First Day of Teaching

Student quote of the day (overheard): “Can you microwave bacon?”
Faculty quote of the day, in response to my query about dress code: “Don’t worry—you look fine. Me? I’m a clothing horse.”
Now I will introduce you to “White,” a good-natured faculty member whose Dylan obsession outdoes my own and whose sole purpose seems to be to make me laugh. He’s not shy about attention, so it is with piece of mind that I include him in my blog.
Scene 1, ten minutes before I teach my first class: White enters my office, looks at me, and shakes his head. White walks across the hall to my classroom and studies the desks arranged in a U-shape around a white board. He sighs audibly, then shouts across the hall, “You’re not going to last an hour.”
Scene 2, later that day: White enters my office, looks at me, and shakes his head. “Will you get some artwork up on these walls already? Jesus, it looks like a prison cell in here!”
And for those who want to follow along at home, here’s a snippet of an assignment I gave my fiction workshop today: Following example excerpts from Hemingway’s The Old Man and the Sea and Charles Seibert’s Angus, write a 1-2 page character sketch that includes dialogue, description, and gesture. You can incorporate a flashback to help reveal details about your character, but that is not required (ex. “She remembered…” or “I remember when…”). If you’re at a total loss, try imitating the styles represented here. If you’re really flowing, don’t stop after 2 pages. This does not have to be polished, perfect, or otherwise impeccable. It just needs to represent a creative, genuine effort on your part.

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