I haven’t written here in awhile because I’ve been overwhelmed at work. It’s evaluation time, and I’m completely freaked out. I had my evaluation yesterday, and TWO administrators came in. Totally freaked my freak – I’ve never ever been evaluated by TWO administrators at one time. In Teacherville, that usually means they’re about to fire you and they need a witness. So I ran to my AP after the observation and asked: Am I in trouble? And she said no, they’re just doing paired observations now. I do not like paired observations, y’all. It’s already intimidating enough having someone come in and pick apart your every move. But two?? At once???? That feels like a gang bang, and not the good kind.
What is really strange about this is I don’t mind when someone picks apart my writing, as long as it’s with the understanding we’re workshopping it to help make me better…and I don’t mind constructive criticism; I am always looking for ways to grow and improve. I think it’s that I also need to pay my bills, and so I need a job and public education is super scary these days.
And I like my administrators. Their hands are tied like everyone else’s, and we’re all doing our best in the atmosphere we’re laboring in. I had a coworker come up to me and complain she’d been given all proficients this year, when she’s used to getting exemplaries on her evaluation. I looked at her like she was ass crazy – are you REALLY complaining to me that you’re mad, in this high pressure, deep stress atmosphere where corporations are driving public tax dollars and Trump just hired an anti-public education woman to head up public education that you’re getting thumbs up on evals? Girl.
There’s a teacher shortage in America…do you know this? For some odd reason no one wants to go into teaching anymore. (that was sarcasm, by the way.) I’ve been going (in my head): Where do they think they’re going to get all these teachers from?? But then again I think the plan may be to just stick kids on computers all day with minimum wage babysitters walking around, monitoring. Donald hired that billionaire crazy lady who’s never gone to public school, whose kids have never gone to public school, who keeps trying to privatize public schools…to be in charge of public schools. He’s putting foxes in charge of the hen houses, and we’re hell bound for a dictatorship, you mark my words. But you go on, keep telling me to give him a chance. I’ll make sure to set aside a few canned goods and cartons of fresh bottled water for you when the grid goes down, Boo.
Okay, that’s done.
When not being freaked out by the Donald and school take overs, I’m spending a lot of time on online dating sites. Not to find me a date, but to look around and feel depressed that THIS is all there is to choose from. This is it. This. These men. These. I submit the racist troll who blasted me on Twitter Sunday evening insinuating no man wants me because I’m fat and have a black kid…and this catch:
…and this fine specimen of the male of the species:
Jesus help me.
On the other hand, I think I have a writing idea brewing from it…if I can stick with it and not get mired in self-doubt and ADD and deciding to Google strange things while fighting off sleep and/or seething about things beyond my control. Right now, I’m okay…happy, actually. I immensely love my team – I work with some of the funniest, fun people. I have a sweet girl. I’m surrounded by people who love me. Come at me, Trump fans and Twitter trolls.
But I’m also really really stressed. I don’t enjoy politically charged atmospheres, having to fake smile and ingratiate myself with people I don’t respect, and I don’t like games. I don’t like being nice to one person and wanting to support them and help them, but also being placed in a position of having to throw them under a bus. I constantly feel, lately, I am walking, blindfolded, across a tight rope strung across one of the Grand Canyon’s highest gaps.
So can I be pointless again? Pointless and me me MEEEEE again? That’s what personal diarist type blogs are for anyway, and don’t come here to read if you don’t like that. Here’s something I saw people doing on Facebook, and it’s a good distraction for me and a chance to further display how ridiculous I am:
1. Who was your FIRST prom date? I went to prom with a younger man, a 9th grader, named Justice. I’m not sure why this question is worded “FIRST prom date,” because I mean is there more than one prom? At any rate, Justice smoked pot after the prom. I did not. And we didn’t dance. But I felt grown up and looked like I was presenting at the Oscars, which I think is the whole point of prom.
2. Do you still talk to your first love? My first love’s name was Steven B. Steven B was from Indianapolis and I probably would still talk to him had he picked up the phone after my 100th “WHY WON’T YOU TALK TO ME??” phone call that I let ring 200 times because he didn’t have an answering machine. (Translation: Steven B was an asshole, and so LOL no…we don’t talk.)
3. What was your FIRST alcoholic drink? Pure grain alcohol mixed with pink lemonade. Listen, Reader/s: When I decide to do something, I always go overboard. Like, I don’t just eat one chocolate. I eat the ENTIRE box. (Why stop at one? Commit, dammit. Nobody commits to hedonism anymore.)
4. What was your FIRST job? Hardee’s fast food worker, specifically: cashier. I remember my mom and dad coming to order lunch from me one day and telling me I needed to smile more, and I was all: DO YOU NOT SEE WHAT I’M WEARING???? CAN YOU NOT SEE MY PAIN???? I lasted one summer…an angry woman came through the drive thru one day and screamed a 2 minute string of obscenities at me because I didn’t get her order right and I spent the rest of the afternoon in sobbing over a Coke in a corner booth. (If only I’d just smiled at her, I’m sure she’d have calmed down.)
5 Who was the FIRST person to text you today? My sister in law. The people who text me the most are my sister in law and ex-husband. Otherwise, my texts are pretty quiet. Unless my boss group texts everyone and then I feel like the most popular person on the planet. But those aren’t fun texts. I like FUN texts.
6. What is the FIRST thing you thought of this morning? The same thing I think every morning, no matter what day it is: How much more sleep can I get away with?
7. Who was your FIRST grade teacher? Mrs. Salmon. Muskogee, Oklahoma. She rode horses. I remember, because some friends and I were playing in our neighborhood one day, and Mrs. Salmon and her husband cantered up to us on horseback to say hi. They looked like a prince and princess from a fairy tale. In cowboy hats.
I walked to and from school (ALONE…oh, 1970s, I do miss you and your carefree ways). One day, I forgot my library book in my desk. I walked back to the school to grab it. I walked into my classroom and there was Mrs. Salmon, sitting at her desk, head in hands, sobbing. I don’t know what the problem was, and I was so unsettled by seeing my fairy tale princess teacher sobbing at her desk with her head in her hands I didn’t say a word, just got the book and quietly left; I don’t think she even knew I’d come in. I think about this memory now, and feel it was an omen of some sort. An unheeded warning from the Universe.
The Universe starts sending these ASAP, kids and It isn’t fucking around: Pay attention.
8. Where did you go on your FIRST ride an airplane? I can’t remember. But I do remember feeling amazed that we were above clouds, that human beings could be in the sky like angels. …but this was all before I started reading about death by fiery plane crash, and so now I’m still amazed but I’d rather be amazed while drunk so I care less upon impact.
9. Who was your FIRST best friend? My first best friend was the little blonde boy next door named Scotty. I had a crush on Scotty, and I wanted play with him every single day. But Scotty was a boy about my age, and 5 or 6 years old girls just aren’t that fun. They’ve got cooties and stuff.
10. Where was your 1st sleep over? I have no idea, but my motto is: you can never have too many sleepovers.
11. Who was the FIRST person you talked to today? My Miss M. As I write this, it’s Friday evening, and so that conversation occurred at 6:45 AM today and went like this: get up sweet girl…time for school. it’s friday fuuuunnn day! come on…get up (kiss kiss back rub, kiss kiss). Then I looked at the time: HOLY CRAP GET UP NOW GET OUT OF BED IT’S 6:45 AM AND I’M GETTING OBSERVED TODAY AND WE NEED TO BE IN THE CAR NOW!!!!!!!!! MOVE MOVE MOOOOOOOOVE!!!!!!!!!!!!
I’m sure with a little PTSD therapy she’ll be just fine from now on when the morning alarm goes off.
12. Whose wedding were you in FIRST? My brother’s. Other than my own, this is the only wedding I’ve ever been in. And thank god. Weddings are whack.
13. What was the FIRST thing you did this morning? I mean, really, questionnaire maker? Okay fine if you must know: I peed. (Isn’t this what everyone does the FIRST thing in the morning?)
14. What was the FIRST concert you went to? In my fantasies, it was a private serenade by Barry Manilow. But in my sad reality it was Ray Stevens. At the high school. When I was a 5th grader. I went alone. Because my mom bought me a ticket and thought I’d enjoy it. I had nosebleed seats. And I didn’t really understand what I was listening to or looking at.
15. What was the FIRST tattoo you got? I don’t got any tattoos, sad face.
I want two: one with Miss M’s name, and one with the Sanskrit symbol for God.
16. FIRST piercing? Y’all, I’m completely vanilla-boring: my idea of edgy is getting three holes pierced in my ears and today I only use one of the holes.
17. FIRST foreign country you’ve gone to? Mexico and the Bahamas. (This survey is making me feel pathetic…Ray Stevens, no body art, and only ear piercings. Clearly, I’m going to need to get drunk with some strippers or something.)
18. FIRST movie you remember seeing in the theaters? I think E.T., but it might have been Fox and the Hound. At any rate, E.T. gave me my first pre-pubescent crush: Elliott from E.T.. Oh, how I wanted to go on platonic ice cream dates with Henry Thomas. (E.T. was also the first movie I realized stories can gut punch you in the stomach…I cried buckets at it, and still do.)
19. When was your FIRST detention? hahaha! My first man love was Barry Manilow, I spent my weekend afternoons skipping around my bedroom singing Somewhere Over the Rainbow and pretending to be Dorothy, didn’t know the word “fuck” until I was 12 or understand what it meant until I was in my 20s, and my first concert was a country comedy guy named Ray Stevens. Do I SOUND like I’ve ever gotten detention. I mean. This ain’t The Breakfast Club over here.
20. Who was your FIRST roommate? This weird girl in college from Chicago who had sex with her boyfriend when they thought I was asleep in the twin bed on the other side of the room. (I’m sure this has given me all kinds of weird fetishes that are bubbling under the surface.)
21. What is something you would learn FIRST if you had the chance? Be the first $500 million lottery winner to learn how not squander it all on parties, crazy people claiming to be relatives, and private jets and strippers.
…okay fine. There would probably be private jets and strippers. At least for the first few months of my new fortune. (I’M JOKING.) (We’ll stay grounded so there’s no death by fiery crash.)
22. Did you marry the FIRST person to ask for your hand in marriage? (Who does things like ask, “May I have your hand in marriage?” If I ever meet someone who asks, “May I have your hand in marriage?” I am doing something terribly, terribly wrong.)
23. What was the FIRST sport that you were involved in? Ballet and tap dance. Which aren’t sports, I know. But they’re the closest to sports I’ll ever get. I’ll run, hike, swim, dance…but I don’t like balls coming at my face. (Stop it. Stop it with the funny testicle jokes.)
24. What were the FIRST lessons you ever took? I’m assuming this is like a musical instruments question? Violin. I desperately wanted to be a great violin concerto…but then I realized the cellists got to actually sit, and their instrument went between their knees and not under their chins. And cellos sound sexier. (I am still undone by great cellists playing sad solos.) And then I took flute, which I had great success at because my hidden competitive streak was slightly engaged…I was in the internal fight of my life to get to First Chair. But Stephanie, bitchy flutist Stephanie, wouldn’t give it up. I got all the way to Second Chair and she was pissed. And – you’d have never known this just from looking at me on the outside because I remained calm and disinterested, like: Oh, are you having a problem, Stephanie? Is everything okay? But on the inside, I was very: I am going to CUT you, Stephanie. That goddamn First Chair is MINE. (Really I just wanted to play the piccolo, because it was little and cute. Whoever was in First Chair got to play the piccolo…I still think my parents may have pulled strings to make sure that First Chair didn’t happen because then they’d have had to go out and buy me a piccolo.)
Also I took piano lessons, which were far less socially stressful.
25. What is the FIRST thing you do when you get home? Collapse in relief.
26. What was your FIRST cell phone? It was a bulky analog. Size of a brick. I never used it, unless I had to. Now I can’t get off my cell phone. Oh, what a strange species we are.
27. Who was your FIRST crush? Well, Scotty next door. Followed by Greg Brady from The Brady Bunch, followed by Robert Powell as Jesus. (If I ever meet a man who looks like Robert Powell as Jesus and he takes me Italy or somewhere, I’ll know my Karma is finally straightened out.)
Oh, look! Someone made a fan video of my hottie religious crush!