"Oh my god buddy, wait until you see this gal. She's got a body to die for." My buddy Ray was doing the speaking, repeating what he'd said for all three strippers that had performed so far. It's what he always said about girls if they were even half way pretty at all. If they weren't very pretty, but had a killer body they were "hot," and if they weren't pretty and had a lousy body, he called them a "skanky bitch." I believe in a certain amount of respect for my fellow human beings and calling someone a "skanky bitch" isn't in my repertoire. The first three girls had been ok as far as I was concerned, but he thought they were "to die for." The other guys had all gone up to the stage and spread a few dollars, so far I'd just been nursing my overpriced beer. The things guys do at bachelor parties.
June is the month for starting new things. For youngsters it's the start of summer; no teacher, no homework, no rules, no parents. For teens, it's pretty much the same, but it's also the three month period where most teen pregnancies are consummated. For the college age crowd, it's the time for the first jobs, summer internships, geology field trips, "studying" abroad and the like. Of course as my good friend Ray used to tell me when we were in college, it is almost always mispronounced as two words; it should not be "Study Abroad" but rather as three words, "Study A Broad." His explanation certainly made a lot of sense, as I can guarantee that the several young ladies that I met on that short - but eventful - summer trip and I did quite a bit of, um... studying together. Suffice it to say I seldom slept alone, and when I didn't -- we didn't get much sleep.
Of course June is also the month where the most weddings occur. High Schools and Universities have graduated; new jobs in new cities are starting, it is a natural time for couples to tie the knot and create lives together. And of course, weddings usually involve a silly ritual: the party. Bachelor and Bachelorette parties, the "last fling," the night on the town with their boyfriends and girlfriends, usually including a trip to strip clubs, Chippendale's, and/or the local whorehouse. Tomorrow they'll take the oath to not fornicate with others, but that's tomorrow. Tonight -- well, let's worry about tomorrow, tomorrow.
For University Professors like me, June is the start of a well-earned vacation. I hadn't been a professor for long, actually having started in the business world where I really enjoyed what I was doing until I got "downsized." Years after I'd walked out of college with a Bachelor's Degree, I returned with 10 years of real world job experience, a newly received PhD, and freshly drawn up divorce papers. What can I say except that my June bride found she liked sucking her bosses cock more than mine. Not an uncommon problem for couples that work different shifts -- she was actually spending more of her day with him than she was with me for quite some time. She was working nights, I was working days -- and even on our off days, she was sleeping when I was awake and vice versa. I wasn't there to see that she wasn't sleeping alone; or that much of the time she wasn't even sleeping at home.
Three years later, here I was a 36 year old divorced professor at a Bachelor Party for Ray's and my mutual friend Jimmy. Ray was one of those guys that everyone knows, the "bad boy" with no filters that would do anything sexual. He knew all the contacts, made all the arrangements, and here we were in a strip bar, our second stop of the night, before we were to head back to the hotel where he'd arranged a suite for us to stay, get totally drunk, totally wasted and party one last time with Jimmy - the single man. Unknown to me at the time, there was also to be a girl who was going to not only give Jimmy a not-so -private lap dance, but was going to strip him naked, tie him to a chair, and fuck him with the other 8 of us watching -- Jimmy's last "official" bit of strange pussy before he got married the following day.
"I swear to God, Rick. Here's some singles, get your ass up to the stage. You're going to fucking love this broad." I found myself standing and pushed by Ray, so I grabbed my beer and moved to one of the seats going along with the flow. All the guys at one time or another had already been up, spreading their dollars so the girls would slide up and shake their naked bodies as close to their lustful eyes as possible. I'd watched the games, seen how they'd push their titties together and use them to grab the proffered bills. The guys would fold the bills so they were hard to grab and hold them between their lips, guaranteeing they'd get their faces stroked with the girl's bare breasts. Or, the girls would lift the edge of their g-strings to allow the guys to slide a bill underneath, practically getting fondled, but always not quite -- at least in the main room. There were always the "private lap dances" in the back where, for a premium, your favorite dancer would shake her booty in your face for a much higher fee than a few bucks. In some places the girls will even let you touch them (to some extent) but that's not supposed to be the case in our area.
"Ladies and Gentlemen, put your hands together for Summer, and coming up next is Brook!" I watched Summer walking around the stage, now naked, stooping and squatting in front of each guy, collecting the remaining money and giving them one last chance to see her naked, shaved bare, pussy. Of course she was saying "thank you" at the same time, making sure the guys got every bit of their money's worth.
Except for seeing movement out of the corner of my eye, I didn't at first pay attention to the new dancer, Brook, as she came on stage; I was busy watching the naked Summer in front of me. When I did look up, I'm sure my mouth fell open. Brook may have been her stage name, but according to my grade book, her name was Linda Simpson.
It's hard to be around a group of people for any period of time without having a favorite. There are co-workers you like, and those you don't. Those you do things with outside of normal working hours, and those you don't; those that become true friends, and stay friends even after you've changed employers, and those who don't. There are acquaintances that you went to school together with, studied with, drank beer with and chased girls with; some became friends, others remained just acquaintances and you've never seen them again. It's true for students and professors alike, both in co-worker and in student/teacher relationships. Sometimes students are just a warm body that fleetingly passes through your life, sometimes they become friends and lifelong acquaintances.
I happen to find that most students like me. Not all; there are always those you don't see eye to eye with, but for the most part I get along with everyone. It's gratifying to have a student come up at the end of the year and ask what classes you're teaching next semester so they can sign up for your class. And when they're as pretty as Linda Simpson -- well, it wasn't hard to like her back.
All I knew about Linda that first semester was that she was a hard worker; she was driven to make more of herself than what she'd come from. I knew she was a single mother, I'd never asked about that, but she'd volunteered on one of her many phone calls as to why she wouldn't be able to be to class and could she please get the homework assignment ahead of time? I also knew she worked nights, she'd mentioned she had to shift her schedule to take the class.
Right from the beginning Linda was definitely one of my favorites. Willing to take a stab at answering any question at any time, she obviously was making an effort to learn, which always makes a student a favorite of the professor. It didn't hurt at all that she was absolutely gorgeous, even without makeup. One of those natural beauties, she had a brown complexion without doing the tanning routine, gorgeous green eyes, and long silky black hair. Her hair was always immaculate, and although she never seemed to wear anything except a lip gloss in class, her lips were the perfect contrast to her skin color. Unlike many of the girls, she never dressed to advertise; she always wore jeans that couldn't hide the fact that she had long legs and a fine ass, and virtually always wore a baggy sweatshirt that almost, but not quite, hid the fact that she had a killer figure beneath. I never heard about her dating; never saw her hanging with other students once classes were over, never saw her around campus. All I knew was that she was totally committed to her daughter and had a bit of a hard edge about her that was never explained.
Only one time did I ever see Linda without the sweatshirt; a heat wave and broken air conditioner mandated opening of the doors for ventilation -- and on that day she took off her sweatshirt. For the first time I realized that Linda wasn't just beautiful but also had a killer body. A simple white blouse encased ample breasts, the slight sway as she'd moved letting me know they were all natural. Her bottom, normally half covered by the sweatshirt, was perfectly proportioned. When she'd stood up at the end of class to put her omnipresent sweatshirt back on she'd faced the wall, but every male eye in the class had observed her as she did. Linda was without a doubt, stunning.
But despite all the obvious effort, all the calls letting me know why she couldn't be there, asking what she could do ahead of time, she hadn't done quite enough, at least not for her. Teaching Math isn't quite as subjective as other courses may be. It's easy to be pretty objective: either you worked the problem and got the right answer, or you didn't.
I'm not a hard ass when it comes to arithmetic errors; I really believe that at the lower levels of Mathematics what we are teaching is tools for use later. We're teaching how to manipulate numbers to get an answer that does something for us or allows us to do something else. But, if you add one plus one and get three, it's pretty cut and dried; the person didn't add correctly. Despite having made an attempt, it wasn't done right and I can't give full credit for wrong answers. By keeping the problems simple, checking for the understanding of concepts and usage of the principles rather than arithmetic mistakes, it's possible for a student to make a few simple arithmetic errors and still get a good grade. But if they're continually adding one plus one and getting three, the cumulative loss of a few points will add up -- and over time their final grade will show it.
I'd informed the entire class beforehand what the grading system would be. 90% for an A, 80% for a B, etc., and what the values were for tests, final exams, pop quizzes and the random homework I collected. I told everyone I don't grade on a curve, it doesn't matter how you do in comparison to everyone else in the class -- it only matters about whether you can, or cannot, do the work. But as an incentive, I told everyone up front that I would calculate their grade-to-date the last week before the final exam and that anyone that had 90% or better would be excused from having to take the final exam -- and get an automatic A. There was therefore big incentive to do the work one quiz and one homework at a time, to not count on just the tests for a good grade. I also pointed out that although the majority of the class was based on the tests, the quizzes and homework were not insignificant; if they didn't get them turned in, they could easily make the difference between a higher grade and a lower one -- which is exactly what happened to Linda.
Her grade calculated out to a B. Most would not normally consider that a bad grade, unless you happen to be one of those people that have really made an effort to get all top grades. Linda hung back after class that day; I could tell she was practically in tears. She said she was shocked; she hadn't realized she'd missed so many of the minor available points, and asked if she got a perfect paper on the final exam, what she'd receive. I made the calculation; even with a perfect exam she could only receive 89% - a B, just a few points short of the needed 90% for the A. The following class she again hung back until everyone else had left and asked to speak to me.
"Even if I get a perfect exam I can't get an A? Is there anything at all I can do to get an A?" she'd started as she handed me a copy of her University transcripts. "I obviously know the material; it's just with my daughter, and being a single mom...," her voice trailed off before she continued. "Sometimes it's just so hard. Is there any extra credit, anything that I can make up at all?" She paused slightly before she finished, "I'll do whatever it takes."
I'd been looking through her transcript as she talked; a transcript unlike any I'd ever seen. Semester after semester, heavy work load after heavy work load, and nothing but A's. Hard classes, easy classes, consecutive class -- she'd gone through three years with nothing but accolades from professors. "Hard Worker!" "Outstanding Work!" "My Top Achiever!" were the notes on the records when I later verified them myself. And now, here I was - the hard ass about to give a girl, a young woman actually, a "failing" grade for a few measly points missed.
I glanced back up at Linda, her words just now coming to mind:I'll do whatever it takes.
I'd heard the tales about an unmentioned professor in another department that was known to never fail the pretty girls, even those that were dumb as a box of rocks. The dirt was that a failing grade would disappear for a blow job; an average grade would become an A for a night with him and his wife who had a penchant for young co-eds herself, and that semester after semester young girls that were on academic probation would take his classes and suddenly find themselves with some better grades.
I had never considered such things myself; it had been years since I'd chased tail just to get laid. I'd been married, I'd been off the market for years, but that wasn't the case any longer. Although I was currently single and had dated a few times, sleeping with my students for grade inflation wasn't in my moral fiber.
"No promises," I said, "but let me take a look. If you get a perfect final exam I'll certainly have a reason to take extenuating circumstances into account." There wasn't anything at that point that I could promise.
I took a look at Linda's class records; it was true what she had told me. Every quiz had a perfect score; either a zero when she didn't take it or full credit when she did. She'd missed a few homework assignments, a few quizzes, but had perfect scores on everything that she'd turned in. She even had perfect scores on three tests, but had made one major error on one of the exams, totally misunderstanding a multi-part problem which had caused her to barely miss getting an A. That one painful error combined with the missing quizzes and homework assignments were enough; if she got a perfect final exam she'd end up after an entire semester, just 7 points out of 1000 below an A.
She pulled off the perfect final exam, which wasn't all that hard to do; any of the others couId have done it if they'd put in the effort that she did. I couldn't bring myself to not give this young woman who had truly put so much effort into doing everything right, an A. I did what I said I'd never do and adjusted the scores -- just because it was the right thing to do. Since she had the high score of those that had been required to take the final exam, I adjusted her overall class score to exactly 90%, and gave the rest of the class the same percentage adjustment. It made a difference to just four students; that slight adjustment brought her up to an A, one other to a B, and two D's suddenly became passing C's. I wasn't sure it was the right thing for the D's -- they really didn't know the material - but if it was fair for Linda, it had to be fair for the others also.
Linda called me the day she received the report card. I recognized her number from all the previous calls I'd received. There was no response after I answered, but after I'd said "Hello, Linda?" a second time she'd said with a quiver in her voice, "I just wanted to say thank you."
"It's not a problem, Linda. You earned it, and I know there are some extenuating circumstances. I couldn't just give you credit without giving everyone the same, so I graded on a curve, made your grade the A line, and adjusted everyone else accordingly. It made a difference for a couple of people." I didn't have to explain, but after saying at the start of the year that I wouldn't, I felt I needed to.
She was silent for a moment. "Dr. B," she started, using the diminutive for the alphabet soup that my parents had bequeathed to me as a last name, "I pay my debts, whatever it takes."
I heard her words and again had absolutely no doubt at all as to what she was offering. This beautiful young woman, probably 14 years my junior was undoubtedly offering me sexual favors in payment for a supposed debt. I admit it, I found her highly attractive. I admit it, if there was any one student that I'd ever fantasized about it was her -- but I also have to hold my head up and look in the mirror every morning.
"Linda, there is no debt. You owe me nothing. I have no doubt that you'll continue to get good grades, and someday I'll be happy to write you a letter of recommendation for anything you ever need."
"Thank You, Mr. B." We talked for a few moments; she told me how her daughter was doing, how she'd been filling out applications for medical school and ended up by telling me she hoped to see me the following semester, she'd already checked to see what class I'd be teaching.
That had been 6 weeks earlier. Now here I was sitting on a stool of a strip bar 60 miles from the University. The girl that had offered herself to me was standing on stage, about to take her clothes off and show me and a room full of other lust filled males the body that she'd hidden so well all those days in class. It was the same well-formed body that had just once been shown to me without a baggy sweatshirt covering it, but had stretched my imagination time and again since then.
With what she already had exposed, there was no doubt from anyone watching that it was a well formed body. The stretchy boy shorts covered her rounded bottom, and the legs that had always been hidden behind jeans, well worn -- not designer, were now bare clear down to the high heels that are de rigueur for the girls on stage. The matching stretch bra that encased her perfectly ample breasts was semi-hidden beneath a see-through chemise.
Her face that around me had previously always been make-up free was definitely no longer unadorned. The amount of makeup was not the overdone painting of the normal stripper; it was just enough to change a plainly beautiful face into one of amazingly exotic beauty. There was no doubt in my mind as to why Ray had raved about this young lady; even with her clothes on (what little there was of that), she was, in a room of pretty women, the most beautiful woman in the room.
Linda didn't recognize me immediately; I was just one of the boys at the bar, but I knew exactly when she did. Her dance routine, which like all the dances included gradually removing what little she had on until she was naked, had a short stutter at one point. She'd just made a spin around the dance floor from brass pole to brass pole, until she'd spun by my position. Suddenly a bend in place, a gyration that turned her back and she looked directly at me. It was not just the glances and smiles that she did for every patron, but the look of recognition, the flash of "Oh Shit" on her face - Linda's face - that said it all. Just that one flash and her face went back to that of "Brook, the Dancer" and for the rest of the routine there was no other sign that she knew who I was. She had her game face on -- and she performed well.