Okay, I am seriously pissed. I have this wonderful bathtub – the tub I have raved about endlessly in this diary – and I can’t take a hot bath in it. I have the water turned up as hot as it will go. The water is only “warm.” So I decide to get into the closet where the hot water heater is located. This closet is locked. My house key fits the lock, but the lock won’t turn. I AM LOCKED OUT OF MY OWN HOT WATER HEATER! What do they think I am going to do? So I took a bath in three inches of tepid water. Now I am cold and cranky.
After much consideration, I have decided to come out of the closet. Maybe I feel safer now that I’ve moved – I don’t know. I… am… a… former… high school… ENGLISH TEACHER! Wow, I just feel relieved that it is out there now. I had been worried my former students would come upon my diary and guess my identity, but then I thought screw it. First of all, I don’t teach anywhere anymore, so they can bite me. What are they going to do? Second, they’re a bunch of lame-ass kids if they spend all their time on the Internet gossiping about their former English teacher’s diary. Not talking about something that has been such a huge part of my life has been very hard, especially considering how open I’ve been about most everything else in this diary.
Remember those old Calgon commercials? Prozac, take me away! I am going to put on my happy helmet (a wink and a nod to Valerian) dammit, and I’m going to write about whatever I want.
You’re sitting there wondering about your old teachers now, aren’t you?
Why’d I quit? Because kids today shoot their peers and their teachers. Because kids today go crying to Mommy if you give them homework. God forbid you require them to do a research paper that includes BOOKS so they can’t just turn in something they copied and pasted from the Internet! It just wasn’t what I thought it would be. I give my respect to those teachers out there that are still slogging away. In some ways, I envy them. I feel like I failed – I couldn’t handle it.
The school year has started again, and I’m not there. And they hired a complete goober to replace me. There are new pencils, paper, and notebooks. And I’m not there. There are new freshmen, scared and unsure, sitting in the desks in the classroom that used to be mine. Now it belongs to the goober. So part of me is mourning the loss now that the school year has started again. I was so glad to leave, but I suppose that quitting this job was a bit like divorce. Divorce is something you decide is best. Maybe you even want to do it, like I did. But it still hurts, and leaving behind the marriage you worked on for so long still feels a bit like failing. So I failed at teaching. For three years, I was a good teacher. The fourth year, I had the worst students I’d ever had, I got divorced, I got unexpectedly pregnant, I got remarried, and I had no support from my family.
I surfed around a couple of the websites of my former students tonight. Why did I do it? Nostalgia? I was a bit fearful I’d see something ugly about me – graffiti rumors painted across the web. Did you hear what she did? Have you read the stuff she’s written? I taught at a school planted firmly in the Bible Belt, a place where everyone went to church on Sunday (most likely a Southern Baptist one) and if you didn’t, you were weird. Yeah, lots of my students professed to be Christians. They also systematically cheated on tests throughout the school, were cruel to their teachers and each other, lied, stole, had sex with each other (sometimes even at school), and squealed to their parents or the principal whenever they didn’t get their way. Yeah, I guess I’m bitter. Bite me. You would be too.
Nobody likes me; everybody hates me. Guess I’ll go eat worms.