Since I woke up at 5:43 a.m.* (my alarm on George the iPhone is a harp; it is a nice way to be woken), I've been drawing a blank about what to write. I think every molecule of my creative energy has gone into teaching, planning, strategizing, and maintaining my good nature in the face of apathy. Other than that last, it is good stuff, but I'm tired, and I thought about skipping a post today. Or just shoving up a picture. I do that too much, though, so I decided instead to do what I urge on my students: think harder. Plus I really want to succeed at NaBloPoMo this month. So here it goes.
I love the moment when an idea that has been circling around the side of my brain sharpens. Comes into focus. Is clear.
That's how I think. I don't get stuff. I try, but I don't get it. I think about it all the time (it= whatever problem I'm not getting). This can go on for a year or more sometimes. My ex-husband liked to say that I am a big slow mover after the Phil Cody song.
Today, during my break between teaching at the college and teaching the SAT prep class, I took the mutts (yes, Manise, the chipmunk-killing, foul-thing-eating, nasty-poop-from-wild-beasts-rolling mutts) for their afternoon walk. The light this time of year is at its prettiest. If I didn't need to get ready for Round Two of teaching, I would have gone for miles.
A proposal for a themed Comp 102 class I'd submitted was on my mind. Revision was requested, and as I brain stormed with my colleague, I thought I had it all figured out. As I tried to rewrite it today, though, I knew that I wasn't satisfied. And something our Composition Coordinator wrote in her email to the Comp teachers was sticking in my head, right near the place where my thoughts about the class I really want to teach were circling. She wrote that she was thrilled by the variety of proposals and to see the interests of our faculty being translated into a wide range of themed courses (I paraphrase loosely).
So there I am, stuff swirling in my head, the light looking fine, a longing to stay home and knit rather than teach high schoolers how to navigate the SAT Reading Comprehension questions, and Bingo! Pop! Bottle Rocket!
I GET it. I get what I'm supposed to propose. Clear as the light. Almost fully shaped. Like Athena popping out of her daddy's brain.
Tomorrow I will completely revamp my proposal and shape into a class I want to call "English Composition 102: Writing about TEXTiles". See, our program is striving to move away from a purely literature-based 102 into a text-based 102. What interests me almost as much as writing? Fiber. Textiles.
I've got some ideas about what I might use for readings (but, hey, if you have scholarly essays about fiber arts, I'd love to hear about them), and I'm almost certain about the writing assignments. That's work for tomorrow, though.
There you have it. My thinking process. It's nice when it actually works!
*I have a theory that setting the alarm for an odd time is more effective than an even time. I would never set it for, say, 5:45 or 5:40. 5:42, sure. 5:47, you bet. 5:30, no way.