Kids can be hilarious. Tiny little comedians, every one of them. If you've ever been a teacher, a camp counselor, or a babysitter, you probably have multiple unforgettable stories of things kids in your charge have said or done, whether they were intentionally funny or not.
One teacher, Erica Buddington recently decided to share the insanely funny antics of one of her former students, whom she calls "Stan," in a Twitter thread. And when I tell you that it is the best thing you will read all day, I really mean it. Stan is a legend. We stan Stan.
Stan's hilarious antics were well-known to Erica's Facebook friends, but she recently decided to share all her Stan stories on Twitter, and we are so glad she did. He's finally graduating, so Erica has a full three years of Stan stories to share with a captive audience. You might want to stretch your mouth muscles because I swear mine are sore from laughing so hard. This kid is a legend. He deserves to be on cereal boxes or something.
2. The first Stan story is savage.
First of all, her hair is amazing! It looks so good. I wish my hair looked that good... ever. Second of all, this is already hilarious. Asking a question in that skeptical manner is the fastest way to tell someone you don't agree with whatever it is you're doing. "Oh, you like your hair like that?" is the equivalent of, "What were you possibly thinking when you let someone do that to your head?" But wait 'til you see what Stan did.
You can already probably tell Stan is maybe a little too comfortable being his funny self with his teacher. I don't know about you, but I was never too chummy with my teachers. I tended to sit in the back of the classroom, keep my head down, do my work, and go home (or to softball practice) as fast as possible. I'm sure it's a testament to Erica's reputation that Stan felt he could be so open with her.
I can't even handle this! It's too funny. The number was for his barber, so she could get her hair "lined up right." Stan just insulted the heck out of his own teacher's hair, which is extremely bold for a kid who had to rely on her grades for three years. And don't forget; this was their very first interaction! Ever! Stan made himself immediately unforgettable. And folks, we are just getting started.
I honestly used to hate kids like Stan, who always seemed to be able sweet-talk teachers into giving them extensions or always got special treatment just because they were charming. But now, I appreciate it so much. Plus, it doesn't seem like Erica's going to budge on this issue. He lost the book for the second time. There is no way she is going to stand there and scan thirteen chapters of a book to send to this kid...right?
Speechless. I am speechless. "You're not married and the holiday is over. You have time." Who does Stan think he is? She was probably so taken aback that she had no idea how to respond. I know I wouldn't! It would take every bone in my body not to burst out laughing at this completely savage response from Stan. I love how he thinks that because she's not married, she has nothing to live for other than scanning books for her students.
Stan is too clever for his own good. The email starts out very respectful, and it even seems like he might be sorry for not completing the assignment for MLK Day. But then, he quotes MLK. And writes, "This homework did not uplift me" as the reason he didn't do the homework. And then ended with that emoji. Stan is an evil genius. Too funny for his own good. I wonder if he ever made up the assignment or if he somehow got credit for this email.
You see, it seems like an innocent question on Stan's part, but have you read the rest of the tweets? Because if you have, you'll understand that this cannot just be an innocent question. Stan doesn't ask innocent questions. But he's not dumb, either. In fact, he's really smart. He knows that "detonate" was completely the wrong word here, but he must have had a whole scheme in mind, otherwise he would have just corrected the other student.
Erica had no choice but to answer his question. She's an educator, after all! But she knew the second he responded that Stan had some sort of plan up his sleeve. It's an honest mistake to mix up the words "detonate" and "interrogate."
While Erica doesn't tell us what grade these kids are in, I think it's safe to estimate these kids are in middle school. At least that's what it seems like from the scope of their assignments and the conversations they have.
As a teacher, you have to remain diplomatic in situations between students, but it had to be so hard to keep a straight face here. Stan kept that kid's mistake in his back pocket and pulled it out at exactly the right time. He's a genius.
I think he deserves his own HBO special. I would watch the Stan Hour, where he just cracks jokes, makes fun of teachers, and charms everyone for 60 minutes straight.
Marcus and Stan seem to be nemeses, and this story is so good. Both he and Stan are straight-A students, and from what Erica has said so far, it seems like Marcus is the more straight-laced and quiet one, while Stan... well, we know by now that Stan is a total class clown.
I remember learning about the patricians and the plebeians in the Roman Republic. It was never easy to keep those two groups straight.
Poor Erica is just trying to do her job, but it seems like Stan can't help but interrupt. I wonder how she gets through the day with him in her classroom! But we don't yet know what Stan is trying to get at here. Maybe he's about to make a very prudent point about the patricians and the plebeians. Maybe he just wants to ask a very innocent, serious question about the lesson at hand. But Marcus doesn't seem to think so.
These kids are smart! Sure, there's a connection between the patricians and the plebians and what's happening in politics today. The rich have more political influence than the poor. An astute observation. But it also seems like Stan, unfortunately, made an astute observation about Marcus' hairline in front of the whole class, and the class went crazy. How does a teacher even recover from a moment like this?
I guess you have to just remove Stan from the classroom and let all the kids cool down. It really seems like Stan has been picking on Marcus pretty constantly throughout these stories, and I have to say, this was a pretty smart comeback from Marcus. He held his own, even when the whole classroom erupted at a comment made about his hairline.
Marcus finally got Stan good. Or at least he thought he did.
"Your momma's a pleb! We plebs!" I can't. I'm crying laughing. Stan is so inappropriate and yet so funny. And his timing is impeccable. He's a comedic genius. And yet, he's probably preventing Erica from teaching her class. Poor Marcus finally thought he one-upped Stan, but Stan swooped in at the end. And let me just say, this is mighty fine storytelling on Erica's part. She paints what happened perfectly.
Stan was almost nice to Erica here! It actually was really thoughtful that he bought her a cookie, but then he had to go and take the compliment away before he even gave it. If I was his teacher, I don't know if I'd be able to handle a student like Stan without either laughing at everything he says or screaming at him because of how frustrating he is. And that right there is why I should never be a teacher.
Last but not least, Stan came in with the "your mama" joke at his teacher's expense! The nerve of this kid! Even though he didn't sign his work, I bet it was fairly obvious that Stan was responsible for this. What a kid. A real legend.
I bet Erica was both relieved and sad when he finally graduated and left her classroom for good. Bless her for putting up with him, and for sharing these epic stories with us.
Erica Buddington is a poet, educator, and CEO of Langston League, an organization "specializing in teaching educators to design and implement culturally responsive and sustaining instructional material and professional development" for teachers of K-12 students.