So, I have two jobs now. One pays, and that matters. I am a broke drone pilot, and a temporary substitute teacher. I also have two volunteering gigs, and three projects. I need three of me.
Paid Substitute Teacher Gig
Actually, I don’t think of any of this as work. I am now a substitute teacher. I received a letter of acceptance the day after I wrote the ‘Unemployed Househusband’ sestina, ironically. For this, of course, I feel deep gratitude, to once again be called to learn from others, and to share what I know. And moneys.
I teach K-12 in-person. I have Covid antibodies, so I have no fear of succumbing to the illness in any profound and unsettling way. I pack my lunch. People consider me soft-spoken. I am not used to talking to anyone outside my family. ‘Twas a lonely year.
The strangest experience: I taught French. I can read some, write less, but I don’t speak French, so I just explored the mathematics of the design of the Eiffel Tower, the subtle way the parabolic arc of its profile is settled to accommodate wind pressure in excess of practical consideration. I enjoyed the hyperboloidal spire that seemed to grow fat as it ascended, as though the ring of the observation tower was keeping the arcs from separating, stretched with crowds, crowds that have enjoyed the structure for over a century since its whimsical construction at the 1889 World’s Fair. The architects were spitballing. I goofed with guesstimated math.
With their laptops on their desks, and their work assignments written in the board, it was quiet. Just me, the clock, a calculator, and The Iron Lady. I am translating an old French travelogue when possible, so it felt natural to take the role, to get a vibe of existentialism.
So, I have taught grades Kindergarten, 1, 2, 3, 5, 8, and mixed high school classes. The elementary classes were intense and gratifying, in sharp contrast to the upper classes. Overall, I like teaching. That surprises me.
Broke Drone Pilot Gig
I amaison at also studying for my FAA Remote Pilot re-certification exam. I plan to take it in two days, if not tomorrow. Then I go back to building a drone for kicks.
Volunteer Liaison at Heinz History Center
I am volunteering with Heinz History Center again soon. I gather stories and provide content for tourism.
Volunteer Drone Tech Consultant for Community Event
I am helping with a drone competition for a local clothing designer and community activist from Team Humanity. Stoked! They have a bunch of drones, robots, printers and other tech incubation toys for kids to use. I was stunned to find this happening in Brownsville. It should be a fun summer event. I feel like painting, so Sunday is going to offer me that.
I designed that tie. It has carrots, spirals, glitch screen, Elven landscape, and smeared lights.
I need to get back at it, but I have been sort of swamped.
Bonus: Marc Ribot on Acoustic Guitar
Listen to this composition of ‘Congo’ by Marc Ribot
at 5:47. Haunting. I don’t have anything won lately, but the Jelly Roll Morton number is also amazing, so listen to that, too.