Friday, April 22, 2005


Some thoughts

It's a Friday night and I can barely keep my eyes open as I write this. More time off the clock this week. Maybe my students learned something. Maybe I learned how to teach, maybe not. Lately I've thought at length about the next step -- the one to take regarding my future in this job/profession. I've commited a non-refundable deposit to a fairly respectable law school on the other side of the state border. The money is not the issue. Part of me cringes at the idea of "giving up" on the job so soon into a would-be career.

It wouldn't be the first time. During my first year of college I wrote for a couple of newspapers. I enjoyed it, actually; the exciting and often-harrowing ebb and flow of the everyday race to get the story far exceeds every part of the routine in my current career. Like in teaching, you are made to eat shit for unspecified periods of time before an employer loosens up the purse strings and pays you starvation wages" with sorta benefits. Meanwhile, you realize that it's time to get out there and make the big bucks because, Johnny woul 4

Saturday, April 09, 2005


Saturday night blues

My classroom is quiet as all classrooms are on a Saturday night. The dust balls and winter-surviving insects keep me company in my dungeon as I grade, and grade, and grade into the night. Much as law and business school hopefuls must take the respective LSAT and GMAT exams, teacher-wannabes ought to be made to sit and grade for hours on end, isolated in both the literal and intellectual sense. Grading takes up half of my "free time" during the school year. The difference between this and the mind-numbing cubicle work that I had hoped to avoid in becoming a teacher is small, save for $30,000 or so a year. Ever have one of those "I'm a fucking idiot" moments? Yeah.

Monday, March 07, 2005


10 minutes to post . . .

It's a Monday evening and I'm sifting through the wreckage that was my Monday lesson plan. I am still smarting from a particularly lively email in which a parent called me "disorganized" and "careless". Funny, that's exactly the way I would have characterized his hot-headed brat of a son. Nevertheless. I am merely shirking my primary responsibility of interpreting the aboriginal, headache-inducing scrawls of my students. If it sounds too good to be true it's because uses such effective adjectives.

I earn $25,000 per year as a teacher at a Catholic high school in the midwest. It wasn't by design, or really by choice. Somewhere in the conduit between dreamy idealism and the spirit-crushing realization of a life wasted we fasten the tether of obligation to ourselves. Some stare at computers, others at numbers. I stare at kids who, in spite of reading cadences that are reminiscent of a first-time stick shift user, will likely go on to earn more in a year than I make in 10, more in five years than I'll make in a lifetime. This makes all the sense in the world.

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