Cold

Physical and Emotional

T

he heater in our house is broken. Seriously. We have not been getting any heat for the last three days and it can be scary cold. The repair man finally came today. He reset the controls in the heat pump and there is some heat coming out of our furnace, but it might not be too reliable–the control board seems faulty and it might go on the fritz again. We actually need to replace the control board. I hope that’s all. He said he’d call it in to the office to see if he could get one so we could have a warm Christmas.

I thought it was very considerate of James from Ace Air Conditioning and Heating. But I had not heard from the office and so decided to call in to see what was up and he hadn’t contacted them yet. To make matters worse, the lady on the phone said that the company they would order from–Carrier–will be closed Friday and Monday, which means that if the control board goes on the fritz over the weekend, it will be a cold Christmas at the O-man’s house, indeed.

Speaking of frigidity, I’ve come to the realization that I have to turn down the educator’s thermostat. Up until now, I have pretty much left myself open to the whims and fancies of students. But I think I’m getting too old for this. While there are those who are good-hearted and generous, there are those who only know how to take advantage of situations, and I no longer have the energy to put up with it. Certainly, school has become expensive, and many of these students betray a sense of entitlement, perhaps rightly so. They, however, try to get their money’s worth from faculty, when in reality the faculty sees very little of the money they pay in tuition. Some students have wondered how much I make and guess anywhere between $80,000 and $100,000. I can only laugh.

But I really do hate to think in these terms–maybe the grading is getting to me; finals can be such a stressful time. Teaching is my life and if I start to think like this, then I may as well quit and do something else. I know that money isn’t everything–which is why I teach–but when students start taking advantage of situations while showing little to no appreciation, well, then it’s time to draw the line. I have to learn to say, “No.”

P.S. If you’re reading this and you’re my student, rest assured that I’m probably not talking about you. Those students who read this site–some even have it bookmarked, ugh!–know the score and are not the ones I am referring to, although they may end up being left in the cold, as I have a tendancy to make sure that I treat all students the same.

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