Co-worker: Did anything happen in school today?
Co-worker: Really? Nothing interesting happened today?
Co-worker: Nothing out of the ordinary?
Co-worker: What about in Mr. Bacchus’ class?
Co- worker: Mr. Bacchus is always doing something interesting. Nothing happened today?
Co-worker: I know what happened in Mr. Bacchus’ class today. Why didn’t you tell me about the naked lady?
Son: Mr. Bacchus kept saying he was going to get fired so I didn’t want to say anything.
My co-workers conversation with her son gave me hope that maybe the naked women that appeared on my projector screen during class wouldn’t be the bomb that destroyed my teaching career. It was 2nd period and I was teaching a lesson about the Panama Canal. As a visual aid, Google Maps was projecting from my computer and out of nowhere a completely naked brunette appeared for all to see. According to the student seated closest to me, I uttered “what the F**K” before sprinting to go and unplug the computer from the LCD projector. The screen went black, the room was engulfed in silence, and disbelief covered the face of every student. The silence was temporary as “YOOOOOOOOOOOO, Mr. Bacchus” roared from a couple of fellas in the back of the class. Those jeers quickly awakened me to my current reality. I just showed my class a naked lady.
“Don’t you boys start! When that picture came up it said Airserver and that program allows you to mirror a phone screen onto a computer. You just went to the bathroom you probably did it! Give me your phone! Matter fact, everyone take out there phones and put them on your desk. Do you know how serious this is? I’m going to get fired for this! People get fired for stuff like this! You all going to go home and tell your parents that Mr. Bacchus flashed a naked lady on the screen and I am going to get fired!
After unleashing that tirade, I paced back and forth before telling one of my students who was a self-proclaimed hacker to get on my computer and figure out whose phone it came from. He looked at me and said “I don’t know how to do that” but I guess he could see the desperation in my eyes and acquiesced to my request. The young man began hitting random buttons as I called the main office and yelled “I need a principal now”.
The only thing you could hear in my classroom were the poor hacker’s fingers typing away on my laptop and me mumbling “I’m going to get fired” as I paced back and forth waiting for assistance. It would be nice to be able to say I was cool and calm once the Principal arrived but after explaining to him what happened he responded by saying “I got this but you have to go take a walk. I know your upset but we can’t have you around the students acting like this”. I never re-entered my 2nd period class that day. Instead, I followed the Principal’s advice and went for a walk outside. My thoughts focused on all the parents that would be demanding my release and the upcoming news headline which would read “Downingtown Teacher Shows Pornographic Material”.
Much to my surprise I was never fired, there was no news headlines, and not even one parent complaint. The only thing I had to deal with was the extremely awkward conversation with my 2nd period class the next day. I never attempted to figure out who had accessed my computer via the Airserver and mirrored a naked lady onto my computer. I let it go. I simply wanted to move on and pretend it never happened.
However, it did occur and attempting to purge it from my memory wouldn’t allow me to embrace the strength that comes from these near misses. A strength that Mr. Coleman enlightened me to years prior when a student claimed that Mr. Bacchus took my virginity.
“As you go through life always remember these near misses. Embrace the fact that you survived! Embrace that fact that something brought you through and protected you. Embrace the fact that your still here! Once you begin embracing the near misses in life, it’s only a matter of time before some of the incoming bombs you face won’t even sound the alarms.”