Monday, December 15, 2008

No Heat Today

I'm not sure what annoys me more: that students assume I'm an idiot because I'm a sub, or that I'm bothered by this. I mean, it can be a good thing when students underestimate you. But sometimes the annoyances are more trouble than the benefits are useful.

It was rainy today. And cold. (Cold by Southern California standards, which, I admit, may not seem very cold to the rest of the country. I'd be surprised if we got out of the fifties today.) This, of course, created havoc at school.

It was a day for the heater.

I know how to work the thermostat controls. It's pretty simple. There are two switches on the bottom of the unit. Switch one to "heat". Switch the other to "auto" (if I just turned it "on", the unit would switch to vent--very cold--air when it wasn't blowing heat, and that would be counterproductive). There are two controls at the top of the unit. Switch the "cool" one to something over eighty degrees (so it doesn't accidentally cycle on). Switch the "heat" one to a reasonable temperature--something around seventy degrees. And then turn the timer dial (the unit automatically turns off after six hours).

So, I did all this, and I got nothing. Everyone assumed that I had no idea what I was doing. They all whined: "Turn on the heat. We're cold." When I explained that the thing wasn't working, everyone then attempted to "fix" it.

They spent time playing with the thing. Only then did they realize that I was right--it was broken.

It would be so much easier if they would just believe that I do, in fact, know what I'm doing. But I guess they have to prove it to themselves before they're satisfied that I was right in the first place.

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