Saturday, August 16, 2008

All Dressed Up with No One to Watch You

Thursday afternoon I got all gussied up for my fancy-schmancy math teacher's conference. I was presenting my thesis research on the Geometer's Sketchpad software, and I was particularly nervous and excited about it because I knew that the makers of the Sketchpad were sending a company representative to check out what I had to say.

I presented at this conference last year, and one of the things I was especially looking forward to was the gift bag that all presenters received, which contained everything from mints to peanut butter crackers, a bottle of water, LifeSavers, and other such niceties to make one feel welcome.

My wonderful mother joined me on the adventure again this year, and as we were unloading my materials and setting up, the man who had showed me to the computer lab warned me that I would probably have a full house this year. Yikes! Was I really to expect 30 teachers to attend this workshop?

As the lump welled up in my throat and the company rep arrived, I just tried to find peace in prayer and reminded myself that I had good friends who were praying for my success and calmness.

But one of you must have a direct line to Jesus, because your prayers were most certainly heard. God had gone and literally removed 96.7% of the sources that could have caused me stress that day. He went above and beyond!!

Yes, that's right, dear reader: 29 of the 30 people (that's 96.7%) that I anticipated to show up failed to. It was just me and a middle school teacher named Heather. Yep, I had only ONE attendee and therefore virtually NO stress.

Was I bummed? Of course. I felt like a professional LOSER. Obviously everyone had read my course description in the catalog and was NOT AT ALL INTERESTED in what I had to say. Well, everyone except for Heather, of course. God bless her. I must have thanked her a dozen times for coming. And of course I apologized profusely to the company rep who had driven all the way here from Philly!

With sadness, I exited the building an hour later and wished I could reclaim some of the many hours I had spent physically and mentally preparing for this non-event in the days prior to it. But it wasn't all for naught; I was at least walking out with a $75 check.