Gov. Jerry Brown has regaled audiences young and old with stories about his childhood. So he didn't have to reach deep into his repertoire Tuesday when asked to reflect on a moment he shared with an educator.
"I can tell you a lot of teacher stories," Brown told students at Jefferson Elementary in Natomas. The governor appeared alongside former Commerce Secretary Mickey Kantor and former Los Angeles Deputy Mayor Austin Beutner to discuss an expansion of Beutner's program to provide free eye exams and complimentary glasses to children in low-income neighborhoods.
"I think my ears weren't very clean and the teacher dragged me over to the sink and washed my ears out," Brown said of his time at St. Brendan's. "She thought I hadn't quite gotten ready to go to school."
He then turned to the students with a query of his own.
"Do your teachers ever do that? Do they ever say: "Your shirt isn't clean? Or, your hair isn't combed? Or maybe you didn't wash your face?'
"Good, because if you don't, the teacher may do it for you," Brown said.
Earlier in the morning, Brown was asked to share a memory from Nov. 22, 1963, the day President John F. Kennedy was shot in Dallas. Brown said he was in a classroom studying commercial transactions at Yale Law School.
He described learning about the shooting as shocking and remembered later joining his father, who was California governor at the time, in Washington for the services.
"It shook my sense of how the world works, and how America works," he said. "It's hard to find the right words to describe it."
PHOTO: Gov. Jerry Brown announced his office has come to an agreement with four leaders of the Legislature on a prison housing plan. (The Sacramento Bee/Hector Amezcua)