Thursday, July 10, 2014
So THAT'S what you do at School Board Meetings!
The church I attend includes a small private school (K5 through 8th grade) and I'm on the school board. We meet once a month to make budget and hiring decisions. The school is one of the best ever--with a superb group of teachers who have agreed to essentially work for peanuts to help provide kids with an affordable quality education. (By the way, if any billionaire happens to read this blog, don't hesitate to donate a huge amount of money to the school.)
Well, I've just watched a Perry Mason episode titled "The Case of the Lurid Letter." (December 2, 1962) In this episode, Perry is on a fishing vacation in a small town, where he ends up befriending a local high school
Perry agrees to help her out, maneuvering the situation to force the school board to give the teacher a public hearing.
Well, Perry may the only attorney in the world to give Rumpole of the Bailey a run for the title of "Best Lawyer Ever," but there's a good reason you should think twice about hiring him. If he's around, someone is going to get murdered. In this case, its a former coach from the high school who might have been selling liquor to a gang of teenaged thugs who are involved in the scandal.
Departing from the show's usual format, Perry's client actually isn't a serious suspect in the crime. But in order to prove that she is innocent of scandalous behavior, he also needs to solve the murder. He does so not in court, but at the school board meeting.
It's a strong episode. Most of the regular cast is absent, but Perry does bring Paul Drake out to the town to help investigate. This leads to several wonderful scenes in which the high school bully--who thinks he's a tough guy because he picks on those weaker than himself--gets repeatedly humiliated by Paul. It's a just & satisfying comeuppance for the bully and it's nice to get a reminder that Paul actually is a tough guy when he needs to be.
From the gazillion or so books, movies and television episodes I'm familiar with, I'm perfectly aware that no matter where you are, someone could get murdered at the drop of the hat. And, by golly, when the police are baffled by the crime, I'm ready to step up to the plate and use brilliant deductive reasoning to catch the real killer.
But this never happens to me. I live in a state of perpetual disappointment because of this.
And now I learn that at our school board meetings, we're not supposed to be making important decisions about the future of children. We're supposed to be solving murders. But we never do. Heck, no one at my church ever even gets murdered. No one ever gets murdered no matter where I go.
I couldn't be more disappointed with my life. I simply couldn't.