Tuesday, October 30, 2007
Because I can
On Friday, I told my students that I wouldn't be at school Monday.
A student asked: "Where will you be?"
I answered: "Out of town."
Someone else said: "You're always going out of town."
"Yup," I said, remembering that I've told my students about recent trips to Madison, to San Francisco, to San Diego. Now Denver. I usually try not to miss any school days, but this time it couldn't be helped.
Another student asked: "Are you rich?"
"No," I said. "But I do have a job."
"Yeah, but you're always going somewhere. How can you afford it?"
"Well, I'm addicted," I said. "Some people spend their money on drugs. Or partying. Or nice cars or clothes. I save up and spend money on travel."
"That's cool," a girl said. "I want to do that."
"Tell you what. Go to college, then get yourself a good job that will allow you to live however you want."
I am always trying to talk up college. Which is why I don't mind telling students about my life. "Partying is dumb when you're a teenager," I say. "Wait until college, then you'll see what partying is. And wait until you have a real job and can afford to go places, to see and experience the world. That's what I call a world party." Does it work? Who knows.
Anyway, I'm always thinking of escaping Chicago, and I know some people with education-related connections in Denver, so this weekend was a good chance to see what's there. Apparently, there are jobs, as one friend told me, for "someone like you." So I have to put Denver near the top of my list.
The main point, however, was to party. One of my students, walking out the door Friday, said, "Get drunk for us, OK?"
"For you?! Why would I do that?"
"Because we can't ... and you can."
So, it wasn't my fault. I drank for my students. And I drank because I can.
Saturday night was spent on a double-decker bus, driving around the city to random bars. Everyone on the bus had to be in costume. It looked a little like this:
I wore a beer keg costume. It was cheap and easy, and proved to be a hit, although some people called me Tin Man and several women asked why I had a penis pump on my head. How I bought the costume is a student-related story, as just about every single one of my stories is these days: Last week, I went to Target to see what they had. One of my current students works there, took me over to the costume section. There was only one adult costume left, the beer keg. I thought, wow, destiny. At checkout, a former student was the cashier. She looked at the costume and asked, "Mr. P., is this for you?" I sheepishly nodded. "It's very appropriate," she said.
Anyway, at one point Saturday, I switched costumes with a friend. Here he is, wearing my costume (I don't have any photos of myself that aren't potentially embarrassing to someone):
Sunday night, some friends and I went downtown to see if we could sneak into Game 4 of the World Series. We could have ... for about $500. So, instead, we went to a rooftop bar across the street from Coors Field:
We laughed when we saw a Japanese news crew at the bar. Guess they couldn't get in, either. Always ready to make international connections, one of my buddies went over to interview the interviewers:
Well, it's back to work tomorrow. And back to planning the next trip. Let's see, Thanksgiving weekend is coming up ...
Posted by AP at 6:37 AM