Attention Please


Attention, Please

By Skyla Nolan

The mixture of their voices, his and hers, fumbling over each other for attention, attention please transported her back to ninth grade, Mrs. Morrell’s English class, waiting at the door for the bell. The horrid smack of chewing gum, the intoxicating smell of printer ink, the deafening crackle of the intercom. Mrs. Morrell reacted to that first static screech like a servant to a bell every morning, listen up, everyone! You don’t want to miss this! but the rest of us were never as enthused. She fought for silence as our principal droned on, about overdue books and the importance of hall passes and upcoming dates for the sports games that you either knew about already or didn’t want to know about at all. Principal Hall never knew about the indifference, no, outright hatred that most of us had for that time of the day. It’s not like we would ever tell him. Principal Hall also never knew about the energy Mrs. Morrell put into that time, she too would never want to hurt his feelings and admit that no one listens.

She reminds me of Mrs. Morrell and her soft yell, always calling for attention, attention please for her Principal Hall. Only Mrs. Morrell and Principal Hall were never married, only they never fought nearly so much, only that attention please never caused rifts between their family. No, this wasn’t like Mrs. Morrell’s English class. They were just a mix of voices at some dumb reunion; her, pleading for her family’s attention for nothing in particular, him, obliviously expecting it.