Mrs. Cooney, the school nurse, is a knockout -- and A.J. has a crush on her! But are her charms just a cover for her secret identity as an international spy? Will A.J.'s love for Mrs. Cooney win out over his love for the good old USA?
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May 29, 2005
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Excerpt from My Weird School #7: Mrs. Cooney Is Loony! by Dan Gutman
I Was a Genius!
My name is A.J. and I hate school.
The worst part about second grade is math. I don't get it. If we have calculators, why do we need to learn math? That's like walking to school when you could ride your bike. It makes no sense, if you ask me.
"Who can tell me what two times ten equals?" asked my teacher, Miss Daisy. A few kids raised their hands. I didn't. Miss Daisy called on this crybaby girl Emily, who has red hair.
"Miss Daisy, I don't feel very well," Emily said. "Can I go to the nurse's office?"
"Rest your head on your desk for a few minutes, Emily," said Miss Daisy. "If you don't feel better, you can go see Mrs. Cooney."
Emily put her head on her desk.
"Now who can tell me what two times ten equals?" Miss Daisy asked again. "A.J.?" I had no idea what two times ten equalled. I didn't know what to say. I didn't know what to do. I had to think fast.
I knew that two plus two is four. And I knew that two times two is also four. So I knew that addition and multiplication were pretty much the same thing.
I also knew that two plus ten equals twelve. So two times ten must equal twelve too.
"Twelve?" I guessed.
"Sorry, A.J.," said Miss Daisy.
"Oooh, I know!" said Andrea Young, this really annoying girl with curly brown hair. She was waving her hand back and forth like it was on fire. "Call on me, Miss Daisy. Please?"
Andrea thinks she knows everything. I wish I could punch her.
But nah-nah-nah boo-boo on her, because Andrea didn't get the chance to answer. At that very moment, the most amazing thing in the history of the world happened.
Emily got up from her seat really fast. She ran to the window. And then she threw up!
It was cool. Me and my friends Michael and Ryan looked at each other and tried not to laugh. I was glad that I wasn't walking under that window when Emily threw up.
After she finished puking her guts out, Emily ran out of the room crying.
"Go to Mrs. Cooney's office, Emily!" Miss Daisy yelled to her. Then Miss Daisy went to the intercom and told Mrs. Cooney that Emily was on her way down there.
It took a few minutes for all of us to stop talking about what had happened.
I mean, it wasn't every day that a kid tossed her cookies out the window. I was sure Miss Daisy would forget all about math after that.
But no way.
"Now, A.J., try to figure it out," Miss Daisy said. "Two times ten. Two tens. We went over this. Think hard."
So I thought hard. I thought and I thought and I thought.
This is what I thought--Emily is going to get to go home. She doesn't have to sit through math. That lucky stiff.
My friend Billy around the corner who was in second grade last year told me about this kid in his class who got to go home from school after he sneezed with his eyes open and his eyeballs fell out. Right out of his head!
I wasn't sure if that was true, but I did know one thing. If you get sick, you get to go home. I didn't want my eyeballs to fall out of my head, but I wanted to go home. I wanted to get out of math.
I started moaning.
"A.J, are you okay?" asked Miss Daisy.
"I don't feel well," I said. "I think I might have to throw up out the window. I think I'm gonna die."
"There must be something going around," said Miss Daisy. "Go to Mrs. Cooney's office! And hurry!"
I was a genius! On my way out of the class, I winked at Ryan and Michael.
"So long, suckers!" I whispered. "Have fun in math!"
I had been to the nurse's office a few times before. Once I fell off the monkey bars in the playground and landed on my head. I had to go to the hospital and everything. It was cool. The doctor took an X-ray of my brain, but he told me he didn't find anything. Then he laughed even though he didn't say anything funny. Getting out of math wasn't the only reason I wanted to go to Mrs. Cooney's office. There was another reason.
But I can't tell you what it is.
I shouldn't be telling you.
Okay, I'll tell you. But you have to promise not to tell anybody else or you're going to die as soon as the words leave your lips.
Here it is.
Mrs. Cooney is the most beautiful lady in the history of the world.
The foregoing is excerpted from My Weird School #7: Mrs. Cooney Is Loony! SNY by Dan Gutman, and Jim Paillot. All rights reserved. No part of this book may be used or reproduced without written permission from HarperCollins Publishers, 10 East 53rd Street, New York, NY 10022