15 October 2009

My mind is playing tricks on me

Monday I had a kid start coughing really hard while working on an internet assignment I had given. I looked at her to see if she was ok, asked if she needed to go to get a drink. She said she was fine. Stopped coughing. Soon after, she started coughing again. I didn't really look up this time, but soon heard more than a cough.

I heard gagging.

I looked up and saw her puking yellow goo onto her desk and onto the chair and onto the filing cabinet next to her desk and onto her laptop; which she had fortunately closed prior to her semi-projectile ejections.

Somehow I didn't verbalize my thoughts about the situation and appeared to the students to be a calm and collected teacher. (I had initially wanted to yell some expletives and ask her why she didn't leave to do that, try to get to the trash can, and why she was at school if she was feeling sick) I called the nurse, then called a custodian. Fortunately the class was about to dismiss to lunch within the minute she started puking so that the area could be thoroughly disinfected without the students getting in the way. The custodian brought in that sawdust stuff I remember from my childhood to put on the vomit and found something to disinfect the surfaces and the laptop.

Yesterday I was sitting in the same hour class and a student came in with about 10 minutes left in class. I was sitting in the front of the room leading a game of review BINGO for the class.

He rushes into the room, kind of out of breath, and charges over to me.

I am in one of the student desks, so he leans over the desk and starts to try to whisper in my face.

"I just finished throwing up in the hallway."

"Then you need to go to the nurses' offices." I really had a harder time with this situation than I did with the girl -- I don't like close talkers and I don't like germs. This dude was combining all of those, as well as some stank-ass, electrified breath to top it all off.

"I don't want to go to the nurses because they will send me home."

This is what I almost said, "Mu-fucca, you need to go home, because clearly you are sick. You need to take your face away from mine and step back before I stiff arm you all the way through the door on your way to the nurse."

Instead I told him that regardless of his desires, he needed to go see the nurse because there are a lot of students at school coming down with sicknesses and that I didn't want him to be spreading his germs to the lot of us.

He left, I got up and got some hand sanitizer. I got it for two reasons:
  1. To cleanse my hands (though I wanted to wipe some on my face as well)
  2. To sniff (the stuff smells like the gin and tonic that I wish I could have had at the moment -- I can almost understand how the Canadian government didn't want to send the stuff to some of their reservations for fear that they would ingest it for alcohol use)
Now I feel like I am in the remix to the old Geto Boys song "My Mind Playing Tricks on Me". Only instead of being a strange looking little person getting beat up by imaginary people, I am getting sicknesses from strange looking adolescents.

Every time I hear a kid coughing I actually really see the germs flying out of their mouth. When they sneeze, there is a spew of cartoonish green stuff that I have coming out of their nostrils. I have visions of Skittles-colored liquid flying toward me like the Maiden Mist of Niagara.

But I really don't want to taste the rainbow.

I am stocking up on water, hand sanitizer, orange juice, echinacea, and all kinds of good foods. I am sleeping earlier, and if I get sick, I know who to blame.

Well sort of... it has to be one of my 120+ students.

08 October 2009

Death -- bring it

Nothing like starting the day with the possibility of death.

Morning started out nice. Actually slept through the night for the first time in days, woke up a bit earlier than normal and did some working out, left for school and it wasn't raining yet.

Oh, but it soon started to rain. Not super hard, but a bit.

I am driving down Forest Park Parkway on my 30 minute trek to school. Driving well since I can probably drive the street with no vision since I do it so often. I'm avoiding the large water puddles and making it through traffic with few stops at lights.

I get close to the DeBaliviere intersection and get ready for the slow down that occurs there (why people don't know how to cross that street, I am not sure).

As I get closer, I realize that there is a big old semi in the right lane next to me. (I don't alway spay attention to street signs, but I am pretty sure there are not supposed to be big trucks on the Parkway.)

The truck starts to veer toward the left -- toward me.

I am now super close to the other side. The ground is wet and I am steadily trying unsuccessfully to brake. I see the middle median and pole coming ever closer to me. I see the side of the truck coming closer to me. (Ever since some relations of mine and some friends have gotten hit by or nearly hit by big ol' trucks, I am slightly hesitant around them... I like to pass quickly and make sure that they can see me so that they don't hit me.) It is dark at 6:30 in the morning and I am pretty sure they guy did not see me as the pole gets closer and closer to me.

Fortunately, I have gone back to rocking out on Grand Turismo during my insomniac nights and am an awesome race car driver. The whole incident reminded me of rally racing.

I veered some more, taking into account the wet ground and the sliding of my Rolli-san (the name for my Carolla) and succeeded in avoiding both the pole and the semi that was close enough that if a person had been in the passenger side, they could have felt their breath ricochet back from the side of the truck. I'm sure they could have seen the holes in the truck drivers shoes through the little foot window in his door.

Needless to say what followed was a nice boost of adrenaline.

Top that off with the fact that I was rocking out to some excellent driving music (100.3 Thursday morning old-school hip hop mix) and you can see that it was a great way to have my life not end.

Today, I am ready for anything.

Bring it.

Parent teacher conferences until 8pm -- bring it. Possibly six-inches of rain -- bring it. Wedding tomorrow for which I have no clothes to go with the weather we are expecting -- bring it. Micro-braids retightened in the front kind of tight -- bring it. A bit of soreness in the legs and arms from working out -- bring it. Kids complaining about their big unit test I am giving a review for -- bring it.

Even if I had been unskilled in my driving, I would have been ready: I have on the cutest under garments today and would have looked real nice if they had to cut me out of the car and then out of my clothes.

03 October 2009

Shock and awe?!

Why are people so shocked and upset that the Olympic people picked Brazil over Chicago???

Did they really, honestly think that Chicago had a chance over the other options?

I know that now I will be more likely to actually want to go to watch the Games since it is not in the Chi. Yes it would have been nice to host some of the soccer games here in Da Lou, but still... in which option would you rather vacation? Tokyo, Madrid, Rio de Janeiro, or Chicago?

Sorry Oprah, the Obamas, and others who are disappointed by this decision, but next time, try to be more realistic.