You! You, out on the road!*

16Dec09

For some reason, I tend to title these before I write them, which I guess is probably evident?  Anyway, it’s unlike me.  I generally leave the first parts for last, as you do.  (Note: I’ve been trying to figure out how to use “as you do” in a sentence, and I’m still not quite sure I have it right.  For me, it’s the new “same.”  I used to be quite enamored with people saying “same” to agree with me, or others, I guess.  I think I am being classist, with the liking of snotty phrases?  The world may never know.)

The student whose work I edited finally thanked me.  I wasn’t so much looking for the thanks as I was wanting confirmation that my help was as insightful and useful as I thought it to be.  (I find myself insightful and useful regularly!) Anyway, his feedback on my feedback confirmed my suspicion that I am excellent at working a piece of writing.  Then, just a bit ago, a friend of mine came in to visit, and we talked writing, and editing, and it was good.

I want to edit your writing, and then I want you to publish it, and then I want royalties (a girl’s gotta eat).  I will compromise.  You can have the fame.  As long as you know that your book could not have been published without what I did for it.  And you tell your adoring hordes so.  Regularly.  I find this an odd thing for me to be okay with, but I’m gonna go with it for now.

In one of my College Comp classes, we had our final today, and something made it quite clear to me that I haven’t been the teacher this semester that I’ve been in the past.  Now, I know I’ve been SAYING that for a while, but I wasn’t sure the students actually noticed?  What a funny thing–to assume they wouldn’t notice!  Well.  The realization made me feel as though I’ve been missing out this semester–missing out on enjoying my students, who were really quite charming today; missing out on whatever it is (it’s magic!) that has made me love the teaching in the past.  I’m wondering now exactly how much I’ve underestimated the role that loving my students has played in my past teaching successes.  Because I kind of loved them today.  But then it was too late.

(We do have another semester.)

I want to be back.  I want to teach the children well.**  I mean, there are some things I’m good at that I don’t have to change careers to capitalize on–some things I can not only feel competent about, but also really…love.  It’s time for me to get back.

* Yes, I–just this moment–have discovered that these are in fact not the correct lyrics to the first line of “Teach Your Children.”

**The song’s in my head because, as part of his public context argument, one student performed a song about legalizing marijuana to its tune.  Precious!

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3 Responses to “You! You, out on the road!*”

  1. 1 J

    To be clear: I like my version of the lyrics better. They’re much more personal. And animated! If I wrote this song, it would go something like this:

    You! You, out on the road!
    You might want some ideas
    that you can live by,
    so, hey! Become yourself!
    Or something
    sort of
    like it.

    Whatever works best for you, is what I’m saying.
    But you’ll probably need other people for that.
    All of it, I mean.

    I’m-a go swimming now.

  2. 2 m

    i can’t really remember the original lyrics, but i know i like these better. and i’m serious.

  3. 3 Mavina

    I am focusing on the words at the end of your blog that say “Because I kind of loved them today. But then it was too late.”
    Hey! I have had teachers that were horrid on flippin’ wheels and never even thought of “loving” me as a student or any other kind of creature on earth. (Fu_k them anyway…)
    I think it is hopeful that you even kind of loved them; that makes there some hope for your teaching future. I have been around alot of teachers and some of them say that there are certain years that are disasterous from the get go and doesn’t get better as the year goes by. I have had classes (in yoga) that I have taught that I have considered just having someone sub the rest of it. Too many icky vibes. I don’t think it’s out of line for a teacher to stop and say, “Hey, I don’t like how this is going and I would like to change what is happening here. What do you as a class have as suggestions to make it any better. (Only serious responses may apply…because they may tell you to just give it up)”


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