Offense or Defense? ( Dr.Jeckle and Mr. Craig)

The noun, “Gentleman” is used far too haphazardly in this crazy world.  These days, gentlemen seem to be a diamond in the buff… much like sasquatch;  When you witness one, it’s usually a fuzzy story and your camera phone doesn’t work properly at that moment.  They are extremely difficult to discover.

Each day, I witness men not opening doors for old bags, and when you do find the elusive gentleman, he is often times not rewarded with a simple “Thank you”.  This is why chivalry is dying, but not dead.

I am a part time gentleman and half time asshole.  When I open a door for a woman going to the theater, or even a man delivering ice to a grocery store, I hold the door open for them.  If they don’t give me a “thanks” or merely a smile, I bellow to everyone who can hear me within the continent, “YOU’RE WELCOME!”  That’s when the gentleman becomes an asshole.

For years, I’ve searched the world for this elusive full time gentleman, and at one point, I had given up hope.  Today, I found him.  Just like a Sasquatch can be referred to as a Yeti, this man is also known as the original Mr. Nice Guy.  His name is  Mr. Craig.

He coaches and teaches at a shitty school in Spokane, Washington.  He is amongst a handful of wonderful teachers and coaches at that school.  And by handful, I mean about four.  The rest of the teachers don’t have opposable thumbs, so a handful of crap is what I should have written.

Craig was coaching a Junior Varsity basketball game with very little significance to the players and the rest of the world.  Craig, as a former athlete and current competitor, enjoys winning.  However, that soft touch gentleman always gets the worst of him.

Nudging him on the bench in an extremely close game, a usually reserved boy named Marc would not leave his coach alone.  Marc’s elbowing routine amidst a very tight game was not allowing Mr. Craig to coach.  “When am I going to get in, Coach…….When am I going to get in the game?”

In his usual easy manner, Craig replied, “Alright Marc, you are entering a tight game, so you need to remember what I’ve taught you at practice, ok?”

“You betcha, coach.”

Craig patted him on the back upon entering the game, but knew his team was going to lose.  Craig didn’t really mind the losing part, but he did mind that when Marc entered the game, Marc did not know if he was on offense or defense.  These are times when gentlemen develop rage after countless hours of coaching and teaching.  I call it the Jeckle and Craig Syndrome.  When this young man was supposed to be playing defense, he  thought he was playing offense.  When he was supposed to be playing offense, he assumed he was on defense.  Jeckle left the gymnasium and Craig showed up, screaming, “YOU ARE ON OFFENSE!”.

They lost the game, but it wasn’t Marc’s fault.  Craig left the gym and the gentleman returned to tell this young man he did his best.  The gentleman silently left in his car transforming into his alter ego.  Craig drank several beverages that night but has a spot in both Heaven and Hell reserved by Econo Lodge.

I still haven’t found Sasquatch, but I have found the elusive gentleman.  You can look him up on the website “GFRO”.  It’s similar to the “BFRO”, also known as The Bigfoot Research Organization. The acronym “GFRO”represents a group of people who believe gentlemen indeed exist. It’s the “Gentleman Friendly Research Organization.” I swear to you, THEY exist.  They’re just hard to find.



5 thoughts on “Offense or Defense? ( Dr.Jeckle and Mr. Craig)

  1. I think the only time Mr. Craig transforms from a gentleman into something less than, is during 7th Grade JV Basketball. Half the time I think it’s a defense mechanism so he doesn’t suffer an aneurism. Something has got to blow, it might as well be his temper. Occasionally it manifests itself into slamming his hands together so hard that his watch explodes off of his wrist, pelting fellow assistant coaches with shrapnel. God forbid that he has a whistle with him during a game. I’ve actually seen him take his whistle that is hanging innocently around his neck, minding its own business, with plenty of half-brained, junior varsity officials controlling the game mind you, that Mr. Craig will take matters into his own hands. Out of exasperation he actually has stopped a game himself and blown his whistle so hard that the officials were not only dumbfounded but deaf and fearful of what was going to happen next. Luckily the gentleman returned, he put his whistle into his pocket, and the trembling official sheepishly asked, “Would you like a timeout Coach?” Mr. Craig simply simply and kindly said, “I’m terribly sorry, yes please.” These brief explosions and recoveries are actually one of my favorite things about him. That and the fact he owns a golden toilet.

  2. Another hillarious story. My students enjoy watching me (aka making fun of me) read this story. I was staring at the monitor (reading) and laughing out loud. I guess you could classify me with the handful of crap referred to in the story. Teaching at its finest baby.

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