If I believed in reincarnation, I would’ve thought that my mathematics teacher, Mr Karim would have definitely been a gladiator in ancient Rome, in his previous life. Though he has silvery hair, age hasn’t mellowed his appearance at all. In fact the deep wrinkles and crow’s feet around his eyes make him seem menacing somehow. His posture is ramrod straight and often makes me wonder if it is uncomfortable being that stiff all the time.
When Mr Karim enters our classroom, he walks in as though the leather briefcase that he carries contains highly confidential government documents instead of our test sheets. One stern look from him is enough to silence the entire class. Even the most disobedient students dare not defy his authority. To suit his personality he has a loud, resounding voice that carries itself well to every corner of the classroom.
He teaches mathematics with the passion a warrior would have before heading to war. If any student fails to achieve a passing grade, he or she receives a talk after class. The last student who was subjected to Mr Karim’s talk said that he was shaking in his shoes with fear at the time. Surprisingly, Mr Karim hadn’t resorted to scolding. Instead, he had solemnly elaborated his disappointment and explained how achieving a good grade in mathematics is crucial for a good education that will eventually lead to admission in a good college.
Punctuality is another virtue that Mr Karim abides by. According to him those who do not value time, do not value their lives. I imagine that Mr Karim lives by a timetable that he follows to the exact second. He probably scoffs at people who depend on the snooze button to get five more minutes of sleep. I think it will probably take an earth shattering event to make him late for class.
Despite his stern demeanor, Mr Karim does have quite a few grains of kindness in him. He is known to contribute more than other teachers at fundraising events. Last year he even coached a student for a whole month after school because that student had missed school due to an illness. It is all these qualities that often make students quietly respect him but at the same time be intimidated by his presence for undoubtedly he is a force to be reckoned with during our mathematics class.