This year, I was a teenager. And in eighth grade had a wide disparity of scholastic enjoyment.
Math was fun with the official introduction of geometry, and the "joys" of the quadratic equation.
English and History were crappy with the reading of Dickens (Great Expectations and A Tale of Two Cities), and learning parliamentary procedure for the mock UN.
A Tale of Two Cities came to be my yardstick for crappy books. If I found myself reading only the first sentence of every paragraph, this was not a book I liked.
We also read A Separate Peace, and The Red Badge of Courage. This is also the year that the movies Gandhi and The Outsides came out. We went to see them on field trips for school. They ended up being at the same theater that I saw The Dark Crystal.
Looking back on the horrible school bus situation, I don't know why I didn't ride my bike more often. The school (Crosby Middle) wasn't that far. Not really any farther than Oak Grove in California.
Maybe it had to do with the weather.