January 12th, 2006

Carne Seca

Today was my first day teaching. I'd been holed up at home recuperating until today so that I could have as much energy as possible for the classroom. It always amazes me how tiring a few hours teaching can be. Although I've had a relatively easy life compared to most people I know, I have worked enough "hard" jobs -- moving heavy plants in a nursery, working twelve-hour shifts in a file conversion, running a printing press and cleaning it up with myriad chemicals afterwards, organizing and executing complex events with hundreds of attendees -- to know that teaching should seem easy. But it invariably leaves me drained in a way that much longer shifts at those outwardly more difficult jobs did not. It has something to do with being on display, I suppose, as well as the pressure that comes with having to lead. There are probably other factors too. I'd try to enumerate them here, except I took one of Kim's migraine pills a half hour ago and am now drifting into a ergot-enhanced visual space that transforms the computer screen into an instrument of torture. One thing I will say, before closing, is that I was also amazed how rapidly my lips chapped today despite drinking two liters of water. Teaching is hard on the lips anywhere. Here in Tucson, though, it results in the same extreme effects as lying on the roof in the hot sun for several hours. What's that about? I mean, I understand the physiology up to a point. Yet it seems like there should be a way to take in enough fluids to prevent the dessication that have turned my lips into the signature dish of Tucson's oldest Mexican restaurant.