It’s been two years since I resigned from my hybrid office/school job. In these two years however my former boss has continued to ask for my help on every single issue of the school paper. Actually, what she really needed was a club bouncer who would have made sure that the heads of the editorial staff rolled. I fit the job description closest.
I’ve been praying for an end to this hemorrhage-inducing publication work since five years ago. I do hope that this March issue will be my last. It’s not that I don’t enjoy working with concentrated capsules of hormones. Oh yes, I do relish forcing eager young Friendster citizens to write about socially relevant issues that they just can’t relate to or are not interested in. But I honestly think I’m losing my touch.
I made a major slip last issue. It was probably because I wanted to finally stop harassing the weepy, distraught printing press artist that I decided to release an issue that had not passed my rigid obsessive compulsiveness. Also, for a change, I wanted to be home before the clock struck late and before my taxi turned into a pumpkin. One thousand printed copies later I discovered to my horror that one of the feature pages contained a picture of a teen with his middle finger sticking out. I nearly fainted. The paper is the official publication of a CATHOLIC school!
The feature page in question contained an article about the emo culture. The article already raised a few of my internal eyebrows. That was mainly because I have a deep respect for emo musicians who take offense at their genre being taken for a cultural fad. But because I had lost the drive to punish myself, the staff and the printing press with my exacting tyranny, I let the feature pass and did not even notice the presence of the offending finger.
The solution to the finger problem? I was told that the publication moderator I was assisting told the other teachers to sit straight, pull their tummies in and start coloring over the finger in nearly all of the one thousand printed copies. They had no choice. How could you explain a finger in that position to a grade 1 pupil? I should at least have sent 3 in 1 coffee sachets to those dedicated educators.
I know I may be losing my touch not so much because I could no longer stand staring at every minute detail but because the whole emo issue really proved that I could barely relate with the kids of today. My former students and staff members used to say that they liked me because I understood their generation. Five years later, I can hardly understand the literal definition of emo culture.
For most of my life I was probably a good example of a member of today’s emo culture. I often thought of deep, dark, depressing thoughts and dressed daily in black which is probably why I once often wished aliens would just abduct me and put an end to my miserable perspective of life. During my time though, I was said to have had a condition that required the assistance of experts in bright, academic offices or of double servings of the latest self-help phenomenon. Now, a lot of kids actually enjoy being or at least seeming emotionally skewed. I must have been partially asleep these past few years and missed something.
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