Sunday, July 22, 2012

Teachers' Lounge

I did it.

I finally finished my book. I think it's pretty good ... but I also thought that Kinky Friedman would be a megastar. (Kinky ... in case you read this ... there is still time.)

The novel is called Home Movies. Those who have known me fror 30 years or more know that I have been writing this and erasing it for about that long.

The premise: Buddy Rosen is an elementary school teacher (Kindergarten) who teaches his class in unorthodox ways ... one of which is showing old home movies that he buys at flea markets as story starters for the kids. One day he happens to buy his own home movies which had been lost for years and discovers his father ... who had died when he was twelve ... might still be alive. He goes on a search to find his family. What he finds is more mysterious than he first thought.


Here's an excerpt:



Buddy put his feet up on the old scratched table that was reflective of the rest of the decor that adorned the Teacher's Lounge. He read a SpiderMan comic book with the catchy title, THE AMAZING SPIDERMAN :THE INVASION OF THE SPIDER SLAYERS PART TWO OF SIX !


" I saw your lips move, Rosen."  Bob Kevin knocked Buddy's feet off the table as he put his books down.


" Hey, you're not fooling me with those books.  Everybody knows you haven't learned to read yet. "


" Have, too! Tomorrow I start Cat In the, what’s that word, Heat? "  Kevin poured the remaining drops of coffee into his mug with the slogan , Those Who Can, Teach.  He pulled up a chair next to Buddy.


" Look at this, Kevin " Buddy said to him, " Peter Parker meets his parents in this issue. But he's not sure whether they're really his parents. They were political prisoners for 20 years...."


" I'm so glad you shared that with me."


Buddy sat back in the chair and turned a page with the air of nobility. " I want to share the finer things in life with you, Robert."   


" In that case, how about starting with Andi. I'll take Mondays, Wednesdays and Fridays. You can have Tuesdays, Thursdays and Saturdays. Sundays we rest."


" Not a chance, friend. Anyway, if memory serves, you have a girlfriend. She works at the Tap Room of the Holiday Inn. "


" Her body works there ... but her mind is on vacation."


" We can't all be lucky enough to have that special mix of beauty and brains." Buddy paused to comb his hair and fix his collar. " Andi was just lucky enough to find me."


" Andi was lucky enough to what? " Andi said as she walked into the lounge. She heard only the tail end of the conversation. She tapped Buddy on the head, " Hi Mutt."


She waved to Kevin, " Hi Jeff."


Buddy smiled, " Hi there Art Lady."


" Now what were you fellas saying when I walked in?"


" Oh your friend Rosen, here, was telling me how wonderful he is." Bob stood to rinse his cup in the sink. " You came in right before I threw up."  


From the wall behind them, the popping sound of the intercom signaled a message. A voice spoke through the intercom. "Excuse me, this is Ms. Rankin. Is Mr. Rosen in the lounge?"


Buddy looked at both of them and shook his head back and forth and mouthed ‘No’.      


" I'm sorry Ms. Rankin we couldn't hear you." Kevin said with a smile.


" Is that you, Mr. Kevin?"


" Yes it is. "


" Well Mr. Kevin I was looking for Mr. Rosen. Have you seen him?"
Buddy again shook his head and gave a more exaggerated "no" this time.


" Why yes, I have... " Bob said as Buddy stood up and started to go for his throat. "... about ten minutes ago. "  Buddy relaxed.


" Do you know where he was headed?" Ms. Rankin crackled through the system.


" No, Ms. Rankin. I never know where Buddy is going. " His body shook with quiet laughter.


" Yes. Well, if you see him, please tell him I would like to finish our discussion."
Andi and Bob looked at Buddy with raised eyebrows. " Certainly, Ms. Rankin."


" Thank you, Mr. Kevin." There was the familiar popping sound signaling the end of the transmission.   


" Naughty, naughty Mr. Rosen. " Kevin teased.


" That woman really has to get a life. "


" Buddy, be careful. " Andi warned, " She does not like your teasing. I'm worried about you. "


" She's on you all the time, man. " Kevin added.


" I know. She seems to have a lot of information about me and my classroom. Maybe Hillary the snitch tells on me." 


" Whatever it is, don't take too many chances. " Andi said. " Hey, don't you have to get your kids at 11:00?"


" Yeah."


" Well, it's 11:05 now."


" Shit." He jumped up and ran past Ms. Rankin who was just stepping into the Lounge.


" Mr. Rosen. I want to continue our discussion..." Ms. Rankin called out to him as he yelled back a cursory, "Yes, ma'am".


" I found him." Bob Kevin said and pointed in Buddy's direction and smiled. 

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