Pet peeves. It's an interesting thing, that we all have those things that make us mad, that annoy or irritate us.
And being mad. Mad is such a taboo, you know. You aren't allowed to get mad. People want to have sunny dispositions and never show frustration. But then we go to the other extreme and everyone has road rage. Or 'roid rage.
My student came in a half an hour ago (which does happen to be 2 hours after class started). She asked to talk to me in the hall. When she didn't come to class today, I knew something had happened, and simply assumed that her child was still sick. (He threw up at school on Wednesday). Instead, she started crying and told me that her husband had been in a car accident this morning and is currently at the hospital in a coma.
It was another of those situations where you just don't know what to say. And nothing you can say is going to make it better (I'm obviously too much in class mode here, because the English teacher part of my brain just took over and said, "Look at how much you used the word 'you' in that paragraph). So I said I was sorry, I said I would keep her in my thoughts, I told her to go do whatever she needed to do to for her husband, and not to worry about class, because it just doesn't matter.
She kept saying, "Please don't be mad at me. I wanted to turn in my paper, but please don't be mad at me."
How could anyone possibly think that I would be mad?
Ok, so this is an extreme situation, but I've had students say don't be mad, or I didn't want you to be mad in other instances as well. I'm not an angry person. I generally don't get mad ever. And frankly, for most of the things they do and worry about, it doesn't affect me, it only affects them and their grade.
Do people really think I'm mad?
4 years ago