May 27, 2005


I dont want to leave you with the impression that my life is one tragedy after another. However, thinking it over, my life has been very close to that. There was a period though, when I was very happy.

I had finally hit the big time. That is to say that I was earning enough money to move into my own place and was happily teaching and being a bachelor. I was a .9 teacher, working in Great Neck. A .9 teacher means that they employ you up to the point where youd be offered benefits and other perks. Since I was a .9, my life was limited and the administration could abuse me any way they wanted.

At first I was a substitute teacher. I lived local and worked a lot and soon had a number of teachers who would ask for me to substitute for them. I worked quite a lot and became well known at one of the 2 local high schools.

I was soon offered my first real position, that of a writing teacher. I worked in a lab setting and helped students to overcome their problems with writing essays. I lived around the corner and would often arrive early and stay late at school. I worked on various committees and clubs and was well liked by the principal. I thought that with her pulling for me, Id soon be a full-time teacher. However, she got sick, left the district and a new administration was hired. I had spent that entire time kissing butt, and had nothing to show for it except a number of letters writing by the former principal that went into my permanent file.

I began my 3 year in the district and was again a .9 teacher. This time I managed to get a few classes of my own. I taught juniors, and since this was the class no one wanted, I was left with the students whose futures were either going to be in daddys company or the local supermarket. Either way, this was not a scholarly class.

In addition to this one class, I also spent the morning at the other high school in town. This was also my old high school and many of my colleagues were my old teachers. It was very odd relearning to refer to this men and women by first name. Im sure that they too found my presence to be odd. However, it was a great year. I became close with two staffs and I also became a valuable part of things.

One of the ways that I was used was to be a much needed male chaperone on the Junior Class trip to Boston. It was supposed to be a fun, but educational trip. The other male teacher going was very new to teaching. You could tell because he wore a suit and tie every day. The students were not only going to see traditional sites like The Old North Church, but would have a tour of Harvard and some of the noteworthy buildings down town.

However, the school assumed that these students would participate in the learning process. Instead, they went on this trip to have fun. At Harvard, for example, instead of listening to the hired tour guide, many of them had fun pretending to be Rocky as they ran up the stairs outside of the old buildings. We took them to Boston Harbor, to the Aquarium, but instead of examining the exhibits, they ran around the building and we found them outside, smoking.

Eventually we decided to give them some time in the Quincy market. We knew they could shop and eat, and off they went. Since the class was now scattered around the market, the teachers were given liberty as well. I made a bee-line to Dirgin Park, an old restaurant in the market.

Dirgin Park is not a typical restaurant. Not matter when you go, there is a line. Rather than seating you and treating you graciously, you are simply given the next seat in a series of long tables with bench seating.

Everyone sits this way and you talk with whoever ends up with you. The food at Dirgin Park can not be beat. It is not only incredibly fresh and delicious, but you get mounds of it. They serve huge platefuls of roast beef, potatoes, rolls, seafood and its amazingly good. You simply make an agreement with yourself to ignore the calories and just enjoy the food. I had a wonderful time, thanked my co-diners and the surly staff and made my way back to civilization.

Every night at the hotel the teachers would take turns at night in the hall. We were very aware that the students would try to take advantage, and having staff in the hall would at least keep them in their rooms.

It being Friday, we knew that they were going to try something. We were set to leave the next day and theyd behaved too well. I was in the hall until 2am and then finally got to go to bed, and my roommate, this very green teacher, would take over until 5am.

In the morning, I was dressed and ready for the new day, when there came some bad news. It seemed that many of the students had been drinking the night before. We questioned the teacher who was in the hall from 2am and he said hed allowed them to get together into one room, but that hed had no idea they were drinking. We questioned him further and the only thing hed found odd was that many of the students carried bottles of Scope mouthwash into this party; BROWN mouthwash.

It turns out that theyd poured out the bright green Scope, and had replaced it with Jack Daniels. Not only did they drink at this party, but later, back in their own rooms, many had torn the rooms apart. The mattresses were tossed here or there, the bathrooms were a mess of toilet paper and overstuffed drains. Many of the students were terribly hung over.

We left Boston, and this hotel with the promise that the school was no longer welcome there.

Posted by bbrother at May 27, 2005 08:35 AM | TrackBack

LOL! I can imagine his thought process.

Hmmm, they've all got Scope mouthwash. Must be getting together to freshen their breath, how nice. Brown Scope? That's new. I'll have to try it sometime.

Well, it ain't easy being green.

Posted by: Tuning Spork at May 28, 2005 10:44 PM
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