Our teacher’s face turned the color
of the ketchup smearing the bottom of the drawer.
He turned to Nick
and slowly, dramatically,
shook his finger in his face,
then anger exploded from his mouth.
“This is not the IHOP!
This is computer engineering!
Eat your goddamn breakfast
We had all been giggling at this is not the IHOP,
but when goddamn slipped out, we were instantly silent.
Nick opened his mouth to protest.
Our teacher grabbed his arm roughly,
nearly yanking it from its socket.
Nick was saved from our teacher’s wrath
by a student from a neighboring classroom.