Draped in diaphanous swirls of peach chiffon and tottering on tiny ballerina feet encased in jeweled slippers, an enormous woman makes her way to the microphone, centre stage.
The auditorium hushed, spotlight fixed, she focuses on a black dot somewhere in another galaxy. The music plays. She opens her mouth and a clear bright note is launched into the void. Angels unfold their wings; babies stop fretting and young maidens hold their breath.
The fat lady is definitely singing.
It is indeed, all over.
I managed a year after the new college contracts had to be signed. A Faustian pact, and one I quickly realized I couldn’t keep.
Sod this for a game of soldiers, I’m taking my bat and ball, not picking up anything I threw out of my pram, I’m off.
I’ve done 34 years of teaching, fuck me; murderers get less of a life sentence, mutter, rant, stomp!
On a slightly more mature note. I have loved most of my career, I have met some truly amazing characters, laughed constantly, been brought to tears of pride in the achievements my students have made and eaten my own body weight in chocolate chip cookies. I will miss the creative souls who have been a privilege to tutor, the vulnerable ones with the giant chip on their shoulders, the shy retiring ones who emerge from their chrysalis eventually, but most of all I will miss the gob almighty ones, the larger than life, the fighters, the ones with hearts bigger than their heads.
Teaching, or rather ranting as I call it, has given me an opportunity to bore for England on my favourite subject and actually been listened to….well, that’s what they tell me although I have my doubts occasionally. “ Have you listened to anything I said? Obviously not!”
It’s true that I have said some terrible things to my students but at least I warn them about my lack of filters. My excuse is that they do terrible things. “Please tell me you didn’t just stick that photograph down with PVA, and its not even straight!”. What did you cut this out with, a knife and fork?” “ Explain to me why this drawing of a fairy smoking a bong under a toadstool is in your mark making scrapbook!” “ Which illiterate moron did you pay to proof read this essay?”
Things I have never said,……. “That’s Nice”.
Oh God, it’s been such a joy. Some days have been so funny that I considered calling Chanel Four to see if they wanted to make a documentary about us. They probably would have taken it too seriously though, just like everyone else. Its not serious, its just life on a course that exists in a cupboard under the stairs, full of medicated nutters trying to do their best whilst holding down adult lives, part time jobs, dysfunctional families and feelings of inadequacy. And that’s just the staff.