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in which teaching becomes a metaphor. or something.

Next week I am teaching Virginia Woolf’s brilliant and amazing essay A Room of One’s Own. So on my list of “to do” for the weekend is this note, jotted down while I was in a meeting: “find a way in to Room.” Indeed. Of course, what I meant (I think) was that I need to figure out how to help my students tackle this long essay. But the metaphor? …

The Gift of the Snail

We’ve spent the last six weeks or so in the U.S. visiting friends and family, including a trip to Plymouth Plantation in Massachusetts.  My kids go to a British school, so this trip was my attempt to offer them a dollop of U.S. history, which for some reason their school doesn’t offer.  Sore losers, if you ask me. We stayed at a great cheap hotel right on the water and …

You Have Lipstick On Your Teeth!

If you’re a woman-type person, then I would imagine at some point in your life, you’ve been to the ladies room, aka the female toilet, aka the powder room. (Does anyone still use powder anymore?)  And I would imagine that in that powder room, you’ve probably had at least one or two really great conversations, maybe a bitchfest or two, and probably at least a few honest conversations: your hair …

Day 1: Pitching

To pitch implies that someone will catch, don’t you think? So to pitch, from the very get-go, is itself a hopeful act. And yet of course–as thousands of Hollywood wannabes could tell you–the hope of “pitch” almost always ends in despair, with the “not for us at the moment,” or “mmmm…we were thinking of going more with a JosswhedonjjabramsNOTYOU type” … Or the plain “nope, hated it, don’t turn in …

Where I’ve Been

It’s July 1 today, which means that our summer holiday official starts in five days. Yes, America, my children are still in school and will be until July 4, when, with a touch of utterly unintentional irony, their British school officially ends for the year and sets them free.  I’ve spent much of the last month preparing to move, then moving, then recovering from the move and I’ve realized one …