Here’s your feel-good fun-time story of the day! Paris Gray, a painfully bright senior at Mundy’s Mill High School in Clayton County, Georgia, made a pretty cool science joke in her yearbook:
When the going gets tough just remember to Barium, Carbon, Potassium, Thorium, Astatine, Arsenic, Sulfur, Uranium, Phosphorus.
And just in case you don’t have your Periodic Table handy (what is WRONG with you?), that would be:
It’s a pretty nifty little joke, and many thanks to Gawker for reminding us that “Back That Ass Up” was a 1999 hit by Juvenile, a song which exhorted callipygian young women to gyrate their heinies. Paris, it should be noted, insists that she had another, less salacious meaning to her quote (or at least she thought of one once she got in trouble, because, come on, high school), telling the Atlanta teevee station, “Basically, it was me just saying start all over again … You have to go back and start all over.”
OK, and then this is where we get to the not-nice-at-all part: Once school administrators realized that the school’s precious yearbook had been besmirched by a coded BAD WORD, they went into full disciplinary fascist panic mode and came down on poor Paris Gray like the proverbial Million Pound Shithammer. She got an in-school suspension. She was barred from participating in the “senior walk,” whatever ghastly abomination of a school tradition that is. And she was almost banned from graduation, where she had been scheduled to give an inspirational speech, but apparently that is a privilege reserved for obedient boys and girls, not for science-fueled filthmongers.
Paris, who’s also senior class vice president, was understandably upset, and told WSB, “It just completely destroyed me, and my mom’s been telling me don’t let it ruin my happiness but it’s like really taking a big toll.”
Let us also just say that we are in Parenting Love with Paris’s mom, Zarinah Woods, because epic perspective: She said, “My first reaction was, you are such a nerd.”
Happily, an update posted to WSB-TV Tuesday night tells us the Rest Of The Story:
Paris Gray and her family met with the school’s principal and the area superintendent on Tuesday. They apologized for the miscommunication and said they would not deny her giving a speech at graduation. The superintendent challenged her to “give the best speech ever.”
Good call, superintendent and principal — the school already looked like petty jerks, but at least you came to your senses and stopped digging. And now Paris has a topic for her first paper in Freshman Comp.
Keep nerding, Paris.
Follow Doktor Zoom on Twitter. He figures there’s going to be a lot of fluorine, uranium, carbon, and potassium in the comments on this one.