What follows below are things actually said by the high school students in my 9th hour study hall this semester. While some of these things may have been said mainly to get attention and/or laughs from other students, this is authentic dialogue of real (if inauthentic) human teenagers:
Teacher: Mr. Hagemann (me, the recorder of these bon mots)
Senior boys: Nick Dreska (ND), Quez Felix (QF), Pat Combs(PC).
Sophomore boys: Julian Hernandez (JH below), Eder Castillo (EC), Hussein Abdallah (HA), and Cale Faber (who mostly sleeps)
Freshman boy: DE
10 March 2014: JH said in a low, quasi-whisper: “ND is printing!” “It’s true,” quipped ND.
10: “I was just a little off,” said JH, after he said there were 4 seconds left before the bell when there were fewer than that.
11: JH said “Kobe, Kobe, Kobe” as he passed my calculator between his legs, then dropped it. [“Kobe” was presumably a reference to the basketball player.]
11: JH: “Oh, my freakin’ knee”
11: JH had been accused of saying bad things to a girl on his bus. “You’re harmless, though,” said EC. “Exactly — whoa, whoa, what?” said JH.
11: JH: “Mr. Hagemann, do you think I should be suspended for doing something I didn’t do?”
11: ND told JH that if someone picked a fight with him, he should take off his pants because “no one wants to fight with someone with their pants off.” “Yeah, they do,” said JH.
11: Of some online comments a girl made about JH, ND said, “Maybe it’s a different ‘JH’.” “No, it’s my name,” said JH. Later, EC paraphrased JH as saying that online comments criticizing him were spelled well: “‘I feel her grammar is adequate.’”
11: ND also suggested to JH: “Bite her ear off. Mike Tyson her,” her being JH’s accuser.
11: ND: “What are you doing?” JH: I’m lifting my butt up. … I’m flexing one hump, then I’m flexing the other.”
12 March: JH, after a cough: “Ah, blah, my lungs.”
12: JH said, “I want to go back to my locker because there’s a girl who smelled really pretty over there” and “the hallway smells like booty, which is bad” and a girl smelled like “dandelions and roses.” JH has Febreeze in his locker because people near his locker smell like “booty holes,” he said.
12: ND: “Why are we taking off our clothes?” They weren’t taking off clothes, but JH was talking about disrobing, for some unknown reason. “We’re not,” answered JH. “What is WRONG with you?” asked ND. “Nobody knows!” low-shouted JH.
12: JH said, “That one movie — Ricky Bobby — ‘I’m on fire, I’m on fire’ — with Will Ferrell and at the very end they kiss and it’s weird.”
Mr. H said, “Accidental Movie Reviews by JH.”
14 March: DE: “The Bible — is there a lot of parts to that?”
14: Said JH to DE: “Get some scissors and you cut the tip off.” JH later explained he was talking about the tip of a pencil.
14: JH, working on computer, said “Where the hell’s my name?” Later, he said, “Oh, my gosh, what happened to my name” and “I don’t know what the hell I just did.”
20 March: ND: “I don’t know where the colon is.” EC: “Like the butt-colon or the grammar colon?” ND: “I’m gonna name my kid ‘Colon,’” as in “Collin.”
20: JH, looking at some webpage he was supposed to add something to, said, “How’m I supposed to put mine in there?” EC said, “JH, you are a quote-worthy person.”
20: DE: “I just wrote the wrong answer on the wrong line.”
20: After DE blamed his poor biology class performance on sitting in the back of the class, EC said, “I also sat in the back and got somewhat educated.”
20: EC said some scientist spent 30 years searching for evidence of the Big Bang. “That’s a lot,” said DE. “Yes,” said EC and ND.
20: DE: “Romeo and Juliet.” JH: “Dude, they died.”
20: “I found it! I found it! I have no idea what I found,” JH said, while doing a word-search.
20: DE said something about not having answers to a biology worksheet. Noting that DE had his biology textbook with him, ND said: “You really HAVE a book that has the answers in it.”
20: DE said a diagram on his biology worksheet was of cake, and that JH had said it was a baseball field. ND said, “Why would the chapter on plants talk about cake OR a baseball field?”
21: EC said CF’s dreams, as he sleeps thru class, have “monsters that speak like JH.”
21: JH: “Math is dumb.”
QF: “Then think it to yourself.”
JH: “I wanna be a civil engineer.”
QF: “I don’t care about your life.”
21: “Calm down, sensei,” said ND to DE after DE did some weird high kick.
21: “‘I need every client you have ‘cuz I’m gay,’” said QF, as if he were JH, who had just said he’d get clients as a gynecologist by telling women he’s gay.
21: DE said “there’s a spring in his pen” in such a way that EC responded with “that was an environment joke.”
21: EC to Mr. H., after some other students had been doing foolish things: “So many years of college and this is where you end up. You’re livin’ the dream, Mr. Hagemann. You’re livin’ the dream.”
31: “This is why you don’t [pause] excel,” said ND to DE about DE taking snack breaks before class.
1 April: ND and JH are both on the track team. “Hey, ND, you want to run 3 miles Monday?” asked JH. “No,” said ND. “Sure?” said JH.
1: Said ND, pointing north: “That’s north.” “If yer LOOKIN’ that way,” said DE.*
2 April: Someone in study hall asked (within the context of a discussion of pranks) if school could suspend everybody, and Mr. H. said they might do something like cancel prom, and somebody (JH?) said he didn’t care about prom, and ND said girls would care a lot of prom got canceled. JH: “We’re not girls, bro.” ND: “True dat.”
2: DE: “Why is our conversation [see * above] on the board?” where the quote was being used as a topic for journaling. ND: “Because it was stupid.”
2: “Let’s throw me in front of that one class,” said DE. This is one of his “acting jobs,” said EC, where DE acts like he has fallen or been pushed.
4 April: “Why’d I say ‘NDs’? There’s only one ND,” said JH, who had said “… when NDs get back” from bathroom.
4: DE: “I don’t like the color of it,” said freshman DE, “it” being rice.
4: DE: “JH, can I have your shoes?” JH: “What?”
7 April: JH said he doesn’t like math but he wants to be a civil engineer. PC said engineers have to like math. JH said, “People don’t like getting naked and having sex for money but they do anyway.”
10 April: JH: “[A particular female classmate] told me she had buns of steel and I asked her to show me and she laughed and walked away. People always laugh and walk away.”
10: DE said he himself was smart. JH said, “In your own world, or, like, in real life?”
10: DE said he had been sleeping in class while having something valuable in his pocket, and he said, “You could’ve pick-pocketed me the whole time.” “I did,” answered EC. DE: “I still have the same money — did you take it and put it back?” “Yes,” said EC.
11 April: “Or you could actually work on the stuff [for his English class] instead of lying across 8 chairs,” said ND to DE, who said he was about to fail English 1 and who was actually lying across the seats of several chairs.
11: To the tune of “Why can’t we be friends,” JH sang: “I feel like I just killed a tree/but it’s not a FELL-oh-knee/why can’t we be friends?”
14 April: Now JH says he doesn’t want to leave with the classroom visitors — he used to ask each one “take me with you” — but today, JH said, “I ain’t about that life.” Visitor SA was confused. “Just ignore him. That’s what WE do,” said ND.
14: “DE, do you know what animate means?” asked EC.
“No, I come from a family of four,” said DE.
“Do you say stupid things just ‘cause you think they’re funny?” said ND to DE.
14: DE to JH, after JH sneezed loudly: “Why are you so obnoxious, as ND would say,” said DE. ND said, “If you’re going to quote me, quote me right.” Then DE cited the quote, with reference to time, date, etc.
14: DE: “Life is not stupid.”
14: EC: “So it came from the heart?” DE: “It came out of my heart … Kevin Hart the wrestler … JH, I want to wrestle you.”
14: Mr. Hagemann said that the staple JH was using to pop what he called a “blood blister” was not sanitary. It’s the dirtiest staple this side of Rochelle, Mr. H. said. EC added: “It’s been in hookers’ butts, JH.”
15 April: ND: “Well it’s snowing [today].” JH: “Mother Nature, go home, you’re drunk.”
15: QF, complaining about the noise level in the study hall classroom, said, “Hey, JH, some of us want to get an education today.” Answered JH: “Oh, I know, I’ve already got mine.”
16 April 2014: After JH had just called minuscule-sized DE a “Big Boy,” ND said, “Please don’t tell someone you’re gonna wrestle and then immediately call them ‘Big Boy.’”
17 April: EC: “Sometimes I think you’re a bird.” DE: “Why, because I don’t stop talking?” EC: “No, because I just think you are.”
17: DE: “Are we friends?” ND: “What day is today?” DE: “Thursday.” ND: “Sure.” Then DE made a high-pitched yelping noise. ND: “We’re not friends anymore.” DE: “Why not?” ND: “That noise.”
17: DE said, “Screw it, there’s two solutions,” as he sat down with a worksheet and calculator.
17: While doing math, DE said: “I don’t think I simplified it right.” Mr. H: “So you complicated it?”
ND looked at DE’s math work and said: “It’s not ‘plus 4 x,’ it’s ‘plus 4.’” DE: “Oh, you gotta move it to the other side.” ND: “You’re not moving it to the other side, you’re adding it to both sides.” And then DE devolved into silliness and nonsense and silly nonsense.
17: “Do you wanna fight?” asked DE. “Kinda,” said ND.
UPDATED with quotes from the rest of the semester:
22 April:: Senior ND to freshman DE: “You reek of Doritos” — he said this after DE swung his hands near ND.
25:: “Oh, yeah, I forgot, you’re a teacher,” said ND to me, after I said I was not able to take the last two days off school as he was able to.
25:: “Mr. Hagemann, what if I just got up one and combed my hair?” said sophomore JH, who later clarified that he meant get up during his time in my English 2 class the next period.
25: JH said to ND, after accusing ND of having drawn naked women, “You drew the nipples wrong.”
25: ND commented that JH was “cheering on someone who finished this race a year ago” as JH was watching a marathon online.
25: JH: “Should I finish my race like that, gritting my teeth?” JH said his coach said he should have a good race-ending facial expression.
28 April: On entering my classroom at the beginning of 9th hour, HA said, “Julian, shut the hell up! Oh, he’s not even in here.”
28 April: JH frequently says “I ain’t about that life” as a sort of catchphrase. HA said, “You should be about the QUIET life.”
28 April: ND suggested JH lie on the laps of students working in the hallway. “No, that’s weird,” said JH. “When has that every stopped you?” said ND. As JH went into the hallway, ND heard him ask kids out there, “Can I lay on your lap?”
28 April: DE said he wanted to not go to his science class. EC said, “Skip it like all the cool kids. Trust me, they get really big in life.”
28 April: JH to DE: “Dude, don’t you have someone’s homework to be copying?”
29 April: I told EC to stop hitting DE. “That’s the last time I touch him, I promise,” said EC at 1:40 p.m. Eight minutes later, EC was touching DE again.
29 April: EC told DE to enter some words into Google Translate. “With a period, you illiterate piece of crap,” commanded EC.
30 April: ND said he wanted to work for the FBI one day. DE said, “N__’s gonna arrest me one day.” ND answered, “that’s quite the aspiration.”
30 April: EC to DE: “You really said ‘stipulation’?” DE: “Yeah.” EC: “That’s the biggest word I’ve heard you say all semester.”
30 April: EC later reported that DE had said, “I’m going nowhere in life,” as DE stared straight into EC’s eyes very seriously. DE said he’s going to live in a duplex and work at a place where he’ll make 14 dollars per hour.
30 April: JH: “Come at me, brah” (a version of his frequent catchphrase, “Come at me, bro”). ND said: “Stop calling people women’s underwear.”
30 April: HA to JH: “J___.” JH responded, “Shut the hell up. What?” HA: “I was gonna say, ‘shut the hell up.'”
1 May: DE to JH: “You do not live on Wayne Road.” I said, “Don’t tell people where they live.”
1 May: Freshman DE learned at the end of his freshman year of high school that “When you’re actually doing work, the time goes fast.”
1 May: ND: “Time-travelling’s illegal.”
1 May: JH’s seemingly accidental Spoonerism: “I those the chug life.”
2 May: DE said, “How do you know if a book’s been published?” I said, “if you know about it, it’s been published.”
2 May: ND shared with the study hall that if you scrape 1,000 dollar bills, you can get 1 gram of cocaine. I made some objections to that idea, and when I asked ND to explain, he said, “Beats me. All I know is, you can get drugs.”
5 May: QF, reading the earlier version of this blog post of study hall quotes, to JH, re: JH’s quote of 11 March, “You said ‘Kobe’ three times and then dropped the calculator? You are a horrible basketball player.”
5 May: QF told JH that he has a “coconut haircut” — so JH pushed his bangs back, and then QF said, “Now you just look like one of those mobsters that get killed for no reason.”
5 May: Said QF to EC, “You can’t tell your own self ‘touche’” Q said, “he said, ‘your muscles are small. Touche.’”
5 May: QF told JH to stop talking, then JH said: “Not talking to you.” QF: “You are now, so shut up.”
5 May: HA said to JH, “J___, stop yelling ‘it’s not going in,'” which JH was saying about putting his books inside his desk.
6 May: Senior ND to sophomore JH: “Stop trying to finger my legs.”
6 May: Freshman DE sings to himself, “Who’s house? RUN’S HOUSE,” apparently a reference to this.
8 May: After QF called JH “ugly,” ND said, “That’s not very nice. J___, you’re kinda not ugly.” Then ND said, kinda seriously, to QF to stop bullying, and QF seemed to lay off.
8 May: Freshman DE said, “Nick, what’s the mesoderm?” ND told DE, who’s copying answers from an online worksheet to his own worksheet, to do his homework. I asked DE if his online source has the right answers. “I don’t know if I’m getting the RIGHT answer,” he said.
Toward the end of the class period, ND said to DE: “You cheated and you still didn’t get it done!” DE: “I blame Eder.” “Blame yourself!” said ND.
14 May: “Stop questioning his sexuality because he won’t share chips,” I said to QF after he called JH “gay” because JH wouldn’t give QF some of his Doritos.
14 May: QF told DE that he looked like a peanut. ND, seemingly trying to mitigate the description, told DE that he looked “like a NICE peanut.”
15 May: To BR, who had told some story about himself, ND said, “Wow, you’re a scumbag.”
16 May: JH said of one of his teachers, “That bitch gave me a tardy.” After I threatened to tell an administrator about this use of the b-word, JH said, “I said ‘witch.'”
16 May: Sophomore EC explained to DE about the book “To Kill a Mockingbird,” which DE was reading in his freshman English class, that the character of Scout gets attacked. DE said of his class’s progress through the book, “I think she already did get attacked. I think I was sleeping through that part.”
19 May: Freshman DE to sophomore JH, after JH had torn up some homework of DE’s: “You fucking piece of shit, dude!” JH claimed DE said he could rip it up, “but there’s no proof I did anything.”
21 May: Senior student BR, who comes to this study hall just to play Uno (in teams) with others here, said to his partner that the other team would have “lost five minutes ago if you didn’t skip me ten times.”
BR’s partner this day was QF, who said, “Well, give me a wink or something,” so as to facilitate their cheating efficacy, I gathered.
22 May: After students discussed a prank they might play, with one student saying that the proposed prank would be a crime if the perpetrators were adults, HA said, “Half of the things you do are only funny when you’re under 18.”
22 May: On the last day of study hall for the semester, Cale Faber joined most of the others in playing a game of Uno. As he played a card that would hamper HA’s play, Cale Faber said, “This is how it gets worse.”
HA responded, “Cale, go back to sleep.”