The sign said on the classroom door, “You’ve been assigned a seat.” I’d driven four long hours. Hadn’t taken time to eat.
So, I gazed out through the rows and every chair was occupied. Then saw my name pinned to a chair. Was dang near horrified.
‘Cuz my seat was in the front row. One I didn’t want to keep. Just feet from the instructor. How was I to get some sleep?
And sitting there beside me was a grizzled logger type. His eyes were red and swollen and he smelled Jack Daniels ripe.
He held a can of coke. I watched him down in one big gulp. Then promptly stuffed his cheek, plumb full of fresh cut Red Man pulp.
The rough old logger tore the lid right off the can of pop. He spit some drool. His aim was true and didn’t miss a drop.
All morning I would see him slobbering chew into the can. Each time he spit my stomach rolled. There ought to be a ban.
And then our fine instructor spoke right up and saved the day. He straightly told the logger man, “Please put your chew away!”
So, the logger man obliged him. Spit the whole of darkest brown. Then put the can up to his mouth and drank it all straight down.
The traumatized instructor tossed his waffles on the floor. My stomach was plumb empty or there’d been more puke for sure.
The class dismissed for lunch but not a single person ate. Each said they’d lost their appetite. One said, “I’d rather wait.”
The logger man excused himself. Did not come back to class. I’ve wondered if the ticked off teacher up and chewed his a–.
I understand a man who chews. In class there’s no excuse. But if you’re sitting next to me please swallow all your juice.