This is from lyl, who can’t actually think of any yetzer hara she has that is greater than her yetzer hara for doing well on tests.
I was sitting in the back of the classroom in “Da Ma SheTashuv” class (“Know What to Answer an Apikores” class — that’s another story in itself) flipping through flashcards, preparing for my upcoming Chumash test.
The teacher, flowing up and down the aisles as she speaks, catches me, and pauses to glare. “What’s that?” she asks.
It turns out that when teachers ask “What’s that?” they actually mean, “Put that away.” It’s a rhetorical question, and if you are dumb enough to answer it, you risk getting kicked out of class. (That happened to me.) You’re supposed to look ashamed, mumble an apology, and shove the offending item away as quickly as possible without making eye contact. But I hadn’t caught on to this yet, so I said “Flashcards. For studying.”
She glared at me, at which point I mumbled an apology and shoved the offending items away as quickly as possible without making eye contact.
“You can learn a lot about a person from their yetzer hara,” she observed.
“Studying Chumash?” I clarified. It wasn’t exactly my most pressing yetzer hara, but I would take the credit for it.
Later, the grade mechanechet pulled me out to discuss this incident in classroom management. It had merited being shared, I guess, because it involved more than one teacher. In this case, the mechanechet informed me, the Chumash teacher should perhaps get involved, and deduct points from my forthcoming test.
“For studying?” I squeaked. This seemed a bit much.
And it was, because it never happened. It was just an empty threat, like so many of them were.