You know, back in our days as denizens of the neighborhood educorporate training facility, our educational technicians would occasionally reprimand us for...erm...unsanctioned instances of youthful exuberance. These were mostly harmless excursions off the beaten path of appropriate behavior. Sure there was the squirt gun incident, but that was totally not our fault. If Dale hadn't taken the pistol away from us and squirted Natalie McMahon with it--who screamed like a well, girl, Sister Arnulfa would have never come running into the coat room just as he gave it back.
Just so you know, we could have ratted Dale out...OK we tried to rat Dale out but nobody was buying it so the Family Maximus had to make another trip to the Rectory for a conference with the The Priest which ended with a plethora blackboards to clean and hail Marys and Our Fathers to say (which were recited in our room that weekend as we were restricted to base, as they say) , plus the ritual burning of the offending weapon.
Seriously. Right there in the good Father's wastebasket. At Saint Mary's Elementary School and Bingo Hall they don't play that.
Still, we thank our lucky stars to have been under the benevolent, if somewhat pyromaniacal tutelage of the Order of Perpetual Detention because if we tried something like that today we'd probably get taken out by a sniper.
A 12-year-old Queens girl was hauled out of school in handcuffs for an artless offense - doodling her name on her desk in erasable marker. She said. "I love my friends Abby and Faith," adding the phrases "Lex was here. 2/1/10" and a smiley face. "We were concerned it was some sort of coded message," said the principal. "Could have been about drugs or terrorism or something. She is brown you know. Can't be too careful."
Instead of simply cleaning off the doodles after class, Alexa was led out of school in cuffs and walked to the precinct across the street, where she was detained for several hours. "Well come on," said a spokesperson for the district. "Middle school kids writing on desks? Doesn't that strike you as just a bit odd?"
Alexa, who had a stellar attendance record, hasn't been back to school since, adding, "I just thought I'd get a detention. I thought maybe I would have to clean [the desk]."
"Right. And if you rob a bank you think you're just going to get detention," said the principal. "These kids need to learn there are consequences for their actions. Did I mention she's brown?"
City officials acknowledged Alexa's arrest was a mistake. "We're looking at the facts," said City Education Department spokesman David Cantor. "Based on what we've seen so far, this shouldn't have happened. The girl probably should have been Tased instead."
"Even when we're asked to make an arrest, common sense should prevail, and discretion used in deciding whether an arrest or handcuffs are really necessary," said police spokesman Paul Browne. "Well, that and we've got to stop sending officers who are drunk out on patrol."
Alexa is still suspended from her school, her mother said. She and her mom went to family court where Alexa was assigned eight hours of community service, a book report and an essay on what she learned from the experience.
Book report huh? Hey Lex, we got a suggestion for you.