"Things that interfere with writing well: Earning a living, especially by teaching."

-William H. Gass

Sunday, December 13, 2009

things that happen at the end of the semester

It's Friday and you've had about 9 hours of sleep since Tuesday. You meet with students all throughout the actual lunch period. By the time 3 o'clock arrives you are starving. Since you are lactose intolerant and your lunch is just a block of cheese and crackers (you haven't really had time to make food this week) you dig through your bag for some pills that will let you eat dairy.

You dig. And dig. And dig. You are out of dairy pills. You know damn well you are out because you ate the last one the night before at the parents' night in which you avoided awkward conversation by eating fistfuls of havarti.

You accept an orange from a coworker. By four o'clock your stomach is making terrible noises. People are staring. You register a weak but definite synapse firing...a lost dairy pill..somewhere. Yes! Earlier in the semester you dropped one in the car and ignored it, grabbing another from the container.

Do you leave the staff meeting to dig through your car?

...growl growl grumble...

Yes. Yes you do. You dig under the diet pepsi cans and muddied newspapers and CVS receipts to find that lost dairy pill. It takes about five minutes.

You return to staff meeting, pop it in your mouth, and eat that cheese like it was the last block of cheese on Earth.