In Search of a Title

In Search of a Title 

Though you spend years buried, knowing who you are, but unable to be, still there are leaks along the way, both good and bad, glimpses from above, colors so bright, impossible to ignore, even from below. 

Then something happens, not through the strength you know you have, but will not budge, but something outside yourself, from above, forces beyond your reach, forces that nudge you to be the person you know you are. 

And though the roots have always been strong, it’s branches gnarled, they shed and new ones, unlike any before, spread above and beyond, uncertain of how far, and though this sensation is new, you know it well, for this is who you are. 

And so you begin, lighter than ever before, though heaviness and darkness still prevail, but now are bathed under the fierce light of the sun. And so, you tread carefully, but with confidence, on a thread you were meant to walk, and though balanced, shakes ever so slightly, as its rhythm grows. 

And though you now are the person you’ve always been, you know that was merely a theory before, and stood as shadows do – not far from you, but far enough. But now, you and your shadow are one, your companion, while you walk upon this trail, and learn, things you could never before. 

But this is no easy task. 

Though filled with light, the sun behind you, darkness is still ahead, for light never stands alone, but is the consort of darkness, and this is how you balance the scales. And though the branches are no longer gnarled, and the engines roar, the road ahead is, as always, unknown. 

And so, you follow paths, which must be followed, however dark they may appear, until you reach a room filled with light, and the sun bathes your face, fully knowing who you are, until you don’t, for you never know when the end is near. 

 

Betty Barkas Hood

THE ODYSSEY OF INVISIBILITY: Smoking in Virginia

I thought I was seeing a shot from the Past. I had 2 things to do before I left and headed to Chicago:
My worst Substitue assignment was long term  – ideally.  But I went nuts. I was passing kids who were failing and couldn’t fail and forced them to repay me by making-up a dish assignment – Greek Rice Pudding. 
Greek Rice Pudding uses a few simple ingredients – heavy cream, sugar, eggs, and the most divine spice of all – fresh vanilla – but it’s easy to mess it up. Not sure what the secret formula that is so essential to its success is, but it’s the best!
As soon as you pour it into cups or dishes, you sprinkle cinnamon on the top – that may be a “divine” ingredient – and it’s aroma and taste is irresistible. 
But I didn’t expect him to know that. 
I wanted him to demonstrate his commitment and integrity – as well as have a kinesthetic experience, which also required math, and a finished product in 45 minutes. 


I HATED teaching that class
It was a nightmare. 


Imagine now. 


You have between 28 and 32 (the max) in a class and you teach the identical lesson 5 times that day – well, how many pizzas is it?
(Answer here, please.)
The Chairman of the Department, clustered under ART, knew she had to get me out of there. 
I refused to go to the grocery store st 5:45 AM, so she had to do that. I would, however, get to school by then, to prepare for classes, which I did, all the time. 
Well, anyway.  
Despite my catastrophic performance, I have many students who befriended me after that on Facebook, and I’ve been friends with them ever since. 
Nick is a musician and was also one of my students then. Sweetest and most talented of them all. They all gave me a hard time, especially the guys. Not Nick. So he’s been in an ensemble (not sure what else to call it, since the one guy plays several instruments). LITZ is the name of the group. Simply outstanding. 
Nick is a keen observer too 
One day I was chastising the guy who sat next to him (they always sat together.)
And I said to him:
Do you realize your eyes are totally blood shocked?  Couldn’t you wait to smoke?




And they would laugh at me. 
After that I could head to Chicago.