Monday, February 16, 2009

The Job Scare

Despite using the word "I" in almost every sentence here, I really do try to keep the personal out of this blog thing. Part of it is the realization that nobody in their right mind should care, and a bigger part of it is the feeling that blogs should be something more than "man, does my knee hurt this morning".

Actually, it's my eyes. These allergies are a real bastard.

So, I really do try to integrate my little existence into the bigger picture and focus on things like bad teachers and teachers having a bad day, instead of specific bad teachers who toil only feet from my own classroom, and long tirades about me having a bad day. At the same time, I realize I have, on far too often occasion, violated this strange little policy, and for those transgressions I am deeply sorry. I apologize to the higher power of Blogdom for my solipsism.

And I apologize for the following.

Every January/February, sure as Swiss clockwork, I apply for some teaching jobs around the world. A combination of wanderlust, APS job dissatisfaction, and a ringing desire to live overseas before I die combine into pathetic little cover letter emails and CVs being sent to places like Phnom Pehn and Belgrade.

Unlike previous years, however, Jan/Feb 2009 has been a tiny bit different. After failing for years to get anything close to the right job offer in the right part of the world, I was just inexplicably offered a job in Leipzig, Germany. The right job. In Europe. In a city that is affordable, lively, bike/public transit friendly, and happens to be where J.S. Bach hung out for long stretches.


In an unsuccessful attempt to be Hemingway-esque in my concision, I'll just say that this job offer led to a tumultuous three-day weekend at my house. A roiling sea of days spent in "discussion" after "discussion" with my wife, significant hours learning enough German to know the difference between "kalt" and "warm" apartments, and periods of time in which I was 98% sure I was going, immediately preceded and followed by other periods in which I was 100% sure I wasn't.

A tumultuous weekend.

And ending this early morning (16:00 Leipzig time) in a phone call with a lovely sounding English Headmaster who listened patiently as I contorted through the most difficult phone conversation I've had in at least a decade.

No Leipzig for Scot. Not now anyway.

The Job Scare has passed.

We now return you to your regularly scheduled blog discussion of how much APS and No Child Left Behind suck, and other whiny concerns about things like the inadequate funding in the 2009 "Economic Stimulus" and the horrible fact that there aren't Thai restaurants in the South Valley.

Cue Neil Young singing "Albuquerque"....


Mark said...

Wow Scot. That must have been tough. It takes two these days. We moved back to Albuquerque from Venice, CA and I was 49% ok with it, but my wife was only 25% ok with living in the congested and extremely expensive west LA.

Your post was so well written too. I just finished my Kindergarten/ First Grade classroom building for APS. And at least I can report that they are committed to providing good classrooms these days (acoustics, natural light, spacious, sustainable, etc.) Maybe it will trickle up from the FD&C department - do things ever trickle up?

Baker Architecture + Design
Albuquerque, New Mexico

Anonymous said...

Glad you're staying, Scot. We can use all the good teachers we can get.

I must add, however, that while I have VERY few regrets, I do regret that my wife and I did not take overseas teaching jobs before children, mortgages, dogs, et cetera.