“Third line” encompasses a veritable potpourri of service, but I will stick to the privileges I witnessed or participated in. “School” chooses some students to prepare snacks for the plebes and serve the royalty their special, homemade, pre-class soup and beverages of choice on class nights — all the more opportunity to “work on oneself” and struggle to create “fineness” in life. The chosen must give special care to preparing Robert’s coffee. It must be made in a French press using an exact measurement of Starbucks Decaf, which is kept aside for him alone. Allow it to brew for four minutes with the press in place. Very important! Don’t leave the press resting to the side!
During “class”, selected “students” — mostly women — serve teachers their preferred snacks and drinks. I vaguely remember hearing Robert ream out one of these women for not meeting the standard. He reminded her that her servitude was a privilege. Some part of me woke up to the intentional and unnecessary public humiliation. Another part of me wondered if this was somehow helpful to her in a way I couldn’t yet understand. Then, of course, the fear of speaking up and calling Robert out on anything prevented me from questioning his method. With highly effective behavior-controlling techniques in full swing, no one else questioned it either in a class of more than thirty “students”. Even so, to this day, I still regret my silence.
Apparently Sharon’s public humiliations are far crueler and her demands exponentially more ridiculous. Former students tell of a woman who—during “school retreats”– abandons particular students of whom she’s grown tired in a remote woods, leaving them for days to fend for food and shelter. They tell of a woman who orders her minions to count the calories in her meals and the numbers of ice cubes in her drinks. These are more absurd examples. Stories of her painful and heartless treatment of “students” over the years would fill a dark and hefty book.