Thursday, September 1, 2011

School Begins Again !YAY!

Today is the first day of the school year.

Its a staff day, where everyone from the whole district meets in one big room and titters after every joke the superintendent makes.

This year, we have a new superintendent.

I try to listen to what he is saying, but it is a mix of educational jargon and jokes about the local college football rivalry. 

Someone nearby whispers that he looks like Megamind.

I strain to see it, that resemblance, but I can't. 

Though I can't see too much of anything at a distance.

As I  have gotten older, I realize it is more and more likely that life will never be like the movies.

In the movies, you take the glasses off the geeky person and suddenly they are the hottest person in the room.

In real life, if you took my glasses off, everyone would look like Chewbacca to me.

Why did I do it? Why did I spend all that time in my neighbor's tree fort, staring unblinkingly at the sun, tears rolling down my face, the air filled with the smell of cooking cones and rods?
What was I hoping to see? 

Perhaps I was hoping to be blinded, to get the attention that blind children get.

I did have a warped need for attention I think; one day after I saw a schoolmate recieving accolades for breaking his leg, I lay in my bed sobbing quietly to myself, begging God to swoop down and break my leg. 
I remember so vividly holding my leg in the dark air, streaming tears, "Break it, O God! Break my leg!". 
This little faith, perhaps capable of moving mountains, was so foolishly wasted on begging the Godhead to hobble me. 

So I don't see Megamind, I see a balding, thin blob that might be a Wookie child telling me how I am the professional, that he is there to learn from me, that I am the face of the school district. 

He uses Powerpoint to present what he calls his 5 Big Ideas, he uses 'proactive' and 'pedgogy' like they are real words. And he keeps saying, "I get that."

Like, "I understand what you are saying about there being no support. I get that. But what I'm saying is..."

'I get that' is a way of quickly dismissing a person's opinion or concern by showing you really heard  and understand them, but it also means you are going to shove your decisions down their throat or up their ass, regardless.

He opens it up for questions, and one of the computer technology staff raises his hand.

"Go ahead."
"This is a question I always like to ask. If you could wave a magic wand, where would you see the school district in five years?"

I am sorry sir, but you are confusing your magical implements. The magic wand is strictly for transformative feats of power, whereas a crystal ball or scrying pool would be much more suited to the type of positive futuring you seek. 

If the superintendent had answered in that way, I would have followed him to the ends of the earth.

I have been at the opening day conference for eleven years now, and I have never heard that computer man ask that question.

Maybe he writes it down somewhere and intends to ask, but perhaps fear of rejection keeps him from it. 

But this year, with this new leader in front of him, he was emboldened to bark out the tough questions.

The superintendent looked confused, stumbled for a minute, and then droned for a little about how the future is what you make of it.

Oh it is, it is.

1 comment:

  1. As a systems administrator I can translate what the IT staff question really meant "Yes, new Superintendent, you've just wasted a day of my life. I have things that really needed to be taken care of and nothing you have said here will motivate or affect my life. I will now ask you a question that will make you look stupid. Oh and a follow up question; fuck you." I know this because I have worked in IT for ten years, I often ask questions like these to people who waste my time.