Wednesday, August 11, 2010

The circle of life . . .

First I'd like to bear my testimony that I know the Lion King is true.

I just had a circle of life experience, which is just Disney-speak for I'm officially an old lady.

Remember when I was an English teacher in Hawaii instead of a desperate housewife in Utah?

Back and back and back in the day?

Me too.

Well one thing we English teachers would discuss at department meetings was our suspicions that English was losing it's sex appeal. It just isn't a sexy major anymore. At least not as sexy as some of the newer, hipper majors, like interdisciplinary studies, or peace studies or global warming studies or freakanomics.

When I visited China several years ago everyone was majoring in English--English is sexy in China--but in America English is stodgy and stuffy and, dare I say, empirialistic.

In China students can quote Hamlet better than me, but American students pooh pooh both Mel Gibson AND Shakespeare.

"He's a plagiarizer," they say, if they know enough about him. Otherwise they say he makes them yawn and want to hit their heads against a cinder block wall. Ironically Shakespeare often made me want to hit their heads against a cinder block wall too.

As English teachers we were always trying to think of ways to sex up the major, you know. Make it more intellectually stimulating. Use more word-play. Get our students hooked on phonics. And ideas. And research papers.

If you can hook a student on research papers, you can hook 'em on anything.

That's what I always said.

We were often encouraged by the department to try to turn our students on to the English major. It felt dirty, and cheap, but I reeled in my fair share.

Little did I know, however, that I'd live to see the day when a student of mine would become not just an English major but an English teacher as well.

And little did I know that not one, but TWO of my students would become English teachers.

BTW, before I was a blogger I had other favorite students beside Wolfgang from Austria. Miles and Keola to name a few.

Miles and Keola are both teaching English at BYUH this semester. I can prove it if you need evidence. (Is Facebook a credible source?)

I recently received this message on my Facebook wall:

Sister Dummy, I am sitting at your desk right now at BYUH and preparing to teach English 101 this fall. I keep telling Keola that if I can be half the teacher you were for us, I will consider my class an enormous success. Any tips for me? --Miles.



He's sitting at my desk.

MY desk.

Excuse me a moment while I blow my nose.

I'm just soooooooo happy.

But also a little bit sad.

And not because I'm a circle now instead of a square.

And not because I don't lub my new life as a desperate housewife.

And not because I don't lub Miles and Keola's new sexy life sitting at MY desk.

It's just that sometimes my stone cold heart just wants to poke Walt Disney's eyes out.

You get me?

P.S. Yes, Miles, I have a tip for you: Wear something low-cut. And don't be afraid to show a little leg.


T said...

English is the most sexy when taught with a hot British accent - you think that's a tip they can use?

Garden of Egan said...

Sage advice from a YW PREZ. Awesome.
I'm glad the the Lion King is true.

English always scared me. I never knew what to do with all those prepositional phrases and stuff.
Scary. Very scary.

It's nice to know that some of your favorites are keeping your chair warm...cleavage and all.

Sandi said...

I like T's hot tip for the day- tell him to use the accent as well as the cleavage and leg. haha.
So, does that make you feel like an OlD dummy if you have students teaching college? huh huh?
Jack Johnson just a few days away!! I can't wait to live vicariously through you!

Martha said...

Hey I can prove that your Keola girl is teaching too. It's on the schedule and it's already full!!

MoWeFr 11:00AM - 12:00PM Multi Purpose Center 115 Keolanani K-----
09/15/2010 - 12/16/2010

But the Miles guy is not on the schedule yet. He's probably one of the many "STAFF" ones listed. That means they are short teachers big time.

BYUH accepted way too many students and now we advisors are having a super fun time trying to find an open class. I heard Housing is in a panic too. But, hey that's nothing new.

The Crash Test Dummy said...

Hahahahahah I love that Martha steps in to back me up with evidence of Keola's whole schedule. I MISS YOU MARTHA!

And no, that's nothing new. I don't know why they never learn.


hahahahahahahahahahahah my verifier says flingie.

hahahahahahaha My verifier is almost as funny as I am.

The Mom said...

We watched "Kiss Me Kate" last night . . . this song comes to mind.

Personally, this "Mrs. English Professor" still thinks English is sexy. Just sayin'.

Megan and Keli'i said...

Awwww...makes me a little sad too. You really were one of the greatest English teachers ever. I totally strived to be like you when I taught a term...but utterly failed, of course, because no one can replace you. You're the best!

Kazzy said...

Students who are now teachers? Weird feeling, huh?

And my husband is a stodgy English professor, but still sexy!

stewbert said...

So, I knew a guy who left the church (and his wife and kids) for a religion based on that "Circle of Life" song and idea. Yeah. F'realz.

SWIRL said...

Your tip should be "start a blog and learn to use photoshop"...
I think your students showed up... just so they could read about themselves the next day..
It was always fun to read your rendition of life.

You should paten some glasses... instead of rose colored.. dummified glasses... so we could all see the humor in our day--

{and when you feel especially dumb and home sick for Laie... we need some lyrics to our dawn treader play.} Maybe you could just re-write words from JJ songs...

Braden said...

LOL. Great post. I felt a little guilty the first time one of my students told me they were going to major in theatre. "Oh great," I thought, "I've ruined this poor kid's life." I bet you were are fantastic teacher!