Helping You Get the Most Out of Your Misery






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Wednesday, February 01, 2006


To Sir, With Absolutely No Love

Things are not like they were when I was in school. Granted, I was a junior high-schooler in rural Ohio and that was over twenty years ago, but still...

I had one of the worst classes I've ever taught today. This was with a special ed class that has been a bit out of hand all year. But I've had good days with them, too. Today was not one of them.

When I went to pick the kids up from lunch, exactly two of them came with me. The rest either hid or told me to my face that they were staying right there. So things didn't exactly start off well. And they went downhill from there.

I had a five minute battle with two girls trying to get them to spit out their gum. (I make the mistake of trying to enforce the school's No Gum policy and it never gets me anything but heartbreak.) So that set off a bad tone right there.

Then one of the girls decided that she wanted to spend the entirety of the class yelling out the third story window to kids she knew on the playground. Which meant that I had to close the window. Which she then reopened. I closed it again. She reopened it. And we went on like this for some time, with fully half of the class joining in.

If it was all just this opening and closing nonsense, it wouldn't have been so bad. I might even have been able to teach the lesson on blocking that I'd come there to teach. But mixed in with this opening and closing was a whole lot of cursing and threats.

Now, I realize that I curse like a fucking sailor. I love cursing. I think it fucking rocks. But I do not curse in school.

I do not think that children under eighteen should be cursing. More specifically, I do not think that they should be cursing at me. Even more specifically, I do not think that they should be telling me to "shut the fuck up" or that I "smile like a bitch" or that they're going to "slap the shit out of" me. I do not need to be reminded twenty times in forty minutes that I'm "not [their] fucking father". I'm actually already well aware of that fact. And quite glad of it, as well.

I find myself wearying of the struggles in this class. There are only so many times when a student can tell you that they "don't give a fuck" about your class before you no longer feel like teaching it to them. There are only so many times you can be told that a student "fucking hate[s] you" before you start to reciprocate.

Fortunately, I'm paid an incredibly huge salary to put up with all this nonsense.

Oh, wait. No I'm not.


I feel your pain. I really do. Thankfully I've not had a class like that in a long time, and even then it wasn't one I had to keep going back to. There is an upside to being a sub- you can say no.

That Girl
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