I have met many people over my lifetime. Some were nice and memorable and others memorable for other reasons. Although I met many people, I only met a few teachers. Some teachers were questionable, others were weird and others were interesting, but the most interesting and memorable of all was Mr. Jansen.
Mr. Jansen showed up out of nowhere in the middle of my 7th year at Saint Nicholas Cathedral School. The first thing that impressed me was Mr.Jansens way of talking. He was really straight forward. On the second day, he told my class that he knows that we are ready to leave school but we shouldn’t give up as each day counts. Every day he told my class “Don’t be like Andrew Rubin.” Andrew Rubin was his friend who didn’t attend his classes when school was ending and that stopped him from graduating.
I can never forget the time when I forgot to do my assignment. I was scared, as at that time, I already knew he was very strict about homework. I was thinking of lying to him that I had forgotten it at home but I decided against it. Then I went into the class and told him that I had forgotten to do it and he straight up told me to lie. He didn’t care about how ridiculous the story was, he just wanted to hear something fun. Since then, I respected him because he was able to understand my situation and somehow make me feel less bad about it. Mr.Jansen also told us stories from his life. Everyday I would come to class and look forward to his stories. I remember the time when Mr.Jansen told my class the story of him trying to find his way in Japan. It was nothing special but he himself made this story an
Mr.Jansen wasn’t fun the entire time, he was very strict. He hated general words such as:we, us, and like. To this day I never use these words. I can also remember when my class didn’t listen to him. That day no one had fun. Mr.Jansen lectured us for a full hour and then assigned all the class work for homework. At that time I was angry at him as it was a giant amount of work. Now I realize that this situation has taught me a lot about high school and how I should act. It taught me to always listen to my instructors and to always respect them. Because if it wasn’t for them I would not know anything.
Although these situations taught me a lot, nothing has taught and inspired me as much as Mr.Jansen himself. He was very simple, usually wearing a blue collar shirt and vanilla-colored pants. The most inspiring thing Mr.Jansen taught me was how not to care what other people think. Mr.Jansen told us that when he was getting married he wore a shirt and jeans. Although I think this is barbaric, I can’t help but feel impressed by his courage and boldness. You might think he was lying but he showed us pictures and he was telling the truth.
You might have never gotten the chance to meet and learn from Mr.Jansen, but from my experience I can tell you that Mr.Jansen is an amazing person. I will miss Mr.Jansen when I go to high school as his stories and his ability to make lessons fun were very helpful in teaching me and letting me understand the English language. Mr. Jansen will always stay in my heart as a fun and very knowledgeable individual.
Zakharii Kovalchuk – St. Ignatius College Prep – DMSF Class of 2027