Sir? Oh, yas, sir; he b’longs to all three schools—to fo’ for that matter, countin’ the home school.
You see, Sonny he’s purty ticklish to handle, an’ a person has to know thess how to tackle him. Even wife an’ me, thet’s been knowin’ him f’om the beginnin’, not only knowin’ his traits, but how he come by ’em,—though some is hard to trace to their so’ces,—why, sir, even we have to study sometimes to keep in with him, an’ of co’se a teacher—why, it’s thess hit an’ miss whether he’ll take the right tack with him or not; an’ sometimes one teacher’ll strike it one day, an’ another nex’ day; so by payin’ schoolin’ for him right along in all three, why, of co’se, ef he don’t feel like goin’ to one, why, he’ll go to another.
Once-t in a while he’ll git out with the whole of ’em, an’ that was how wife come to open the home school for him. She was determined his edjercation shouldn’t be interrupted ef she could help it. She don’t encour’ge him much to go to her school, though, ’cause it interrupts her in her housekeepin’ consider’ble, an’ she’s had extry quilt-patchin’ on hand ever since he come. She’s patchin’ him a set ’ginst the time he’ll marry.
‘An’ then I reckon he frets her a good deal in school. Somehow, seems like he thess picks up enough in the other schools to be able to conterdic’ her ways o’ teachin’.
F’ instance, in addin’ up a colume o’ figgers, ef she comes to a aught—which some calls ’em naughts—she’ll say, “Aught’s a aught,” an’ Sonny ain’t been learned to say it that a-way; an’ so maybe when she says, “Aught’s a aught,” he’ll say, “Who said it wasn’t!” an’ that puts her out in countin’.
He’s been learned to thess pass over aughts an’ not call their names; and once-t or twice-t, when wife called ’em out that a-way, why, he got so fretted he thess gethered up his things an’ went to another school. But seem like she’s added aughts that a-way so long she can’t think to add ’em no other way.
I notice nights after she’s kept school for Sonny all day she talks consider’ble in her sleep, an’ she says, “Aught’s a aught” about ez often ez she says anything else.
Oh, yas, sir; he’s had consider’ble fusses with his teachers, one way an’ another, but they ever’one declare they think a heap of ’im.
Sir? Oh, yas, sir; of co’se they all draw their reg’lar pay whether he’s a day in school du’in’ the month or not. That’s right enough, ’cause you see they don’t know what day he’s li’ble to drop in on ’em, an’ it’s worth the money thess a-keepin’ their nerves strung for ’im.
Well, yas, sir; ‘t is toler’ble expensive, lookin’ at it one way, but lookin’ at it another, it don’t cost no mo’ ’n what it would to edjercate three child’en, which many poor families have to do—an’ more—which in our united mind Sonny’s worth ’em all.
Yas, sir; ‘t is confusin’ to him in some ways, goin’ to all three schools at once-t.