Boston Public
Chapter Forty-One

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It's My Party, And I'll Bring A Twenty-Year-Old Former Student If I Want To

Out on the terrace, Scott and Steven are chatting rather politely about the race issue. "I may sound like a bigot," Scott is saying, "but I think there's a code, yes." "Among blacks to promote other blacks?" "At least not to exclude them, yes. There's a duty to promote the cause." The cause being? "Equality. I don't disapprove; on the contrary, I find consolation in it, it's less a reflection on me, Marla's being on the list." Steven assures Scott that Marla is on the list because she has the qualifications to lead, and that, while she may be erratic, she gives good speeches to students and parents. Which we know, since we've seen, like, eight of them this year. Then he turns his attention to Scott: "I don't really know who you are, Scott. I don't. I love you. And you're the best assistant principal I could ever hope for. But…Scott, you're about rule and regulations, you're about order and discipline, you're about schedules and budgets, I don't really have a feel for what Scott Guber the man stands for." Stung, Scott says that that's a pity, and heads inside.

He goes into the bathroom, where he finds Lauren, also there to be by herself. He's crying, and blames it on allergies. "Oh. Yeah. That's why I came in. Allergies." Scott laughs. "Great party." "Wonderful."

Out in the living room, more stuff happens. Dick Teachie heads out onto the terrace to talk to Steven.

"What do you want?" "I don't know. I thought maybe I could walk you to the parking lot." Anyway, Teachie explains to Steven that he doesn't get to sulk, because he and the other teachers are the hurt ones, because Steven is leaving. "It's my life, Danny, I don't have to put it out for a referendum." "Oh, that's crap. A lot of the teachers in there, they signed up for you. That's why I did, and you know it. You big baby." Steven smiles. "What did you just call me?" Teachie references Dana Poole's "you people don't know what you have" speech, and explains that Steven needs the trenches of Winslow to give him his precious integrity. "I'd like to see you survive without the combat," he says. "And I find it kinda odd, since for a teacher, it's what you give that you're actually getting. I don't know anyone who gives more than you. But. You know. You go have fun. Let me know what it's like at your big private school."

Back inside, DaveKelley's child is doing karaoke.

In the bathroom, Lauren asks if Scott was complimenting her with the remark about her high standards, and he assures her that he was. "We both look at discipline itself as a greater good. The way you do your hair, for example. The precision. The detail. You have a vision. Others may see your perfectionism as a liability; I assure you, I don't. I think I've had too much wine. I apologize. Still trying to drown Steven's words." Lauren says, "I do not believe Steven's words at all. I've always had a feel for Scott Guber the man." Yeah? Yeah. As Dick Teachie might say, "Oh, that's crap." But that was a nice moment between them, I guess.

Steven calls everyone to attention in the living room, and gives a big speech. Just then, all the students whose lives he's had an impact on come into the room and thank him, gratefully. No, but they might as well. Instead, he talks for a few minutes about all the mean things he's been called tonight. He also essentially lists all the events that have happened tonight, which we all SAW. And then Harvey says, "We don't need for you to review things, Steven. I've got it all on tape." Yeah, dude, SO DO I. Wait a minute…shout-out? Anyway, Steven says: "If there's anything I'm sure of…the truth is…I feel that any one of you in this room would make a fine principal. I do. Except for you, Harvey, I'm sorry to have to say that. But you're…" Jewish? "Yeah, that's it." Blah blah blah he's lucky to be at Winslow, and he's in awe of the teachers, and sometimes they teach him more than he teaches them. In short: "This has been…a horrible night. I mean, the kind of horrible night we'll all look back on as the good old times. You know, it's rare to get coworkers in a room and have them be so upfront with each other with their feelings." Then he keeps talking more. "This is some group. I am so proud to lead you. And I'm not going anywhere. Yet. SO. Um. What else. Happy birthday, Harry." Marla asks if they can dance now, and The Exposition Fairy puts on music and sings.

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Boston Public

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