Most parents brought their concerns directly to me, but one contacted the school principal. Experiences with parents faded soon after incidents involving their child’s classroom activities, but two are still with me. The boy story first.
I found an ‘adult’ magazine in the trash can when I was emptying it into a larger can just after school one day. Sometime later I discovered another issue of the same genre in an unidentifiable Pee-Chee tucked between boards in the lumber room.
One day I saw a boy pass a new Pee-Chee to another, but part of the Playboy cover was exposed. I kept both boys after class and determined which had brought it to school. The first possessor, Junior, said it was his dad’s and begged me to not tell.
I did the office referral and made the call he begged me to not do. I’d not met the father, but the gyppo logger had a reputation for being disagreeable. From an incident I’d heard about when I was a police reserve, I also knew he was a frequent fighter1In court it would be called hearsay if I presented it.. Logger dad told me he was picking up a load of logs and would stop by to have a talk the next day.
A fully loaded log truck appeared in the driveway between the shop and main building just after students left for the day. From my side I could see Junior, still suspended, not for the magazine but for inappropriate reaction to being given detention by the vice principal. Logger dad stepped out. He had the build of Merlin Olsen a defensive tackle with the Los Angeles Rams.
My imagine went a little wild – disagreeable frequent fighter nearly a foot taller and a hundred lbs. heavier than me. The sound of his voice addressing me, “Benson?” fit my perception. Then things changed. He said, “sorry about Junior doing what he did. I keep the guns and booze locked up, but I didn’t think about the magazines. You still have ‘em? I’ve got every issue except one since they came out. Gonna be worth some money sometime.”
I told him the VP probably kept them with the referral file. He went into the building and after a very deep breath, I locked up and left for home.