9.23.2005 ||> And another depressing thought
Hello, dear Miss S.I still get letters from a couple of my students. They were all students that I had in Tashkent, and are from one of two classes that I taught. Why do I mention this? Well, going to the Blackboard Jungle is always a good reality check. Lectrice tells the story of two teachers that she has come across. The former is someone who went on a glorified vacation to Latin America to go teach without even knowing the language. With virtually no training, she paid money out of her own pocket for books and supplies. She tried to teach 31 students of varied ability who could not retain or research information.
How are you? The first thing, I'd want to do is to congratulate you with your Birthday! Be happy and just enjoy this day. I wish you happiness and rich, good friends, clever students and many happy returns of the day. I want you to know, that you are the best English teacher, I have ever had. Of course, Mrs. O is a good teacher, but I don't like her lessons, because they are simply uninteresting. And of cause she is not so good as you are. I don't want to say something bad about Mrs. O behind her back, but you simply are THE BEST. I'm so unhappy now because I've lost such a good English teacher, yes, you can say, that now I can write you letters, but it's not the same as to talk to you face to face. I miss you very much.
The whole plan was a failure.
This is why I couldn't stay as a teacher. Beyond the frustration at teenagers acting like teenagers or all the work I was putting in with no result, one thought kept me awake at night. This is these kids' lives. I will be going home in 2 years, but this might be 2 years of education they'll never get back. That's what I felt when I saw teachers and other volunteers going to class still drunk from the night before, or when I saw that I wasn't making any discernible different in the student' grammar. I was scared as hell everyday that these kids were wasting time better spent learning something worthwhile. They needed the Daras of the Peace Corps, the people that knew how to teach going in.
I don't have an easy answer to these quandaries, and it is still something I struggle with. Sometimes, I let the letters console me, but sometimes I also feel like a fraud.
I am trying to convert my cousin to Firefly before the 30th in the hopes that he will go with me to see Serenity on opening day. Because, make no mistake, I am going to see this movie on opening day. There are nine days to go, and I haven't been this excited to see a movie since I went and saw Moulin Rouge six times in the theatre.
All I showed him was the scene where Simon and Dobson are in a Mexican standoff, and Mal just walks up and shoots Dobson in the head like Dobson was an inconvenience and Mal was on the clock. One of the coolest scenes ever, and my cousin got pretty interested. And from the trailer, it looks like this movie is going to be big. Like, Star Wars big, only with much better writing than Star Wars because Joss Whedon would never write lines like, "You're beautiful because I'm in love with you." Instead there are lines like:
"I aim to misbehave."
"I'm unarmed." "Good!" (shoots)
"I don't kill children." "But I do."
I mean, come on! How could anyone miss that? And that's just 1/10 of the trailer!
Also, there's the River Tam Sessions, which are possibly the most creepifying marketing tool I think I've seen.
People often get confused when I cry. Most people cry when they are sad or something bad happens. Occasionally, people cry to manipulate. I don't. When I'm sad or feeling unlucky, I can typically be found staring off into space to going to bed early. The only time I cry is at movies (and boy will I cry at anything!) and when the alternative is planting my fist through someone's face.
Last Friday it happened at work, when I had the biggest freakout since I left the Peace Corps. I felt it coming on and it was so strong that it was like I could feel my skin turning to ash in the force of the nuclear blast of my anger. So I went outside to freak out privately. Well, one of my co-workers told my boss and when he sat me in his office and told me he was concerned, I felt the tears come because I know he's full of shit and I wanted to throw his desk through the window.
At that point, I could have.
So today I go to work, expecting any day to have to quit before I get another job. I know that quitting like that is the most stupid thing ever, but I'm like a cornered animal, trapped.
There once was a girl with one singular power. On 364 days of the year, she was normal. However, on one special day, the earth paused in its rotation of the sun to revolve around her. On this one day, she would wake up transformed into a princess. Nothing ever went wrong because she was very, very lucky. If anyone tried to mess with her, she had the power to transform them into frogs.
As she got older, people were still surprised that this happened. They expected her to hate her special day. As if this day could ever turn her into an old hag! As she looked around, she saw much of this birthday hate. People pretend to be ages that they aren't. But this princess knew that if she gave it up, if she refused to wear the crown that was rightfully hers, her magic would be gone and she would be normal every day.
So today she puts on her crown, eats her cupcakes for breakfast, and waits for the magic to start.