Welcome to my asylum for ideas and thoughts on movies, politics, culture, and all things Bruce Springsteen.

Friday, July 30, 2004

T-minus three days and counting...

This is the first post where I stop whining, speaking in politico-talk, or raving about the man from Freehold, New Jersey. I thought that I'd lie down on the couch and just chat. Today was my first real day back at work for seven months. See, I teach U.S. History at the high school in my home town. I've griped and complained and even been depressed, but I actually have a great job. I have never once questioned my decision to teach young humans, though I've often questioned my sanity. Today, as I put my classroom together and caught up with my colleagues, I realized just how special an occupation I hold. Not only do I get paid wonderfully for what I do, but I get lots of time to contemplate impending fatherhood or the existence of truth, mow my lawn, or something else that helps me connect with the universe and figure out how to turn it into a forty-minute lesson plan. This year I'll be teaching three periods of U.S. history and two periods of U.S. Advanced Placement, which I teach at the college level. Including a one-year hiatus, this will be my fourth year teaching AP and I absolutely love it; to see young minds process and wrestle with issues in the past and their relevance is truly rewarding. Watching young minds (in either class) grasp ideas and create solutions is sometimes better than getting monetary rewards for my job. Teaching isn't a job; it's an occupation, a calling, a religion, and a psychosis all wrapped up in one. Do people teach to atone for their own academic sins or in order to stroke their intellectual egos? Do they do it to feel loved and appreciated, or do they do it because they believe that by passing on knowledge and thinking skills can actually make the future better than the past? While Freud sorts me out, I will be quickly gearing up for a hopefully successful school term. Heck, with a presidential election, most of my first semester is practically planned!