Back in my other-school teaching days, I had some awesome students (not that the current ones are not great, but with a small school came some great connections).
At one point, an alliance of at least two of my students captured my stapler. They vowed to return it to me only if I put a set amount of money in an unclaimed locker. I figured out who took my treasured teacher supply. Actually, I really didn't care about the stapler... even in my early years of teaching I had enough money to go out and buy a new one. I was just hoping not to have a Milton Waddams event on my hands.
I guess I deserved them taking the stapler. If I remember correctly, I was able to convince some from that, and perhaps another, graduating class that my name was actually 90.7nsxtfewtq (or something to that affect). I told them that my parents loved the local NPR station, were extreme hippies, and wanted me to have a unique name that was spelled non-phonetically with lots of silent letters.
A week or so after the stapler disappeared, it was back in my room somewhere (of course not on my desk... there were no teacher desks in those rooms - not allowed by the administration).
I was happy to have it back.
When it came back, it had a different look. No longer was it a simple beige and brown stapler.
Five or six years later and at a new school, I still have that stapler and it opens up conversations and reminds me of good laughs with former students - several of which are now on their way to becoming excellent teachers and coaches themselves.
This stapler has always brought a smile to my face.
Except when students smashed the eyes as they slam the top of the machine down on their papers or made the stapler jam to the point of no return.
Since the stapler has been nothing but a paperweight on my bookshelf for the past 2 1/2 years, today I did the unthinkable.
Today, I followed through with my plan to minimize my life.
Today, I threw away my most favorite stapler of all time.
Fortunately, I did not throw away all the memories and hopes for those great former-students!