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Intro to Catholic School Tales

Can you believe it? I went to Catholic school from about the last half of kindergarden through 4th grade. No nuns, just sociopathic teachers that I helped to push to the brink of retirement.

We used to recite the Pledge of Allegience, that spooky utterance that all good red-blooded american kids recited dumbly with hands on hearts. (I still like Calvin and Hobbes version the best...I pledge allegience, to Queen Fragg, and her mighty state of hysteria...Ow, Leggo! {if anyone can find me the link to this strip, I'd much appreciate it.) We did it however with 2 addendums:

1. with truth and justice for all...and God Bless America.
This was pretty standard parochial school fare, but then, even wierder, tacked on to the end was the misnomer:

2. I am special.

It wasn't too long before I noticed an astounding dichotomy. The teachers would make us recite this (all in unison of course), and then the first thing they'd say when you wanted to do something out-of-line was (I swear!), "Do you think you're special?"

When I pointed out this clear hypocrisy, I can't remeber exactly what I was told, but something about us all being special in God's eyes, but all being equals to the teacher. Only I don't think it was even that clarity-filled. More of a "shaddup kid, ya bother me" kind of response. I remember being quite unsatisfied, but also somewhat aware that I was just purposely being a pain in the ass.

I think I'm going to feature Catholic school stories all week.