Saturday, November 1, 2008
I Have Two Masters Degrees
I work with a woman who generally finds some way to insert this statement into almost any conversation. For example, a few of the English teachers were thinking about starting the book club back up and this woman and I both showed up at the meeting. We each mentioned what we were reading. Well this Mrs. TWO MASTER's had mentioned what book she'd been reading and one of the other teachers said she just couldn't get into that book herself. She admitted that she had started to read it but with a small baby at home if a book couldn't draw her in she just put it aside.
I mentioned that I had just finished "Of Mice and Men" and that just before that I had read The Audacity of Hope." I confessed I was going back and checking out classics that I had never read I was really enjoying them far more than I thought I would. Well since the English Department requires of Mice and Men they gushed over the book and I confessed that one of the reasons I had chosen that particular book was because it was required. I will always comment when I see a student with a book, "Are you reading that for a class or did you pick it out because you were interested?" I will ask what they thought and what was going on in the book so far. If they admit that they aren't reading it I will tell them what I thought of the book when I read it.
Well this just tickled the English Department's fancy. They LOVED that. Their summer reading selections had been filled with books I had loved like "90 Minutes in Heaven" and "Tuesdays with Maurie" The kids had actually enjoyed these books more than I would have imagined. I had actually had some interesting conversations with the kids about the books.
I thought the meeting went well but with fixing up the house I didn't know if I would have the time to dedicate to the club. As we were leaving Mrs. TWO MASTERS caught up with me. She was pretty upset but not trying to show it. "I just can't believe that so and so didn't give the book more of a chance. Then again it seemed like many of the books that were thrown out there were pretty pedestrian. I have noticed that I often pick out books with a bit more substance but then I have two masters degrees.
Now I work in the same department as she does so I can't always avoid her. I've learned to just accept that she'll sneak her two degrees into almost any conversation but it's still annoying. I think it's a self-esteem issue.
Anyway, the other day one of our co-workers had to leave a few minutes early to go to the dentist. I think the exact words were "a couple of minutes early". Hey I understand. If I had a seventh period planning period I would have covered her class so she could go She wanted to avoid having to take sick leave time so what is the big deal in watching a class period that is almost over for someone who works in your department. This is not a person who does this all the time or for that matter asks people for much of anything.
Well the teacher who needed to leave asked the department secretary if she woud watch the class. The department secretary said yes but then discovered she had to leave early because her son was sick. She asked my pal two masters who agreed to sit with the class for a "couple of minutes". As she related the story to me, she had planned to go down during the afternoon announcements to cover the class. That would be essentially a couple or literally two minutes. Yet her phone rang with eight minutes to go and she told me she knew that this was the call to say come down and watch my class.
OK for me eight minutes, two minutes, it's not an all day thing. I'd have probably gone there ten minutes before the end of class anyway. That's just me. Well Two Masters was infuriated. After all she has two masters and her time is valuable. She told me she just ignored the call. Then the teacher had to send a student down to her to say "Mrs. So and So wants to know if you are coming." Keep in mind this is just a kid. Mrs. Two Masters says to the kid "Well I'm turning off all the computers in my room and when I'm finished I will come down there. You can tell her I will be down for the last two minutes like she originally asked."
Now her last class could have turned off all the computers. She could have come back and turned them off after watching the class. I asked her if she had some place she had to rush to after school and she told me no. "No it's just the principle of the thing. Two minutes is two minutes. I have two master's degrees and my time is pretty valuable. In a real workplace people would respect time but then I find most teachers have no real concept of time. I doubt many of them could handle the corporate world. I am certain most of them couldn't have handled the rigors of a MBA. I reminded her that this particular teacher had actually run her own restaurant for ten years. She didn't acknowledged that. The point was that two minutes are two minutes and eight minutes is six minutes longer.
I find her attitude to be pretty selfish. Maybe that's just me. What do you think? Am I really that clueless? Do you think getting two masters would make me a more self-actualized person? Am I really missing the point because for me six minutes goes towards goodwill to others and not anything more.
Thanks for letting me vent because this person is making me crazy. Trust me I try to avoid her but it's not always possible