10 faces staring at me all had the same expression written on them; an expression of utter confusion that immediately brought a certain acronym to mind: “W.T.F?” It’s an acronym that accompanied me on many a bike ride home after class at UCSB, which got me to thinking:
I think we’ve all had THAT class at least once. The one where no matter what, you can’t help but feel totally and completely, hopelessly lost. You’ve already figured out your cheating plan for if and when all else fails, but you’re reluctant to cling to that shameful last resort as your only hope. So now you’re just trying to scoop up that 10% for attendance by sitting in lecture with the teacher talking at you. Words soaring right over your head like a flock of migrating geese threatening to defecate on you and your pathetic blank piece of notebook paper. You try to scribble down notes in whatever language they’re currently speaking in this alternate dimension that you have involuntarily been launched into, but all your efforts are as barren as Betty White.
You look around to see if you can recognize another WTF face nearby so you can commiserate in your shared WTF’ed-ness. Desperate for affirmation that this class has indeed slipped through a wrinkle in time.
“Ummm, WTF is our professor talking about?”
Instead, they’re like:
“Man, I offered you some breakfast brownie to help you get on this level of thinking. He’s talking about the phenomena of consciousness in regards to Lewe’s Theory of Emergent Evolution. Duh. WTF is wrong with you?”
(Why are all your genius friends stoners?)
…And that’s when you start to regret that your pivotal decision in enrollment hinged on the red chili pepper icon for hotness on ratemyprofessor.com.
Okay, close memory lane and you get the urge to rush out for red dixie cups and ping pong balls.
Looking out at those inquisitive faces, some framed by chiffon jilhabs, all slowly growing devoid of hope, I found determination.
It was in this suddenly clear moment of inspiration that I truly found my calling and ultimate goal as a teacher.
Working to eradicate “WTF?” from the faces of my students.