28 September 2008

Lessons Learned From a 15-Year Class Reunion

Guess what I was doing this weekend? Visiting the wonderful world of Nostalgia.

1.People do not change much, relatively speaking. A pair of corollaries demonstrate this:

a.The girl who would have been voted Biggest Flirt (had your school done such shenanigans) would still be elected Biggest Flirt. However, it’s a much more dangerous title now because everyone present is of legal drinking age, and who knows what can happen.

b.The bar/grill/banquet room/picnic shelter/dance floor where the reunion is held resembles your high school cafeteria circa fifteen years ago. The athletes had their reserved tables, and the mortals sat somewhere else. The same is true at the reunion, except the mortals no longer give a rat’s ass about the athletes because the athletes have protruding bellies and receding hairlines. The male ones, too.

2.Inevitably, a drunken guy will shuffle over to the jukebox where you are picking some sweet tunes, and punch in a random number, completely usurping one of your plays.

3.The guy who was the dark horse Prom King candidate turns out to be a lawyer.

4.You will meet people that inspire you, like the person who freelances for a living or the person who is moving to Zambia in, like, two weeks.

5.The B-52’s “Love Shack” will be played at least once on the jukebox. Which is fine. The 25-minute B-side by The Doors is not.

6.Being sober at a function like this is way more fun than the alternative.

7.You realize the popular kid you elected your Class President is not a very good organizer, and thus you should have nominated somebody who had a vision for the future.

8.The guy you had a crush on is no longer as appealing as he was back in 1993.

9.Those of you who attend the reunion realize you should elect a Reunion King and Queen, and preferably, these people should not have gone to your high school.

10.People you haven’t spoken to you for fifteen years will all of a sudden want to sloppily hug you as you leave for the night.

22 September 2008

The Great Contemplation

So, here I am. White, middle class female. Three kids, stable marriage, nice house, solid income, able to enjoy most comforts of life.

I work as a teacher at the local high school. I would say my job is fairly secure. It has its ups and downs, but for the most part I would categorize my work life as OK. I don't hate it, but I don't love it.

And that is why I am thinking about getting out.

This year, for the first time in my life, I was not energized by the first day of school. I was not looking forward to school starting. The kids have not changed drastically, but I don't enjoy being with them as much anymore. Colleagues that I normally enjoy socializing with have recently begun to get on my nerves. I feel that I have become less of a teacher and more of a facilitator...or some other word that really is not that cool. It's all about the test scores, or getting off THE LIST, or another initiative designed to help kids, but is actually too complicated and cumbersome to really implement.

There are a lot of other things coming into play here, but my dissatisfaction with my job is top of the list. And I don't see it changing soon. I feel like in someways I'm seeing the writing on the wall and getting out before it's too late and I become bitter.

However, not being a fancy-free twenty-something anymore, there has to be a plan. Brent says there was to be a plan. I can't just quit, and wander aimlessly in the wilderness. There are bills to be paid and kids to be provided for.

So - the question is now: What do I want to do for a living that will allow me to be a good mom and wife, and yet will contribute to the GNP in some way?

Well, I know what I'd like to do for a living. This. Write. Obviously, I probably wouldn't get paid for blogging, but freelance writing might take care of some of the bills, yes? I love to write, and I even fancy that I'm moderately good at it. But could I do it professionally? There's the deep jump into the unknown.

I don't have all the answers yet. But times, they are a-changing.