Thursday, May 6, 2010

Moments with Joey – Blacklisted

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SCENE 1, EXTERIOR. MORNING, CROSSWALK. The teacher is standing outside in the early-morning sun with a large, red STOP sign; he is waiting for students to arrive on the other side of the street. A small car turns into the school drop-off zone. The window on the driver’s side comes down, and the voice of a boy in the passenger seat can just be heard trailing off.

JOEY: But I told you that you can’t…

TEACHER: Good morning, how are you guys doing today?

JOEY’S MOM: Oh sorry, Mr. Z. I was going to say ‘good morning’ to you, but I guess I’m not allowed to talk to you today.

TEACHER: What, you’ve been banned?

[The mom glances to the boy in the front seat then back at the teacher].

JOEY’S MOM: Sorry, I’ve been forbidden.

[The teacher nods appreciatively and glances from the mother, to the boy, and then back to the mom again].

TEACHER: So, I’ve been blacklisted?

JOEY’S MOM: Unfortunately, yes.

TEACHER: Well, you’d better not talk to me then; I don’t want to be responsible for getting you into trouble.

[The mother gives a small wave, rolls up the window, and pulls to the curb to let her son out of the car. The teacher continues to cross the students arriving to school].

SCENE 2, INTERIOR. MIDMORNING, CLASSROOM. The class is filing out to labs. The fifth-grade boy is still lingering at his desk. The teacher casually approaches him, starts to say something, and then changes his mind.

TEACHER: Sorry, I was about to make a joke, but then I realized that I’d better not since you’re not speaking to me.

[The boy sits in stunned silence for a beat].

JOEY: No that’s okay, Mr. Z. You can still do it.

TEACHER: [Shaking head]. Sorry, I’ve been blacklisted.

JOEY: Maybe you could write the joke on a piece of paper…

TEACHER: And take a chance on you violating your restraining order? I think not.

[The boy sits for a second longer before answering].

JOEY: Oh, do you know what? I think it would be okay, Mr. Z. After all, I just remembered that today is opposite day.

TEACHER: Opposite day?

JOEY: Yeah [grins]. That means that everything is opposite, so you can tell me the joke after all because I am speaking to you.

TEACHER: I don’t know about this whole ‘opposite day’ thing, I’ve never celebrated it before.

[The boy thinks quickly and changes tatics].

JOEY: Would you tell me the joke if I gave you a hug?

TEACHER: Sorry, won't work work; today is opposite day, remember?

JOEY: Okay. Well, then you could push me away, or punch me in the face instead.

TEACHER: I don’t think I want to do either of those things, Joey.

JOEY: Please?

TEACHER: Okay. I guess I’ll tell you the joke.

[The boy leans forward in his seat and looks at the teacher with anticipation].

TEACHER: Oh yeah, I just remembered…today is opposite day. That means that I can’t tell you the joke after all, sorry.

[There is a slight pause as the teacher begins to walk away].

JOEY: Mr. Z? Would you please NOT tell me the joke today?

[Fade to black].

18 comments:

tiburon said...

Oh how I love that Joey.

I need to start a blacklist. I think it would be very long though...

The Empress said...

Adorable.

I love conversations with children....no easy and natural and true.

Thank you.

Chrissy said...

LOL u both are ALIKE!...you MALES!..

Katie's Dailies said...

I love Opposite Day! Never knew it existed till our kids got in school. And the "neat" thing? It always seems to occur when either one doesn't really want to do their chores!


p.s. my boy's name is joey, and he's going into 5th grade next year! : )

Richard & Natalie said...

Clever. Very, very clever...both you and Joey.

Mamma has spoken said...

Joey is pretty quick on his feet verbally, I would so love talking to him!

Cheeseboy said...

Blacklisted! Ha! Been there.

So much of Joey rings true to me.

FabuLeslie said...

Opposite Day is my least favorite day ever.

Ally said...

OK, since I've only seen two of the Joey posts, I need to ask, are these dialogs based on a real child? Are they like a "student incident of the week" type thing or one student in particular? I'm sure you've said this somewhere and I somehow missed it...

FourthGradeNothing.com

Natasha said...

Haha, I'm in love with Joey! Opposite days are fun.

novidiac said...

Blacklisted sounds pretty serious. You take everything in stride... some people might fall apart on the spot when they learned they were blacklisted. but not you!

Teachinfourth said...

T - He is quite easy to like. Good thing that I don't have more than one in my class this year.

E - I'm just glad that I'm now 'off the list.'

C - It's fun to have people - or even students - who can joke around sometimes. It makes teaching even more enjoyable.

K - LOL. I decided that if I ever really had a 'Joey' in my class, I'd still use the name; I'd have to use a disclaimer when I used the name in class though letting the other students know that this was a different Joey.

N - Mostly Joey…

B - I think you would absolutely love this kid. I know that I do.

C - It's kind of a fun place to be, isn't it?

A - He's 95% just one student. You can get all the nitty-gritty here: http://teachinfourth.blogspot.com/p/joey-faqs.html

Also, he will sometimes give me enough for two or three posts in a single day so it's not really 'incident of the week'- they just happen. Sometimes, I post them a little while after the actual interaction. This one wasn't all that long ago…I have about 8 others which I could run now, but I keep them tucked away just in case there's nothing (or perhaps over the summer?).

L - Tell me about it…no wait, is it opposite day?

N - I think everybody could use a photocopy of this kid.

N - That's what I thought, too. Turns out that it wasn't quite as bad as I thought it would be.

Okay, I actually just thought it was funny because he wasn't too serious about it….

Shannon said...

I think that you must have been "Joey" in some classroom gone by...in fact, I'm sure of it.

Stef said...

Haha... That is funny! I love the whole opposite day routine...it is only opposite day when they know asking on "normal" day will give them the answer they DON'T want.

Just SO said...

Wow. What did you do to get black listed??

tammy said...

Life is so confusing on opposite day. Especially when my boys don't warn be beforehand.

Serene is my name, not my life! said...

LOL, that was so funny! Blacklisted huh? What did you do to get yourself into so much trouble?

Usually for me all it takes is making them finish their food or say that ice cream is not an appropriate breakfast food.

Teachinfourth said...

I was blacklisted because I had to take a few fun things away from class…or so I think that was the reason. It didn't last too long though. I guess it's a good thing the kids like me deep down.

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