Call and Answer
12 March, 2003 :: 12:34 a.m.
So this is the letter I sent to Dr. Sornberger earlier today:
I know that I'm probably rapidly making myself one of your least favorite students, but I'm not going to be in class today. My other two misses were both just physical exhaustion from work and school...this one is because I just can't. I don't know how to explain it better than that. Part of it is because today is the first day I got ahold of someone for the assignement the last time class met, but part of it is more than that. I am not someone who cares about my grades...I don't think that whether I got a D or an A has anything to do with what I really got out of the class myself. I don't think it defines who I am or what I can do. All I know is that every semester I go through a wig out period where I can't focus or get things done and it always affects my grades...but it just happens. I know that between this and my not talking much in class, I'm not doing anything good for my grade in there, but life happens and in reality this is a small part of my life (yes, that may have a big impact on what I do in the future, but I'm good at screwing over future me) and the other part is more important at this moment. I'm sorry and it is not a reflection on my views of you or your class. I love the class. That's part of my problem with not speaking up more--sometimes I get lost in just watching and enjoying the way the others interact. That and there is a certain student in there who(m?--I love writing but grammar has never been my thing) I think is a pompous ass and he tends to get under my skin to the point where I can't focus on the discussion sometimes. But that's my own problem to deal with and this is the last class I'll have with him. I'm sleep depping right now which tends to make me ramble and just say whatever is on my mind. My apologies for that. I will do my best to have my head screwed back on and be in student mode by Thursday. What are we supposed to read? Thank you for your time and I apologize for this again.
So yeah...I was expecting some sort of bad response from her...but that's not what I got at all...instead, this is what I got:
Thanks for letting me know what's going on with you. I completely respect your need to prioritize, and I do not take it personally that the Emerson/Fuller seminar is not at the top of the list at the moment. If it's a problem for you, however, that every semester you hit a "wig out" time, I'd be happy to talk to you about that. I think we all go through times like that.
The reading for Thursday is "The Emancipation Proclamation" and "The Fugitive Slave Act." I hope to see you then.
Oh, one last thing. When I wrote on one of your papers that I wished you would speak up in class, it wasn't so much because I was concerned about your grade as it was that I really appreciate the thoughtful and perceptive responses you write and would love to have those ideas out there in the discussion.
See you soon,
I love Dr. Sornberger. I love college professors in general who seem to understand that life happens outside of class...how come they all seem to be English profs? Well, ok, Dr. Seidel is a psych prof...but anyway...yeah, wigging out at school...wooooo