I stop mid-sentence, look at him, say "are you registered?" No, just thought he'd try to get in. I tell him and another student I'll talk to them after class and continue on. I assign a short in-class writing assignment which I collect at the end of class. I'm having one of those moments of weakness, where it's easier just to let another student in than turn them away, so I tell him, and one other student who showed up that day--only she arrived early and participated during the class--that if they want to add the class, they should send me their information right away and I'll get it forward it to the registrar.
Next day, I've heard nothing from this student and assume he changed his mind. Then I read the papers. First of all, he can't write. He really, really, really can't write. Every word is mispelled and the handwriting is so bad, I can barely make out the words. I'm worried about his ability to do the work, since this is a writing-intensive class.
Then I see it, very legible, in the margin of the paper. "Go fuck yourself." Okay, so he definitely didn't like this class. Good riddance and god help you if I ever see you in the halls, because I WILL confront you.
Day three. I open my e-mail and there's a message from him with his information. He thanks me for letting him add the class and says he's looking forward to seeing me in class today.
NO way. I write back:
"I was under the impression that you weren't interested in taking the class, especially after you scribbled "go fuck yourself" in the margin of the paper you handed in at the end of last class. I don't think this class is going to be a good fit for you and that you should find another class."
His response? "You must have me confused with someone else. I'm a Christian." Of course he's waiting for me when I arrive for office hours. He continues to deny writing anything until I show him the paper and then he just stares and stares and stares. He says he doesn't remember writing that, and then that he didn't mean it, and then that he was doodling.
Whatever. I didn't let him into the class, so he immediately ran down to one of my colleagues and tried to convince her to intercede for him. This led to awkward conversation with her later in the day, over the copy machine. I showed her the paper. She raised her eyebrows and shook her head.