scrap post

Dec. 24th, 2014 01:08 am
sekritomg: (mew mew)
[personal profile] sekritomg
S/K teacher AU scrap.

It's been an eternity since Stan's been on a date, a proper one, with a bread basket and large popcorn/two Cokes combo deal. He's thinking about it as he finishes up his class on Leslie Marmon Silko, whose work he doesn't even like -- though he feels good about including more Native American and female writers in his American literature curriculum. The bell rings, and his students begin to throw their papers and pencils into bags, stuffing their books in as afterthoughts. "Don't forget to bring your response papers to today's reading if you forgot them," he announces, as they're trailing out of the room. He's already thinking about running to the lounge to catch Kyle before lunch.

One of his students, a girl with expensively angled bleached hair named Hawley, saunters up to his desk. "Could you remind me about the um -- like, the paper?"

"What, you mean -- the response paper?"

She puts a finger up to her lip. "Yeah?"

"Well, it's just literally a response to Ceremony," he says.

"But like -- how?"

"Well, what did you think?"

"I dunno."

"Well, what did your classmates say they thought?"

She shrugged. "I dunno?"

"Did you take notes?"

"Well, yeah!"

"So, what did you take notes on?"

"I wrote down, um." She floats back toward her desk, to gather up her notebook. There's a Hello Kitty decal on the cover, and a gallery of awkward gel-pen doodles on the pages as she flips through. "The history of Indians in America--"

"Native Americans," Stan corrects. "Or at least say 'American Indians.' "

Hawley blushes, bringing the notebook closer to her face. "Ryan said, this chapter was boring--"

"Did you agree with him?" Stan asks.

"Um. I dunno?"

"So for your reflection." Stan is gently pushing her out of the room by heading toward the door himself, and flipping off the lights. He pats his pocket to make sure he has his keys, then closes the door as she leaves. "Maybe you need to think about what your classmates said, and ask yourself, do you agree? And why or why not, based on the text."

"Oh, okay."

"And it's one page."


"Do you think you can do it?"

"I think?" She tugs her jean jacket down so it's flush with the waist of her bubble skirt.

"Let me know tomorrow how it goes, okay?"

"Okay, Mr. Marsh!"

"Great!" He waves at her to signal that the conversation's over, and heads to the lounge. He's back to thinking about the date he wants to go on; his last actual date was in grad school with a Mormon guy named Gary who was getting his M.Ed for the express purpose of developing a program that taught Mormon students about other religions -- for the express purpose of promoting conversions to Mormon. He'd laughed about it over their fondue pot. It seemed so contradictory to Stan, that this Mormon guy was both gay and out, and also into Stan, and also wanted to go out on a date.

Something about Kyle inspires this need in Stan, to want to do things by-the-book. Is it a little outdated and weird, yes, maybe, especially for him, but he's too caught up in the immediacy of this weird urge for that to matter. Less than a month ago he'd been hooking up with some faceless whoever with really defined pecs behind the dumpsters next to Penelope's, a sort of gay hipster bar in Capitol Hill with an all-New Wave jukebox that played three tracks for a quarter. Also, he literally has an entire shoebox full of awkward valentines from 16-year-old girls, none of which he can bear to read or throw away. And now he's going to duck into the teacher's lounge and see if Kyle is there, and maybe ask him out on a date.

Over the coffee table in front of the couch, Kyle is struggling with a little packet of something, trying to tear it open. He glances up when Stan comes in, grunts out a "hey," and bends back over his lunch, a paper plate and an assortment of plastic cups.

Stan heads for the fridge, sputtering a nervous and overly enthusiastic, "Hi!" He feels stupid and slams the door too loudly, then realizes he's forgotten to bring a drink. He fills a plastic mug from Disney on Ice (whose is this?) with tap water and begins to spread his lunch out in front of him. It's a kind of bento box he's filled with hummus, pita, cucumbers and grape tomatoes and green olives, curried cauliflower, some whole wheat pasta corkscrews in olive oil with a little goat cheese, and slimy red peppers he gets from the deli near his house. They sell for $5.99 a pound. Stan always buys a half pound, eats them in two days, and regrets not buying a whole pound.

"What are you eating?" Stan asks.

Kyle looks up. "I don't know," he says. "Whatever you're eating looks -- interesting."

"It's just a bunch of stuff," Stan insists.

"Yeah. Well, it looks like it." He's still struggling with the little package.

"Can I help you with that?"

Kyle tosses it down on the table. "Whatever, sure. It’s a packet of crackers. To go with my Jenny Craig Hawaiian chicken salad lunch option. Please don’t make fun of me.”

“Kyle.” Stan picks up the crackers and opens them in one tug. “I’m never making fun of you. It’s just — you really should eat something, like a real lunch.”

“What, like that box of vegetables you’ve got?”

“Well — sure, if you want that, but I can’t imagine you’re really appetized by Hawaiian chicken salad?”

“It’s disgusting.” Kyle begins to smear some on a cracker. “But I have to eat this, and before you say anything, no, it’s not really working yet, but you wouldn’t understand because you’ve got a good body and I have the physique of a bucket of pre-made cookie dough."

“You think I have a good body?”

Kyle sniffs. “Objectively.”

"Wait, cookie dough comes in buckets?"

"Well, tubes, usually, but the nice kind you can get in a kind of tub thing -- look, it's not important. You obviously wouldn't know because unlike me, you haven't spent your nights eating cookie dough in front of history channel specials on vikings sailing to the New World in 700 BCE."

"Is that true?"

Kyle shrugged. "Who knows?" He resumed his methodical spreading of chicken salad on wafer-thin crackers.

"It's just, you're a history teacher, so you'd probably know about, um -- vikings."

"I guess. Fuck, Stan, this is my lunch break."

"Yeah, but look what you're eating."

Setting the cracker in his hands down on his paper plate, Kyle sighed. Clutching his stomach, he jiggled it sharply. "I don't want to look like this forever," he said.

"What's wrong with looking like that?"

"What's wrong with wanting to be attractive?"

"Look, I see you eating this weird diet shit every day. You can eat a normal meal for once in your life. Let me buy you a steak."

"A steak?"

"Yes," said Stan, "as in, part of a dead cow."

"I know what a steak is." Kyle let go of his stomach. "I really shouldn't be eating like that."

"You're really turning me down?"

"What? Oh. Um." Kyle seemed lost for words. "For steak?"

"For a date. This weekend, if you're free. Maybe Saturday night? At Elway's? Downtown?"

Kyle cleared his throat. "I prefer the Cherry Creek location."
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