How Did I Miss This?!
Authorities say two separate Pensacola teachers apparently made the big bucks by accepting $1 payoffs from students wanting to get out of gym class. Their names are Terence Braxton
and Tamara Tootle
. I think Ms. Tootle must have been destined to appear in an odd news segment at some point of her life.
You might think that my titular question was an allusion to missing a two-month-old news story. But what I am really confounded at missing is the opportunity to bribe my way out of physical education. Scrupulous child that I was, that would have been awfully tempting. As it is I somehow managed to dance my way out of most P.E. classes.
I actually kind of regret this. I have no fond memories of the enforced Friday mile of seventh grade, but it was regular, and I did eventually get better at it. I've griped often about how adults end up doing less math in real life than they ought to because they did less math in school, but in all honesty that is probably even more true with respect to exercise. How to do a good crunch or sit-up is useful information that you don't want to be looking up every single time you need it.
The P.E.-averse brainiac is a staple of popular culture--if memory serves, genius Kid's avoidance of P.E. was a crucial plot point in Class Act
--and the stereotype is that such children are simply lazy. Well, okay, I'm a tad lazy. But like a lot of other kids who shied away from PE, I've since also really enjoyed rock climbing, hiking, dancing, swimming, martial arts and soccer. It's always struck me as a little bizarre that P.E. is made as boring and routine as possible for younger children, who will have no appreciation of the need to exercise. I'm convinced that the combination of opportunities to look stupid and be made fun of with deathly dullness infected me with needless aversions. Eventually there are going to be Kumons and Sylvan Learning centers for kids who need to get motivated to play ball. It's a business opportunity for someone, but apparently not Tootle & Braxton.