No joke: Teacher fired for practicing wizardry


There are some times — I like to call them “weekdays” and “weekends” — when I worry that humanity has gone crazy enough to really, really need a straitjacket and padded cell.

Substitute teacher Jim Piculas does a 30-second magic trick where a toothpick disappears then reappears.

But after performing it in front of a classroom at Rushe Middle School in Land ‘O Lakes (Florida), Piculas said his job did a disappearing act of its own.

“I get a call the middle of the day from the supervisor of substitute teachers. He says, ‘Jim, we have a huge issue. You can’t take any more assignments. You need to come in right away,'” he said.

When Piculas went in, he learned his little magic trick cast a spell that went much farther than he’d hoped.

“I said, ‘Well Pat, can you explain this to me?’ ‘You’ve been accused of wizardry,’ [he said]. Wizardry?” he asked.

Tampa Bay’s 10 talked to the assistant superintendent with the Pasco County School District who said it wasn’t just the wizardry and that Picular had other performance issues, including “not following lesson plans” and allowing students to play on unapproved computers.

When middle school students, parents, and administrators can no longer tell the difference between really simple sleight-of-hand magic tricks and eldritch Gandolfian Magic-missile-flinging sorcery, we need to rethink our current concept of education.

And really, doesn’t that “not following lesson plans” and “letting kids play on unapproved computers” sound like the administration suddenly realized how stupid they looked and had to dig up something they could use for cover? Bah, humans, you must all be smote with fire, I swear.

Please, Florida, write this down somewhere: The Eye of Agamotto is not real. The Helmet of Fate is fictional. Harry Potter doesn’t really exist. And making a toothpick disappear doesn’t mean you’ve obtained unearthly powers from Satan.

Comments are closed.