Carlos had made their lives miserable for long enough. Seventh grade was almost over, and it was time. He was finally gonna get it.
Carlos was really annoying. He was really gross most of the time. He was totally responsible for disrupting class, but he never got in trouble for it. Everyone else got in trouble instead! By the end of seventh grade, we just couldn't take it any more! It was time. Carlos was gonna get it, once and for all!
That was the year that Carlos started having these days when he'd act so crazy and annoying that we could hardly stand it. We called those days "Days After," and they happened about once a month, for the whole year. By the time the May "Day After" arrived, it was totally the last straw.
Carlos came in really late, and right away, Donte and Frankie got into trouble for teasing him. Three minutes and 27 seconds later, Carlos fell out of his chair, landing partly on Frankie. When Frankie shouted at him, Ms. Atkinson sent him and Donte to the office. See? Carlos fell right on top of Frankie, and he and Donte get into trouble.Half an hour later, it happened again, only this time Carlos fell the other way, and landed on Maurice, who yelled. Maurice had to go to the principal's office. And that afternoon, when we were in math, the last part of the Day After started — the scratching. Carlos had his shirt pulled up to his neck, and was scratching his bare bony chest like he was trying to claw the skin off. Thea ended up in the principal's office that time. But just as always, Carlos was fine — given extra chances, never punished, no matter how gross he got, no matter how distracting he was.
That's when Thea told Sara and me that she had a plan to get Carlos, and get him good. We couldn't wait to hear the plan.
This booktalk was written by Joni Richards Bodart, university professor, librarian, consultant, and internationally known booktalking expert.