Tuesday, March 18, 2008
Sunday, March 16, 2008
Thursday, March 6, 2008
I saw the movie Juno last weekend. I really really liked it. Like Bella, which I also enjoyed, it seems more than most movies to talk about real life. In Bella, the city is not a glitzy place full of high-powered professionals, but a place full of dirt and graffiti and noisy kitchens. That way, when there's beauty found there, it doesn't seem fake--it's real beauty, in a place that looks like our own places.
Juno has that same feel to it. Juno's house isn't a suburban paradise with white carpets. It's an older house full of clutter, with overflowing window boxes and roughly cut grass. Juno doesn't dress in perfect trendy style; she's kind of off-beat and wears her own thing. She isn't popular. Her parents are divorced and don't understand her. She's more like you and me.
Some people I know will probably criticize this movie because of the language and crass humor. Personally, I thought that was part of the whole "reality" thing--that the movie wouldn't have been as real if Juno had said "fudge" when she was in labor instead of what she did say. It's part of the point of the movie that it covers nothing over. No one ever pretends it is easy to carry a baby to term in high school. Instead they go into gruesome detail about the physical suffering Juno goes through and the teasing she endures from people at school.
Another important thing about the movie is that it doesn't preach. The parts where the biggest moral issues are decided are a little ambiguous, so it takes a little thinking to see what the real tipping points for the characters are, why they made their decisions. But you see how they feel when they're making these decisions, and you find yourself rooting for them.
Most people I know agree that it's a good movie for the world today. The everyday teenager out there who's a lot like Juno needs to see her making a good choice. But I also think it's a good movie for people like me, people who aren't exactly mainstream. I don't cuss; my parents aren't divorced; I have the faith. But this movie helps me realize that virtue isn't the monopoly of conservative, religious types. It helps me open up to the people who aren't at all like me, but sometimes are doing heroic things I'd be afraid of doing.
I'm afraid it's too easy for me here, in a Catholic college surrounded by people like myself, to get in an ivory tower and dictate to everyone else what they should do. I imagine that no one could ever be virtuous without the perfect (more or less) environment I'm used to. We get scared of the world outside. But out there in the Real World, wonderful and beautiful things are going on. It's time for me to get humble and appreicate that.
Wednesday, March 5, 2008
My teaching itself will probably be the main point for winning (or losing) me this job. I am always being observed as I teach, and this will show them whether they want to hire me. Though I think I'm doing well so far! I had a great class on Monday where I really felt I was connecting with the students. That's a beautiful feeling.
I'm teaching very often now, and getting more and more comfortable with it. The more I teach, the more I feel like it's something I've been called to do.
Tuesday, March 4, 2008
I have this theory about holiness. I just don't have the willpower to keep myself always doing things that will make me holier. Instead, I put myself in situations where I'm going to have to come out of myself. Many of the summer jobs I chose for that very reason. One would try my patience; another would make me more open-minded. This high school job promises to try me in a number of ways, from making me work hard to teaching me to care more about others. The work environment is wonderful; all the teachers are so kind, and they genuinely care about their students. That's what I want to be and do.
So, pray for me! If I get this job, I'll be a real teacher at last.