I don't really remember much about my 10th grade* English class, other than:
1) It took place in what the school euphemistically called a "relocatable classroom," or what we students more accurately called a "trailer next to the baseball field."
2) Although we did have your run-of-the-mill high school English homework - like writing b.s. essays about Red Badge of Courage (which, come to think of it, I don't think I ever actually read) - our teacher, Mr. Mann, was pretty cool and let us spend most of our class time on crosswords, seeing who among us could finish that day's puzzle first. Which I liked because - and I don't mean to brag - it was usually me.
3) One other run-of-the-mill aspect of the class was that we had to write poetry. For an entire semester, most of our grade was based on our ability to put together rhyming couplets and stanzas and AABB stuff.
Now, despite what you may guess by reading this artfully crafted blog, I could never make my brain produce poetry. I'd sit there and stare at my notebook paper, pen in hand, and just... nothing. I didn't get it (I still don't) and I didn't want to. So when it was time to hand in each new assignment, I'd basically walk up to the teacher, shrug my shoulders and keep on walkin'.
And yet, despite the fact that I handed in not a single poem, the teacher gave me a B+ for the semester. Clearly, he took pity on me - but I think he justified handing out the decent mark because he loved crossword puzzles and he had watched me strut my crossword stuff all year.
And now, I get to my point: If you read the comments that followed my ingenious post from yesterday, you know that there was a near uproar - can two people typing blog comments create an uproar? - about the fact that I hadn't yet shared my thoughts about... swine flu.
Clearly, what this world needs is more analysis of this unimaginable pandemic that, despite being unimaginable and a pandemic, has caused only a few deaths and a few dozen illnesses. So today I kill two birds with one blog post: I shall break my silence on swine flu and, simultaneously (Mr. Mann, are you reading?), finally, write a few of those poems that escaped me in 10th grade.
That's right, ladies and gentlemen: It's Swine Flu Haiku.
Here we go:
swine flu all the rage
but not many confirmed sick;
octopus news fades
while swine flu gets the headlines.
* Actually, I don't even remember if this was 10th grade, or 9th or 11th. But it took place in high school for sure, and the rest of the information is accurate. So if I'm off by a year, sue me.