Since this was a spelling test, I did not answer. I just gave the student a look. He relented, and the test continued.
You might be surprised how often that little maneuver turns up. "How do you spell permit?" or "How do you spell number seven?" Both were asked as I was reading out the words to them (in different periods). Very funny.
The period continued on, and at some point (as all middle school classes do) they asked if I had written any names down. I told them that the question about commitment went into the note. Mistake.
The boy who had asked that question then tried to bargain with me. "If I'm good for the rest of the period, will you erase my name?" I said no. He sulked for the rest of the period. I passed his desk--he had not started the assignment (a different one after the test).
Then after school he spent what seemed like ten minutes begging me not to leave his name for the teacher. He offered to get down on his knees (I declined). In the end all I agreed to was to think about it. That's what got him to finally leave (with a polite, "Thank you for your consideration," after).
I left the note. I added that he had apologized for his stupid remark. I don't know how hard the teacher is going to come down on him (by the amount of begging, I should think rather hard). Maybe next time he'll think before he speaks.