15 July 2016

Published July 13, 2016 by rochellewisoff

Summer Showcase

Summer is the time for vacations, picnics on the beach and reruns on the telly. For me it’s a time to meet a deadline in July for my third novel in my series entitled AS ONE MUST ONE CAN. Many thanks to those of you who responded to my plea for your favorite reruns. 

Erie Canal

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The following photo is the PROMPT. This week’s retread request is from Jennifer Pendergast. If you’re one of those who wrote a story for this prompt feel free to re-post it and enjoy the respite. Remember that all photos are private property and subject to copyright. Use other than Friday Fictioneers by permission only. 

PHOTO PROMPT Copyright-Sandra Crook

PHOTO PROMPT © Sandra Crook

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Genre: Histrionic Fiction

Word Count: 100

Original Post Here


            My seventh-grade social studies teacher strode the aisles like a stalking tiger.

            “If Seventeen Magazine told you to, you kids would hang beach balls around your necks and dangle pop cans from your ears.”  

            I squirmed in my striped mini dress that varied only in color from seven others in the room.

            “What’s wrong with wanting to fit in?” I asked.

            “You know anything about lemmings?”

            “Good in pie topped with meringue,” whispered the boy behind me.

            My teacher extended his arm, hand straight, palm down and shouted, “Turn in your textbooks to page 245, ‘The Indoctrination of Hitler Youth.’”


When Jennifer chose this prompt I was more than happy to comply. TO THE SHEARING remains one of my favorite stories. Not only for the subject matter but because it’s based heavily on one of my favorite, if not most memorable teachers of all times. He worked hard to teach a bunch of awkward pubescent adolescents to think for ourselves. To Kevin McShane, wherever you may be, I salute you!” 

McShane's Admonition

74 comments on “15 July 2016

  • A great teacher is an inspiration for life. I like the Seventeen magazine reference. The French would say (translated) If someone asks you to jump out the window would you do that too! Lovely story Rochelle.

    Liked by 2 people

  • Teachers come in many forms. Not all are great. I’m having a different reaction today than when you originally posted. Hitler certainly was a teacher and knew how to mold young young minds. As well as old. I wonder if there might be a knew teacher on the block……”Social Media”. As always, I love your stories and they never grow old.


  • A great teacher. We need more like him lest we forget. Powerfully done, Rochelle. Contrasts the seriousness of the message with the frivolity and superficiality of those who need to be reminded.

    Liked by 2 people

    • Dear Sandra,

      Poor Mr. McShane, He spoke emphatically to a group of seemingly indifferent twelve-year-olds who wanted to fit in. I’m sure I’m not the only one who turned around and remembered his message. He was a great teacher. Thank you for your encouraging words.



      Liked by 1 person

  • That’s an underrated, underused skill – teaching young people how to think for themselves. We should have a specific subject and exams taken in that – but then, I guess no one would turn up to the exam 🙂
    A great story and a great sounding man. A good teacher is such a wonderful thing. 🙂

    Liked by 2 people

  • What a great story! Mr McShane looks such an unlikely hero. He would so proud of his former student.

    My school is about to adopt a new motto/mission statement advertised with a huge banner in the entrance hall, with the simple word ‘believe’ in huge letters. Now me being me, I would write ‘challenge’ or ‘question’ or ‘discuss’ or ‘think for yourself’ on that banner…Just ‘believe’ has a very disturbing history – as your story reminded us.

    Liked by 2 people

    • Dear Miranda,

      Perhaps “Believe” should have a subtitle that says, “and ask questions.” 😉

      It wasn’t until many years later that I realized what a hero Mr. McShane was. I only wish I could tell him.

      Thank you for your kind words.




  • The teacher has an excellent point; very wise. As I note in my last post(“An Appeal to Love in a World of Hate”) that we need to be a purple thread on a white cloth! Emerson said, “Whosoever would be a man must be a nonconformist.” Indeed it is those who dare to be different who change the world.

    Liked by 2 people

    • Dear Kevin,

      Anything purple has to be wonderful. 😉 Seriously, the people who dared to think and stand out in all walks of life were the ones who changed history, either for good or bad.

      Thank you for your thought provoking comments.




  • I loved this post two years ago, and I love it today. Judy Fowler was my current affairs teacher. She and her husband had traveled the globe and was an excellent story teller. She was also very wise and insisted we use our head for something other than a hat holder.

    Mr. Terry Thomas was my 10th grade English teacher. I tried to locate him before my book was released to let him know the impact he had on me, and that I’d become a writer. Unfortunately, he passed away a couple of years earlier. Still, I dedicated the book to him and hope that someday one of his children of grandchildren will stumble across it.

    It sounds like we were both blessed to have some teachers who cared.


    • I so wish I could find Kevin and tell him how much of an impact he had. Perhaps my latent interest in history has to do with seeds he planted in my somewhat dormant mind all those years ago. I had a few others that I have been able to go back and thank. Yes we have been blessed.


    • Dear RG,

      Young teens, in particular, are doing their best to figure out their place in life. I remember wearing white lipstick, white go-go boots and ironing my hair because that was the in thing. History does teach a sobering lesson and we’re ignoring it IMHO. Thank you for dropping by. Always a pleasure to see you in the courts of the Frog Palace.




      • I remember desperately trying to keep up with what sort of trainers were fashionable this week or how to wear my belt. It’s incredible now how important it all was at the time, and how each generation does the same thing.
        You’re right, history is destined to keep repeating itself, each time with different players


  • The agony of being the odd one out – I still remember it. We’re so vulnerable to manipulation at that time in life when we’re trying to figure out who we are and where we fit. Your story shows it beautifully. And as an ex high school teacher, your memory of Mr McShane made me smile.


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