Melvin’s kindergarten teacher, Ms. Tami, sat on a stool, skimming worksheets at the front of the classroom, while her students waited in line against the blackboard for her final score on their assignments. Already having been graded, Melvin sat near the line on the classroom rug, pushed up his sliding circular eyeglasses, and ruffled his moppy dirty blond hair. As he waited, Melvin clicked together his index and middle fingers and glided them along the winding highways connecting the stumpy skyscrapers of the rug’s disproportionately-skewed aerial view of a cartoon metropolis. His fingers accelerated like a Ferrari. Though Melvin remained silent, the Foley artist in his mind growled through clenched teeth, replicating the Ferrari’s acceleration and screeches for the getaway movie Melvin’s eyes projected onto the screen.
Eventually, the Ferrari swerved off the freeway and nosedived into a ditch because of his short attention span. Melvin was bored. Without thinking, without hesitation, but oddly without sinister perversion, he pinched the hem of the skirt belonging to a girl standing in front of him, lifted it, and peeped at her panties. Strawberries dotted her white underwear.
He released her skirt. No shrieking. No crying. No vehement cringing of her freckled face. A blank stare without rancor. Melvin assumed she was okay with it. She remained in line. When she was next, she leaned closer into the teacher’s ear. Ms. Tami scowled at him, the circumference of her eyes behind her glasses widening like an expanding puddle of water from a melting ice cube.
“Melvin! Go sit on the time-out mat!” the teacher yelled, pointing from her stool.
To which he replied:
“I didn’t do anything!” And then he cried.