Wednesday, May 8, 2013


So in my last post, I lamented about how tired I am and how during hard times, we can truly see through certain people that we thought were really ‘nice’ to us. Also, during these times, we can really ascertain for what reason each and every one of us wake up and go to work every morning. Is it because the work entrusted to us is deemed as our responsibility so we must carry it out selflessly or is it to gain fame and announce to the whole world that we are the model employee and should be given award for our perfect performance.

Now, if you’re in the teaching business like I am, you know that the work of the teacher drains the life out of you. Whether you like or not, if you want to live off guilt-free out of the monthly salary, you’ll do tonnes of tasks that are above and beyond your original work description. You work 24/7 including on the weekends too. There are bound to be all sorts of whatchamacallit activities that the school wants you to be in charge of. So, your brain will be processing all of these activities right from the moment you wake up until the very last moment before you’re sleeping.

If you think you’re in the wrong profession, because you can’t take all these bureaucratic bullshits, then you better change profession before you turn 40 and wake up with sudden realization that your life (if you have any at that point) sucks. You have no time for social gatherings or personal holidays because for every goddamn holiday, there is bound to be extra classes or exam-answering technique that you have to be in charge of. And for the year-end holiday, if you want to make more out of your miserable monthly salary, you’ll bound to be selected (voluntarily or through coercion or other people dumping that responsibility to you) to invigilate exams. If you’re a PMR or SPM exam marker, the moolah is quite lucrative albeit your eyeballs and souls being tortured by some ridiculous essays written by form 3 and 5 students who supposedly spend 15 and 17 years respectively in school learning English for 90 minutes, 5 times a week. So basically as you can see, teachers don’t have a lot of holiday like some of you imagine. I really hate it when people ask me, “What is your profession?” and I answered “A teacher”, then they will retort with “Well, easy for you since you have so many holiday”, and I immediately ran through countless scenarios in my head where I could kill the person mercilessly.

I’d never imagine that being a teacher could be this hard. I mean, I love the teaching and the bond between teacher and students (selected ones who do not get on your nerves) but all those other works that are definitely NOT within your professional capacity just suck the life out of me. And the way society looks at teacher and the misconception that they have, i.e the long holiday, the short working hours, the increase in salary, these are the things that make teachers lose their spirit in working and stay working as teachers. No wonder there are many teaching professionals who switch ship and prefer to be a lecturer instead. And the way society segregates teachers and lecturers and give a high respect towards lecturers but not so much on teachers because they think the former is better and of more prominence than the latter. The truth is, dealing with these kids, from my personal experience, those hours of googling to look for interesting shit to be presented to students and sacrificing your beat-up printer to print out coloured hand outs so that the students would be interested to learn, and when I took those handouts to class, the kids just disregarded my effort and didn’t even bother to attempt the exercises in the handout and throw it away or rip it to their hearts’ content, I just got this feeling of futility and shit wouldn’t work out for the better no matter how hard you try. Or what about the time when you called the parents of this particular student who was absent to school for such a long time and when the parents came to school to meet the principal, they could blame you for their son’s or daughter’s half-assed attitude towards academic matters? What is the teacher suppose to do? Drag their son or daughter from their own home to come to school? Seriously, sometimes I don’t get this ultra-protective attitude of parents that would eventually spoils and ruin their children’s lives.

Not to mention all the split personalities of your colleagues that could baffles the director of an asylum. Some people only work when the administrator told them to. Some people only work when there are people watching. Some people only work when there are benefits for them. Some people only talk about the ‘work’ that they do. Really, no wonder teachers are one of the most occupants of mental facilities and I’m shitting you not.

So do I regret this choice of career? Do I wish that I took that offer to study medicine at Universitas Gajah Mada or became a software engineer instead? Sometimes, when I am swamped with work or I felt like I’ve been treated rather unfairly, yes, I do think of quitting but then I am reminded of my 180k worth of government scholarship that I have to pay if I didn’t give my service for at least 5 years and this girl on fire just melted away to nothing. The truth is, all those wisdom words about loving your job or doing whatever you dream of are called wisdom words because it is easy to say but not an equally easy feat to do. Sometimes, you’re stuck in the job you don’t like and although it is easy to say “Fuck this shit, I’m quitting!” but when you think of what could’ve happen if you don’t have a job, you just swallow the bile in your mouth and grit your teeth and breathe slowly through it all. Because not all of us have the luxury of being in the job that we truly love and for those few who honestly love their job, can I just say I hate you?

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