Note: While I have kept as many details as possible completely honest, I have changed all of the names of the people in these stories. I didn’t think it would be fair to write about them in the way that I have if I hadn’t protected the real people a bit. In the case of one particular person, I don’t remember his real name anyway. Also, please don’t take anything I say in this story to be tacit approval for the way I or anyone else acted. I was in High School, and sometimes acted like quite a punk.
Mr. Grady was a Christian. This was well known at school. His nephew, Sterling, was an outspoken Christian student-athlete, and I found out he later became a youth minister. Although I was a pretty popular kid, I just never had much of a desire to hang out with the preppy crowd. It seemed to me that they were a little too shallow for my tastes, although I was on pretty decent terms with most of the preppy kids.
People generally respected The Grady family’s strong Christian faith. I don’t recall ever hearing anyone teasing any of them for that. It probably happened at some point, but not in my circles. I was of course, a pretty dedicated Christian too.
We liked to do our best to get Mr. Grady off his script during lecture by asking him questions that had nothing to do with class. We did this for two reasons. First, the lecture was always boring and never included any information that the book hadn’t already said. It was a far more valuable use of time to read the book while he lectured, finish, and then read something more enjoyable. He would never notice. But the second reason was that Mr. Grady always had a unique way of putting his foot in his mouth.
One time Mr. Grady got himself in trouble in our class by making statements about “hearing voices.” The way he said it, it seemed clear that he was referring to hearing God’s voice in his head or in the spirit. His wording was very strange though, and made him sound like he was somehow schizophrenic. After that we would periodically ask him what the voices were telling him at that particular moment.
A short time after this, one of the students in our class brought a portable mini-tape recorder to class. He turned it on for a while, recording Mr. Grady’s lecture, then every time Mr. Grady turned around to write on the chalkboard, the student would play back a piece of the tape, lowering the volume when Mr. Grady would turn back around.
His hearing must have been suffering, because he would not notice until the volume was pretty loud. He’d then turn around and ask us what the noise was. We’d tell him that we didn’t hear anything at all, and ask him if he was “hearing the voices again.” This continued for well over an hour.
We eventually got bored and stopped. -Ryan
Stay posted for further episodes.