Archive for the ‘Work’ Category

Grading for Winners

September 22, 2012

I have had a few jobs in my life:  Babysitter, tutor, camp counselor, fry cook.  My newest job is along the lines of a couple of those old ones, but from a different side, and I don’t mean food critic or mother.  I have become the Holy Grail of college upper division jobs: a grader.  Yes, I now grade papers for a living, so I have officially become the most disjointed educator ever.  I take roll, I lead a class and write on a board for one of my jobs, and in a totally unrelated job in a different school in a different field, I grade the work of a bunch of students.  It kind of goes towards what I want to end up doing and it’s amazing experience.  Well, not necessarily amazing, but it’s enlightening for sure.  I’ve learned that one of the best forms of entertainment is grading on a Friday night, and here’s why.

How I began my evening was making tea and cracking open some delicious creme filled ginger snaps for a sugar high to keep me motivated.  Even a regular night with these two would be delicious, but I decided the cherry on my sundae of school would be a pile of papers to grade.  I got out my red pen, ready and willing to be used, and turned on Iron Man 2 (to get the right amount of ego in my system) and began.  I won’t get into the nitty gritty about what went down, but I will say I yelled…a lot.  Mostly exclamations of “What?  What the hell?”  and some tossing of paper and cursing and wishing for whiskey.  Thinking of it now, I might have some in the freezer for later…no, bad idea, I’d just become meaner.  The first, I would say, 20 papers I went through, I tried to be nice, but 21 was almost no work and just felt like the person phoned it in.  That’s when my heart began to fall and I ate a cookie.  I went on to the next paper, and it was, if anything, worse.  Even Robert Downey Jr. inventing a new atom couldn’t bring me back from these doldrums.  I finally finished the last paper, and breathed a sigh of relief.  However, did I mention that I was going only one part of one problem at a time?  No?  Well, I am.  As of right now, I’ve finished the first two parts…out of more than I’m willing to say.  I was a distance swimmer in high school, so I’m rather good at pacing myself, which I’m going to do now.  That way, when I come back to this pile of doom tomorrow, it will be with fresh, less agressive eyes.

Sound like a plan, Stan?  Too bad, because I’m going to do it anyway.  Now, where’s that whiskey…?


Herding Cats

July 17, 2010

I feel bad for letting this blog slip for a while.  Here’s my apology.

And now we’re done with that.  Basically, I’ve been working full-time for the summer as an assistant instructor at a camp for preteens and I must admit, although I’ve done this before, it remains a challenge and time consuming.  Along with the fun of finals, I’ve completely let a ton of stuff fall by the wayside.  I was supposed to be penpals with someone and I’m ashamed to say that we’ve kind of missed a few weeks.  The best part of all this is my legs have that lovely tingly sensation of being on my feet for days on end.  And it’s my day off, so that’s great.

That’s not to say I don’t love working with kids, I really do.  They just have this amazing ability of not listening.  I can stand next to a kid and say their name over and over and over and over and they’ll eventually look at me and say something like “I didn’t hear you.”  I have choir voice training.  Meaning, I’m very, very, very loud.  I have the ability to yell over traffic without damaging my throat…at all.  While I’m not shouting at the kid, I tend to have a fairly strident tone, which I’ve learned from other authority figures and it’s hard to ignore.  The best part is that they’ll scream in my ear, so now I kind of lost hearing in my left ear for a little bit.  It’s also related to the slight congestion I caught when a kid sneezed and coughed in my face.

However, kids are hilarious!  They say the most honest and pure things, and it’s hard not to burst out laughing.  These kids are also brilliant.  I’ve had wonderful discussion of basic physics concepts with them and they’ve asked me questions.  I think truly genius people become that way by asking well thought out questions and then listening to the answer, so these kids are halfway there.  There have been some kids that I’ve wanted to take home with me, and some that I feel I’ve really connected with, and that makes it worth it.  I’m proud that I’m helping foster future nerds, and showing kids that being a nerd is cool.  I mean, I wear glasses and have a tattoo of a Greek symbol found in most equations for Pete’s sake, and these kids think I’m cool.

Well, there’s no accounting for taste.

Anyway, I’m just glad that this program is around to foster a love for science and creativity and give kids like me a place to be and people to look up to.  Whoot.

Anywho, on an equally nerdy note, 5 days until I go to San Diego and 6 days until Comic Con.  WHOOOOOOOOOOOOOT.