Reasons I’m Slowly Going Crazy February 16, 2010

Reasons I’m Slowly Going Crazy

There’s lots of stuff happening right now and I feel like spewing it all out.

  1. I have two more classes and then I’m *finally* done with my Masters degree. My grade doesn’t even really matter; I just need to pass… so hopefully, after June, you can all call me Master Hemant.

    It’s about time, too. This is a 1.5-year program that I began 4 years ago… the same time all the eBay weirdness happened.

    The classes work like this: you meet 8 hours on a Saturday and 6 hours on a Sunday. A month later, you meet 8 hours on a Saturday and 6 hours on a Sunday (and there’s a midterm somewhere in there). A month later, you meet for 6 hours on a Sunday (and there’s a final somewhere in there). That’s it. You take two classes at a time (every other week) and you’re done after 6 quarters.

    So why did it take me so long?

    The conversation with the program head went something like this:

    Me: Professor, you know how I’m halfway through this program?

    Professor: Yes…

    Me: Right… so I need to take a hiatus for a little while.

    Professor: Oh? Why is that?

    Me: I have to go to church every Sunday for the next few months.

    Professor: [Confused look]

    The “few months” lasted a lot longer than I thought it would. I took time off to write the book, do my student teaching and start my actual teaching job. I finally resumed classes last summer:

    Me: Hi, Professor. Remember me?

    Professor: Umm…

    Me: Right… I’m done going to church now. Can I come back into the program?

    Professor: You got money?

    Me: [Pulls out credit card]

    Professor: Welcome back!

    I’m almost done. Yay!

  2. The state tournament for Speech/Forensics is this weekend. The kids I coach are awesome and I hope the state judges feel the same way.

    And for those of you who don’t think it’s a big deal, it’s a *huge* event in IL.

  3. My birthday’s coming up on Thursday, the 25th. Woo! How should we celebrate?
  4. Speaking of my teaching job, do I even have a position next year? Who knows. My district “released” all non-tenured teachers next year (including me) because the state’s not giving us money.

    In fact, our elected officials aren’t giving money to any public school. Which puts everyone in a quandary. It’s tough even applying to other districts since they’re all in the same boat.

    There’s some reason to be optimistic about getting rehired back (I teach Math as opposed to an elective, I’m relatively young and therefore less expensive, I coach a team, etc.) but it’s frustrating to not know if my job is secure. I won’t know what happens for at least another month.

    If it doesn’t work out, I’m not sure what I’ll do yet…

    (Anyone need a math teacher? I’ll write proofs for food.)

  5. My parents currently think I’m never going to get married. And they’re getting desperate for grandkids:

    Them: Do you have a girlfriend?

    Me: No.

    Them: Umm… Do you have a… boyfriend…?

    Me: No.

    Them: *Oh, thank god.* Do you want us to import you a wife from India?

    Me: No.

    Them: We’ll buy you a ticket to India so you can meet someone.

    Me: No.

    Them: We can all go next week if you wa—

    Me: No.

    Them: We can make a profile for you on

    Me: No.

    Them: Ok, we’ll let you date white girls.

    Me: I’m gonna go now…

  6. On the weekend of my birthday, guess where I’ll be?!

    It’s *very* exciting.

    And I’m strictly forbidden from telling the blog world until I have permission. Which I’m still waiting for… you’ll find out soon, though.

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  • i assume the permission you’re waiting for on item 6 is not from your parents.

  • Kit

    If you ever thought you might wanna come to Alabama, my former high school doesn’t have a speech/debate coach? Rofl.

    Congrats on the Master’s program and fingers crossed for the job situation. My mother’s a HS teacher (ten years) and a lot of her friends were in the same situation last year. :/

  • Ron in Houston

    Don’t worry – sanity is highly overrated.

  • Karen

    Come to Columbus! People here love you. You can work in Westerville Schools. You’d like it 🙂

    You can do your Phd work at OSU and be a Buckeye…

    I can even find you a wife. There are lots of them here.

  • I know in the midst of all that craziness it is difficult to make sense of everything, but I’ve noticed some of my best times are when I’m busy and not really sure of what the future holds. Security, while a good thing, also leads us to be complacent. Hopefully this time will lead you to be a better student, a better teacher and thus, a better person. 😉

  • Luther


    My daughter is a Math teacher in a private school. A little less pay, a whole lot more freedom. But in general you need GOOD GRADES to start teaching at a reputable school.

    There are national search services that do a good job of matching applicants and openings.

  • @Hemant,

    In times of flux, try to keep a larger picture in mind. You are a very capable, talented individual and I’m sure you will be doing fine (possibly already married and maybe even with kids) five years from now. Although the journey may at times be “interesting” always embrace the future. Things will work out.

  • Parse

    On the weekend of my birthday, guess where I’ll be?!

    It’s *very* exciting.

    </obligatory joke>

  • I love reading this blog for too many reasons to list. I needed a good laugh this morning and got it here. The exchange between you and your parents is hilarious.
    Keeping my fingers crossed for you in your job situation. It’s tough out there.

  • The Other Tom

    so hopefully, after June, you can all call me Master Hemant.

    You may want to know that “Master so-and-so” is the correct form of address for a male child.

  • I’m glad you’re slowly going crazy, after all insanity isn’t something that you should jump in right away. It’s always better to easy your way in. Got any cats? If not, get some. Start off with one or two, then work your way up to twenty.
    I understand master programs can make one insane. My last presentation that I gave during my, besides my defense, was entitled, “Why am I still here?” Needless to say, I couldn’t give any acceptable answer. Also do not get your hope up that anyone will call you master. They’ll look at the MS and say what, “More sh*t.” and laugh thinking that they are the first ones to say that.
    The beginning and the end.

  • mudball

    you crack me up! but don’t go crazy, keep fighting the good fight, the kids need you (where were the teachers like you when I was in school?)

  • MaryLynne

    I’m at the tail end of my Master’s, too – Curriculum and Instruction in early childhood special education. Last semester – three classes, 10 credit hours of student teaching, and comprehensive exams. And I’m a full time teacher already. Definitely crazy making.

    Hang in there – everyone tells me it’s worth it!

  • JulietEcho

    You can do it! And I, too, hope the mystery location isn’t India to find a wife!

  • We share a birthday! Woohoo, go fighting February 25thers!

  • tennismom

    Not sure where Kit is in Alabama, but yes if you can stomach being in the bible belt and would like to come down here we have a very good school system (ranked nationally) and I know my son would love to have you as a teacher at our Jr. high (which is 8th and 9th grade) or at our HS (10-12th). Oh and we have an Atheist/Humanist group that gets together for dinners every 3rd Sunday. Along with the approval at our local University of the AAA: Auburn Atheists and Agnostics Club. They will be attending our next dinner group to meet us, update us on their plans for the club, and how we can help. Oh yeah, about forgot…granted funding issues are not really any better here than anywhere else, but our schools also get money from our city which allows for a little extra.

  • It saddens me that America doesn’t value education the way we do here (you’re welcome to come to Canada if you want, our teachers just got another 6% raise).

    As for a girlfriend, don’t write off letting your parents set you up, my husband and I were set up by our mothers (who were best friends). You’re a hot stuff atheist, the girls should be throwing themselves at you.

  • If I married a Filipino gir…woman my parents would buy me a house they would be so happy. Unfortunately for the Pinays, they all remind me of my cousins and sister (I don’t care how hot they are).

  • Staceyjw

    If it’s ok with my husband,I have a solution for you AND your parents: if you lose your job, you can come and be my 2nd house husband here in sunny Mexico (only 12 miles to San Diego!). You can lounge in our ocean front house, and do whatever you want, in exchange for sex and childcare.I’m not rich, but I do well enough, and its my fantasy to have a few husbands, all with different talents.Give your parents grandkids after all! *LOL*

    Poly marriage isn’t for men only, some of us ladies think it sounds great!

    (If I was a man offering this to a woman, I would be considered a exploitive sexist pig!!!)

  • Congratulations on almost being done with your Masters degree. When you wrote “so hopefully, after June, you can all call me Master Hemant”, it reminded me of Star Wars. Will you be looking for a Padawan?

    I can relate to what you wrote about your parents. My parents are from India as well, and they are Muslim. I have been trying my whole life to convince them that, no I am not going to have an arranged marriage. I still have a couple of years before I graduate from college (since I’m in pharmacy school, which is 6 years long) but they’ve already started hinting at wanting me to get married. (They want me to wait until after graduation, but I guess they want to get a head start on looking for guys.) Hang in there and stand your ground.

    All the best with your job! I wish people valued education more.

    Happy Birthday in advance!


  • On the weekend of my birthday, guess where I’ll be?!
    It’s *very* exciting.

    I’m now guessing about 12 miles south of San Diego. 😉

  • Philip

    isn’t the 25th on a Thursday? or am I in the wrong month?

  • Staceyjw, you do sound like an expolitative sexist pig…but it’s turning me on.
    Tell you what, I’ll flip you for Hemant.

    Hemant, if you need a guide into the land of crazy, I come cheap.
    However, I will second the Canada thing. There is a GREAT school system and lots of hot chicks (Indian and otherwise) there. Plus, you get to end every sentence with a question.
    What could be more fun than that?

    Good luck – but you don’t need it because you’ve already got talent and great teeth.
    What? You don’t think there’s a correlation between success and teeth?

  • To quote Bill Clinton, and I mean this sincerely, I feel your pain.

  • Alexis

    Hemant, We will all be so happy to see you here in (name of place deleted)!

    The importance of Speech/Forensics reminds of the days when one of my girl friends was a high school English teacher and also coach for the Forensics team. They had won regionals and were on their way to statewide championship. That same weekend, the girl’s basketball team was going to states as well. Guess which one was allotted 25 busses for team and entourage, with all lodging and meals paid for? And guess which coach had to shell out to rent a van, buy meals, and rent motel rooms for her team? Not the one where the kids actually have to use their brains, that’s for sure!

    Academics takes second place to sports here in the wonderful state of (name of place deleted). Hey what’s a school for if not team spirit. Even if it’s only basketball not football. Even if it’s only girls (women)and not MEN (boys).

    Hey if too many kids learn to think we are in danger of ending up with a secular nontheistic society!

  • Tometheus

    Wow… It’s hard to believe it’s been that long since I was working on my Masters. (I was working on my MS when you were an undergrad at UIC. I think we graduated the same year.)

  • Tometheus

    To clarify, working on my MS at UIC when you were there. Yes, I was on the SWORD mailing list, yes, we met once (Newdow visit), no, I’m not stalking you. (But that’s what all of the stalkers say, so I suppose that doesn’t prove anything.)

  • Re:5. What? You got permission to do something that you might have done anyway regardless of what your parents thought!?! You lucky bastard.

    I’m finishing my mechanical engineering degree this semester and I finally have permission to take a bus by myself (how do they think I get to school?). But I’m not allowed to walk to class by myself. Oh dang.

    Congrats on your Masters! It seems like the break you took was really worthwhile. How in FSM’s name did you manage 8 hours of classes at once? Ewww.

  • Sydney

    Hello, I’ve been a long time reader and lurker but when I read that you coached for IHSA speech I knew I needed to comment! I compete in IHSA speech and made it to sectionals, but never to state! It’s so cool that you coach for that. Out of curiosity, which school do you coach for, what events? It would be awesome if I competed against some of your kids, haha. Well, good luck! Making it to state sure is tough!

  • muggle

    Well, your birthday’s a day before mine and my daughter turned 27 last month so I was going to make suggestions but she’s white.

    And my daugther would shoot me if she knew I wrote that and, no, I don’t blame her. (I’m in no actual hurry to marry her off. I want her to take more time next time than she did with grandbaby daddy.)

    Schools around here are hurting too. Freaking governor cut health and education but not stupid stuff like his personal staff he keeps giving huge raises to or an annoying television channel playing nonstop in the Empire State Plaza (State office building complex) on a gigantic screen at the end of the indoor councourse that has to cost a mint just to run. But don’t dare ask for paperclips to do my job with!

  • Alexis — I know what you mean. We’re sending the same number of kids to state as Wrestling. Guess who gets the buses and the glory? 🙂

    Sydney — Yay, fellow speechie! I’ll leave out the school for now 🙂 But I coach the limited prep events (Impromptu, Radio, Extemp). I went to Sandburg when I was in high school, though. What’d you do?!

  • Sydney

    Hemant- I totally understand, just curious. I’ve done Impromptu for the last three years with a little foray in extemp earlier this season, but it wasn’t for me. I’ve made it to sectionals the past three years, and hopefully next year will be the year for state. Our team’s never gotten that far before, but we’re growing every year. It’s so much fun, and although I’m glad to have my Saturdays back, I’m sure I’ll be really missing it in a few weeks.

  • Hannah C

    Just have to comment to say… SPEECH!!!
    Forensics is my favorite class, ever. I feel like that class has helped me more than any other. Now doing essays and presentations in other classes is a breeze. Not to mention how good that class has made me at BSing. (Good skill? Eh. Useful skill? Ohhh yeah.)
    I live in California, and our state comp isn’t until April. We have Debate Quals in a couple weeks though, and IE Quals right after that.
    And on a note kind of related to this actual website, I have met more non-religious people in that class than anywhere else. One of the first days of class, we were discussing religion, and when asked, I said that I was an Atheist. To my surprise, that was met with high fives and “me too”s. Of course, there are plenty of religious kids too, but still. I wonder if there are more Atheist/Agnostics in the class because doing activities like Debate makes us more analytical and rational in things like religion, or because people who tend to be less religious are more drawn to Speech?

  • DemetriusOfPharos

    @Staceyjw – I still think you sound like an exploitive sexist pig. 🙂

    P.S. – I’m a computer programmer, where do I sign up?

  • You’re Indian? Are your folks Indian too?

    Ok, as for where you will be: I’m going with … Uh … Pakistan!?!

    Finally, you can date my sister if you like. She’s whiter than Moby Dick, exceptionally unintelligent, and singularly unattractive. But on the plus side… she’s a plus size.

    — Happy Birthday, Hemant. —

  • Cafeeine

    I can’t help but imagine the number of lithe, voluptuous and brainy single atheists who must have just sent Hemant their profile, along with swimsuit photos…

  • I can’t help but imagine the number of lithe, voluptuous and brainy single atheists who must have just sent Hemant their profile, along with swimsuit photos…

    The answer to this is 0.

    But all lithe, voluptuous, brainy, single atheists are welcome to send profiles my way 🙂 (umm… I suppose I should add that I’m straight.)

  • Reginald Selkirk

    6. On the weekend of my birthday, guess where I’ll be?!

    At your wedding! Congratulations!

    I have no idea how these rumours get started.

  • Rieux

    My guess was Melbourne, but looking at the calendar that doesn’t appear to fit.

  • Mikko

    I’m in that age when parents want me to get a grildfriend and after a few years a child 🙂

  • Joey

    I now have “No Life Without Wife” from Bride and Prejudice stuck in my head, thanks to the parental exchange.
    Hmmm… Maybe he’s good in bed?

    (The above comment will be lost on anyone that hasn’t seen/heard the song – youtube it!)

  • parv

    Hemant would be eploing to India to teach & possibly father some children.

  • Becca

    You coach speech team?! That’s fantastic! I’m from the Chicago area, and I was on speech team in high school, so I understand what a big deal it is in Illinois. I hope your team does really well!

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