No, it’s not Mother’s Day. Yes, this is an interview with my mother. Why? Because she is funny and has some good perspective on life. She raised four daughters and lived to tell about it. She once had major brain … Continue reading
Sometimes I feel like my fiancé and I are in a constant game of “How To Lose A Guy in 10 Days”, where I’m the crazy girl who buys love ferns and he is the suave Matthew Mcconaughey who puts … Continue reading
Last week I was giving a presentation at work for the batch of new students enrolling in school. My portion of their orientation day is not exciting or encouraging, to say the least. I basically stand in front of them for 20 minutes and explain the consequences of getting poor grades and dropping classes. Being a small, caucasian, 25-year old woman who could pass for 19 seems to add salt to the wound, as the group is usually comprised of African American single mothers in their 40′s. They don’t particularly love hearing that I will be the one to put them on academic probation , suspension, or even dismissal from school.
To lighten the mood during my presentation every six weeks, I have started doing a team building activity. Yep, that’s right. A team building activity. Could I be more cliche? Probably not. But there is a reason that companies, camp counselors, and teachers use them- they work! Personally I think they mainly work because those participating suddenly have a common enemy- the person hosting the team building activity. They can all, as a group, start making fun of the leader’s mousey voice and corny jokes. BAM! They are laughing, joking, and instantly have a sense of community. So to benefit my students, I put myself out there as the common enemy. You’re welcome.
The past few times that I have run the team building activity, it has gone great. The game we play is called “two truths and a lie.” Each person has to tell the group 3 things about themselves, two of which are true and one is a lie. I always tell them to come up with truths that sound absurd and a lie that would be easy to believe. The group then has to try and guess which one is the lie. If they guess it, they win. If the person stumps them, they lose. It’s easy, allows people to share things about themselves, and usually gets everyone laughing with some of the truths and lies that are shared.
This past Friday, people were not laughing. In fact the whole room fell silent after a woman decided that one of her factoids should be “I was raped.”
REALLY?? Sitting in a room with 23 strangers before the first day of school seems like a good place to share that you have been raped?
I held my breath so as not to bust out laughing. Not because I think rape is funny but because suddenly I had 46 eyes staring at me, waiting to see my next move. Was this a test? Had the whole group collectively decided to play a prank on the Registrar? I held out hope. I thought maybe she has a sick sense of humor and the rape claim is her lie.
That would have been too easy. Instead, my coworker and I had to ask to the group “okay…um, raise your hand if you think that it’s a lie that she has been, um…..raped.”
Not surprisingly, no hands went up. People stared forward avoiding eye contact with each other. In fact nobody raised their hands for any of her answers, everyone was scared to vote. The woman, with a bizarre sense of pride, said to the class “I was raped, that wasn’t the lie.”
“Okay great job, you stumped the class. You win a free session with a psychiatrist starting right now. Just go, please go get help” is what I wanted to say to the poor woman. Instead, I will keep an eye on her while she is at school. I gave a heads up to the Director of Education that she may need some extra attention. I will check up on her to see how things are going and recommend some good counselors in the area. And next time I might skip the team building activity.
Last week I began my fourth online class towards my Humanities Degree. I have come to an important realization: I hate online classes.
In 2007 I enrolled in an online class in addition to my “real” classes and dropped it within two weeks. There is absolutely nothing that appeals to me about taking classes online. It is extremely frustrating because I love being a student and learning, I even like taking quizzes, tests, and pages of notes during a lecture! But online classes? They make me angry. From the past 3 classes that I have taken and received A’s in, I could not tell you ONE thing I learned. Hell, I don’t even remember the names of two of them. They blow by and are neither stimulating or satisfying.
I hate logging into my virtual classroom and seeing that the professor has posted the same exact feedback for 30 different posts made by my classmates. I hate that when I have a question about a certain topic I cannot simply raise my hand and ask, I have to post it to a discussion forum. It may be 4 days before I get an answer to my question, and by then the assignment is already over with. I hate blowing through chapters of an online textbook and never really understanding any of the topics we discuss. I hate wasting my time and money on courses that are going towards a degree that I have no idea what I’m going to do with.
I miss sitting in a real classroom, having real interaction with classmates. I want to find a way to make this happen again. In one of my last counseling sessions with Ken, he gave me a surprising 20-minute lecture. He told me that he was amazed at how far I had grown emotionally and how my perspective had changed. He also said that my biggest source of anxiety and frustration in life is going to be with my schooling and future career choice. He could not have been more right. Today I realized that these online classes make me so miserable, there is no way I can continue to do this for the next few years in order to finish a seemingly pointless degree. I need to discuss my options with Isaac and see what we can come up with because this is not working anymore.
For a brief moment I thought “I should have just stayed in school and finished my degree. I would have graduated 3 years ago!!!!” Sure, that was an option. But if I had chosen that route? I wouldn’t have gotten the chance to work with dolphins, meet my future husband, move to this city that I love so much, and somehow fall into my current job. Nothing would be the same. So for that, I am thankful. I am just feeling a little confused as to what to do now. The question what do you want to be when you grow up keeps ringing in my ears. I AM grown up, so what do I want to be?
I’m noticing a trend in my Monday’s lately: I develop or at least become aware of certain pet-peeves that I posses. I have a lot of pet-peeves. I’ve made a list before and it seems to only be growing as I … Continue reading
On April 16, 2007, a Virginia Tech student by the name of Cho Seung-hui murdered 32 people and injured 25 others in what was one of the worst school shootings to date. Everybody was impacted by the massacre that day no matter … Continue reading
FINALLY my Asian Literature course ended about 2 weeks ago. I don’t know how I did it but I managed to get an A in the course. Okay an A- if Isaac is reading this. He always makes sure to … Continue reading
Working two jobs and taking a class online has been challenging, to say the least. After a 15-hour day I have a hard time finding even a morsel of energy to read a novel and write essays on it. Especially … Continue reading