I had a rough week. Even now I should be working on my paper, but the lure of Netflix and my blog has me stalled at three pages of the five I was hoping to do tonight. My inability to focus is stressing me out, and not even a trip to the gym today made me feel better. I have found myself stuck in my own head, and feeling a lot like I did when I was living in San Diego and working nights. The last time I felt like this, I pushed away a relationship, applied to school in another country, and alienated myself from my friends. This time, I am picking fights with the boy (when I should be focusing my attention elsewhere and not taking that so seriously), counting down the days until I can get back to Scotland, and feeling gloomy about the fact that all of my friends live either in different parts of the state, or in different parts of the world. Instead of tackling my list f things to do (and do everything that I learned from my therapist in Scotland), I am stewing in my negativity and getting very frustrated with everything and everyone around me.
In an effort to shake the feelings, and to get out of my own head, I put this aside for an hour and put the finishing touches on a presentation for the philosophy class. A few weeks ago I expressed my extreme dislike of Horace Mann and his theory of the perfect educational system. As part of the course, we had to write a scenario of a problem in higher education. Working with a partner, we then had to pick another group’s scenario and try to work out a solution to the problem using the philosophical theory of one of the men (and so far they have all been men). I like the assignment. A lot of the case scenarios presented interesting problems, and I snagged a fantastic partner with a sense of humor and a strong work ethic. We decided that it would make for the perfect presentation if we used Horace Mann as our muse. This will no doubt make the class laugh, as the last time I had to discuss Mann, I talked about his Fantasyland view of education, and the improbability of his model ever producing the results he envisioned. In essence, I was labeled a Mann hater (I seriously just made that up right now, and I am totally tickled by it) by the class, so no one would expect me to use his philosophy to unpack a scenario.
I would love to say that the time spent with Mann has given me a change of heart about him and his theories.
Sorry to disappoint, but it has not. While I think education should be open to everyone no matter what color, gender, socioeconomic status, or religion is, I have a hard time buying into the fact that education will act as the great equalizer and erase all the ills of society. His Utopian concept of school has made a significant impact on the way classes are taught today, but I am far too cynical to think that a rich kid and a poor kid will leave school with the same chances for a good job and a betterment in class and status. I do however, think that my partner and I have provided a strong Mann answer to the issue presented to us, and I think our ten minute presentation will make the class laugh and allow them to think about what the perfect program would look like.
I can cross that assignment off of my list of things to do, but I am still feeling distracted and stuck in my head. I think it might be time for me to switch gears, go Zen, and try to shake off the long few days. So with that I am going to
It might not hurt if you send me your good vibes though. Good vibes never hurt anyone.