Lemuel and Steve’s Favorite teacher Meme

Lemuel over at http://greedymaelstrom.blogspot.com/ saw it on Steve site Steve’s WhirlyWorld and they did a post on their favorite teachers and asked “what about you?” We’ve all had teachers who have made a difference in our lives.When I met Dr Ernest Edwards, professor of music at ABAC I was a freshman in College. For months I had heard of this distinguished man and read some of his poetry and stories. I was acting in “Hold Me”, by Jules Pfeiffer, he had come to practice piano, as he was leaving he came up to me and complimented me on something, and I thanked him. I was wearing spandex shorts and he asked about the material as well. He taught music appreciation. I’ve had many wonderful teachers, that taught me many things. But this lesson was something I learned and guess I’m still learning every day. Music was never my best class, and was a class that I just had to take for my core curriculem. So I never imagined I would learn something much larger than music. I was a freshman in college, and actually became friends with a man who was friend with Dr. Edwards. He invited me to have dinner with this man, I accepted, and fretted over how I would feel sitting down and breaking bread with someone so bright, a philosopher, a poet, a writer of song and stories. Would I even be able to bring anything to the conversation. So you can see I was scared of him at first. I soon grew to know him for the wonderful person he is and will love him forever. He used to call me “Beautiful One”. He’s the beautiful one. I learned a lot about life through him. He wrote a short story that he had a very personal viewpoint which begins with the question- “If love is what we all want, then why are we so afraid of it.” He wrote of regardless of our earthly years our time here is quickly running out and how we must try to fill them with the best life has to offer. His eyes have seen the light, the truth-he’s seen houses decay, cars fall apart and realized they are only temporary. Things that last are like he says, “the friends who have stood by us through the years, people who have loved us, and whom we have loved. Things can be replaced, people cannot. The smile, the touch of hand, the embrace of someone we love, and who loves us. He’s right. He helped shape a lot of my values in life. His final lesson was “When all of life has been measured and sifted and simplified, we truly realize that nothing else matters as does love.” He was a teacher over thirty years, I havn’t visited him in a while and need to make that a priority, I talk to him on the phones every now and then, but it’s been a while. He’s in a retirement home, two of his best friends are there with him, Ralph and Betty. But I had heard Ralph had died recently. Blessings going out to Ernie! He let me call him that too when he wasn’t in class. We became friends the years I went to ABAC. Knowing him let me see a side of myself that wasn’t that diffrent from anyone else. I felt I wanted to learn, I wanted something better for myself. I have a picture of us somewhere. I played Santa Clause one year for some extra money around Christmas, he must of heard and he went up to the mall where I was working, came up sat on my lap and got his picture taken. I’m sure there were a lot of people wondering why this grown man was sitting in Santa’s lap. He’s in a assisted living home now, and I keep meaning to take Mike to meet him when we go home. But I never seem to make time for it, which is a shame on my part. I remember he always made me feel smart, and peaked my interest in things I had never even dreamed of. He gave unconditionally and was such a good friend. Bless him whereever he is.
My first teacher I remember loving was my 3rd grade teacher Miss Linda Dawson. I really loved her. She was so sweet, and she just loved me, I even cried after 3rd grade ended, and she moved to Tennessee. Then in 4th and 5th grade I had a wonderful teach named Ms. Smith, she made learning fun. I also had a wonderful teacher come in my life in the 5th grade named Dr. James (Jim) Cleary, he taught us the teachings of Zig Ziglar, he took 5 boys and 5 girls from our class and started TA for kids, it stands for Transactional Analysis, I wonder now were we guinea pigs in an experiment or was he just a wonderful guy who taught us much about life. He showed me another side of life, he encouraged my art, acting, writing, everything that wasn’t encouraged in my life. He took us to broadway plays and musuems, and sometimes just to have fun. But it only lasted three years. High School was different, there was only two high school teachers that really stood out to me, that was Traci Hutchison Jones, and Kathy Griffin, I just loved both of these teachers. Well that ends it for tonight thanks Lem and Steve.
Oh and I’ll never forget my first teacher crush, 7th grade Mr. Coffman, I remember on the first day of class he said , “Today class we are going to talk about sex”, The whole class started making funny sounds, he then looked at us, and on the board in big letters he wrote S-E-T-S, what did you think I said”
He says he said Sets, could be but I still think he said sex. He sure made me want to learn math for the first time. He had this really nice beard too.

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~ by deveil on SeptemberUTCb000000amSun, 17 Sep 2006 02:58:00 +000006 19, 2007.

7 Responses to “Lemuel and Steve’s Favorite teacher Meme”

  1. what a nice memory for you!

  2. Until 12th grade I never had a teacher I liked very much. I lusted after numberous one’s in middle and high school but no one I ever looked up to. I know what experience it stems from.

    You were very lucky. Thanks for sharing.

  3. Thanks for sharing your stories. I enjoyed reading yours too!

    Dr. Edwards was obviously a very significant influence in your life and a beautiful person. You also told the story in a very moving way.

    I love teachers who do things like Mr Coffman. (I’m willing to bet he did say “sex”.) They get your attention and then draw you in to the subject.

    On a point beyond your post, a) you in spandex? WOOFERS!; b) the pic of you as Santa with the prof on you lap must be hilarious; c) someone else has a nice beard too – at least in his avatar. 🙂

  4. Lemeul…how dare you steal my line.
    I’ll double WOOF the fact of Derek in Spandex although I can easily say that with Derek wearing no spnadex too. 😉

    So great memeories D. I honestly can’t say that any grammer school teacher appealed to me. High school encompassed several but I need to retain their privacy. Heck in college, they are all a blur. I just needed to get through it.

  5. Beautiful memories in an enthusiasting text! Thank you!
    Some times when we happen to meet each other (we don’t live that far apart), me and some schoolmates still talk for hours about our former teachers from 1.st to 11.th… And we seem to have always different stories. I enjoy it very, very much. Some of those teachers were true models to me. 🙂

  6. What a beautiful post Derek… no one realizes how important teachers can be to us all… and we often pay them LESS than the guys who pick up our garbage…

  7. Hi Derek,

    Thanks for visiting my blog…I hope it makes sense!

    This post really got me thinking. I could post about many teachers.

    But it turns out that I was a high school teacher in holy catholic Ireland. I was 1000% involved. Coaching rugby, entering pupils in multi-media competions and heading up the athletics program. I left my teaching career because I got a green card and came to the US (San Francisco).

    I’ve had my past pupils hunt me down. I became very close to one of my pupil’s parents. Nine years ago at the age of 18 he came out. He told me that seeing the love his parents had for me made him realize that they’d be ok with him being gay – they were. In fact, his parents sent him to visit me (in San Francisco!) so I could talk to him about being gay…..

    Today he and his partner (both successful attorneys) come to visit every two years.

    Never underestimate the impact you can have on people….

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