It was a profoundly horrible moment when Dan looked into the mirror
getting ready for work in the morning
something had changed about him
his clothes and shoes and face were worn
He had gained weight and lost it
so that everything sagged
His job required him to delight in dull details
and he had developed a dull sense of humor
Soon he depended on the nods in the hallway
from his coworkers
they signaled he was still there
and if they stopped nodding
he didn’t know what he would do
What was worse, he started to listen to himself talk
and he became bored
the exact opposite was happening to his coworkers
who seemed to think they were doing and saying important things
and he was almost convinced…
until he made one of them question their existence
by asking Why?
it only took three Whys for a person not to know
and their world crumbled like a stale cookie
in the teacher’s lounge
it always ended in them professing their love
for INSERT noun.
Dan was a teacher because he thought he taught young minds
but each year he realized his kids were learning things on the internet
he didn’t know
and who was teaching whom?
On that day when he REALLY saw himself in the mirror
he didn’t have the words
because he realized he didn’t know anything
it was like learning he had Alzheimer’s
and soon, he would start forgetting
Dan walked into his work that morning
“How are you doing today?” A teacher asked.
“Oh….” but he couldn’t finish his sentence. He had a meeting coming up
where he would be asked questions
“Why haven’t you posted grades?” And Dan just smiled.
He was put in charge of the classroom
and he just smiled
it was like his muscles froze inside his face
and then he was evaluated
“You’ve been allowing your kids to take charge of their education; Bravo. What would you like to work on this year?”
Dan didn’t say anything.
“Profound!” His evaluator said. “Exceeding Standard.”
Dan was speechless
he got into his car and drove home.
He couldn’t fail, and that was WHY there were no victories.