Good And Bad Things About Being A Teacher
First the bad: today I had to deal with my first mean girl situation. Amazing that in six years I have not had to face this before now. One of my sweetest students came to me on Friday after school and told me that she was being harassed by three of my most irritating students--no surprise. Maybe it's my inner 13-year-old, but I managed to get increasingly more worked up and nervous about the confrontation as the weekend wore on. Last night I had a nightmare about it. I didn't want to make the situation worse for this girl, and it's so nebulous; I thought about calling a parent and trying to explain how his daughter was bullying someone: whispering. Giggling. Plus I think I'm still a little scared of the mean girls. Pathetic. But I was the grownup and confronted the ringleader today, in general terms, about her behavior toward other students in the class. She was clearly taken aback--this is the kind of successful kid who is good at snowing most teachers--and said she understood, but looked pissed. I stayed composed, but felt shaken.
On the up side, I got one kid to give me a cookie in the morning, and in the afternoon I made a girl share her clementine with me.
Sunday Is Shallow Shameful Voyeurism Day
Every once in a while, out of some perverse curiosity, I Google my ex-boyfriends. It's usually after I've skimmed the news and read all of your blogs and checked my three e-mail accounts, watched The Office
and 30 Rock
and The Daily Show
on Hulu, and have laundry or grading I really should be doing, but can't seem to get off the couch. Some vague insistent impish part of my mind wonders how much I could find out. Usually, it's not much, and boredom or embarassment or hunger pulls me away.
Today I found out that one of them, the first one who was important to me, has a child, and for some reason I can't explain, it made me feel sad. Strange that something so far in my past should make me feel this way. I thought, maybe it's because we used to know each other's every idle thought, and now major life events go by unknown. Or maybe it puts me in mind of the capriciousness of fate, how easily one new child arrives to have its impact on the world, while so many other possible people disappear and fade into parallel universes as their potential parents drift away from one another. Or maybe it's disappointment I'm feeling, because what I really wanted was to find out something deliciously terrible, to gloat over.
Last night started out like this:
And ended up like this...
It's our time!