Despite my atheism, it's DAMN hard to celebrate true joyfulness with other exclamations:

I have a new JOB!

The story is actually even stranger than the one I told in the last entry, about teaching second grade bilingual. Literally as I was driving down the freeway to my pro-forma (apparently it was a mostly foregone conclusion that they wanted to hire me) interview in this new district, my cell phone rang. Like an idiot, I fumbled in my shoulder bag to answer it. It was the principal of the school where I'd actually interviewed -- the middle school that had wanted to hire me, except for the fucking credential issues. But she was very excited and tense on the phone, asking whether I'd signed anything yet with the elementary school. I said no. She said that it was "all fair", then, and that she'd talked with the district's credentialling person and they thought that this middle school could hire me into a new fulltime position teaching FRENCH. She said they wouldn't know until Wednesday evening, but in fact, after my interview with the elementary school, where it was clear they were desperate and ready to take a chance on someone who'd never taught those whom [ profile] raptis calls "tiddlers" before, I had three different messages to call Personnel, where the woman I reached told me she would have a contract typed up by 8 AM this morning, as long as I had some proof that I am pursuing a French credential.

Oh, my fucking christ. I haven't talked about it much in this journal, because most of my seething frustration in this area dates back to being forced to stop getting a single subject French credential in 2001, because Oakland eviscerated the electives program for middle schools. I had taught French 1999-2000, and it was insanely fun. It wasn't much like work, really, as far as I could tell. I loved making curriculum, I loved speaking French all day, I loved getting students turned on to language and watching them fall for French, in particular.

Anyway, once Oakland scrapped electives (drama, art, music, language, and anything else that might once have been taught -- Lowell had rooms that had clearly been intended as home ec and cooking classes), I felt like there were so few job opportunities in foreign language that I might as well accede to the District's demand that I get a multiple subject credential, so I'd be qualified to teach Language Arts/Social Science Core -- HA! given recent events. Not that I didn't worry about that, even back then.

Now... I didn't even APPLY for this job, and it's the job above all others that I would have wanted, had I known it existed and was possible.

So I signed a contract this morning, filled out reams of paperwork, and went to the middle school to look at my classroom. Strangely, for me, this is one of the most important things -- I'll make any classroom I work in beautiful somehow, because I cannot bear to work in ugliness -- but THIS classroom is already gorgeous, even almost empty! The whole back wall is windows, with a long curtain that can be pulled across like an auditorium. The desks are the two-people-at-a-desk-with-undershelf affairs, and those are the ones that I would request if it were in my power to do so, which it never is. The dimensions are good. There are two filing cabinets. It's a blank palette on which I can now begin to work. I can't use most of what I used to have up, though I do have some stuff left from the last time I got to teach French. But I'll accumulate things this year, oh, yes, I will. The first thing I am going to do is get rid of that fucking American flag and put up a French one, a Quebecois one, and a Haitian one. If I can get them. I think I have the first two? I'll have to look. [ profile] kola and [ profile] celesteh and [ profile] nana_b, expect pleading for French realia on a regular basis. Used Carte Oranges, bus tickets, museum entry tickets, advertising posters, ANYTHING!

God, I'm so glad to have a teaching job. I start -- with students -- Monday.


May. 2nd, 2004 07:10 pm
I love Jean Ferrat. I love just about everything right at this moment. The person I had the argument with, the person I behaved childishly with, called after reading my e-mail and to be honest, all is right in my world. Okay, that's a bit of an exaggeration, as well as a bit of an over-the-top admission of the importance of this connection, to me. Nonetheless, I am very happy.

Jean Ferrat... He's French, and pretty much was the bard of the French Left. I've never been completely sure whether he was PCF (the French CP) or just PS (the Socialist Party), but he sounds more CPish, to me. His songs are very lyric driven. Some of the them are beautiful love ballads, some are just humorous comments on the French Left, on the pretensions of the petty bourgeoisie, and some are more serious contemplations of politics. He's got this one lament on the crimes of Stalin (which sounds ludicrous but is actually quite touching). I love that song. And he's got some very sexy songs, too. There was this one that I learned in high school and used to sing everywhere, secure in the knowledge that no one would understand what I was saying.

Here are the lyrics. I would alternate between this, the original version, and a version where I'd invert the gender roles so that I, the singer, could speak in a feminine voice.

L'Amour Est Cerise

Rebelle et soumise, paupières baissées,
Quitte ta chemise, ma belle fiancée
L'amour est cerise, et le temps pressé
C'est partie remise, pour aller danser

Autant qu'il nous semble, raisonable et fou
Nous irons ensemble, au-delà de tout
Prête-moi ta bouche, pour t'aimer un peu
Ouvre-moi ta couche, pour l'amour de dieu

Laisse-moi sans crainte, venir à genoux
Goûter ton absinthe, boire ton vin doux
Ô rires et plaintes, ô mots insensées
Ta folle complainte, c'est vite elancée

Défions le monde, et ses interdits
Ton plaisir inonde ma bouche ravie
Vertu ou licence, pardieu je m'en fous
Je perds mon semence dans ton sexe roux

Ô Pierrot de lune, ô monts et merveilles
Voilà que ma plume tombe de sommeil
Et comme une louvre, aux enfants frileux
La nuit nous recouvre, de son manteau bleu

Rebelle et soumise, paupières lassées
Remets ta chemise, ma belle fiancée
L'amour est cerise, et le temps passé
C'est partie remise pour aller danser

I love that song. I kind of wish I had an audio link to this thing, because I feel perfectly unselfconscious singing that song. I translated it once, for myself... I could do it again if anyone is burning to hear.

Salut, Abra



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