heavy into labor. Is the baby a boy? Is the baby a girl? It’s… it’s… it’s a basketball! We certainly miss her presence and wish her the best.
Smooth-talkin’ daddy Rob is unfortunately suffering from a toothache, and will not be joining us today. In his absence, I scoot up to the table and decide that I’m going to be Rob for the day. I keep repeating to myself: “W.W.R.D.? W.W.R.D.?”
Tara turns to me and spews her venomous brand of morning pleasantries. “Shut up, loser.”
Dang, I don’t think I want to be Rob anymore. Now I know why he didn’t feel like coming today.
We’re not waiting for that two-timin’ Ken anymore. Let Reem’s Demo Lesson begin!
Reverting to the lingo of her ghetto upbringing, she greets us: “Yo what’s crackin,’ we ‘bout to bring some ol’ Drama and Fluency up in this mo fo, ya feel me son? I’m talking Reader’s Theater fool, what!” I snicker at the Ebonics demonstration. Reem whips her head around and snaps, “Pipe down you overgrown chocolate Q-tip.” Unnerved by the thuggishness of this bona fide African American, the audience participates politely throughout the rest of the lesson.
In an example of reader’s theater, Tara, Jessica, and I act out the roles in a scripted adaptation of the nonfiction thriller, “The Monster in My Closet.” We proceed to split up into our fruity groups and select pictures from story books. This time, each group is to write their own script based on their interpretations of their picture, and act it out.
Valyn, Felix and Melody dramatize the touching story of John, a young boy who thinks that everyone’s forgotten his birthday, but in the end his friends throw him a surprise party. Hey John, my birthday is between Christmas and New Year’s Day. I gotta compete with that Jesus fellow for attention, so don’t expect me to feel sorry for you punk.
Dawn, Tara, and Dedra act out some story about a couple girls and their pet chicken, or something like that. I kept getting distracted from the plot with Dedra’s crowing like a constipated chicken. She appears to feel surprisingly natural doing this. Huh.
Bonnie, Jessica, and I follow with a heart-felt Lifetime™ drama about a troubled young man discovering a bond with his school principal. We’re shooting for a moving tearjerker, but our uncouth audience simply laughs at the inherently-hilarious topic of pre-teen parenthood.
Good job, Reem. You can breathe now.
Did Dedra use to live in a barnyard? Now she’s snorting for some reason. She and Tara go on to discuss the finer points of snorting styles and techniques.
Ken just talked to Rob. He says he misses us. I can almost his New Orleansish, New Yorkish accent now: “Awwww c’mooooooon, I miss everybody. Well, almost everybody.”
It’s demo lesson time, and Jessica is on deck. Or, shall I say, Jessica is on Deckard (insert canned laughter). For the record, Deckard’s past is quite checkered. Anywaaaaaaaay…
She introduces a lesson on serialized fiction that cleverly crosses Greek mythology with the reality show Survivor. At first a few of us seem a little confused by some aspects of the lesson, but as the details flesh out, we discover a fun and extremely engaging method for journal writing. It’s clear that Jessica has worked through some of the kinks in the lesson this past year with her kiddies, and she has some good suggestions for resolving foreseeable issues that may arise in the classroom. As an imaginative way to keep all students involved in the classroom, the “voted off” students could travel the talk show circuit, like actual reality show losers do when the clock ticks 14 minutes and 59 seconds. Some of Jessica’s experiences with this lesson sound like it would have been a blast to witness. Okay, all this gentlemanly praise is making me uncomfortable. Let’s move on.
Sorry folks, I hope you didn’t think lunchtime was off the record for the GNOWP log.
While eating at the UC, the topic turns to awesome pick-up lines. The heart-melting first words Dawn ever heard from her husband were technically grounds for arrest in 43 states. Apparently Dawn does not believe in setting the bar very high for pick-up lines, as they’ve now been happily married for 15 years. (“Who’s your friend? I want to molest her.”)
Jessica’s unshakeable willpower helped her resist the enticing allure of “I like your shoes. Wanna f---?”
Just this morning, Reem was treated to the flattering flirtation, “Are your eyes real?”
I whip out a pencil and jot these gems down on a napkin.
We return to the GNOWP cabana, finish up some feedback for Jessica, and break up to work diligently on our Special Interest Book Group presentations.
Most other GNOWPers have already left. Before I take off for the day. I grab a parting fortune cookie. Oh wise cookie, offer me some guidance in my perilous journey through life: “Now is the time to try something new.”
I check to make sure the napkin is still in my shirt pocket, and smile.