Patrick's 4th and 5th grade teacher, Mr. Lenkart, used points as an incentive to read. The students would earn points based on the number of pages in a book they'd read. You could get double points if you read what he considered "classic literature" (i.e., not "The Babysitters Club"). Triple points could be earned if you read a book on a subject they were currently studying. For instance Patrick read a book about the Civil War when that was their social studies topic.
A couple times throughout the year Mr. Lenkart would tote in lots of second-hand stuff, the kind of things one might buy at flea markets or garage sales. (Mr. Lenkart and family had an antique store so I imagine he picked these things up when shopping for the store.) He would auction these objects and the students would use their book points to "win" them. Patrick brought home many things he had won with a top bid ... a fake Jenga game, notepads (those were really handy and I'm still using one), and lots and lots of stuffed animals. (Most of those animals were recently given to a Parkland colleague who used them for Bingo prizes at a nursing home where she volunteers.) Jewelry was really popular with the girls.
One day I watched as Patrick and his friends headed for home after getting off the school bus across the street. I could see one of them lugging a giant stuffed gorilla and I hoped it did not belong to Patrick. My wish was granted and one of his friends took it home. My relief lasted only until the next auction when Patrick carried in a giant stuffed rabbit.
Professional wrestling was very popular among the 4th-5th grade boys at this time, and Patrick used Bunny for an opponent. He would pile-drive him, clobber him, pummel him, try to twist his stubby little arms and legs behind his back. Patrick always won. In the process he literally beat the stuffing out of non-complaining Bunny, hence the tape. When wrestling was no longer popular, Bunny was relegated to a corner of Patrick's room and became a repository for stickers.
But a boy and his bunny must say good-bye. Patrick returned to start his second year at the University of Illinois, and today Bunny "went to the railroad."
We sadly bid adieu to Bunny and fondly remember the many happy hours Patrick spent beating the crap out of him. Bunny leaves wide-eyed and still with his goofy grin, on to that great playground in the beyond.