"Don't give me any of that Socratic bullshit Mister Christian!"
Shawn Siegel was staring straight at the assistant principal with a look that could put fear into any staff member at Closter High School. In fact he had once made the choir teacher cry just by staring at her during a heated exchange.
Shawn wasn't a big boy. Just five foot eight and about one hundred fifty pounds if you included his thick leather jacket that wreaked of body odor. He had been caught going off campus with a sophomore girl in a brand new 1997 Acura Integra and five days of detention were already on the docket for him. The girl would get five of her own and she would not have Shawn to keep her company. Boys and girl detentions were in different rooms at Closter High,
"Look Shawn. The rules are the rules! You don't make the rules. The school makes the rules and if you break the rules you get punished. You think that's unfair? Tough luck!"
Shawn had a temperament that came straight out of a German father and a Jersey upbringing. When Shawn was pissed, he had an unpredictable nature about him that made a lot of folks wonder exactly where his mind was going. Shawn minced a bad temper with words that came straight out of a thick dictionary.
Jack Christian had never seen anyone quite like Shawn before, and after 32 years in administration, Jack had pretty much seen it all and then some. Siegel was smart as hell and incredibly nice when he was in a good mood. A good kid at heart. But that kid was as tightly wound as a grenade and when he exploded, it was almost as if Jack was dealing with a 40 year old intellectual psychoapth. And God did he hate dealing with a hormonal psycho who talked like a professor.
"Why can't you understand that the rules apply to everyone Shawn?"
"Apply to everyone? The hell you say!" They don't apply to you or anyone else who isn't a student. I can fight and die for my country but I can't go across the street and buy a pizza? That's pretty damn insane and you damn well know it Mr. Christian!"
Shawn had stood up from his chair, and without knowing it, had moved halfway between his chair and Mr. Christian. He was shaking with rage in a way that Mr. Christian took as a mental edge between the verbal and physical. If Shawn exploded, it would be hell for the both of them. Thankfully,the door was just a step away and Jeff opened it so that Shawn would know that his next move would be seen by the secretary.
He waited a moment, and then gave Shawn the very words that would change his life forever.
"You're a better man than this Shawn. Let me tell you that this world is going to be unfair to you in so many ways. Your friends and family may sleep in the dirt to no fault of their own. That girl you took out? She may be the best thing ever or the worst. I have seen the worst of people and the best of people and there's only one thing that separates the two. Rules. The ones who respect the rules are the only ones who win. Think about that Shawn."
Mr. Christian walked out and went straight to his secretary, leaving Shawn with a chance to cool down and take in the advice. He stood for about two minutes, and then walked out of the office to face the final two classes of the day - Social Studies and P.E.
Later that evening, Shawn went to the movies with a sophomore girl named Leslie. One thing lead to another, and within 15 minutes of leaving the movie theater both of them were naked in the back seat of the Integra.
"Sweetie, I don't have a condom.", Shawn could tell that Leslie wanted sex as badly as he did. But grad school in his family was a given and Shawn had three brothers and two parents who would break him in half if he did anything stupid."
"I'm ready if you are. We'll do the rhythm method. How about it?" - Leslie was already a C cup and had an ass that was rock hard thanks to a never ending regimen of cheer and aerobics. Shawn had never seen anyone as hot as Leslie but in that moment of anticipation, something unexpected happened.
Shawn lost his erection. Completely. Almost like his dick had been shot. When Leslie offered the invitation, that conversation he had with Mr. Christian earlier in the day began to ricochet in his mind.
"The rules. I'm fucking up if I'm fucking her." Shawn thought to himself.
"Why don't we do everything but?"
"Why don't we do everything and the butt?"
His dick stinking in shit? Why do people have these fantasies?
"How about if you lay back and I give you a reason to smile?" Shawn said, and with that he began to give her the pleasure that would be returned ten minutes later. Twenty minutes later they were both fully satisfied and Shawn dropped her off at home and began a forty minute drive back to his parent's house.
He didn't think about anything on that drive except whatever Bruce Springsteen and Bob Seger were bellowing on the four speakers of the Integra. Shawn was a classic rock guy, but he also had a short memory when it came to confrontations. By the next day Shawn was back to being the nice guy that everyone liked and he even gave a "Hey!" to Mr. Christian as he passed him on the hallway.
"Remember the rules Shawn!", Mr. Christian said with his devilish grin. The strange thing is Shawn did remember that remark in a way that teenagers store life lessons for their future use. After graduating from high school, Shawn went to Berkeley and majored in finance. Right after college Shawn began a job as a junior financial analyst at Apple where he stowed away nearly all of his savings into Apple stock. Every. Single. Week.
Shawn's new motto in life, "Pick the best. Fuck the rest." would serve him well as he decided to just keep his Integra as long as he could while dumping his money into a retirement at 40.
Last week Shawn cashed out just over $7 million in Apple stock and traded in his 1997 Acura Integra with 340,455 miles. He bought himself this.