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Saturday, June 10, 2006

Computer status: Healthier

My computer has finally been fixed and returned to me.  It doesn't have a new hard drive like I was hoping, but it is functional again, so that's certainly a plus.

For the past week I have been working at a one-week class in which the other teachers and I teach entering-kindergartners about safety.  I don't particularly like teaching this mini-class.  Perhaps because, aside from field trips to the fire station and police station, it feels like something that doesn't really need to have a whole class or needs substantially more than 10 hours of class time.  Most of the things the kids learn (their address, phone number, the meaning of common street signs) they already know before taking the class.  And if they don't know it before coming into the class, they usually still don't know it upon leaving.  In a different setting or a different area this class could be more helpful/useful.  In this area though, nearly none of the children's mother's work, so it feels like they are having their children take this class as a way to get rid of them for 2 hours a day between the end of preschool and the start of summer camp.

On a not-quite-related note, the difference between the parents in Hometown and the parents in School-town are so pronounced.  I have noticed it before, but it seems to be more extreme each year.  The parents in School-town look like...parents.  The parents in Hometown aren't "parents" but instead only mothers (there are fathers, but we don't see them) - it's only mothers who pick up and drop off their children.  The fathers work, the mothers seem to mostly all stay at home.  And nearly all of them look like models (or something).  The other counselors that I work with during the summers at camp have discussions about who's mom is the prettiest, because somehow so many of the mothers really do look like the Desperate Housewives.  And that's just not normal.  People are not supposed to look like that.  I'm not saying that parents should all look disheveled and messy, but the amount of time and money that the majority of these mothers spend on their appearance is time and money that can be afforded only by the upper-middle-class, and is time and money that would be much better spent on so many other things.

Basically, Hometown makes me feel...uncomfortable, and I feel that I have finally developed enough to understand that I could never happily/comfortably live here even if I were financially able to afford to do so.  In the past, in high school, I always thought it would be awesome to teach in the same elementary school that I went to as a child.  I now know that I couldn't do that.  I think that I would end up...resenting the children for all that they have.  Which is ironic because all that they have is all that I have too - I mean, I grew up here (though admittedly Hometown has become noticeably wealthier in the last five to ten years or so.  When my family moved here a little more than 20 years ago, it was an affluent white suburb, but now it's...even more so). 

I'm trying to write something on the guilt I feel about having grown up in this town.  It's not coming out quite right, but I'm working on it.


Blogger Chris McDowall said...

I can imagine that feeling somewhat uncomfortable. Perhaps it's something you can grow to accept. I think the happiness of our childhoods is affected much more by other factors than how wealthy our parents are.

2:12 PM  

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