Sunday, December 9, 2012

Rust Never Sleeps

We walked past a colleague's home tonight as we strolled the neighborhood admiring all the holiday lights. Rumor has it he's retiring in February... not the usual date for a teacher, right?

"Six years ago we were wishing for him to go out," Heidi remarked, "but now? It seems a little sad."

I nodded. She had a good point. The guy was famous for his cantankerous attitude. He had a reputation for unceremoniously blasting anyone-- coworker, administrator, parent, student-- anywhere, if he believed they were in the wrong. His irascible voice has boomed through the hallways of our school for over 18 years, and teaching was his second career! It seemed like anyone who had ever a run in with him just wished he would retire already.

I shrugged. "He's really toned it down a lot recently," I pointed out.

As we walked on in our silence, I considered his. "I guess that's what happens when you're really done," I said. "You stop fighting. Being burnt out is not being upset or angry at the direction things are going. Burnt out? That's when you don't care."

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