The Unpreparedness Dream


Most people I know have had the "unprepared student dream."  It comes in many versions: you arrive at an exam only to realize you have forgotten to prepare, you blank out before a phone-book-sized final, or--my personal favorite--you realize three-quarters of the way through a semester that you registered for a class but have forgotten ever to attend it. Along with flying, falling and appearing naked in public, the unprepared student dream is apparently one of the most common.

It's not surprising, I suppose.  In many ways the given circumstances of schooling (testing, performance, being evaluated) apply universally to life.  I'm told that actors have their own version in which they find themselves on stage without having memorized their lines or even being quite sure what play they are to perform.

It's curious, then, that I've never heard of anyone having an "unprepared professor dream."  You know, a dream in which you walk into the class without a fully-formed plan or even much in the way of expertise on the subject.   That's not really a dream.  More often than not, it's a job description.

Here it is the end of June and all of the plans I had to revise, amend and improve my courses over this summer have gone unrealized.  Time to wake up, I guess.


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