Posts Tagged ‘story’
Starbucks’ Internet was being uncooperative yesterday. I wasn’t about to go home, yet, what with two free hours of Internet just outside my grasp. I decided to wait it out and try again later.
I turned on my Tetris. I lost. Points: 178,364.
Eventually I figured out the problem: This specific Starbucks’ router still redirects the user to a T-Mobile login when the national chain switched to AT&T.
Figures. I went back to Tetris. I lost. Points: 203,435.
Who should at that moment walk in to the Starbucks but an old adviser from college? She had arranged a meeting here with Professor Emeritus, a legendary department figure I’d only ever heard of before, and one who had read, and said he liked, what I wrote for the school paper.
We made some more small talk; I let the two of them get to their meeting, turning instead to Tetris. I lost. Points: 153,239.
Just as I started another game, my old adviser, done with her conversation with Prof. Emeritus, came over to swap a few more war stories from back in the day I still worked at the school paper. In the course of this conversation, it came out that I was looking for a job, as did my observation that journalism had almost exactly zero openings.
Have you considered advertising? Our advertising curriculum has been doing our students a disservice, because it doesn’t really focus on writing skills. The first thing employers ask now is how our students can write, and I have to be honest about it: Not so well. We’re reworking our program now, but for the time being you might find more than a few openings that might suit you.
There are a few other former print journalism students from the paper who found jobs in advertising because they can write. You should try that.
I hadn’t thought of that. I began my generic cover letter.
I can write. I hear this is a marketable skill.
Thanks be to shoddy curricula.
I never jumped on the South Park Canada-haters bandwagon. I thought it was kinda tacky, however satirical it was intended. Suddenly, I’m tempted to, thanks to a story that came my way via Neatorama.
On the claim of a psychic, school officials reported that an autistic child in their school was being molested.
Colleen Leduc’s weird tale began on May 30, when she dropped young Victoria off for class at Terry Fox Elementary and headed in to work, only to receive a frantic phone call from the school telling her it was urgent she come back right away.
The frightened mother rushed back to the campus and was stunned by what she heard – the principal, vice-principal and her daughter’s teacher were all waiting for her in the office, telling her they’d received allegations that Victoria had been the victim of sexual abuse – and that the CAS had been notified.
How did they come by such startling knowledge? Leduc was incredulous as they poured out their story.
“The teacher looked and me and said: ‘We have to tell you something. The educational assistant who works with Victoria went to see a psychic last night, and the psychic asked the educational assistant at that particular time if she works with a little girl by the name of “V.” And she said ‘yes, I do.’ And she said, ‘well, you need to know that that child is being sexually abused by a man between the ages of 23 and 26.’”
Not only is the mother understandably upset that administrators reported her to the Canadian equivalent of Child Protective Services on such specious evidence. She comes complete with dramatic flair.
“They reported me to Children’s Aid,” Leduc declares, still disbelieving. “Based on a psychic!”
Assuming Children’s Aid Services works anything like the CPS, and assuming that teachers up in the Great, White, Barren North are beholden to the same laws, the school staff was required to report that claim. Schools are not allowed to interpret even the silliest, most incongruous rumors from the most ridiculous sources — it might, just might, be true. Instead, schools are required report those rumors to the appropriate government agencies. The job of CPA — I assume it works like the American CPS — is to investigate the claim, either exonerating the accused or reporting them to the district attorney.
I can’t help but feel sorry for the demonized administration here, and I certainly can’t help but feel angry at the overconscientious — at the very least uninformed — psychic. The psychic doesn’t need the attention, because and the very last thing psychics need is greater scrutiny. She probably thought that this was just some simple, white lie. Not so much.
Consequences for not reporting even the barest suspicion of child molestation don’t stop at simple stuff, like losing your job. If you’re a teacher, not reporting directly to CPA directly could mean a hefty fine, or even jail time at a prison.
The way I hear it, if there’s one kind of convict that serial shoplifters, axe murderers and high-profile inside traders don’t like, it’s child molesters. You will be the lowest rung on the smokes-for-favors ladder, and even though you didn’t molest the child yourself, don’t expect other prisoners to make that distinction.
By law, you could be treated as if you were directly party to the offense. That’s what was going through the mind of the school staff, and it would be wrong make fun of them for how they treated the psychic’s suggestion.
Sure, sane psychics are liars and shouldn’t be trusted. By law, even the allegations of liars have to be reported.
I didn’t get it at first. What could he mean by asking:
Does your mother have a black dress?
No other credential program professor would tell this story. No other credential program professor would have this story. But because he’s Dr. Rosy, he’d tell us how he as a school teacher once dealt with a school bully.
This had to have happened in the mid-90s, in the first few weeks he taught 8th grade English in a high school somewhere in the Midwest.
The way he tells it, he came across an all-state athlete picking on some scrawny kid whose feet weren’t touching the ground. The lineman had the kid up by the collar.
Dr. Rosy — then Mr. Rosy, doctoral student — walked up to the bully and told him to put the kid down. The bully complied immediately. This kid must have been pushing iron since the 3rd grade, recalled Rosy.
This athlete was 6 feet 5 inches, with a solid 300 pounds of muscle, and now focused his attention on the upstart teacher.
A girl off to the side of the scene told the football player to just take care of Rosy already. Rosy wasn’t impressed; he asked the girl for her cell phone. She declined.
In that case, you call 911 and get an ambulance here. Well, maybe two. This guy’s so big he won’t fit in one.
Rosy was at least 43 years old and slightly shorter than the bully. A large-framed man even then, he would have been quite a bit smaller than the massive boy defiantly facing him, as if to challenge the teacher’s authority with a show of muscle.
Rosy, unimpressed, asked the kid a question.
Does your mother have a black dress?
The bully didn’t understand, so Rosy repeated the question.
Does your mother have a black dress?
Rosy must have feigned pondering to himself for a moment. Knowing him, for dramatic effect.
Because she’ll need one in about four days. That’s about when the state buries you.
That’s about when the story ends with my class laughing hysterically, some laughing out of horror.
He never advocated using or threatening violence, of course, and made sure to say that.
You have to improvise, overcome and adapt to these situations.
That’s one way to look at it.
These impromptu anecdotes were the best part of my credential program. The most entertaining, the most useful, the most helpful, the most consoling. I always felt like I learned something from every one of his classes.