Mr. Harrison is Embarrasin' is the second book in the My Weirder School series.
When the power goes out in the school, everyone panics in the dark, and only nerdy Mr. Harrison, the school's technician, who can fix and build anything, can save the day.
The book begins with AJ saying that he hates coffee, and that his parents drink coffee every day. AJ suspects that there is a chemical in your brain that activates when you're an adult. AJ walks to school with his friends.
When they get there, they notice a sign that says that it's Ella Mentry Elementary School's fiftieth anniversary. AJ and his friends all agree that fifty years is a very long time. When they go inside the school, they notice that the teachers are walking around like zombies because of their need for coffee. They ask the secretary, Mrs. Patty, what is going on. Mrs. Patty tells them that their coffee machine is broken. Mr. Klutz says that there will be a mess if the teachers don't have their coffee soon. The janitor, Miss Lazar, is often in charge of the coffee machine, but today she's taking a day off.
Then Mr. Harrison, the school's technician, comes in drinking a cup of coffee. AJ suspects that Mr. Harrison stopped to buy some coffee on the way to school. The teachers want some of his coffee, but he has already finished it off. Mr. Harrison examines the coffee machine. He explains how the coffee machine works. Then he finds out that the reason why the coffee machine is not working is because it's not plugged in. So he plugs the coffee machine back in. All the teachers get their coffee and go back to normal. Then AJ and his friends get to class.
During math, Mrs. Patty makes an announcement over the loudspeaker that everyone should go down to the all-purpose room for an assembly. At the assembly, Mr. Klutz and the vice principal, Mrs. Jafee, tell everyone that today is Ella Mentry Elementary School's fiftieth anniversary, and everyone is excited. So, to celebrate, some special visitors are going to come after lunch. The mayor would be there, and even cameramen from a news channel is going to film the event. When they hear that they are going to be on TV, all the girls go berserk. Mr. Klutz stops the commotion the girls are making so he can continue speaking. He says that there will be another special guest. That guest is Ella Mentry, whom the school is named after. Like the school is celebrating its anniversary, Mrs. Mentry is also celebrating her ninetieth birthday, so she is going to celebrate with them.
Mr. Klutz asks if everyone remembers the last time Mrs. Mentry visited the school. AJ remembers what happened. The school was named the cleanest school in the district, so Mrs. Mentry came to the cafetorium to give the award. But unfortunately, AJ accidentally started a food fight, right on the day Ella Mentry was going to give the award. Mrs. Jafee says that they can't let that happen again, and with a reporter and camera crew coming they all need to be on their best behavior.
Mr. Klutz says that Mrs. Mentry doesn't like it when things get dirty, so everyone should spend the rest of the morning cleaning up the school before she arrives. So when AJ and his classmates go back to their classroom, they skip math because they need to clean up the classroom. They needed to have everything perfect for when Mrs. Mentry and the news reporter showed up. AJ cleans off the computer table when he sees that the computer is broken. So Mr. Granite has to get Mr. Harrison to fix the computer.
Mr. Harrison fixes the computer while telling the kids why the computer is broken. Suddenly, the computer starts working again. Then Mr. Harrison fixes the broken SmartBoard. Then he has to fix the copy machine in the office. He thinks the copy machine is worn out, so he'll have to build a new one.
At lunch, AJ and his friends discuss what they think might be Mr. Harrison's real first name. Mr. Harrison's nickname is Fritz, but he won't tell anybody his real first name. Then they discuss that they think Mr. Harrison might not be their real technician.
Then Mr. Harrison comes in with his new invention, a solar-powered umbrella. Then AJ points out that people use umbrellas when it rains, not when the sun is out. Then Mr. Harrison remembers that he is still working on building a solar-powered flashlight. But as he leaves, he slips on some juice that someone spilled. His wallet falls out of his pocket. AJ picks it up and looks at Mr. Harrison's driver's license.
AJ learns that Mr. Harrison's first name is George. AJ and his friends find that name strange. But Andrea says that there was another man named George Harrison who was a member of The Beatles, a famous band. Then AJ and his friends wonder whether or not Mr. Harrison is the famous band member.
Then Mr. Harrison comes back into the cafetorium to announce that it's time for the big anniversary celebration, so if they want cake, they should report to the all-purpose room. AJ cannot wait, so he starts to run out of the cafetorium, but Mr. Harrison stops him and says that the floor is wet, and that he might slip and fall, so Mr. Harrison holds AJ's hand so they can walk out together.
Everyone goes to the all-purpose room for the anniversary celebration. There is a giant cake on the stage, with ninety candles to represent Ella Mentry's age. AJ and Alexia are interviewed by a newspaper reporter named Mrs. Lilly. Then everyone listens to some speeches. Mr. Klutz gives his speech on what is happening to the school as it is getting old. Then Mayor Hubble comes up to speak. Then finally, Mrs. Ella Mentry comes and says that she's happy to have the school named after her. She says that she'll always remember her name, as it is printed on big letters on the side of the school.
Mrs. Mentry goes to her cake to start blowing the candles out. But while she's blowing, all the lights go out. The only light that there is is the light from some candles on the cake. Nobody knows what to do and everyone is scared. Suddenly, the teachers realize that there has been a power outage, as everything, even the computers, are off, and not just the lights. Mayor Hubble is afraid that the parents might blame the blackout on him.
Mrs. Mentry then starts getting angry, asking why something bad happens every time she visits, and says that she's had enough. Mr. Klutz tells her that he's sure the lights will go back on soon. Mrs. Jafee tells everyone not to panic, but it's too late. All the kids have already started to panic. AJ joins in just for the fun of it.
Mr. Klutz asks Mrs. Mentry if everything is okay, but she isn't there. Everyone realizes that Mrs. Mentry has disappeared. When the kids realize this, they stop panicking. Everyone is worried about Mrs. Mentry. Mr. Klutz is assured that the lights would go back on and they would find Mrs. Mentry. All the adults are upset that Mrs. Mentry disappeared. But Mrs. Lilly is the only adult who is not upset, but interested. She thinks that Mrs. Mentry disappearing is a great story for the newspaper. Mr. Harrison lights up all the candles on the cake again so everyone can see a little better.
Mr. Harrison says that he knows where Mrs. Mentry went. She might have wandered into the basement and fell in a hole on the floor. This makes everyone confused, as they might have not heard right. Mr. Harrison needs some volunteers, so Ryan, Michael, Neil, Alexia, and AJ decide to do it. Andrea and Emily decide to help too. Each of them take a piece of cake with a candle on it. They would light the way until the lights came back on.
They follow Mr. Harrison down the stairs. When they reach the bottom of the stairs and go into the basement, they notice a hole. Mr. Harrison explains that he saw the hole yesterday. He says that a squirrel made it. He had noticed the squirrel digging holes in the playground. He even named the squirrel Digger. Mr. Harrison says that Digger must have went into the school and chewed a hole in it, and even chewed an electrical wire that was in her way. It knocked out the power, and Mrs. Mentry must have fell in it without looking. He then says that if Digger chewed through a live electrical wire, she might have been shocked.
Then Alexia says that if Mrs. Mentry touches the wire, she might get shocked as well. Mr. Harrison calls to Mrs. Mentry and asks if she's okay. Mrs. Mentry is okay, but she is really mad. She is wondering why there's a hole in the floor, and now she wants to sue the school over it. She asks them to get her out of there before she calls her lawyer. Andrea warns her not to touch any wires. Mr. Harrison is too big to go down through the hole, so he lets the kids do it on their own. He allows the thinnest kids, AJ, Ryan, Andrea, and Alexia to go down into the hole to rescue Mrs. Mentry.
Once they get to the bottom of the hole, they look for Mrs. Mentry. Suddenly, the ceiling collapses around them. Fortunately, the school didn't collapse, but AJ and his friends are trapped. Then Mr. Harrison reminds them that an emergency rescue crew is coming and they have a giant drill to help get the kids out. Mr. Harrison tells them that Mrs. Mentry managed to crawl out of the hole before the cave-in. Ryan says that Mrs. Mentry might be really mad, and she might be so mad, that she'll never visit the school again. Mr. Harrison says that it might take a while for the emergency rescue crew to drill a hole in the cement to pull the kids out.
The kids sit close together and Andrea becomes scared. She asks AJ to hold her hand, but AJ doesn't want to. Alexia then decides to hold AJ's hand, too. But AJ refuses to hold either one. But when Andrea and Alexia start crying, AJ gives up and decides to hold both of their hands to calm them down. Suddenly, the emergency rescue crew finally comes to rescue the kids. Mr. Harrison is going to help the kids get out. First, the kids need to move a boulder over to the side so the drill can get through. AJ can't push it himself, so his friends help him. They are able to slide it out of the way. Then the drill starts up again and drills a hole so the kids can get out. Suddenly, they spot a squirrel. But it's not a fried squirrel, it's Digger, and she's still alive.
AJ, Andrea, Alexia, and Ryan get so scared, they climb out of the whole in a hurry. They do not know how Digger chewed through the electrical wires without getting electrocuted. But when Digger jumps out of the hole after the kids, they find out that she is very harmless. Then the kids chase Digger out of the school.
When they return to the front office, the lights come back on, and everyone is happy, except for Mrs. Mentry. She is waiting for her ride home. She tells AJ and his friends that, like Ryan predicted earlier, that she is so mad that she'll never visit the school again. Then AJ thinks of the things that happened previously in the book and wonders what might happen next.
- A few running gags in this book are:
- People shouting "Hip hip hooray!" when something good happens or is mentioned.
- Some of the characters and lines referencing the titles of Beatles songs.