Friday, September 19, 2008

Teaching is LAME, Yo!

I know everyone says it, and I know they usually don't start saying it until they get old, but kids these days suck. Big time.

One time when I was talking about it with Persephone I said, "When we were teenagers we wanted the world to revolve around us, because that's what teenagers do, but we had enough common sense to know it was rude to say so out loud." People ten years younger than me and below (which is like, eight years old, right?) have no problem insisting that everything should always be about them.

Why do students get mad when you tell them, "I don't care about your grade any more than you do"? They don't take it seriously, but for some reason I have to? That's dumb.

The best part about teaching: I get to go bowling with the grad students tonight! Oooh! I'm betting it's going to be pretty lame, and I'm going to feel pathetic for even being there. I would go so far as to wager I'm going to be the only person who shows up. I have a history of taking social events too seriously.

To wit: since we moved to Kansas we haven't had cable (and judging by how many worthless toy commercials were on TV in the restaurant last night, we're no worse for it). In 2006 (when we didn't even have a TV antenna) I worked with a single guy with a huge TV and an interest in soccer. I jokingly said to him, "I should come watch the World Cup game on your TV this Saturday." He said, "Yeah, you totally should. That would be awesome." I got his address from him, and he gave me his telephone number, saying, "Call me that morning to wake me up before you come over."

Okay, it sounded like a "man date" (which is the primary reason I don't have any guy friends, but that's for later), and on Saturday morning I called him. No answer. I call again at kick-off time. No answer. Around what would have been half-time he called me and said, "You called?" I said, "Yeah, I was going to come over and watch the game." He said, "Oh. I'm not at home. I went to watch it at my friends house because I thought you were joking about coming over."

Second example: In high school I got "ding-dong-ditched," with a note left on my porch asking me to backwards Homecoming or Sadie Hawkins or some sort of "girl-asks-guy" dance. The note had a telephone number on it. It was the number for a local land developer office. I hung up and called back, just to make sure I hadn't misdialed.

Third example: When I was in College Republicans (Nearly 10 years ago! All right!), I got a mailer advertising the national convention in Washington DC that summer and I thought, "I'd like to go to that." I was young and single and liked the idea of being able to go on a vacation wherever I wanted, whenever I wanted, seeing only the things I wanted, and doing it all super cheap since there were no women with standards of cleanliness to impress. I got my airfare, lined up a spot in a hostel (or so I thought), and secured my spot at the convention. The mailer said there would be a dinner and reception and that "formal wear was recommended." They even had a list of formal wear rental shops in the area. So I lined up my tuxedo. When the event actually came around, I was the only person in formal wear. Even the dignitaries, like then-Wisconsin governor Tommy Thompson and perennial presidential candidate Steve Forbes, were just wearing suits. I showed up for the convention at three in the afternoon, like it said to, and I was the only person there for over two hours. Steve Forbes's daughter Moira (as in, "The machine is still on, Moira!") felt sorry for me and talked to me some. Then after the dinner that evening, when I was the only person in a tuxedo, I had an opportunity to have my picture taken with Steve Forbes, but he wasn't looking at the camera and it looks like I Photoshopped myself into the picture. When I get home and can scan the picture in to the computer, I'll post it here for you to see for yourself.


Nancy said...

Even I didn't know some of these stories. The ding dong ditch in high school (it wasn't me). The tux in DC. Who knew!

Erin said...

yeah, those stories are pretty awesome. I'm glad you published them! Your kids will thank you one day.

Nathan said...

Let's see the picture!