I didn't mean to lie, but it turns out I am incapable of doing what I said I was going to do. When Paul left, he asked me how much longer I would be here. I said, "Until I grade five more papers, however long that takes." I graded maybe two more, started a third--and I didn't just hit the wall, the wall fell on me. I was already having trouble making any sense in my comments, had several times written a comment and then realized that the student hadn't done or said what I was responding to--and I finally have to acknowledge that the point of diminishing returns was passed, oh, a good long while ago.
I'm very concerned about one student from the SF class. She's been one of my best students in a lot of ways, so I cut her an enormous amount of slack about the late submission of her paper, told her she could drop it off for me today--and it isn't here. I don't know what I'm going to do now. I really don't have even the faintest hint of an idea what to do.
I had a total conniption fit earlier: I came back to the office after class (which was actually lovely, thank you very much), filled with anxiety about all those papers yet to grade, and was smacked in the face with the fact that we need to interview candidates for adjunct positions--and we need to do it next week. Plus the faculty member I observed left a voice mail, saying she'll call me at 1:00 tomorrow to talk about when we're going to meet.
So, in terms of the adjunct interviews, I feel like, fuck this: no. I have no time to do this now. Absolutely not. But if I don't do it now, I'll have to do it over the break, and I really don't want to do that. So, well, OK. I've given Joan the times when I'm available--but I truly had a full-fledged anxiety attack about it.
And I tried to call the colleague back, but her voice mail isn't set up. I sent her an e-mail, explaining that I'll be teaching at 1, so I won't be able to talk to her. And I was practically yelling at Paul: I wrote up the observation; I said exactly what I had told her I was going to say. She can write a rebuttal if she wants to. There is nothing for us to discuss--and that she made the assumption that we would meet, not saying that she'd like to, or would I mind if we did, or anything along those lines, but as if she's issuing orders to me, that rather set me off. In my e-mail, I asked her to give me a preview of the topic for discussion. If it's anything about the observation, I'm going to Bruce about it before I meet with her--because I am not going to defend my observation, and I am not going to be raked over the coals by her. If I did, in fact, write something that I shouldn't have for some reason, then he can tell me so and I'll change it, but I'm not going to argue with her about it. No fucking way.
I know I wouldn't be so het up about this if I weren't already tired and stressed about the papers to grade and about the screaming rush to the end of the semester and the sudden influx of additional work for which I was not prepared. I'm sure that once I get these papers returned to the students I will start to calm down. But I did get up at six, and I did sit here and do nothing but grade papers, non-stop, from 9 to 2, at which point I had to take a brain break, and I read the book I'm teaching in M&D for a while, then graded one more paper before I went to class. There are seven more papers to grade--eight if that one from the student who hasn't turned hers in yet magically appears. That's cutting it awfully close for tomorrow, even with getting up at 6 and getting myself here by 9 at the latest--in part because I also have to meet with a colleague about her promotion folder, and that may take longer than I want it to. But worst case scenario, I put the students in groups, they talk while I grade the last paper (or--god I hope not--two), and then I can shake that off.
Right now, I need to shake the day off. I am tired, I'm still pretty stressed and cranky--and anticipating unpleasantness, which is never a good way to feel. What I need is to go home, take care of a little life maintenance, read the pages of the novel for M&D tomorrow (I already finished the book for SF), and try to get to sleep as early as possible so that 6 a.m. alarm isn't quite so painful tomorrow.
Which won't happen if I stay here working on blog posts. So, off I toddle.