Friday, June 4, 2021

A John Wayne movie

I was showing a movie in class, something I never liked to do. I preferred to show movies outside of class, all at once, the way they’re almost always meant to be shown. This movie was a documentary about wages and employment. Of the two computers in my office for movie projection, I picked the older one, heavy white plastic, with two switches, like light switches, sticking up from the keyboard.

After starting the movie, I took a seat in a back corner of the classroom. And who came in and sat next to me? One of my worst students. He had appeared on a reality-TV show and had been mocked on social media for his Dunning–Kruger witlessness. In class he liked to lean forward and glare at me.

And then in came John Wayne, wearing an enormous corduroy cap. He took the first seat in my row of desks, blocking the view of the two or three of us behind him. The bad student began talking to Wayne about hunting. Then bad student stood up, walked up to Wayne’s desk, and continued to talk as the movie ran. I told bad student that if he didn’t stop talking and sit down, I’d have to ask him to leave. He kept talking, I asked him to leave, and he did.

Related reading
All OCA teaching dreams (Pinboard)

[My (pre-streaming) strategy with movies: get one or two time slots when nearly everyone was free, and reserve a classroom. I would cancel one class in exchange for students’ willingness to show up, and I would lend the videotape (!) or DVD to the one or two students who had to miss. There was always something strange and wonderful about watching a movie at night in a nearly empty building. The bad student in this dream is real. John Wayne, too, is real, but he was never in one of my classes. This is the twenty-second teaching-related dream I’ve had since I retired. In all but one, something has goes wrong.]

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