In this board for introductions, please tell us a little about yourself.
Student: “The people I love make me happy.”
The best and worst part about teaching online classes is that you don’t remember what your students say. Their inspirations and their grievances don’t stick. You don’t carry their faces around with you to the grocery store, to home, to the gym like you do when you see them everyday in a high school English class.
But I haven’t stopped thinking about what should have been a passing remark in a passing discussion board assignment for a passing online composition course.
I think about people who love someone who doesn’t make them happy or about people who are made happy by someone they don’t really love. And, with the house in Florida that won’t sell and the house in Minnesota that barely has room for a toilet, I think at least the really complicated parts of life are still simple. There are a lot of–what was it Rumsfeld said?–known unknowns: jobs, homes, 15 below 0 in the winter. But if I think on it for five minutes, I am nearly brought to tears by what it must mean in the south to be blessed–these guys make me feel happy, loved, and necessary. If I wake up and decide on any given day I want to make Clara, William, and Aaron happy, I will know how to do that. Of all life’s mysteries, expenses, and disappointments, it’s no small thing when love isn’t one of them.