Thursday, March 10, 2005


This morning I sat talking to one of my classes. It is a wonderful class, even if they are sometimes slackers. I like all the students in this class, and I have to pretend, sometimes, to be mad at them or else I would let them get away with murder. So we were discussing my expectations of them. And I mentioned that I recently heard of one of my students who claimed to be terrified of me. They were surprised. "You don't get mad," they told me. "I mean, you get mad, but not scary mad." This from one of the most charming ones. So it got me thinking.

I do get mad. I don't get mad at students, because they don't really have the power to hurt me. The only time I get truly mad is when I have been hurt. And only a person to whom I make myself vulnerable can hurt me. And due to my reserved nature, and what most people consider my aloofness, there are not so many people in that category.

I was talking to my colleagues, and one remarked how I always seemed so calm and cool, and rarely was ruffled. "Oh, it's all an illusion," I said. "In reality, I am a quivering mess."

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