A Teacher complains. That’s new…

Dammit. Not only do I have to co-teach this year, but ALL my 9th grade classes are co-taught Special Ed inclusion classes (which I can’t stand teaching in the first place).

I don’t like co-teaching even when I like the teacher working with me. It makes it feel like I’m not in my own classroom and in charge of my own students, and I can already see my prep period being taken up by this person (she just loves to talk and talk and talk) when I have other work to do for my other classes.  Edit: The teacher and I eventually became friends; she turned out to be way less annoying than I’d thought she’d be, and when she left I was actually sad.

I had a co-taught class the year before last. I made my opposition to it clear, and I asked not to have to teach Inclusion classes again. I do not care what the SpEd teachers say, in my classes it has NEVER worked well for the students. What I end up with are half SpEd kids who are normally difficult–they won’t do their work, they often have severe behavior problems–and half non-SpEd kids who try to survive what is an often hostile class.  Even the year I worked with a GREAT co-teacher who did her absolute best, it was a nightmare. She agreed with me, by the way, and felt that most of the SpEd students in that class were not ready for Inclusion–but the head of her department wouldn’t listen.

Anyway. This isn’t about teaching SpEd kids. I’ve had those kids in my regular classes every year since I began teaching, usually supported by a Resource Professional who occasionally came to class with them, but primarily worked with them outside my classroom and supported me in teaching them in the class. That, in my opinion, works better. No, I’m upset about having to share my professional space with someone who doesn’t mesh well with me. I don’t play well with others; that’s one reason I like my job–what I do is largely on my own, and while I collaborate with and consult my colleagues, I don’t like giving up my autonomy.

Today’s Bout of Impostor Syndrome

I feel like SUCH an impostor today.  I can’t work on the novel, because it’s what I’ll be workshopping at Viable Paradise in October, and I’ll probably need to change a thousand things about it, so why keep working on that when I’ll just have to rewrite (or shelve) it later?  

A short story I’ve been working on is plotted, but I can’t seem to actually make it work.  Some of my “ideas in reserve” aren’t jelling, so I’m having a hard time doing anything with them.  

My OTHER novel-in-progress is frozen, because I’ve convinced myself that the synopsis makes little sense, and also because I need to do more background work before I can tell a story there.  My OTHER other series idea is frozen, because even though I’ve been working on it off-and-on for more than 15 years now, it’s remarkably similar to a currently-published book series (which I had never read until long after creating my own), and while I think it can still be made to work, I need to think on it so it doesn’t get any more derivative in appearance. 

I am terrified that what I will discover at VP is that I have the ability to write prose, but that I will never be an author because I can’t seem to generate ideas in quite the quantity that I need to.  Most everything I think of seems like it couldn’t really be even a short story.  

Yep.  Frustrated.  

State of the Me

I find I’m reticent to write a lot of the things I’m thinking lately; partly because a lot of it strike me as ephemeral crap I don’t really want to think about, and partly because I’ve grown weary of debate and discussion on certain topics. And not enough happens in the writing part of my life right now, so I’m not doing anything there. Meh.

I have thoughts, but I’m just increasingly unlikely to share them for fear of… I’m not sure what, exactly. Here’s a random sampling:

I’m tired of being dismissed with tired lines about “privilege” if I disagree with the idea that white people have no place in discussions about racism, or if I think the term “cisgendered” is unnecessary. (There is nothing wrong with “gender normative.” The word “normal” exists for a reason, and it isn’t a value judgment to say someone isn’t normal in some way. I’m a bisexual man–that isn’t “normal,” in that the vast majority of men are straight. It doesn’t lessen me to say my sexuality isn’t normal. It doesn’t, in my opinion, lessen a transgender person to say that I am gender-normative. But because I’m not transgender, apparently I don’t get to say anything.

The increasing tribalization of American society worries me. It’s not a good thing that so many people identify themselves by whomever they voted for in the last election.

I would emigrate to the UK in a second, for a lot of reasons. Lack of funds to do so is one reason I don’t. I wish there was a “citizenship swap” mechanism. That’d be pretty cool, actually. I think it’s absurd that in the modern world, with more ability to travel than ever before, our nationalities are determined by where we happened to be born. I regret, as I get older, that I didn’t go when I was much younger and probably could have done it legally. It’s only gotten more difficult since then, and the UK’s new system counts my age against me. (And yes, I know the UK isn’t perfect, either. As I said, many reasons.)

I don’t think Edward Snowden is a whistleblower. He just doesn’t fit the definition. I’m not sure whether or not I think he’s a hero, but I think it’s good that the information he leaked is out, and I suppose I’m glad he made that happen. He’s a guy who made a choice, and now he has to deal with the consequences of those choices. I suspect history will remember him more fondly than that.

I think I’m having a midlife crisis. Fortunately it’s more “quiet desperation” than “buying a sports car.” It’s not that my life sucks, but that I’m rebelling internally against some of the strictures I have to live by.

Theodore Beale is a cautionary tale showing that knowing facts doesn’t mean you’ll come to a reasonable conclusion regarding those facts.

Identity Theory makes me insane.