No matter how often a student asks me about my visible tattoo; no matter how many times I share with him that I got it over Christmas break… it does not guarantee that this same student will not believe my friend and colleague who told him I acquired this tattoo in prison.
When I tried to explain that felons cannot become teachers, I was subjected to a very passionate and elaborate plan for me to change my identity, my name, and my hair color so that I could move on with my life and become the teacher I was always meant to be. I quietly revealed that I am already a teacher and have never been to prison, much to their disappointment. My friend and colleague asked, “Wouldn’t it just be easier not to commit the crime to begin with?” but it fell on deaf ears…
Right after graduation, I ran into one of my seniors at a restaurant.
In our conversation, as we were waiting for our respective tables, he shared that he’d spent a lot of time in “the safe seat” when he was in middle school (I was not surprised lol). He went on to explain that “the safe seat raised me,” which we agreed would be an awesome title for his autobiography.
We then took turns imitating Bane’s voice (from “The Dark Knight Rises”) – his was much better than mine – before we then went on to create ideas for his book-cover art. Our best idea: he’s wearing a batman mask, sitting in a safe seat, with his chest puffed out and arms arranged in the classic superhero pose.
During the final, out of the corner of my eye, I saw a bug the size of Texas crawl across my table.
Near my laptop.
Less than a foot away from my hand.
I screamed “OH MY GOD” and flew across the room. One of my seniors valiantly fought off the heinous monster and I was able to return to my table.
I would like to say that none of my students then made insensitive comments such as “Did you see the spider?” “What’s that on your shoulder, Miss?” “WHAT IS THAT?!” But that would be a lie… I clearly need my eyes checked (as the bug was more like 3/4 of an inch long), but I am no fibber.
“I thought you had a dog, Miss. You need a dog, I mean, you are a teacher and make more than the Average Joe.”
Everyone says to invest wisely… why is public education not considered a wise investment?!
It so clearly is the root of the success and failure of our country. Until education – and teaching as a profession – cease to be undervalued, I don’t harbor much hope in my heart for our future. I’ll still work as hard, but you can only beat your head against the wall so many times…