I feel bad. I feel like I’m cheating on Mike with Phillip Phillips. I know he gets mad about my crushes. This is the biggest one I’ve had in a while. He’s just so dreamy.
I’ve always had major crushes on guys – way more crushes than actual relationships. I think I liked to build them up in my mind and pretend they were perfect. So I never got close enough to actually find out that they’re not that awesome. Not even close. I could probably name a guy for every school year starting with kindergarten (Jacob Atkinson). I’ll start and end there, because it’s just too embarrassing to go down the list. (Besides, no one knows that name because I went to a Christian school in Glassboro for kindergarten and first grade.)
Oddly enough I rarely had crushes on boys in my own grade. By high school I felt too close with most of the guys or they were just too familiar and I couldn’t see them in that way anymore. I liked some older guys. I liked some younger guys. But my biggest crush in high school was by far, easily, hands down, my 11th grade history teacher – Mr. Shultz. Yes, my teacher. And this wasn’t an ordinary crush. It quickly turned into borderline obsession.
I vaguely remember the first day of class. He had everyone line up in the back of the room, and then one-by-one said our name out loud and had us take our seat – trying to put names to faces, I guess. I knew nothing about him before I entered the room, and it wasn’t like I thought he was good looking. Not just by seeing him. But his personality, his dry sense of humor…I laughed at a couple things he said that first class, and the way he said certain things. By the end of the period, the crush had formed.
There are many memories, and every day I liked him more and more. Once, there was a fly in the room, and it was pissing him off, but he kept lecturing us in his monotone, boring, sexy way, trying to act all nonchalant as he made a plan to kill the fly. Obviously I wasn’t paying attention to the slides. I just watched him. He finally killed the fly with some rolled up paper. He slid the fly onto the paper and held it up to the window before tossing it out. “Let this be a message to your friends.” And the fly was gone. And I was in love.
Another time, he was playing a movie and came to sit at the back of the room (I only really remember this one because it’s a diary entry). On the way, he stepped on my foot. ON PURPOSE. He was totally flirting. He sat in the desk behind me to the left. I had just come from foods class, where we had made cookies. “Can I have one?” Thank god the lights were off, or he would have seen my red face as I tried to act cool and hand him one. Every day was the same. He always stood outside his door in the hallway before class started. He usually greeted us as we walked in. “Stetson.” Mr. Shultz. I always tried to be cool like him but I’d always end up smiling, maybe laughing, maybe blushing. I didn’t have his class until later in the day, but I passed his room on the way to third period English, and if we made eye contact, I’d say hi. I looked forward to it. Every day. And I got so nervous, too.
At first, my friends laughed about it. But they soon realized that it wasn’t a joke. “Lindsay, who do you like?” Mr. Shultz. (Their eyes roll.) “No, but who do you actually like, like in school.” Seriously, Mr. Shultz. I don’t like anyone else. Something I would do all the time, before going to school in the morning, was blare music and sing in front of the mirror downstairs. During this time I’d constantly listen to Teacher, I Need You, by Elton John. I’d just change the her to him for the lyrics. (Were my sisters around? I really must have been in my own world.)
Then one day, he got mad at me. A teacher. Got MAD at me. Which means he cares about me. Anyway, the Giants had made it to the playoffs or something that year. It was the first year that I started to really get into the NFL, and yes, I’m a New York fan. (Dad’s from South Orange. Lay off me.) I did the morning announcements, and today, I made a little sign to hold during the announcements. “Go Giants.” That’s it. With a big smile on my face (well, I had to smile anyway, I was on camera). When I walked into class later, I said my usual, “Mr. Shultz,” at the door. He looked past me, saying nothing, ignoring me. I said it again, and he responded. “I’m not speaking to you.” It’s like we were dating and having our first fight. I was thrilled and embarrassed at the same time. The bell rang and Mr. Shultz sat down at his desk. He has a way of making everyone in the room be silent without saying anything. When everyone was quiet, he said no one was to speak to “someone” until “someone” made a “public apology for “someone’s” actions. Oh my God, he’s talking about me to the entire class. Again, thrilled and embarrassed. I knew I had to do something. I had to apologize on the announcements the next day. I thought about it all night. I wrote out what I was going to say. I got to school early and went straight to Pete (Dibiase). He was a teacher, and he basically directed the morning announcements, I guess. But I knew him before I knew him as a teacher. He coached Stephen in wrestling. So he was Pete. Pete, after the announcements I have something to say, so can you just let me say what I have to say before you cut to black? He was all distracted and getting ready, like morning announcements is SUCH a big deal. “What do you have to say?” I didn’t feel the need to explain anything to him. I just need to say something, will you let me? “Yea, OK.” OK. Thank you. I sat at my spot to anchor. Three announcers. I close. It was probably Colette and Courtney Baker. I didn’t tell anyone what I was doing. I was so nervous. The announcements were over. And I would like to say something. I want to apologize for…I don’t remember what I said. I certainly didn’t apologize for the sign. I said something about not trying to offend anyone and I was sorry if I did. In mid apology, jerk Pete cuts it off and I look like a moron in mid-sentence. I was so mad. He had no idea what he was doing to me. When I got to class, Mr. Shultz had a smirk on his face. The apology was enough, even though it got cut off. Whew! Thank God. I didn’t want him to break up with me. (Just kidding.)
Senior year, my crush continued. Unfortunately, I didn’t get 47 minutes with him every day as I was used to. But I still looked forward to seeing him every day. I even dressed up as him for Halloween. I was pretty comfortable going into the athletic director’s office, which was also Mr. Folsom’s office (head football coach). (Mr. Shultz was the assistant football coach.) One day, I went into the office when no one was there, and looked on the cork board close-up: Mr. Shultz’s home address. Memorized. Did Lauren and I drive by there with me ducking my head under the dashboard, scared to be caught? Yes. Did I memorize Mr. Shultz’s license plate? JFB42E. Yes. Was I obsessed? Yes. Did he know it? Absolutely. He had to.
I am not still obsessed with Mr. Shultz. In college, I found out he got engaged. Ugh. Schultz (my friend Schultz, completely different – Kristen Schultes) told me. She was going to Bucknell University, and in the weekly newsletter or whatever, it posted engagements of alumni – Mr. Shultz was engaged to one of these bimbos. It was very upsetting. I got over it.
Most of my moments with Mr. Shultz were incredibly embarrassing, and it followed me into adulthood. Just two years ago, I was telling my head field hockey coach at Spence (Sarah Jones) about my high school obsession. When I got home that night, I figured I’d look him up on fb. He was there! And…no way…today is his birthday. That’s crazy. Of all the days to look him up, and the day I do is his birthday. I HAVE to say something. On his page, it said something like, “I love drinking children’s tears.” So I posted, “Hopefully you can drink all the children’s tears you want on your birthday.”
The next day, I checked his page again. And that’s funny, today is his birthday. I am an idiot. Some kid made this page and made stuff up and made it so his birthday is every day. God, will I ever not be embarrassed because of this man? Needless to say, he never responded. One of his punk students probably told him some weirdo girl posted something, and he slowly smiled, laughing to himself. Yea, I just checked his wall, and my post is still there, an embarrassment. I know I can remove it, but what’s the point? He already saw it, and how can I care anymore. I have no shame.
The point of all this, is no guy is as good as you imagine. It’s so easy to make them what you want them to be in your mind. And I never got close enough to most of them to find out (not that I was allowed to get close to Mr. Shultz – it would have been illegal). Conveniently, the same year I found out Mr. Shultz was engaged was the same year I met Mike. I had a new crush.