Wednesday, May 16, 2012

A moment of "Glory"

Finished showing "Glory" today.

I asked period 4 for adjectives to describe the movie, having heard rumors that the morning class called it "depressing." Hands shot up--when I called on K, his voice cracked: "Inspiring," and instantly we all knew he was crying.

Whoa. This is not in the faculty handbook.

The class didn't know what to do with itself, but thankfully no one smirked or sniggered, and I moved away from him to draw eyes toward me and give him some privacy. The bell soon rang, and kids darted off to lunch, all but K. and another kid, J. I kneeled next to K., a student with significant personal struggles, and told him of the moment in the movie that gets me every time (the parade through Boston, if you must know), and he looked me in the eyes: "Honestly, Miss M., there were three parts in this movie that made me cry...."  J. came nearer and said, "Oh, for me the most touching part was...." and in a natural, friendly way, he normalized the situation, one guy to another, shrugging off the lunch lines that grew longer as he chose to support a fellow student. K. finally collected himself and left, and I had a chance to thank J. for helping K.

"Well, I've known K. since 5th grade; we used to sit next to each other.  I know he has struggles. I like him."

Well maybe so, but I LOVE J. for his kindness and humanity. "There is more to battle than rest, sir. There's character. There's strength of heart," says the film's Colonel Robert Shaw as he requests the honor of leading the attack on Fort Wagner on behalf of the 54th regiment.  Looks like J. has both.

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