Friday, September 30, 2005

It’s all fun and games until someone breaks a leg and asks for a divorce

Reading Ocean from the last several months would have one believe that I do not work. It isn’t that I post huge amounts, or that anyone would be inclined to say – man oh man, there is no Nina out there, everything is on Ocean and Ocean is about everything. It’s just that I never mention anything related to my work here.

Of course, Ocean is a mere smudge on my day – a lovely (for me) effervescent smudge, with colors and ebbs and flows, but a smudge nonetheless. Moods come and go, flowers bloom, leaves fall, and all this never makes it onto to the Ocean floor.

Still, many have said that Ocean works for them because it is so…personal.

Gulp. Personal? Oh dear.

Okay, so I do happen to work and I do happen to teach. Something equivalent to 2.25 classes per semester (Torts and Family Law this fall). And predictably, ever since I started blogging, each semester, a handful of students from my classes will in some way let me know that they read my blog.

I do send out little tests: I mention something that one would get only if one read Ocean and I canvas the room, looking for that small flicker of acknowledgement, that wink, that tiny grin that tells me They Know.

This fall, their faces have revealed nothing at all. No guilty admission after class, no wink, no reference, no email and, most significantly ----- no comment.

Because in fact, this is the first semester where I am teaching with a blog that has a functioning comments section. The opportunity for (pseudo-anonymous) punchy-ness is there, and I am waiting for that irrepressible shot from the hip, of the caliber where I am sent to my proper place in the corner, quivering.

As for the personal stuff appearing herein -- okay, so I have to live with the fact that a student may potentially know a hell of a lot more about me than I do about them. I have come to accept that. It’s like throwing up in public.* You reveal your weaknesses and hope that all witnessing your transgressions are a forgiving bunch.

As a final note on teaching and blogging and the relationship between the two, I want to say that I have two groups of students (in my two classes this semester) that are astonishingly wonderful. I will protect them with all my might and so references to them and their peculiar and adorable idiosyncrasies will not appear on Ocean.

*BTW, my Ocean is my huge indulgence. Let it be known that I have never thrown up in public. And it has been more than 35 years since I have had so much to drink as to make myself ill, so don’t hold your breath waiting for a sordid description of such an event here, on Ocean. It’s not gonna happen.