In the eighth grade in junior high school my science teacher, Mrs. Graves (nee Ms. Hare) talked about the florence flask, a common item in labs. One of the students in the class, David Freund mentioned that his mother’s name was Florence.
I think Mrs. Graves was friendly with my seventh grade English teacher, Joanne Altus. I vaguely recall that after an evening school program, Ms. Altus and Mrs. Graves drove home together. Ms. Altus’s father was a pharmacist, John Altus. She had graduated from Girls High School. In June 1967 Ms. Altus wrote on my report card: “Gary is a hard working English student.” Do you hear that, David Callet? A hard working English student.
I have to laugh at my crazy primary care doctor who thought my interest in personal details about him was suspicious. I’m curious about everybody–every minor detail. People think that my behaviors are specific to them. If I know things about a person or remember things about a person, it doesn’t reflect a general personality trait in me, it means I have some special interest in the person. If I work hard, it is not a personality trait, it’s intended to impress a particular employer. Psychiatrists have a word for that. It’s called paranoia. I think people are in love with me, that’s what I think.