Sunday, April 5, 2009

Delight and Disappointment

I have to start off by talking about the disappointments of the past week. I generally tend to leave my job out of this blog as much as possible, but an incident that occurred this week is worth mention. I've been teaching for twenty years and have had countless experiences both good and bad. The interesting thing about teaching is just when you think you have experienced everything possible something new occurs. Now, without going into very much detail...earlier this week I had the estranged father of one of my African American students show up at school unannounced. He's pretty much one of these uninvolved fathers who does not see his son very often and it has had a severe impact on this child.

This ass shows up and was apparently spying into my room. He immediately goes down to our associate principals office and starts asking questions about my ethnic background. He mentions to the principal that he is not sure he wants his son in my room because I look...are you ready for this..."too Middle Eastern!" He also mentioned that he didn't feel comfortable with his son talking to our "white" social worker.

The following morning at about 9:45 the office calls for this boy to gather his things because his father is at school to pull him out. None of us thought that he would be back and this would have been very sad for me because he really is a good kid and I feel like I've finally been able to connect with him. Needless to say I was pretty much pissed off! Fortunately the next day his mother returned him to school. I don't what will happen in the coming weeks, but I hope he stays at our school. All I have to say about this parent is "FUBAR!"

Further disappointment came in the form of a better luck next time letter and receiving my entry check back in the mail. So, as of right now there will be no Chequamegon for me. Not only me, but it appears that not many from our part of the Twin Cities cycling community got in. For me and many others this is an enormous let down. Last year my entire focus was on this one race.

We may still have a chance through the essay contest, but they only reserve fifty spots for this and I believe the chances of all four Amigos getting in is rather slim. So now we look for other events to fill our calendars and set goals for.

Another minor irritation is the weather. I'm generally not one to complain to much...after's weather. I am however getting tired of having to wear multiple layers of clothing to go for a bike ride. I don't mind the cold, but cold and wet is just not that fun.

I am ready for more spring like weather to arrive and stay. Of course...all is not lost. There have been some nice days and I have been working really hard in spin classes to develope and maintain some level of fitness. I definitely feel stronger than at this same time last year.
Saturday was a great day for a road ride. The temp. was around 32 F when we started. Matt, Bob, Danny the youngster of the group, and myself (the oldster of the group) headed southwest of the metro is search of hills.

We hit our usual roads in and around the Baker Park area and then headed west of Maple Plain on Hwy. 6 and hit the country roads near Minnetrista, St. Boniface, and Watertown. The roads in this area are fantastic. Good surfaces, very little traffic, and some very nice hills. I ended up with a solid 60 miles for the day. This was my first real test of the spring. We pushed hard and kept a good pace, but my legs began to really fizzle at about mile 45. I'm excited to get back out there and ride again and again and again.

TRAINING GROUNDS!! I know that I will be spending a good deal of my road time in this area over the next couple of months. I'm also really looking forward to getting out the mountain bikes for some fun in the dirt.

Patience will pay off. I hate to get out there too early and damage the hard work that others have put into making the area trails some of the best around.

We also received our new mtn. bike jerseys. Twin Six makes some very nice cycling clothing and I think our new 29 n Single jerseys will attract some attention. I think they are pretty cool. Although being black they will also be pretty hot. Ha!!


Tex69 said...

I'm a teacher too (high school) as well as a high-school tennis coach and I repeatedly find that the kids are way, way more humane than their parents. I don't have much more to say than "look on the bright side" and understand, remind yourself, that you've contributed so much more than that loser. Peace and good luck.

Ali B. said...

Great looking jerseys indeed! I'm also very very tired of the winter weather. Another cold front moving through with potential snow.. ugh! Shake off that bad experience with the parent... it's just too unbelievable and disappointing to imagine.

WheelDancer said...

Well I guess the fact the father isn't very involved in the kid's life might end up being a mixed blessing given his extreme racist views. My heart goes out to the kid though, it's gonna be an uphill climb but I point to some teachers that I had that got me through some tough spots so I can pay it forward (backward?) and thank you for your efforts.

In my fantasy world it's the teachers of the world that are getting million dollar bonuses since they are nurturing the minds of our future rather than shuffling paper to make fake money exclusively for themselves. That's as far onto my soapbox I'll step...

Vito said...

WheelDancer...Thanks for your understanding. It really is a tough situation, but I'm confident that it will work out.

As far as the million dollar bonus goes...that would be fantastic, but of course that is not why I got into teaching to begin with.

However...I better stop right there.

Doug said...

Bummer on the Fat Tire....maybe you could shift your focus to something a bit more challenging...maybe the Arrowhead 135!!? I mean, if you really need something to focus on. Preparing for that can definitely consume a persons time and energy.

Vito said... are so reading my mind. I am definitely heading in that direction.

Have the plan in my head just need to make the commitment.

It is definitely gnawing at me...