Writing Challenges

A Tale of Two Teachers

Day 3 of 30 Minus 2 Days of Writing and today’s prompt is and the next thing I knew. I should have just stopped at “and the next thing I knew I had agreed to be in a writing challenge”


Back in primary school, we spent our days split between two teachers. The mornings were spent with Miss English and the afternoons with Madame Louise, who taught us math in french. Miss English was a bitch who would flip your desk upside down for no other reason than to humiliate you when you couldn’t find your homework. And by ‘you’ I mean ‘me’.

Madame Louise was like a doe and I looked forward to her classes even tough I was terrible at math. Her classes were peaceful and she was patient with everyone.

Back across the hall under the tyrannical hell of Miss English, we did our best to make it through class without crossing her. Make a wrong move and you’d be sent to the Gulag, breaking rocks with your bare hands, or worse, she’d make you stand next to her desk while she ‘taught’ the class and took out her personal issues on a roomful of 10 year olds.

Most classes under Miss English would start with her slamming the door as hard as she could. It was her only way of getting us to shut up after we’d lost respect for her and the grating sound of her voice had lost its potency.

Madame Louise’s classes weren’t like that at all. We always listened to her and I guess she had a way with us because she never resorted to embarrassing tactics, like child labor or personal tantrums.

Until one day.

That day when we were all hyper from an extended lunch hour we didn’t hear Madame Louise enter the room. Once, twice, three times she asked us to be quiet. Maybe it was more. No one was listening anyway. Finally, she lost it and slammed the door as hard as she could

We snapped to attention.

All eyes on Madame Louise as she glares at us, hands on hips.

All eyes on the clock over the door.

It comes loose.

And the next thing I knew, hell, the next thing any of us knew, Madame Louise is flat on her back with a dented clock by her side.

There was a brief moment where everyone was silent and just stared at our teacher lying there on the cold floor before the difference between boys and girls was revealed:

The girls all ran up to Madame Louise to make sure she was ok.

All of the boys put their heads in their desks and laughed. Well, all of the boys except for Billy C. who bolted to the front of the class, grabbed the clock, and tore down the hall with it, bringing it straight to the janitor’s office. Hey, classes need working clocks, or else you’d never know when the lesson was over.

Madame Louise was OK. She was a little shaky but soldiered on and finished the lesson, occasionally making mistakes and blaming the clock for her memory loss.

Many years later the story still comes up when reminiscing with old friends:

“She really got clocked by a clock, didn’t she?”
“Yep. She really did.”

ibm metal school clock

Related Posts

  • Wow, I guess time really does fly. You know they say time heals all wounds but who know it caused them too?

  • Please don’t tell me Miss English taught English. That would be way to frightening after the Miss Louise incident. (Dufus got all the good jokes in before even got here.)

  • That is a great story. I think everyone has had an elementary school teacher who scared the bejeezus out of them. I sure did, but no clock ever took her out…

  • Gosh, the little boys in your class were a tough crowd. Had Mrs. English been clocked with the clock you guys might of got up on the desks and cheered.

  • Hah! I would probably have joined the boys and laughed my ass off had I been there.

  • Damn… why couldn’t it have been Miss English who got clocked by the clock? That would have been so much more satisfying!


    Over the years I have questioned why certain teachers got into the business in the first place. If they hate people or kids it just doesn’t seem like the right field.

    And, why are you always talking about your big clock?

  • There were a few teachers I knew that might have benefited from a good clocking (no serious injury, of course). I had some good teachers, and some that were real doozies.

  • That’s one hell of a story.

    Only the good get clocked?

  • mikewjattoomanymornings

    What a great story, CheesyMike. I wish something like that had happened in my high school.

  • I hate to admit… I would have been laughing hysterically too. While I ran to see if she was OK, of course, but still laughing!

  • MalisaHargrove

    I really liked your story. Loved the way you compared the two teachers. Those are the people I dealt with as a principal. Give me the good-hearted, kind teacher any day. You were a very astute student.

  • To be honest, I don’t remember what she taught. I wasn’t paying attention 😉

  • That’s the thing. The clock took out the wrong one. The bad one got off scott free!

  • We probably would have. She was quite the nasty and bitter person.

  • It was impossible not to. It was just so unbelievable.

  • I know! She went on to torment the masses until she retired.

  • I guess sometimes they don’t have a choice for whatever reason. And it wasn’t my clock.

  • Yep, I think we all did. We definitely had some great ones though.

  • Something like that. Shoulda happened to the other one.

  • It still can. You just need to loosen a few bolts.

  • For 10 year olds, it was impossible not to laugh!

  • I remembered the details, but really I was mostly a daydreamer. Of course this got me in deep with the evil one.

  • You know, I only thought of it just now, but time was on her side too.

  • KZ

    In addition to getting a great story out of this incident, you also got a hold of a killer pun. Please tell me Madame Louise retained some of her gentle poise after this clock incident. I’d hate to think she ended up cranky like Miss English after that nasty business.


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