141028 Curiosities served
2015-04-18 9:19 PM
Loads and loads
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Right here right now is too fucking much to write about, living it being quite enough, thank you very much, but on the plus side I've had occasion to read bits of blog from 2006, so here they are. First this one about me being a teacher:
9:20 p.m. - 25/05/2006
What a day of it I had yesterday.
Lesson 1 with year 8 (age 12-13), doing their Lady of Shalott essays. "How does Tennyson create an atmosphere of mystery in L of S?" You'd think that was easy enough, wouldn't you? They're meant to be concentrating on using quotes to support points made and commenting on them. I wouldn't have set this for year 8, but this is the way it's done here. Mixed ability, which I'm not really used to. Some are doing fabulously, others are managing with quite a lot of input and then there's Keiron. 'The first part of the poem is mysterious because of all the unanswered questions such as 'willows whiten, aspens quiver.'' What? Those aren't questions, they're descriptions. 'Look, miss, you wanted quotes and I've put in quotes,' said in the tone of weary resignation of a boy who has met all these stupid, pointless instructions and is now faced with a moronic teacher who can't understand what's in front of her face. I kept trying to find new ways to explain it to him, but you can't take your eyes off big lanky Cameron for two seconds without him leaping into a play-wrestling hold with some poor under-sized little squirt, and Jemima will be mouthing off and the rest will stop writing to watch etc etc. So I didn't make much progress there.
Then in with MsG with her year9 (13-14) doing a poem, with quiet concentration, the bastards.
Out for a fag [in the lane behind the school] and the scents of childhood (cow parsley, rain and tobacco).
After break it's Year 10 (14-15) and the collages about their culture and traditions. I'm on very good terms with a proper flouncy young rat-bag, who took one look at my collage and said, 'Miss!!! You smoke weed! Come on, you can't deny I it!' Of course I did deny it, but she just laughed in my face, staring me right in the eyes and I BLUSHED! Fuck. I gave it my best, 'I'm a grandmother' routine but she didn't really buy it. She did some work though, cutting out bits for her collage and was generally pleasant for the rest of the lesson, which is good, but fuck all the same.
James, David and Rob have made a short film on DVD of them doing clever stuff on their bikes, which is great but a) we don't have a dvd player that works and b) they still have to do the fucking collage and now they haven't got anything to make it with. But I give them some gardening magazines and yesterday's Guardian and we muddle along in a welter of paper. There's a lovely girl, Josie, fat, long dirty hair, terrible acne and eyes that light up with beautiful wickedness. 'Pass me the scissors, love,' she says to me. 'Love' - brilliant. Most of them have missed the real point of culture and tradition and are just putting things they like down, but they're loving it and getting on with it as soon as they come into the room and I'm getting to know them, so what the fuck, eh?
Next it's the other year 8, finishing off an essay about Holes, on the relationship between Stanley and Zero. I really wouldn't have them doing formal literature essays yet, but just working on the content in different ways (this could be a flow chart). Then they get confident in their ability to read and deduce before worrying about structuring an argument. Anyway, this group contains some very keen motivated kids who are just getting on with it and some little fuckers who swear blind they've done it but left it at home. I don't believe them as they do sod all in class and show no sign of being committed homework completers, so I try and make them do it again, or at least write everything they know about Stanley and Zero, but they start doing acrostic poems instead and I give up, knowing I'll have them one more time before half-term and they'll bloody well do it then. If not with me, then I'll send them to Bossman. He's good at being intimidating to order.
Lunchbreak. Register Mrs Lovely's group. Afternoon off. Rush to Chi in attempt to buy tent for festival which friends will be sleeping in this weekend. Bloody Millets only have a giant marquee that sleeps 10 or a tiny so-called two man tent that would just about fit two skinny people who were deeply in love. I want something I can spread out in a bit when I need to step out of whatever this festival turns out to be. I thought I'd be able to go into the camping equipment shop and buy such a thing. Silly me.
I cheered myself up by having an espresso and a pudding in an Italian restaurant - summer pudding and mascarpone - delicious. I LOVE going into places on my own. It's such a relief to have arrived at not caring what anyone thinks after years of the usual female paranoias. Comfy sofa too.
Back to school for parents evening. Fucking hell. It's not really evening as it runs from 3-6, but it still involves talking to parents. When Bossman told me it was coming up, for year7, I said I couldn't do it as I didn't yet know half of their names, let alone what their work was like. He was cool until yesterday morning when he realised that due to the other teachers' legitimate (if badly planned)commitments, he would be the only member of the English dept there. Very poor show for the main core subject. So I agreed to turn up and have a go.
I teach three year 7s, one group for 5 of their 8 lessons per fortnight, the other two groups only for 3. I've got a bit of a grip on the one I see for 5, but they'd already made appointments with Bossman, who used to teach all their lessons and still has the other three. So I sit at a table in the hall next to his table, beckoning passing kids and their parents, just to talk bollocks at them. 'Hello, sit down, nice to meet you. Remind me which tutor group you're in... and your name is...?' It was OK really cos I do know the extremes - all the baddies and the really good ones, so the others are just 'making good progress' and behaving themselves. Only one hunky dad all evening, which was very disappointing, though he was truly fucking gorgeous and his daughter is a fabulous writer so lots of smiley smiles all round. Three hours though, of absolute non-stop parents. I don't know why I was so worried about it really, as I know that all they want to know is that their kids are behaving themselves, getting on with their work to some extent, making progress to some extent and aren't miserable. They don't give a stuff about national curriculum levels, with a very few exceptions who let you know.
Then home, to collapse on the sofa with fish and chips.
Today was more of the same, minus parents evening, plus art class. Progress on the self-portrait is slow.
All that fabric is so hard. What fabric, I can hear you thinking. All that blue and green and my red cardigan. I'm quite pleased with the bowl and the hair is coming along, but there's still a way to go on the fabric.
And now it's bedtime. Have a good Friday xxx
Then a bit later I came across this:
10:38 a.m. - 01/06/2006
OK, then, tagged by Alison at aliannmil here are six weird things about me.
1. I have noticed that adults are a bit wary of me in a way that kids aren't. For example when I went to the first nanowrimo meeting, afterwards K, the liaison person, told me that they'd all felt quite intimidated by my air of confidence. Which actually was me being quiet as I was so scared of coming over like a boring old git in amongst all these groovy, hip young things. Whereas the teenagers I come across in my daily life can see straight through to the confusion and lack of confidence inside.
2. I've never ever worn high heels. Comfort beats beauty every time for me. I did once have a pair of platform clogs, but they were still flat, just high. Not that high in fact, but as near as I ever got.
I find this quite difficult actually, which I guess I shouldn't as I'm aware that I'm considered mildly eccentric. I'm just not sure why. I just asked YD for some suggestions. She said to GS, 'What's weird about Granny? Unusual?' He said, 'She's got a very crinkly neck.' Gee, thanks, GS. Let's see your neck when you're in your fifties.
3. I don't really do housework until things are pretty dire. I'll never wash a cup or plate while there's a clean one to use. I like a bit of grime and chaos and utterly resist the way so-called labour-saving devices have just led to increasingly high standards. To say nothing of the fact that somehow the cleanliness of a woman's home is related to her sexuality. Dirty house equals dirty slut. Not round here, it doesn't. It's years since I had sex with another person.
4. I feel a strong inclination to tell people about my history of mental ill-health. I will not be ashamed of it, nor sweep it under the carpet. I want it known that it can happen to anyone and that you can recover. Although perhaps I'm wrong in assuming that a) they couldn't tell already that I've such a history and b) that I have recovered. Don't care about either.
5. I don't shave my legs or underarms. I've written about this before. I stopped when I was still in my teens. I hate hate hate the whole hairless women thing. Children are hairless. Adults are hairy, to a greater or lesser extent. Why should women ape childishness? What does that say? What does it tell us about male desire? I will add that when I was sexually active, my hairiness was viewed as a plus by the men I pulled. This is not necessarily a bonus, though, when I consider what a bunch of losers most of them were. I am however, not brave enough to let my geriatric beard just grow and grow, but have removed it.
6. I have completely gone off my cats. I used to be a proper cat-lover, but now if they both left home or died, I'd actually be relieved. No room left in my heart for dumb beasts. I have no idea where this has come from or if it will last. I can see that Bob is very beautiful, but she still gets on my nerves something chronic, and George even more so. This from a woman whose diary is half named for her cat. Again, I don't care.
So that's me, a bit weird. If you haven't already done this, then you're tagged.
I'm off to have lunch at the new tapas bar. May be back xxx
So that was me, nine years ago. Makes me feel tired. Today got fucked up early when I couldn't sleep so checked facebook on my phone only to be confronted, under the 'people you may know' thingy, with the name of the man who raped me while I was unconscious back in the 1970S. On a Saturday as well, when there's no one to call unless you really are going to top yourself and I only wanted to.
I am grateful for: Son, stretched out on the sofa; having a blog to read; remembering there's a quote about that, about keeping a diary to have something scandalous to read in your old age; tomorrow is another day; finding all the bits of the cartoon Susan, a Canadian blogger made about me and my earmuffs at Niagara Falls:
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