Saturday, May 8, 2010

in the trenches

Note to Self:

Yesterday you described a workshop presenter as someone who "is still in the trenches" and hasn't lost touch.  John, you've never been in the trenches.  If it's a construction metaphor, your pansy non-calloused hands and your aversion to neon orange vests are evidence that you understand almost nothing of construction work.  If it's a war metaphor, you might want to avoid it entirely.  Wars are bloody and violent and destructive.  You spend your day helping a class of thirty children learn to think better about life.  Okay, it's closer to forty, but your having a blast and you are often learning as much from the conversation as they are.  It's not a war zone. It's a refuge.


PS - KCL brought up a great point.  It's more like a garden than a refuge.


  1. I agree. BUT - we do need some other metaphor that describes those who are closer to the students every day, and must think on their feet (another to be gone), get their hands dirty (also...poof?) or walk a mile in others' shoes (tink.tink.tink - the sound of a ball bearing on tired words at a carny shotgun game?). I think once we lose our complete touch, grab, hold, etc. of the students and teacher interactions (notice I didn't say disconnected; didn't want to get ditched), then we are floating ever and away into the ether. I'm not sure I would use refuge, because that reminds me of refugee camps, and those aren't great. Sanctuary? Oasis? Garden? Gopher hole? Permeable membrane between the classroom walls and the rest of the world? Thanks for listening to my mental meanderings as well. Off to the salt mines.

  2. I'm stealing your idea and using it for a video. Mud. Mud hole. That's what it is. Those who are distant fail to understand, because they are far away. They are in an antiseptic zone where they never get their hands dirty. Yup. Mud it is.