Loved this story. Reminded me of my "first day". I was used to be called "Butch", my nickname at home. On my first day in school my name was printed Arnold Glenn Bryden. The teacher called out that name. I did not answer. She asked why. "That's not my name. My name is Butch." Then I got my first lecture on nicknames. I still did not feel comfortable being called some strange name. I absolutely hated Arnold, my first stepfather's name. "How about Glenn, your middle name?" The teacher asked. I consented to that. The school records were a mess for years, as I transferred to ten elementary schools as my family moved around--but after a while I kind of liked being called Glenn.
Arkansas was 50th in education. My mom was a teacher from "the old school" so I was always ahead of my classmates, which meant I was bored. There wasn't really any such thing as differentiation in those days or in those schools. So I got in a lot of trouble, didn't do very well, and generally developed habits I'm still working to overcome.
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