The analogy that’s been in my head lately: Beating on a dead horse. I’m the one doing the beating and the dead horse is whatever I want to do. Eventually the beater gets exhausted. And, according to the analogy, the horse never gets up. Things just add up and eventually feel like they’re falling apart.

Exhibit: A meeting. Several weeks ago a bunch of English teachers were bugging me to start a discussion group for teachers. “Okay,” I said, “I’ll do it.” I decided to choose the topic for the first meeting myself, because trying to come to a group consensus is like trying to run really fast and fly, at least in my opinion. “We’ll have a meeting in one week to schedule the meetings,” I said and everyone agreed. Then the meeting comes around and hardly anyone is there. No one is saying much at all. I wished I had a cattle-prod or something to get some sound out of the few teachers that were there. “Here’s the hand-out with questions,” I said. “They are discussion questions so don’t try to answer them at home, we’re going to talk about them.” Every one agreed or at least pretended like they understood. “Everyone is tired now,” I said, “so I’ll write my email on the board here and please email me with topic ideas for the next meeting.” At least a week passes with no emails. I don’t want to dictate everything to them, but the horse just won’t get up. And then there are always the questions: “What’s the topic?” “The hand-out is on the table, you can read it.” “I didn’t see it” “It’s right there.” Etc.

I’m just really down about trying to do this all the time and my energy, which isn’t the best at any time, is failing fast.


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