Saturday, February 11, 2012

You annoy me, kid

I'm sorry to say that so far teaching middle schoolers has not given me much hope in the goodness of human nature.

When I taught English to immigrant adults I was often encouraged by the tenacity of people who would come to a 2 hour class after a 10 hour work day and before a night of housekeeping in order to learn the skills to give their families a better life.

And even though I'm no idealist, it made me think... just sometimes ....that maybe people are basically good after all.

But teaching their ruthless kids has made me take that all back.

In the past few days alone:

I had one 6th grader, 11 or 12 years old, just start to punch and smack another kid in classout of the blue. The punchee was in tears afterward, too embarrassed to go to go to the nurse or the bathroom or even talk to me. I still don't know what happened.

-I had a whole group of 7th graders laughing hysterically over an art project of the various subway lines hanging on the wall. I really couldn't understand why the fact that the Ruggles station had been left out was so hilaaaarious. It was only when the artist came up to me afterward in tears asking to take the project down that I realized that they were only using the drawing to torture the poor kid.

Oh, I know.

Someone meant to teach urban kids would be more understanding. They're just children, all horribly insecure, wanting approval and attention, bad home lives, rough neighborhoods, multicultural adjustments, yada yada yada....

But dang those mean kids piss me off.

Thursday, February 9, 2012

Warning: Cat people click away

I like cats.

Or, I think I like cats. It's difficult to tell...right now, cause my judgement of them is being strongly colored by my extreme annoyance with the little ball of fur that covers everything in our apartment in long white hairs.

The cat. It has a name, but I don't condescend to use it. "Cat" or just "the cat" does fine. And sometimes "Heeeey, HEY! NO! Stupid thing..."

Don't be seduced by apparent kitty cuteness.

I try to be fair, though, you know. Cat pros and cons:


Seeing kitty poo every time I go to the bathroom.

Kitty litter under my feet in the bathroom constantly.

Fighting the urge to tell my apartmentmate to clean up after it constantly.

Finding cat hair in my food.

Keeping the door to our room shut constantly.

Gagging at canned cat food smell.

Losing half our plant, which apparently looks like catnip.

Stumbling out into the living room at 2AM to search under the coach for that dang noisy ball.


Bonding with roommate over how much we hate the cat.

Sunday, February 5, 2012

I'm Nickel... get it?

I went to a party with a periodic table of elements theme last night.

My costume was clearly much too advanced.

Although Mendelevium, with a picture of peas on her shirt, definitely had me beat on required explanation time.