THE FUNNIEST MASTER
A salute from Jim Ewing, C'57, who according to school historian/master teacher Ben Snyder, "would have been a comfortable fit in the '49ers. His take-off on the Wombat is worth a chuckle."
  Carl G. Wonnberger   
  Carl G. Wonnberger   

"History class brought us Time magazine for current affairs. We left Ben Snyder's class, as I recall, and headed upstairs for Senior English with Carl Wonnberger.  Carl was death on Time magazine.  I hope Carl never had to deal with People magazine.  Anyway, Sig Snyder '57 (anyway I think it was Sig) during a writing exercise or a quiz or something tried to sneak a peek at a corner of the fifth page down in the magazine.  Carl caught him out of the corner of his eye and made a move at a speed that I surely didn't think Carl capable of. He sprang from his chair to rip the offending rag from Sig's hand.  The unexpected bit was the wastebasket that Carl stepped in on the way.  Hilarity ensued.  A group howling with laughter, in rapture, without making a sound.

"I think I loved Wonnberger most. He gave us a quiz one day and promptly fell asleep and, I guess, fell out of his chair to the floor.  Crash.  We all looked up to see him gone. No one said a word.  One hand appeared on the desk.  Another.  Carl's wondrous, radiant, and alarm-red countenance next.  'Shut up and get back to work.' Enough said.

"Late spring, Bermuda shorts had just been permitted by our keepers.  Albeit with long socks. So we looked like modern-day post office deliverers, or more romantically, some sort of proper British desert explorer or military types.  Anyway, Carl thought we had all become completely gay.  He waved his handkerchief our way.  Chided us. The word 'pansy' crossed his lips as I recall.  It got more intense each day.  One day, he decided to join us and dropped his trousers and continued teaching in his boxers, shirt-tails flying with the garters for his socks so glaringly evident.  More amazement, hilarity, even a kind of joy I think at the reality of this obviously gifted, while very weird, and gentle, man.  This was all cool.  No pun.  Until Harry Hoey's secretary showed up through the back-door of the classroom.  She took one look and said, "Oh for God's sake, Carl!", turned on her heel and retreated. Invoking the Creator's name was pretty racy at the time for the establishment.  Carl became a real guy for me that day.  He let us in on something completely nuts and when the secretary walked in, we were all part of his loony gig.  Swell."

 Related links:

Hat Tips

http://schools.cranbrook.edu/ftpimages/209/misc/misc_21188.pdf

Jim Ewing C '57
Jim Ewing C '57
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