On my favorite part of the day

There are so many possible options. Could it be…

  • My foot flying out from underneath me on literally my first step out of my car when trying to go into work this morning?
  • The not-one-not-two-but-three teachers who grabbed me and asked me for help and/or favors before I managed to take my goddamn coat off once I got in the building?
  • Babysitting a room full of deeply obnoxious 8th graders with no lesson plans of any kind during homeroom and first hour?
  • Returning a computer to a kid for something like the tenth or eleventh time in the last few weeks and catching myself just before telling him that if he lost it again I’d be making sure he couldn’t lose it again by shoving it sideways up his ass the next time I returned it?
  • The ten different kids– I counted– who came to bother me about charging their computers during second and third hour, which is about five times the normal number?
  • My terrible decision to go to Panda Express for lunch?
  • The two hours this afternoon where my right leg decided it didn’t need to be a leg anymore, probably courtesy of item #1?
  • Realizing that I’d been so busy over the course of the day that I’d manage to accumulate forty-five emails that I needed to read or respond to, most before going home?
  • Realizing that the “upgrade” to an essential part of our district’s content monitoring strategy, which hasn’t worked since late December and had just been pronounced “fixed,” was not only not fixed but might have been actually downgraded, and having to explain that to half a dozen angry teachers in half a dozen separate conversations?
  • The general, ongoing feeling of “none of this shit is my fault at all and I’m trying to be as gentle with y’all as I can possibly be while I’m explaining that I know that everything is still fucked and I can’t fix it but I’m starting to reach the point where I’mma snap off on the next person who looks at me sideways about this”?
  • Accidentally sticking my foot into a disciplinary issue with literally 20 minutes left in the school day and emailing another staff member to say “I’m not doing shit about this because I’m tired but you can if you want to”?
  • The vague realization that Friday, at least, promises to be way worse than today was, and tomorrow’s got pretty heavy bullshit potential too?

Right now I think it’s probably the leg, but there’s still like five hours left in the day before I’m going to be in bed.

In which I level up

Well, at least I can’t claim that I didn’t get anything accomplished over my Winter Break. You may possibly recall– I’d forgive you if you didn’t, but you might– that I took a three-hour test in September to gain Level One Google Certified Educator status, which signifies that I understand The Googles, The Internets, and The Tubes. Well, as of this morning, I have taken another three-hour test, and now I am Level 2 certified, which signifies that I understand … well, The Googles, The Internets, and The Tubes. I’m really not sure what the hell the difference is between Level 1 and Level 2 certification other than that 2 is a bigger number than 1 and the Level 2 test cost more money to take. As far as I can tell the test was exactly the same kinds of questions and I don’t feel like I needed any deeper understanding of anything to pass this one than I did the first one.

The punchline: they “give” you, as in they actually email it to you, that .png file up there so that you can put it in your email signature file to show off your new fancy-schmancy Level 2 certification. They did the same thing at Level 1, and I dutifully dumped it into my (otherwise quite minimal) .sig file for my work email.

I just spent half a Goddamned hour trying to add the Level 2 image next to the Level 1 one, and I can’t get it to work. I can get a little box with a question mark in it to show up, and that’s it– nothing I can do can get this image to show up in my signature file despite the fact that I have done this before with the first image. And, for that matter, I don’t remember any trouble doing it the first time. I can only assume that something is actually wrong with the functionality right now, because I’m not doing this wrong. It’s just not working. I just love that I want to show off my literal certification in Knowing How to Gmail and I can’t figure out how to do it.

EDIT: After typing this, I tried the exact same thing I’d been doing, and when I did it this time the interface that popped up when I clicked the “Add Image” button was completely different, featuring two tabs that weren’t there before. And despite that, it still didn’t work. Then I tried to do the exact same thing I’d been doing all along, only in Chrome instead of Safari, and it worked fine. So I’m not taking the blame for this, Goddammit.

Because it’s still true

This picture is very old– almost exactly fourteen years, in fact– but was taken under the precise circumstances and in the same mood that I am in now; that being the end of the first semester of school, and the beginning of a glorious two weeks in which I am not responsible for anyone else’s children.

So yeah. Let’s use it again.

I gotta move out of this neighborhood

(That’s a BB King song)

Today was fucking awful.

We had … I dunno, six fights in the building today?  Let’s say six, it was close to that one way or another.  One kid caught what I think is probably the worst ass-whipping I’ve ever seen short of Rodney King.  I hope to hell the other kid is in jail right now.  I don’t know why they don’t take you to jail when you attack someone at school; school is the only place you can just beat the shit out of someone and then expect to go home afterwards like nothing happened.  This kid should be in jail.  He should be there until he turns 18, frankly.  But he’s not, because he attacked someone at school and not out on the street.  

Go ahead; there’s six plus years of damn near daily blog posts around here.  Hell, the running average is probably still more than one a day.  I wrote a whole-ass book about teaching that you can look through too if you like.  See if you can find another post where this kid needs to be in jail for what he just did is the topic.  I can’t think of one.  That rough of a day.

And I do not have a hard job, guys.  I really don’t.  There’s a lot of moving parts but I don’t have a hard job, not compared to what everyone else in the building is doing.  And today was damn near too much for me anyway.  I don’t know how the hell any of these people get up and go to work every day.  I do know that there’s no way in hell I return to this building next year.  Not if my life depended on it.  Which means I get to start jobhunting again.  There’s a chance to do the same job just in some other school but for various reasons (which I’ll probably get into eventually, but not now) is not as likely as I’d like it to be, so the best move is to start looking for alternatives now.  Because I can’t be in a place with this rotted a culture any longer.  I’ve never worked in a school this bad.  Not even close.  And I’ll make it to June, but I need to be gone after that, and if something good turns up before then I’ll jump ship.  I’ll be burning this bridge for the last time, but I think it needs to be done.

(Then again, for fun, especially if you know me in the real world, think back over my life since graduating in high school and count the good decisions.  Other than marrying my wife, there aren’t as many as I used to think there are.  I’m actually not very good at this being an adult nonsense.  I remember when I thought I was good at stuff; it was a while ago.)

And tomorrow I’ll get up and do it all over again.  Six more days with the kids and then I get a couple of weeks off.  I can manage this, I think.  I don’t have much of a choice, one way or another.

On whiplash

I spent all week trying to prevent fourteen-year-old boys from looking at tits.  If you have ever known any fourteen-year-old boys, you may be aware that they rather enjoy looking at tits, and that in fact they tend to prioritize looking at tits over many other human activities, including, for example, math class.

I also had a meeting this week in which one of my students was described by someone who was not kidding as “clinically addicted” to pornography.

Then I had bibimbap for dinner.

Mmm, bibimbap.

And I ate it all.

mmmm, bibimbap