Monday, October 01, 2007

'I wanna be ignored by the stiff and the bored'

About midway through The Hives set at the Metro tonight, I felt a small amount of teacher-guilt. This is the feeling a teacher, especially an English teacher, gets on a school night, when said teacher should be at home grading week-old papers but is instead out enjoying what normal people call "life."

I moved back against a side wall, where it was cooler and a little quieter, and looked at the all-ages crowd while the band launched into their hit song. The singer sang, "Do what I want cause I can and if I don't / because I wanna be ignored by the stiff and the bored / because I'm gonna," and I thought, hmm, I don't really understand what that means, but maybe it can be my teaching motto anyway.

Then, I thought about a bunch of different things, mostly related to my job. Didn't have anything to write it down with, so let's see if I remember:
  • This is an all-ages show. Please don't let me run into any students.
  • If I do run into students, who will be more embarrassed, me or them?
  • Nah, there's no way any of my students would listen to this music.
  • But if they did, would this make me cool? Or make them uncool?
  • Do I want to be the cool teacher?
  • Man, that bass player is old. Chubby, receding hairline, sort of resembling the old "time-to-make-the-donuts" guy in the commercials. He's probably pushing 40.
  • Which puts him in my age bracket. Do I look like that?
  • Why don't I ever wear earplugs at concerts? Will the ringing in my ears ever go away?
  • Whenever a student mumbles something, or speaks very quietly, I say, "Can you repeat that? I'm deaf in my left ear and I can't hear out of my right one."
  • It's not a stupid joke if it's true.
  • Why do I call this a school-night? Isn't it really a work-night?
  • Do any of these people here have jobs? If so, are they thinking about those jobs right now?
  • Hey, this new song is pretty good!
  • But at my age, shouldn't I be listening to jazz and classical music?
  • Screw it, 36 is the new 26. Or at least the new 34.
  • What the heck am I going to try to teach tomorrow?
  • I wonder if what's-his-name in fourth period will show up tomorrow. I hope not.
  • Do people with normal jobs fret like this on a Sunday night?
  • Darn, it's 9 p.m. and they're still playing. Maybe I should cut out early.
  • Come on, make this your last song.
  • In eight years, I think I've run into students at a concert only once. Actually, they were graduates. They said they didn't realize that I "rock."
  • So I bought them beers. Just kidding. But I did continue drinking mine. Said something about it being legal.
  • I really need to stop thinking about my job. Can't I just enjoy myself?
  • No, I can't.


Michael said...

I'm not a teacher and I haven't been in school for years but I still refer to weeknights as "School Nights"

Anonymous said...

So do I, and I've been out of school for years. And I went to school with YOU -- My then 4-year-old son lovingly called you "Bunny Rabbit." You carried him on your shoulders to a football game one time, while I was home studying or writing a paper or some such thing. He's 16 now. Yeah, makes me feel old, too.
Love your blog.

appopt said...

No, I refuse to believe that a child I used to carry on my shoulders is now old enough to be my student. No. I am not that old. You must be thinking of someone else ...

Actually, I do remember, and I recently heard about the "bunny rabbit" boy when I visited San Francisco. I wonder if he remembers ...

appopt said...

Oh yeah, here's a question for non-teachers:

Do you call weeknights "school nights" during the summer? That's just so wrong in so many ways.

Rich the photoguy said...

If "anonymous" is who I think she is, then I really feel old. No, I refuse to think of that cute little guy who ran hung out at our former "workplace" as a teenager. Nope, I'll think I'll keep the angelic image of him asleep on the couch amid all of the hubbub.

BTW- I'm enjoying your blog. When I finally catch up to the current posts I'm sure I'll be almost as sad as when I finished the Harry Potter book series.