There is something wrong with the clocks at my school. They sent out a note about it but I didn’t really pay attention. Something about the satellites which control the clocks having a communication problem and the clocks in turn not getting the proper signals. So the sweep hand, which is the red one that shows the seconds going by, has some issue. I don’t know, I usually look at the clocks on the computers over the kids’ shoulders as I’m looking at their work or reminding them how to save.
Things are not OK right now and I won’t go into it but it has consumed my life lately and will for a while. Not only has normality been shorn away but other people’s normality irritates me which in turn makes me feel like a tone-deaf jerk. So I’ve been staying away from places where people are normal and living normal lives. The one bit of normality in my life is work.
Today, just a couple of days before the start of what is supposed to be a vacation, I wandered into a main area just outside my door where the Kindergarteners were having a session with their 4th grade “mentors.” Each kid had a partner from the other grade and the 4th graders were explaining a project they had done, which was displayed on the walls, to their Kindergartener. Each K child looked completely absorbed and inquisitive and eager. Each 4th grader looked serious and engaged and you could feel their sense of importance and responsibility. It choked me up inside, I was so full of emotion at seeing all these children I teach in these roles, their connection and transformation. I went inside my lab to pull myself together when I saw the clock and this is what it looked like: the sweep hand would stop completely for a few seconds and then suddenly jerk forward to catch up. All the way around the dial. And I had this overwhelming sense that this clock was not broken but perfect in the way it illustrated my life and maybe life in general… not in a smooth, calm flow but in utter stillness and then sudden action. And then I let it take hold of me.
The blog will be on hiatus for a while. Thanks for not emailing because I would not write you back and then further feel like a jerk. I’ll rejoin you sometime.
Title is from the Editors’ Escape the Nest but this is the song from that record which I feel just now.