Friday, February 29, 2008

Some Days I Just Look 12

Yes, yes. Daisy is cute, isn't she?! And as much as I agree with the comments about how wonderful it is to see her growing and discovering, last night I was ready to trade her in for a bowl of well behaved fish. My GOD the energy. She ran, she peed in the floor, she ate the carpet, she growled (playfully), snapped (nips really), and generally jumped up and down on my last nerve. I finally put her to bed an hour early, and put myself to bed shortly after. Whew! I'll be glad when Puppy Kindergarten starts on Monday night. I bet she'll sleep then!

Incidentally, she got her second shots this morning, and she's totally healthy. And growing! She weighed four pounds when we got her, and now, three weeks later, she weights 6.7. Right on, girl!

On the professional front, a funny thing happened earlier today, and it happens to me quite often. To contextualize, I don't meet with classes on Monday, Wednesday, and Friday, but I have to work in the Writing Center for three hours in the afternoon. As such, I rarely go into my office on MWF, and since I don't meet with students in anything related to an organized fashion, I rarely dress up. MWF is all about dark jeans, comfy sweaters, and comfy (flat) shoes. The byproduct of this casual dress, my overgrown curly locks, the sunglasses I wear on my head to hold back said locks, and the 27 years I have on me is that most people think I'm a student.

A couple of days ago, for instance, I was tutoring a young man--probably 19 or 20--and he stopped mid-session and told me he liked my hair. I smiled, unsure if it was an acne and Red Bull induced come-on or just a really awkward proclamation brought on by a sneaky case of Tourette's. Either way, I continued correcting his comma splices and he went away. He showed back up for another appointment yesterday, and the first thing he asked was, "Are you a teacher here?" To which I replied, "YES! Yes I am." And he didn't comment on my hair anymore.

This afternoon I made a pit stop in the ladies room before I popped up here to the WC, and I always use the Faculty/Staff restrooms on the main floor of the library. As I was coming out of the jane, one of the library workers--whom I've seen around but haven't met--approached me with a squinty, half-cocked look of confusion and asked, "Are you a staff member here?" I answered in the affirmative, assured her that I teach English, and she was most relieved. I apologized for having not introduced myself before now, we had a nice exchange, and I went on my way. I like to comfort myself in thinking she was just being friendly, but I suspect she was really trying to protect the staff bathroom from infiltrators.

There are far worse daily frustrations than being the really young instructor on the block, but my God, must I resort to tweed and a bun to secure my teacherly identity?

I'll save the story about walking into a classroom to proctor an exam and being handed a pencil for another day.


  1. My niece had the same problem when she started teaching. At least, the library lady didn't just stop you and growl 'get back to class'.

    Congrats on the clean bill of health for Daisy!

  2. Last year (when I was 20), I was flying home from college and had the emergency exit seat. Well, the flight attendant comes over, and the following conversation ensued:
    "Are we flying by ourselves today?"
    Me, giving her the look of someone who has flown beyond the Iron Curtain by herself, "Yes."
    "Well, how old are we?"
    Me, now realising that she thinks I'm too young to sit in the seat, and thus UNDER FIFTEEN, "Twenty."
    She tried to back-pedal real fast, but the damage was already done. My friends and family thought it was absolutely hilarious.

  3. Ha! I had the exact same experience as Eva when I was about 21. Except the flight attendant wanted to know if someone was meeting me at the other end.

    Oh the perils of looking so youthful, Andi! (fortunately - or maybe not - I've haven't been mistaken for someone younger for quite a few years now, sigh)

  4. And we're all complaining why? We'd probably be more upset if people over estimated our ages.

  5. I had that problem for a long time but now that I'm in a more corporate arena I have to dress the part, unfortunately. And since I turned thirty no one really questions my particular age, although they still tend to estimate 27-28, which is nice.

  6. I have the opposite situation at our place. Students see my as faculty--no problem. I have always said it was my glasses, they make people want to run home and do their homework. I guess the twinset and pearls (don't get scared, it's only once in a while and no cats are involved) adds to my teacher look too.

  7. Heehee I guess enjoy the fact you look youthful! Although I don't wish old age on anyone, I hear its inevitable, and someday you'll probably look back fondly on the days you were mistaken for a student.

    In the post-college jobs I've had so far, I've had positions of authority and I have absolutely avoided telling anyone my age... I try purposely to dress older than my age (ripe old 23).

  8. I have the same deal. I was in the post grocery store the other day and was dressed down and I started putting my items on the conveyer belt. We have to show our military IDs to be able to shop there. The check out lady looked at me and said, "Excuse me, Sweetie, can I see your mom's ID card?"

    What can you do?

  9. It could be worse. Really. Back in college, one of the most senior member of the staff dressed in a most frugal manner -- but she was brilliant and articulate -- that brain of hers cuts like diamond.

    Clueless students kept mistaking her for the school cleaner though.

    A friend of mine is now 18 but when she goes out with her mom, they mistake my friend for the mother.

    So, it could REALLY be worse.

    Personally I simply enjoy having my ID checked for R-rated movies. And getting student discount when I'm getting a haircut.

  10. Ahh, but do you SOUND 12? I've had people call and ask to speak to my mother. I usually just say she's not home. I did tell a caller once that I WAS the mother. That really got them flabbergasted. It was a hoot.

  11. Take it as a compliment. There are worse things than looking too young!! I was carded until I was over I wish someone would card me now!!

  12. I think it's nice that students thought you're one of them. I've got the same experience when I TA classes the first couple years. One of the students handed me a sign-in sheet and a pen but only to realize later that I was the discussion leader.

    Isn't your puppy cute! The peeing on the floor, biting carpet, bouncing up and down--they can't be any more familiar to me. George did all of the above, plus ripping apart a few books and toppling the waste basket, when he was a puppy. Those were the days when I came home to a havoc. :)


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