Thursday, July 27, 2006

Schools, shows and surreal moments

In the past few weeks, my life has become increasingly bizzare.

First I willingly give up my job, leaving with excellent references and a final staff review that proves how much my employers completely loved me, only to find that I am incapable of getting another one. That's right: I'm still unemployed after five interviews, after each of which I was told something along the lines of "We really, really liked you, and thought you interviewed well, but in the end you were our second choice because you didn't have exactly the experience we were looking for/you were nervous during your teaching demonstration/you asked a question that made us wonder if you were really committed to the job/you were a little bit vague in one of your answers/you needed to give a few more examples/you weren't dressed as a large orange parrot and you didn't come into the interview room singing the first three verses of Guide Me O Thou Great Redeemer while standing on your head and saluting" [delete as appropriate]. I am now so good at bloody application forms that I think I could get myself an interview at any school in the country, including those weird hippy private ones where the kids do nothing but play in sandboxes and talk about their feelings in circle time because it's good for their emotional development, but I can't get through an interview. Nonetheless, this situation has its good side, which I'm sure I'll get to in more detail another time, but which basically involves doing some part time supply teaching for a bit and getting some actual rest, which might just sort out the last of the post-viral thing that's still hanging around, and would generally be very good for me. So, there is hope.

Next, I manage to get myself involved with The Girl's Edinburgh show, not least because it's brilliant, but mostly because I couldn't stand the thought of a long, insufferably hot summer full of nothing. The Girl is interesting to work with, being a control freak and more than a little bit stressed, while I'm having fun in a small box where I keep forgetting which ropes to pull and when. It's going to be fantastic, but it does all seem a bit surreal at the moment (I'm a teacher, Jim, not a theatrical type). I'm also completely exhausted, having given myself no time to stop and catch my breath. Between the last week of term, characterised by an insane rush of goodbye parties and end-of-year drinks and rushed clearing out of desks full of three years' teaching resources, and the technical rehearsals that are going on for hours and hours every day of this week, I'm a bit wiped out really.

And in the midst of all this chaos sits little me, oblivious and fairly serene. I'm reading John Irving's The World According to Garp, which is truly inspired as well really quite fucked up, and I'm writing yet another bloody application form. I am still, miraculously, both unmedicated and happy. Even in the face of unemployment leading to poverty leading to possible eviction and having to live in a box underneath Waterloo Bridge (always my contingency plan for those 'when everything goes tits up' situations), life is a good laugh at the moment. I just need to find some time to be home for long enough to do my washing and tidy my room. That'll be sometime in September, I think.

4 comments:

Aidan said...

Ooh, interesting - are you off to Edinburgh yourself, and for how long? I was there for a little while last summer, for the first time, when my mum took a show up there - and a lovely, if occasionally-stressful (make that, often stressful) time was had by all. No matter how grizzly and sniffy an Edinburgh-bred friend of mine gets about the whole frenetic shebang...

Good luck with the future interviewing. A friend of mine once scuppered his chances by taking too literally the interviewer's request for him to "Take a seat outside". It was only as he reached the door, chair in hand, that he realised his mistake - and kept on walking, never to return...

lilwatchergirl said...

I'm joining the cast for the last three weeks of their four-week run. Should be fun! What show was your mother doing, and how did it go? Was she the director?

Ooh, bad interview moment. Just the sort of thing I could very easily do in such a situation. *shudder*

lilwatchergirl said...

...and "joining the cast", above, should of course read "joining the cast and crew". I am not becoming an actor (thanks be to God and all Her angels).

Aidan said...

You never know - one of the star players might just, well, break a leg and your moment of stardom under the spotlight will be too tricky to resist...!
Hope it all goes well, anyway, onstage and off.

My mum took up a five-person show about her uncle and aunt's wartime romance - far from cutting-edge and hip'n'trendy'and'yoof-ful like so much at the festival, this was a feelgood old-timey mix of 30s and 40s songs and storytelling and souvenirs. Well, I enjoyed it anyway...