Also, Holden's last name is Caulfield. Holden Caulfield. (Want to hear some thoughts about his name? Check out his "Character Analysis.")
As soon as Holden makes it into Mr. Spencer's room, he has second thoughts.
Mr. Spencer is reading the Atlantic Monthly, surrounded by Vicks Nose Drops, and wearing a ratty bathrobe.
Hey, give the guy a break—he has the flu (the grippe).
They talk about Mr. Thurmer, the headmaster, and the way he told Holden that life is a game.
Holden's not quite buying it. It's only a game, he thinks, if you're on the side of all the hot-shots.
We also learn some key info: this is the fourth school Holden's been booted from; he says "boy!" a lot; he was sixteen during all this; he has gray hair; and he acts like he's twelve—except when he doesn't.
Mr. Spencer picks his nose.
Just when he decides he'd better get out because Mr. Spencer's about to start lecturing him, it starts. (The lecture, that is.)
Mr. Spencer wants to know what's wrong with Holden, and our narrator admits that he failed four classes.
In fact, the only reason he passed English is because he'd read all the books before, at another school (before he was kicked out of that one).
Spencer then resorts to a low blow: he makes Holden read his final exam essay (in history) out loud. It's a bunch of hooey about Egyptians and ends with a note that (roughly speaking) says, "I know this is junk, so it's cool if you flunk me."
After really ticking Holden off with this move, Spencer wants to know why Holden left his previous schools.
Holden isn't very forthcoming to his history teacher, but he tells us that he left because he was "surrounded by phonies" and the headmaster was a "bastard." Sound familiar?
Does Holden have any concerns for his future. Because he will, someday—when it's too late.
Apparently this is depressing.
Holden gets out of there after that. As he heads out the front door he thinks he hears Spencer yelling something like "Good luck!" after him.