August 26th, 2003

don't fear death

(no subject)

a month or so ago i was thrilled to get a call from the school board, out of the blue, offering me a certified GED teacher. i'd been teaching GED in the evenings and it had become quite time consuming. i don't mind teaching and i am good at it, but ideally i want to be in my office working while other people teach. i have volunteers teaching citizenship and computer classes. i had an awesome volunteer teaching ESL. he just left for the peace corps. i hate to teach ESL. i would teach anything, but ESL. don't think this strange of an english major. ESL is a whole different game. i just don't like it and i don't like the time it takes to get the curriculum in order. the school board offers me an ESL teacher too. i'm excited. the new superintendent is big on adult education and this suits me just fine. the teachers will be on the school board payroll and at my disposal for monday and wednesday evening ESL and GED classes. awesome. or so i thought.
first GED class was last monday. 6:30. 6:45 rolls around and i have 19 students and no teacher. i call the woman in charge at home and explain to her how this is not really a good start. looks like i will be teaching this class for now. i absolutely hate to teach without being prepared. always have. i had a few students from my previous GED class and some new ones. fortunately PBS (thank you!) had just given us a license to use an internet based GED virtual classroom so i used the time to get the students set up. still, i am not a happy camper. i had explained to the woman from the school board how critical it is that my teachers be on time and be prepared. not a lot to ask, eh?
last night 2 teachers showed up an hour early. mass confusion followed. there was an older african american lady who brought her husband along "for support", whatever that means. she also brought with her a vietnamese man who was to teach ESL. ut oh. now, i don't claim to have ESL experience, but i do believe someone teaching english as a second language should have english as a first language. these two came into my center with an attitude and a plan to run the classes their way. i am trying to be friendly and accommodating, but they made it quite difficult. i explain to them that i want, no offense, an american to teach ESL. the woman explains to me that she is also teaching the ESL class. i am standing there, looking at her with raised eyebrows, shaking my head and trying to figure out if this woman has an ability to clone herself during these two classes or some other magical ability to be in two classrooms at one time. her plan, you see, is to go back and forth between the two classes, teaching the GED class and assisting Mr. P with the ESL class. not cool. not cool at all. one of my volunteers commented to me that she thought something was wrong with this woman (whom i will call Ms. O for overbearing) because she didn't seem to understand anything i was explaining to her. but that is not it at all. Ms. O hadn't the ability to listen. this is one of my pet peeves....a person who is unable to listen to what someone is saying because she (or he) is too busy formulating the next response in her mind to really listen to what the other person is saying. i cannot tell you how many times i had to repeat things to this woman. i finally threw my hands in the air and went into my office. whatever. i will call the school board and explain to them that i do not want this woman back.
meanwhile, her husband is just sitting in a chair in the reception area, twiddling his thumbs. he remained there the entire evening.
classes begin and sure enough she is running back and forth between the two classes. i overhear Mr. P explaining to the ESL class that he is changing the schedule from 7:30 class to 5:30. at this point i am sitting at my desk totally in awe.
"we were hea at five tirty and no one was hea for cass." i hear him tell my students.
deep breaths.
i poke my head in and tell him, for probably the 10th time, that this class was scheduled for 7:30. i smile sweetly at the students as i tell him that everyone here was on time.
"why were we skeduled for five tirty?" he asks, in a heavy vietnamese accent.
i shrug my shoulders, smile sweetly again and tell him that now is not the time to discuss this. i close the door.
then comes the proverbial straw that broke the camel's back.
a woman brings in her 16 year old son for the GED class. Ms. O turns him away! she tells the mother that he is too young and should be in school. hardly able to get a word in, i am trying to tell her that a 16 year old can leave school with parental permission and that he obviously has parental permission. Ms. O tells him he can only come back with a note from school.
what the hell????
i am furious now, but i will not make a scene. i retreat to my office and wait until Ms. O finally shuts up. but she doesn't. she is arguing with the mother.
really deep breaths.
out i go again. i tell Ms. O that she needs to get back to her GED class, especially considering that a few of her students have left because they have nothing to do. she flat out ignores me.
fuck this. i will teach the class. i go back to the classroom and proceed to do just that. aha, this got to her. she returns and, naturally, takes right over. i hurry to catch the mother, give her my card and tell her to call me in the morning, that we will work it out. i tell her son to come to my office after noon and we will get him started because he should not be sitting home all day if he has left school. the mother looks grateful. i feel better. a little.
what a mess.
today i will call the school board and tell them thank you, but no thank you.
anyone want to teach ESL?
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don't fear death

help me write an ad ;)

there is this sailing magazine i read..... for months there has been one personal ad among the classifieds. i am sure it is a joke and written by the editor, instead of "Bubba", but each month it gives me a laugh.

this month:
Single male seeks double-jointed supermodel who owns a brewery and knows how to hydroponically grow cannibas sativa in small spaces. Access to free concert tickets a plus, as is have an open-minded twin sister. If the above attributes are all in order, knowing how to sail is not necessary.

from last month:
LIVE ALONE SAILOR with unique cement boat looking for relationship with foxy lady with lots of money. Exotic dancers whose family members work for law enforcement are tops on the list. Women from Keokuk, Iowa need not apply. Woman I am looking for must know how to sail, cook and clean, in that order. Send your best recipe and acknowledge which gourmet markets you prefer shopping at. Am drinking Cribari by the gallon now, but would like to know more about bottled wine - snap-cap or corked, it makes no difference. If you like to sail and don’t mind a few roaches in your life, this may be your golden opportunity. If you know how to sew and have your own fishing gear, so much the better. No rap music fans, please.

the "Bubba" stories in Southwinds are hilarious. Not long ago, Bubba won a regatta by setting up a screen projector on board and directing a porn flick on his head sail to keep everyone behind him. genius. i want to get to know this man. ;)

i was going to answer this ad, but since i am not a supermodel, can't cook, can't sail (not enough to count anyway), do mind roaches, and don't have a twin sister, i have decided to work on my own ad to be placed next to his and see what happens. i need some help with this one.....use your creativity and help me write this ad ;)
don't fear death

(no subject)

i've screwed up my office phone. not that it is such a bad thing, but it doesn't ring anymore. i get only one short beep and then it doesn't ring my extension anymore. i can't figure out how to fix it.
saturday i was trying to forward calls from my extension to my cell phone. couldn't get that to work either.
i can't believe i am on an online knowledge base for a freaking telephone.
i hate telephones.
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    David Wilcox - All My Life
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don't fear death

(no subject)

i am getting sick. i never get sick. i can't afford to get sick, i have too much going on. but i have a sore throat.
i think i will go home a little early, pop some zinc and drown myself in water and green tea.
meanwhile, i fixed my phone and it is ringing again. not just a good thing.....
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    Sonia....Me, Too
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