As I Hurdle Towards the Sweet Relief of Death.


I just had my 45th birthday.  At least I think it was my 45th.I Need This Car.

At this point, I’ve lost track.  And really don’t care.

My theory is any birthday from this point forward beats the alternative.

If I really think about it (and I try not to), my life is probably half over.

It’s probably more than half over, but I’ve convinced myself with advances in medicine, an occasionnal walk around the neighborhood, and only eating17 cookies instead of 21, I should live until at least 90.

Not that I want to be that old, but again it probably beats the alternative of a dirt nap.

Since the clock is ticking I should really get on with accomplishing something (anything) before it’s too late.

I shouldn’t waste my last few remaining good years watching TV, tweeting, mowing my yard, or even going to work.

I should be making the world a better place.

My time should be spent on charity work.  Traveling.  Maybe building a school for the less fortunate.

Meanwhile, I’m shuffling paperwork and worrying about mandated testing.

This doesn’t seem right.

I’m on the clock.  I have things I need to do.

And first on the list:  Mid-life crisis.

So if you need me, I’ll be driving way too fast in my brand new red convertible I can’t afford sporting a mustache and wearing a tight shirt unbuttoned two buttons lower than appropriate.

Once I get this phase out of my system, I can help build a school.

Or at least mow my yard.

*Note from editor in chief…aka…tech-geek wife or whatever it is you call me on this "blog"…ummmm…it’s 46 and no…just no…on the mustache and unbuttoned shirt that is…I am totally good with the brand new red convertible.  Maybe I am having a mid-life crisis too…after all I turned 39 this year.

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Time Flies When You’re Having Fun. Or at School.


The school year is 25% over.  This is the only way to look at it.

Saying we still have 75% of the school year left sounds… well, sounds like we still have three-quarters of the year left.

Call me crazy, but for my own mental well-being I’m sticking with the idea that we are a quarter of the way done.Time Flies.  Although Not Literally.

As an added bonus, I should point out the year is flying by at an unprecedented quick pace.

Although, I’m not sure why I’m excited because there will be another school year starting 3 months after this one ends (if all goes well… and I get a good evaluation. If you hear anything to the contrary, please let me know).

I’ve said it before, but it bears repeating … the older I get the faster each year seems to go.

There’s probably a formula that could explain this to me, but since I didn’t take physics I may never know.

I can only come to one conclusion.  I’m old.

Not old in the sense that I am the last surviving Civil War veteran (which to clarify kids, I’m not).  Or old in a way that I saw pre-fat Elvis in concert.

Old in a way that I remember when Burt Reynolds was cool and hip (along with Jerry Reed and Dom DeLuise).

An even better way to explain this is I’m old in a way that is only understandable to people who work in schools.

I’m no longer on the bottom half of the Seniority Scale (the young vibrant half… sorry top half, but you know we all go to bed early… really early).

I’m in the group that spends more time talking about retirement than discussing their exploits during college.

I’m that kind of old.

It wasn’t always this way.

I used to be young.

Now I’m so not.

When I started working in education the older teachers were very recognizable.  The dressed differently (usually better), they spent a lot of time discussing the good old days in education (primarily the ability to spank), and they graduated from college when I was struggling to pass kindergarten (that’s a whole different blog… or possibly a series of blogs).

I didn’t really understand the older teachers.  They were different in so many ways.

I found them very conservative and slightly grumpy (kind of like… me… now).

When I was around them, I did my best to just keep my mouth shut (this was and continues to be a constant struggle).

Things have changed in the last few years.

Older staff members have retired.  They are now enjoying a life that doesn’t involve a bell ringing every 45 minutes.

And I’m still working with a bunch of children (I’m not talking about the kids attending school, but the teachers who were born after 1987… when I was already in college).

This has caused me to see myself differently.  Who am I kidding?  I still see myself like it’s 1982 (sophomore year of high school… I had my whole life ahead of me… I was full of hopes and dreams).

But the years passing by have definitely changed how others see me.

They seem to look at me in the same ways that I looked at older teachers.

The school year going quickly is a good thing.

Moving up the Seniority Scale (and pay scale) is a good thing.

Getting older… not so good.

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Retirement is Wasted on Old People.


I spend hours thinking about some of the larger questions in the universe.

Heaven or Hell? Was President Obama cool when he was 12? Why do junior high boys feel the urge to shove each other in the hallway? Who is foolish enough to drink out of a school water fountain after 1st graders have put their mouths on it? And why do people complain about the quality of school food when the entire meal cost $2.50?

What do people expect for a couple of bucks? If the food isn’t moving, you should consider yourself lucky.

I am particularly interested in how the whole heaven thing works out for me. But that is a long term goal (hopefully long term).

My immediate focus is retirement.

Only 20 years to go! (barring some sort of incident where I am “encouraged” to leave school grounds and not come back… and mark my word, I will not be going quietly)

It’s not that I don’t like work, because I do. I just think I would like not working a little more.

If I am lucky enough to retire in the far away future, I have a feeling that I may end up being disappointed.

This is My Future.

My Future.

It seems that people retire at such a young age that many find themselves going back to work.

After all if you retire at 62 it’s possible that 1/3 of your life is left (if you are 62… this would be a good time to knock on wood). Your retirement years could last as long or longer than your work years.

The only downfall to retiring is being old.

Although old is a relative term. I used to think people in their 40’s were old. Now I see one of these old people in the mirror every morning and I find him youthful, vibrant, and breathtakingly handsome.

Not really.

I find him tired, grumpy, and slightly creepy (but I don’t want to bother you with my self esteem issues).

I can remember my dad’s 36th birthday party. For some reason one thing struck me that day.

This guy is a dead man walking. I didn’t think there was any way he would live to see his 37th birthday (yes, he is still alive over 30 years later).

Today when I see a 36 year old, I think they are childlike and shouldn’t be crossing busy streets by themselves.

So it turns out my thoughts about age depends on how old I am at the moment.

I am sure that when I turn 62, I will think I am young. Albeit, slightly tired, a little grumpy, and slightly creepy, but again that is a me problem.

While I look forward to my retirement in only two short decades, I do think the entire system is a mess.

I think the concept of when we retire needs to be discussed.

Presently, we attend 13 years of school and then go to college, the military, or work.

The first 65 years of our lives are taken up with these obligations.

Where is the time to have fun?

Where is the time to enjoy life?

Why is retirement dangled out in front of us like a carrot?

Why do we get the carrot when we are too old to chew it with our own teeth?

Retirement should come much earlier, like after you graduate college and earn a master’s degree. Or serve 8 years in the armed forces.

If you accomplish that, you should get the next 20 years off (retirement) and then go into the workforce at 45.

Then you would work until you die.

These days, many retirees go back to work only months after they retire. Why not get some time off when you are young enough to enjoy it?

Just think. If I retire when I am 62, my golf game will have deteriated to such a pathetic level that I won’t even enjoy playing.

Under this new system, I get to enjoy early retirement” while my golf game is still mediocre.

Let’s not kid ourselves.

Retirement is for old people. It should be for young people. And my golf game is barely mediocre.

I want to retire before I start setting the thermostat in my house to a balmy 84 degrees. Or before I am driving 27 mph on the highway (in the passing lane with both hands on the steering wheel looking straight ahead).

Of course, I am only offering this “new retirement idea” for a very limited time.

When I am 62, retirement won’t be for old people… it will be for me.

And by then I will be more focused on my heaven/hell issue than my retirement problem.

Plus, 62 isn’t really that old. It’s not like I will be 85.

But no matter how old I get, or where I end up spending eternity, I will never understand why people drink out of a public school water fountain.

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While this site operates with the knowledge and awareness of the Tuscola CUSD #301 School Board, Tuscola, Illinois, the content and opinions posted here may or may not represent their views personally or collectively, nor does it attempt to represent the official viewpoint of Tuscola CUSD #301 administrators or employees.