26 May 2009

Calgon... (or anyone) take me away!!

There is something about coming back to school after Memorial Day that is really irking me this year. That along with the fact that the authorities at this school are making going to State way more difficult than it needs to be -- especially considering that I am taking one competing athlete.

The children don't seem to understand that their finals start on Thursday and that my giving them three days last week and a long weekend to work on their projects was so that they wouldn't be frantically working during the time I had planned to review today.

There is no air conditioning in the room -- which is a problem when there is only one 2x2 window that leans open in the room.

We are to have a track banquet after school that is also causing way more drama on the side of the admin than is necessary.

Get me out of here.

25 May 2009

More bitter than sweet

Throughout this track season I have had some days when I question my decision to leave my last coaching position. I guess it wasn't a choice to leave that job, more to leave the teaching position and all the b.s. associated with it.

As the season progressed and I continued to see my old kids excel, it got even harder. As my new crew of kids try to adjust to actually working out and having to sweat, occasionally hurt, and learn new form, it got harder. I still love my old kids and wished them the best.

The current coach called, emailed, or texted me weekly to get ideas for workouts and who to put in which events and what orders to run the relays. I even helped my replacement when he had questions about how to work with the lady-coach that is there. It was like I was coaching two teams.

This past weekend, they won the State championship. Awesome, right? I worked 5 years to get them to that point. Got really close last year - 4th place with very few kids at the meet. I went to watch them the first day. Saw them break some meet records - awesome. Even was texting and calling one of my all-time favorite athletes during my drive to Jefferson City giving him advice after he asked my opinion on how he should run his race that day.

I was still coaching him through his final meet.

I proceeded to help the coach see what he could tell his kids about that evening so they would continue to run well the second day of the State meet.

He did awesome. Won the 100, 200, 400, and a relay. They won the whole meet. Set a new record for their class for the most points scored in the State meet.


I want nothing more for those kids to do well. They deserve it. They work hard for it.

Yet bitter. I have rejoiced with them, but at the same time I am bitter that it will not be my name in the records for coaching them. I am bitter that I am not the one being interviewed. I am bitter that the current coach, who has been blowing up my shit to get advice, has not once mentioned me in an interview. That bothers me. And the main guy who interviews the coaches at the school knows me and what I have done to bring the program up. The other guy will be anointed coach of the year in the fall when we have our state conference of coaches. I doubt if I will get a shout out there, either.


What makes it even harder is that I've only got one kid who made it to our State meet for next weekend. I understand and accept that I have taken on a greater challenge at this school. I understand that the competition is way harder here. I understand that I am starting over just as I did at the last school and that it may take another four years to build a competitive program. (Seriously, I am working with kids of such unheard of levels that I had one boy run a 400 and pee on himself during the race (while running a 68-second quarter), I had a kid think he was a superstar 100m runner and then run slower than all the girls at a meet that occurred elsewhere in town the same day, I have had guys quit the team, kicked kids off the team, had kids who preferred to go get an oil change rather than work on handoffs leading into the District championship, and so much more that I may get into another time.) I understand that I am at a bigger school and that that provides me an opportunity to (possibly) do even more than I did at the last place. I have what has turned out to be some pretty awesome colleagues (though some of them complain about stuff like little punks). But it will be hard to get to the point where we are truly competitive in the conference and state level where we are positioned. I accept that.

It upsets me that I am so upset by all of this. I am not usually bothered. When I coached at the other school, I never really did it for the accolades. Right now, I am definitely not doing it for attention - if anything, at this point, I am not ready to let people know who is coaching the 15 second 100m runners, and the 11 foot long jumpers. I take pride in my work, I have some kids who have drastically improved over this season, but I'm still not ready to be sporting the team colors and logos all over my clothes.

Question is, why am I letting myself get so bent out of shape about this?

Not sure.

I am hoping that after this weekend, lots of sulking, some venting, very few congratulations, some over indulgences of various kinds, and continuously laughing at the Mike Tyson-singing-Phil Collins preview to the movie "The Hangover" I will finally be over it.

I don't like feeling bitter.

10 May 2009

Wanda Sykes: White House Correspondence Dinner

Not sure why they had someone like her there, but she had some funny moments. Some low blows, but some good comedy in there, too. Not sure they will bring her back again.

President Obama gave a good speech and had some funny moments himself. He (or his writers) got some good jabs at a bunch of folks as well. Even had himself cracking up at a few points.

09 May 2009

Cover your mouth up like you got SARS

The pig flu has arrived in the area. I had heard of a case in the state, but now there is a confirmed case in the school where I work.

Fortunately I take precautions to make sure the kids who come into my classroom don't get me sick -- hand sanitizer in the largest jug possible on the table by the door, tissues that are super thick so the snot does not get on hands, Lysol wipes so that I can clean off the door knobs and anything else that I may touch.

But I am going to go a step further and wear a mask on Monday.

Not really, but I think that would be hilarious.

One thing I have noticed is that the kids don't remember SARS. I quoted Kanye and told a few kids to "cover your mouth up like you got SARS." And they had no idea what I was talking about. They are freshmen, so I guess when the song came out, they were too young to understand it. And I guess they don't remember the incredible fear that spread through the world when that disease was rampant.

I have already passed on the message to my family members as to what they can do if I pass. They all know that I love them and am happy that I am related to, and knew them.

Everyone can look back to my online will (I don't believe anything has changed since then) and see how to distribute my belongings.

Until next time, I will be stocking up on vitamin C, echinacea, zinc, and any other immune system boosters.

06 May 2009

Wordless Wednesday: Sara Watson and the invisible car

Words cannot even describe how awesome this artist in my mind.

In three weeks, Sara Watson truly made the car look like it is not there.