Summer School Part 1 of 3

Really 2(Door creaks open. Jessie peers through, enters, and sneezes twice in the accumulated dust. She dries her nose on her sleeve. Finding her jester’s crown atilt on a high backed chair, she strides to it with growing confidence. She seizes the cap and  bangs it on a nearby table, sending up a dust storm and bringing on a hacking fit. When she has recovered, she glares daggers at the table and chair, daring them to provoke another allergic reaction. Still eyeing the furniture warily, she puts on her hat and waits. When nothing happens, she smiles.)

Jessie: Well, hello folks. It’s nice to be back.

(Sits in chair facing audience. Leans one elbow on the table.)

Jessie: Sorry for the absence. Not much has changed in the last couple of months. Sam and Caroline are still doing well, I’m still ambivalent about the south, and Scott is still doing the lion’s share of the work-that-makes-our-house-livable. Caroline and I have been growing out our hair, but I’m ready to cut mine off again. I suppose everything else will come up in the next few weeks, so I’ll skip the rest of the  pleasantries and get straight to business.

You probably know I teach college English online, and I work over the summer. I rarely discuss my job, even obliquely. But I’ve been harboring a bit of teacherly grouchiness here lately, and I’ve decided it’s time to unveil my latest creation. I’ve developed a text language I only wish I could use when grading. Some essays do receive comments like “this is not a verb”, “cite your sources”, and “vague and garbled”. But I don’t reply in acronymic abbreviations, because I’m not a snarky prof. To emphasize that point, let me say clearly that my remarks here don’t apply to all, or even most, of my students. But, sometimes, late at night, when I’m running low on personal fuel, I find myself rolling my eyes at the screen and muttering. (I can only assume my students periodically respond in kind.) So, without further ado, I give you part one to The Jesterqueen’s Guide to Grading .

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The background picture above is the tombstone of  a Civil War soldier in a historic graveyard  in Sharonville, Ohio.

About jesterqueen:
Jessie Powell is the Jester Queen. She likes to tell you about her dog, her kids, her fiction, and her blog, but not necessarily in that order.

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