Revenge of the Nerds

Okay, so I quit my job.

Well, sort of.  Right now, I'm still working a few hours every week until they find my replacement.

As if.

Chuckle.  I love being cocky.  I'm much better than I used to be! I used to be an "arrogant prick".  Seriously.  That's what my husband, Tomas, still calls me.  It's so sweet.  I love breaking gender barriers.

But I quit my job so I could go back to school full time and finally, finally finish my long-lost degree.  Yes, my bachelor's.  The one I should have finished 20 years ago.  Okay, 20+ years ago.

So, I'm sitting in class every day (except Fridays--I have learned something in 20 years) hanging out with the millenials.  I consider myself fairly hip, but I am noticing a few differences.

1.  They wear Uggs.  I wear Uggs (okay, they're knock-offs).  But I pick up my feet when I walk in them.
2. They yawn in class.  I yawn in class.  But I do not do so audibly every fucking time.
3.  They exaggerate when describing things.  I exaggerate when describing things.  But I use other words besides a-m-a-z-i-n-g.

(I might have to write an entire goddamned blog on #3 at some point.  Seriously.)

Now, I try really, really hard not to sleep in class.  Because I am a mature adult and I have now taught some classes in a professional sense and it's frankly insulting.  But I have to admit that I have a couple of courses right now that are a little.....dry.
Okay, they are dry.  Dry as farts.

I'm getting my degree in Economics.

And sometimes these courses are taught by grad students.  Now my first time around in college, I had the extreme pleasure of being a TA (I told you I was a nerd).  My university at the time didn't really have grad students that I recall, although they must have been there, but they used us, as in undergrads, as teaching assistants.  I had the great fortune of actually being a TA as early as my freshman year.  First semester.

And I can clearly see now that my fortune was other students' misfortune.  Those poor bastards were hazed, ridiculed and harassed.  I was an asshole.  Actually, to be precise, I was an arrogant prick.  But I will tell you what--no one, not one single person, ever thought about sleeping in a class.

Of course, I 'taught' labs, so it really wouldn't have been feasible, but I digress. 

Anyway,  now I'm in Econ classes.  I'm hanging out with the young.  I'm being taught by the young.  And I gotta say, there's one class, actually it's Economics of Poverty and Discrimination, that I thought would be a really interesting, okay....riveting class.  I grew up poor, remember?  Well, it's not.  I mean, the subject matter is.  But the instructor, the grad student (okay, let's call him "Lewis"), just takes the material and somehow sucks every ounce of interest, life, and energy out of it. 

It's painful.

But I forgive.  I know it's hard to teach.  And I admit I need to sew good karma here.  I was a prick.  I need to make up for that.  So, I think it's just his way.  He's shy.  He's an introvert.  I'm sure he would be much better discussing it one-on-one.  It's just the classroom venue doesn't bring out his best. Not everyone is passionate.  And that's OKAY.  Because passionate people can be a little scary.  Hell, people think I'm mad all the time.

I'm not.  I'm just ANIMATED.  

Well, all of that inner dialogue was going great until today.  When this guy sitting four seats down from me decided to tip his head back and TAKE A NAP.  Now, thank God, he didn't start snoring.  But he did do that thing where you slip into a nice relaxed sleep and start breathing really loudly.  He did that.  And I thought Lewis was going to flip out!  At first he was ignoring him.  And by ignoring him, I mean he would pause and deliberately look anywhere but in the direction of the guy (okay, let's call him "Barney"--dead ringer for miniature Barney Rubble). But the nap continued.  And the aggravation continued.  Until finally Lewis just stopped the lecture, planted his feet and gave Barney the death stare.


Awkward, since Barney slept right through it dreaming of sugar-plums.  Awkward because the dipshit sitting right behind him  didn't give Barney's chair a tap to wake his ass up.   Awkward because someone else chose that unfortunate moment to yawn.  I know this because it was audible.

I swear to God, if laser beams could shoot out of someone's eyes, they came close today.  I've never heard such silence.  Not even a cell phone chirp.  Not the click of a laptop.  Nothing.  I was elated.  I now knew Lewis did have passion!  It was just a little repressed.  I made the decision right then to move down one more seat from Barney in future.  Just in case.  As I always say, 'safety first'.  You never know what a nerd might do.  Don't underestimate 'em. 

It was about that time that Lewis just clicked off his Powerpoint, announced his office hours, and succinctly told everyone....

wait for it...

"Have a good weekend"


On the way out the door, I heard someone comment that they were surprised he let us out of class early, as he never had before.  The student next to them, feet dragging, said, "I know, right?  Amazing."

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