I don’t know how to explain to my students that even though I took all their tests home last night and was planning on grading them, the staff meeting that took up an hour an a half of my life and was mostly full of whiny adults sent me home with a school headache and forced me to go to the gym, and then when I got back and made dinner and my daughter called me and then I ate (really late, by the way), I didn’t have the mental energy to grade anything. Nor did I care about the grading at all, because the meeting was that irritating. And it wasn’t irritating because the thing we were discussing was so onerous…it was just because people are whiners and think if they whine loud enough and hard enough and demand shit that they will in fact get their way. Although it was the commentary on All I Have to Do Is Expect Work from my students and it will magically happen that kind of set me off as well. Because duh. I do that. And I chunk it. And I say, if you have done this, then I need you to do this. And still, there is a brainfart that happens between start-the-work and turn-it-in that I don’t understand. True that I’m not 12, but apparently parents allow the brainfart, because they think tutorial will help. Tutorial doesn’t help kids turn work in…most of them. And even with 10 kids in there, I can’t possibly help all 10 at the level they need, which sometimes means standing over them and saying “Keep working. Stop talking. Stop distracting yourself. Finish the work. Turn it in.” I usually leave tutorial with a monstrously bad mood, and that’s every Tuesday, which fucking sucks. Last year, at some point, we quit doing tutorial. Just plain quit. Because it was driving us nuts.
Let me be clear. I do not get paid to do tutorial. I do it out of a sense of duty to my students. So if I choose NOT to do it, I still don’t get paid. I’m a little irritated though that counselors and admin kind of expect us to do tutorial without pay. And detention. I don’t get paid for that time either. And it kinda punishes me too.
So that’s where my brain was when I got home and even after going to the gym, where there are still too many wannabes on the treadmills walking slower than I do going uphill on a hot day. Get off my machines people. I adjusted my workout. I listened to music and read my book. I came home and made dinner and talked to the girl. Miss her. Miss the boy. Miss all the things.
And then I sat down and did this instead of grading all those tests.
You know, those tests didn’t deserve the time of day. At least, they don’t deserve my free time at home after 10 PM. I’ll work on them today. I have my prep. I don’t have a lot of hands-on teaching today. And I still have a ton of grading to do. It doesn’t seem to go away.
I cut stuff out for about 2 hours. I’m 8 hours in. I figured out as I was cutting things that there are 5 sets of arms, so 10 arms total, so 10 hands, and each hand has 4 fingers and a thumb, so 40 fingers that have these tiny little stripes on them where the wrinkles are, and each finger has two of those wrinkles, so that’s 80 wrinkles I cut out yesterday. And then the 10 hands have 5 fingernails (including the thumb) each, plus two feet each with 5 toenails, so I cut out most of 60 nails yesterday as well. Some were really small so I left them ironed and uncut until I actually need them so I don’t lose them.
I’m down to I think the last two or three of the flesh fabrics, so mostly larger pieces of arms and breast and knee. So nearing the end. I had thought 9 hours…will be closer to 10 I think. I might finish tonight, but it is my opening and I’m hoping that’s successful. We’ll see. That’s a nerve-wracking thing in itself. But whatever. My art’s been out there long enough that I don’t need people’s approval to DO it, but it is nice to be in a 2-person show and hope that it gets positive press. I’m not going to stop making work if it doesn’t though.