Academic Child. A Memoir by Hazard Adams

By Hazard Adams

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They had been heroic figures to us seventh graders, and I remember all of them as good people. 2. Eccentricity is often a sign of a good teacher, or perhaps it is the other way around: good teaching is often a sign of eccentricity. The latter is the 32 3. Lakeside 2 33 more dependable guide, though not infallible, for many eccentrics, unable to control adolescent behavior, have been driven out of the classroom. My Lakeside experience certainly led me to identify eccentricity with good teaching. The first eccentric to impress me, evoking both awe and intellectual influence, was a willowy, prissy man named William Henry Eller.

We made two return trips to Ohio, one by train for Christmas in 1936 and one by car in the summer of 1938. I remember well the visit to London (Ohio), where my grandmother, recently widowed, now lived. My Aunt Grace, 42 ACADEMIC CHILD thirteen years older than my mother, was intelligent and industrious. She had gone off from Logan to the College of Wooster, the first of the family to attend college. She studied successfully, majored in German, and taught that subject in high school until it was discontinued in World War I.

So, though the school needed a business manager, Miss Cornish did not really want one. My uncle got the job, but he was regarded by the proprietor as a sort of interloper, perhaps a stern judge, and above all a snooper. When my uncle tried to bring some order to the books he was summarily dismissed. He returned to Cleveland, but came back to Seattle a few years later. , returning there during the Korean War just in time to avoid financial disaster. Between wars he had decided to market his invention of a device that was clipped over a car visor to hold various objects — the Auto Park-It.

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