Teachers always have the best stories. I spent this weekend at a wedding and was reminded of this fact. Sure, there are some people who have an amazing story of how they ran into Khloe Kardashian at the juice store, or whatever, but that kind of story is a random anomaly. I’ve found that Teachers can consistently entertain a group of people by merely going through some of the minutiae of their daily life.
I first learned of this as a teenager when I was drawn towards a conversation my aunt Josie Mae was having with my other Aunt’s. Josie May, who worked at a middle school school in Chicago, was going in detail about her students, her co-workers and teachers through a series of vignettes. I hung on her word as they were window into a world beyond the bubble of suburban school which was all I had known for the past 12 years.
My other relatives were pulled away and I was left staying next to Josie Mae who asked me what I was doing. I said I was actually in college and planning on going into education, and was interested in hearing more of her stories. What she said next really boggled my mind. She said, in the most serious of tones, “Oh, those weren’t stories. that was just what I did last Friday.” WHAT!?! As a teenager who thought I would have to memorize and rehearse interesting things to say at parties to impress people, this made quite an impact. At this point I knew I wanted to teach, but knowing that I would never be at a loss for an interesting tale at a family gathering seemed like an added bonus.
This Friday I show up at a good friend’s wedding where I ran into a nine or ten old buddies. We haven’t all been in the same place since we were probably in one of our parents garages over a decade. I didn’t have to worry about making up a story of how interesting my life has been in the past 14 years, and I was able to get through the awkwardness associated with this high school micro-reunion. We actually got into a pretty spirited conversation about common core that I’ll spin into another post.