So I teach part-time at the community college,and I love just about everything about it. I especially love the students; college kids are my favorite -- always have been.
tangent: I have been a den leader, a brownie and girl scout troop leader, a day camp volunteer, and a dance recital cat herder. But if you told me I had to teach elementary school, I would very sweetly reply, "how about instead of that, you just give me that big stick over there and I'll poke my eyes out with it?" These teachers are either saints or insane. Probably both.
Well, as at most community colleges, space is at a premium throughout the campus where I work. There are classes stacked on top of each other, and the full-time faculty "offices" are really a warren of cubicle spaces. And office/work space for adjunct instructors? Oh, please.
But see, all of that is fine by me; I can do most of the non-classroom stuff I need to do at home, so I don't really need a work space. Some functioning copy machines would be nice . . . but here's my point -- most of the time the space constraints don't bother me.
But parking: this sucks. Especially in the middle of the day, there are just more faculty on campus than there are parking spaces for those faculty. Many, many days this semester I swore bad swears under my breath as I stalked some poor old professor as he toddled toward his ancient Volvo, and the clock crept ever closer to 11:00 -- when my class was supposed to start. I would die a slow death as 10:57 became 10:58 and I still had nowhere to put my car.
So one day as I cruised the lot and the clock sat at 10:59, I spied an open spot and whipped into it, victorious. As I jumped out of the car I noticed a sign . . . .
Hmmm . . . Well. My huffy reasoning was that certainly if the provost intended to work on campus that day he would have shown up by 11:00, right? So he wouldn't be needing his spot, right? And why weren't there enough spaces for us poor adjunct faculty, anyway?? And he's a very collegial man, so I was sure he would understand. Right . . . ?
So I left my car there, but after my first class ended at 12:15, I rushed out to try to move it to a more appropriate spot. But when I got to it, I saw that I was parked in by a big honking SUV with a faculty sticker on it. Hmmph, I thought to myself; the nerve of some people! So I just figured I would go back and teach my second class and when I came back the (other) illegally parked car would be gone.
You see why I was a little resistant to the idea of going to the campus police with my tale of woe, right? I was sure that they would make frowny faces at me for parking illegally, and besides, they were not really able to do anything about the big SUV that prevented me from moving my car. At 2:00, when my last class was over, I looked out toward the parking lot, and saw that I was still parked in. Now this was a problem, because I needed to get back to my real life and my car pool responsibilities. But no. I was stuck.
So -- and this is always a great solution -- I went into the library, grabbed a book I'd been wanting to read for a while, and read it. The whole thing. I highly recommend it -- funny, thought-provoking . . . you'll love it!
And then I looked at my car again. Still trapped! Well, at least I could get some work done, if I grabbed my computer out of the car. So I walked out to the car -- ticketed, of course. And as I approached, I heard the beautiful rich baritone voice that could only belong to one person . . . the provost.
"Is this your car?" he asked, and as I turned around I saw that he had a look on his face that said, you are killing me here.
"Yes, sir -- and I'm so sorry!"
"Well . . . let me move my car so you can leave, loser." No, he didn't call me a loser. But he thought it, I'm sure.
And I'll tell you in case you were wondering -- yes. It is possible for a car to slink away in shame.