Tuesday night at 5:30 p.m., I walked into a classroom as a student for the first time since 1997.
I think I stopped shaking in fear around 8:30 p.m.
As I’ve said on here before, I left my safe, comfortable job as a newspaper sports reporter to go back to school to get my Masters degree in education at Queens College in New York.
All day Tuesday, I was nervous. Would I be the oldest person in the class (as it turned out, I think I was the 3rd oldest?) Would I remember how to be a student? Did I make a big mistake?
No idea what the answer to the last question is yet. But I walked into Room 102 of Powdermaker Hall 15 minutes early for my class, and the room was almost full already. Hey, grad students don’t mess around.
It was weird, sitting in there waiting for class to start. Nobody knew each other so the room was deadly silent for like, 10 minutes.
Then the professor walked in. And handed out the syllabus. And started talking about the lesson plans we’d have to create, the 30 hours of field observation we’d have to do in a school this month, and then she kept talking about reading assignments and journals we’d keep and then I think I blacked out for a few minutes when she was talking about our end of the semester presentation.
I looked around the room, and felt total panic. Most of these people had been in school in the past few years. Most of them had ingrained study habits, and I instantly felt like the dumbest person in the room.
Thankfully, a few people raised their hands and asked really stupid questions, so I felt better (ah, humanity).
I walked out after class and felt sheer terror. What the hell was I doing here, 35 years old and starting over? How the bleep am I going to get all this work done this summer? And is it too late to go back to Florida and my old job?
Then I took a few deep breaths. Of course I was overwhelmed at first. Of course I felt lost. And starting in summer school, with such a compressed schedule (the whole semester lasts 6 weeks), I was bound to feel deluged.
I’m writing this about two hours after class ended, and I’m a little less freaked out. This is going to be a scary, exciting new adventure, I keep telling myself. The first day is over and I survived.
Course, I haven’t met the prof for second summer course yet. That’s Wednesday night’s fun.
**Just a few words on Casey Anthony, who if you’ve been trapped under something heavy for the past 24 hours and haven’t heard, was found not guilty of murder Tuesday.
I’m pretty sure she did it. I’m pretty sure the defense did an outstanding job throwing as much crap at the jury as possible, misdirecting and obfuscating the entire proceeding.
And I’m pretty sure Casey and O.J. Simpson are collaborating on a book called “How I Got Away with Murder (and How You Can Too!)”
**Finally, sometimes those tarpaulins you see groundskeepers pulling at baseball games fight back. Ask Vince Coleman about it.
Check out this insane tarp action from a minor league game in Arkansas last Saturday. I’m pretty sure there are people under there…