Tuesday, 4 September 2012


Our teacher in grade 8 was known amongst the students simply as "Q" due to his last name that matched mine as far as epic last names go. Mr.Quattrochiocci, or Mr.Q for short, was my home room teacher in grade eight. I can't remember if he was a phys ed teacher first and foremost, if he wasn't he should have been considering the fact he stood anywhere from 6'2-6'4 and was in pretty good shape. Q was easily the biggest teacher in the school and could have been an athlete or a pro wrestler without question. I honestly can't remember what his teaching forte was, but being a home room teacher left him to cover all the basics for us like math and English. 

I believe he was Italian. He had thick black hair that slightly receded on either side of his widows peak, and a thick, bushy, black moustache that could put Super Mario's to shame! To be quite frank he looked like a seventies porn star, straight up! In the beginning of the year I found Q to be the most intimidating teacher I ever had, based on his constant scowling face and sheer size, but he didn't hold a candle to Mr.Hoyte as far as belittling students went. Q was actually pretty laid back and even comical at times, but me being a metal head b boy and him being an alpha male jock, obviously led to us bumping heads over the course of the school year. For a teacher he was actually quite the "ribber" (wrestling term for practical joker) and it was hard to pull a fast one on him, although I did manage to make him go red faced a couple times during the school year. All in all he was a bit of a hard ass who always got the last laugh. So I made it my mission to change that.

Closer to the end of the year we got an assignment in music class. We were to group up in 4's and perform a song. I quickly grabbed the reigns for my group and decided we were going to fix Q's wagon once and for all! My brilliant idea was to make a song about him called "Q" which would be a parody of the Beastie Boys song "Girls". Our group quickly figured out how to play the xylophone part of the song, now all we needed was a beat. Thankfully I had bought a drum machine from Toys R Us the previous year, so I programmed the entire song into it and our music was done.

Synsonic drum machine from "toys r us"

Now we just needed some lyrics. If my golden memory serves me correctly it was I that single handedly wrote the lyrics which went something like this:

Q! all we really hate is Q!
Cus in the morning it's Q!
And after recess it's Q!
I hate the way that he talks 
And he's such a big head jock
And you can never make him smile
He gives you homework in a pile

That's about all I remember but you get the idea. So I programmed the beat, one guy played the xylophone and we all decided to do the vocals. 2 of us did the rhymes simultaneously and one guy did the backups which consisted of "bomp bomps" Around this time I was working on some murals with a few other students in preparation for the grade 8 graduation. My music teacher was actually allowing me to cut class so I could help get these murals done on time. On the day of our performance I was painting as usual when my group came to inform me that it was our turn. I told the guys they would have to do it without me as these murals had to get finished. The guys were upset and insecure but I assured them they'd do great without me, as we had been practicing religiously and had our song down tight. I showed them how to run the drum machine then returned to the murals. 

Grad day. Mural of me @ bookfair by Sanjai. My initials "kt" on the other one.

My group returned awhile later and they were all ecstatic! Our song was the stand out performance and we had received the best mark in the class. I was extremely proud of my boys and myself for that matter, as I was the brainchild behind the whole project. Mr.Q was even brought into the music class to witness the performance which left him red faced with embarrassment and sporting a huge smile from ear to ear. Even though our song was a success, inside of me was a feeling of failure. What nobody ever knew until this present day was I actually suffered from stage fright when the moment of truth arrived. I had previously been very outgoing in music class and drama class, but for some unknown reason I was full of anxiety that day and could not bring myself to perform in front of the class. I felt terrible for abandoning my group yet I felt like a proud father at the same time since they had nailed it without me. I used the mural as an excuse to skip out on performing. The only saving grace was the fact we had the top mark in the class, which restored some of my dignity. I didn't know it at the time but this was just the beginning of an ongoing battle with stage fright that would haunt me for years to come...

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