David A. Schwinghammer
· Soldier's Gap
· Seminary Boy, a memoir
· Fisher of Men, Chapter Nine
· Soldier's Gap, Chapter Three
· Honest Thief, Tender Murderer, Chapter Nine
· Fisher of Men, Chapter 8
· Honest Thief, Tender Murderer, Chapter Eight
· Mengele's Double, Chapter Eight
· Bereavement Blues
· Fisher of Men, Chapter 7
· Speed Dating With 'Janeane Garofalo'
· The Three Stooges, book review
· The God Particle
· Empire of Sin, book review
· Science at the Edge, book review
· Obama, a Modern Caesar?
· Americans Need to Pull Together
· Voices of the French Revolution, book review
· Great American Scandals
· Odd Man Out, book review
· Portrait of a Killer, book review
· Widow's Peak
· Alumni Game
· Girls Who Wear Glasses
· The Do Drop Inn
· Ode to Neve Campbell
· Jacks or Better 101
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A Catholic school boy plans to kill an aged nun after being humiliated in class.
Black and White and Red All Over
"John Gibson, diagram sentence number four on the board, please," sister Mary Agnes said.
Johnny snapped awake. The last he remembered she'd been nattering on and on about the Spanish American War. The old nun, a cross between a bulldog and a catfish with the whiskers to prove it, had been getting it all wrong
again--he knew 'cause he wanted to be a marine when he grew up and had read up on all the famous battles. She'd been lauding the efforts of Teddy Roosevelt and the Rough Riders charging up San Juan Hill, when anybody with a grain of sense knew the Spanish had the high ground and TR's actions had been foolish and impetuous.
The Spanish American War and its battles were a blip on the screen of history anyway. He could give this sleepy class a jolt if he told them about Julius Caesar's siege of Alesia, where Caesar'd trounced Vercingetorix and 80,000 Gauls, building fifty miles of field fortifications when surrounded by Gallic allies marching to Vercingetorix's rescue.
And so he'd fallen asleep again, with his eyes open, a tactic you had to learn in Sister Mary Agnes's class if you wanted to see your fourteenth birthday and the large check you were expecting from your Uncle Willie, who had the coolest job in the world, quality control for Harley Davidson.
Momentarily, Johnny looked up at the board behind the flag that the class said the pledge of allegiance to each morning. In blue chalk the nun had written: "Girls--$55.43; Boys--$37.22." The girls were way ahead of the boys in the mission competition, something that really galled him.
"John Gibson. Did you hear me? Stop that woolgathering!" She sounded exactly like the witch with the trained monkeys in The Wizard of Oz. He could kick himself for not noticing she'd changed speeds on him. English could get you killed if you didn't stay one step ahead of her.
(You can read the whole story at Mysterywriter.net) Companion short stories dealing with Catholic school are "Today I Go to God" and "Prodigy With Hooves" both posted on Authorsden.
Dave Schwinghammer's published novel, SOLDIER'S GAP, is available at Amazon.com.
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"Black and White and Red All over"
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|Reviewed by Sandi Schraut
|Nuns as teachers were often alternatly intimidating and annoying, those in my family taught by them referred to them as 'crows'. This title was not meant to flatter. They did teach you to diagram a sentence however!!! not a skill in great need these days, as you can see this excerpt has brought memories to fore....good writing, p.s. line 13 has the word class miss-spelled. Sandi|
David A. Schwinghammer