BUTTE, MT-Veteran science teacher Wayne Brumfeld was reportedly called "cool" by a student in his remedial biology class at Butte High School yesterday. Brumfeld, 56, is the first non-humanities teacher in the state of Montana to receive such an honor.
"It took me by complete surprise," said Brumfeld, whose teaching career has spanned three decades "It's both humbling and reassuring to receive student recognition at a time when the taxpayers want to replace us with robots."
The teacher's breakthrough occurred during the waning minutes of seventh period on Wednesday afternoon. According to multiple sources, Brumfeld was wrapping up another one of his "lame lectures" when an unidentified pupil hurled a "nasty, half-peeled orange" at his head. Brumfeld reportedly snatched the orange out of the air, casually flicked it into a trash bin over 15 feet away, and told the student, "Nice try, slick."
"I don't know what came over me," Brumfeld said, "but I'm glad it did. That punk has had it coming to him all semester."
Junior basketball star Darius Mitchell was impressed by his teacher's athletic prowess.
"Who knew the old guy had skills like that?" Mitchell said. "I mean, him being so clumsy and out of shape and all."
"And slow," senior Theresa Hart added. Hart admitted that her teacher showed unusual composure in the situation, but she considered his use of the word "slick" as "subtle bullying."
Principal Natalie Stern held an impromptu assembly to present Brumfeld with a plaque honoring his achievement. Referring to Brumfeld's awkward jokes, ill-fitting slacks, and "utter lack of student rapport," Stern called the instructor a "highly unlikely candidate" for such a rare distinction. Still, she congratulated him on handling the orange incident in-house and not "unloading all his problem students on me like he usually does."
When interviewed, none of the 23 students in the biology class would admit to calling Brumfeld "cool."
"Someone definitely used the word,'" said Junior Eddie Phelps, "but it wasn't me. What that man did with that piece of fruit---it bordered on cool, sure. But is he cool? Naw, man. Not even close."
Some students contended that the actual word was not "cool," but a word that rhymed with it, such as "fool," "tool," or the unlikely "spool."
"Nonsense!" Brumfeld told reporters. "I know what I heard, and I heard 'cool.'"
When asked if Brumfeld's new status would change the way they view their teacher, students shook their heads adamantly.
"He's still the same person we've always known," said junior Chas Robey. "If I saw him coming towarc me at the mall, I'd still walk the other way."