Thursday, February 16, 2017

My Horrendous Morning

Just the other day, I had a truly horrendous morning. On a personal scale, this actually nearly reached epic level, because it was just the perfect storm of numerous things seemingly going wrong all at once.

I was off from my main job (I work overnights), and so felt well-rested, when I had to get ready for my substitute assignment for the day. The call had come the night before, and apparently, I was half asleep and not fully focused when that call came in, as will become obvious later in this post.

In any case, I like to write a little bit before going to work in the morning on my nights off, but the writing was very lethargic on that day. I prepared lunch, showered and finished getting ready, then turned around and saw that my early start had somehow shifted to a slightly late start instead.

Not to panic, because I had left this late before. In fact, it was relatively normal. But when I stepped outside and went down the stairs, it felt like I pulled a muscle in my calf. Out of nowhere, suddenly, there was pain, and it felt like I might have an injury, and nothing makes you feel old quite like being in pain like that, right?

After testing out some steps and seeing that I could still walk - slowly and carefully, admittedly - I began to walk towards the car once again, then got in the car, and finally headed off.

Two minutes later, things went still further south. Once I reached the intersection between the local road I live off of and the main artery, it was clear something was different. I do not remember ever seeing that much traffic at that time of the morning. It made the going slow, and it continued like that all the way to work - and I have a long commute.

It seemed that I got stopped at each light, and the lights in this town, Rahway, NJ, are really, really bad. So, the waiting grew.

Eventually, I got to the school, and with five minutes to spare! Not exactly comfortable, but not all that bad, given all of the delays and such, right?

Well, as it turns out, this was the wrong elementary school. Apparently when called the previous night, I was either half asleep or something, because the message was not clear.

That meant getting back into the car and going to the other side of town to get to the right school, which obviously now meant outright being late.

What was worse was that when I finally arrived, the secretary was not there, which is a problem, since substitutes need to pick up the folders and schedules there. After waiting around, going across the hallway once to ask the other secretary, who apparently was too busy to help, someone finally came in and questioned why the classroom I was assigned to was still locked and dark.

At least I knew which classroom to go to now, but then, the doors were locked, and no one had the key. They called the custodian, but it was taking an extraordinarily long time for him to arrive, and by then, the entire class had gathered. Worse still, the principal and other apparently high ranking members of the school picked that day, and that time, to walk these particular halls, which cast me in what was probably a bad light.

Just a nightmare! And it took some time for things to finally smooth over. By the time they finally did, it was well into the day.

It was just one of those mornings, like the perfect storm, where everything has to be just so for so many things to go wrong all at once. It did, and that made it perhaps the most memorable morning in recent memory going back many years, although maybe the silver lining was that since that, I have seemed determined to not repeat the mistakes made then that at least contributed to the morning being a disaster on quite that scale!


  1. Sorry to hear about your day from hell. Here's hoping the pain has completely subsided, and that the next time one of their messages isn't clear, you'll remember what you just endured and do yourself the favor of replaying it when you're more awake and alert. Which I definitely don't say condescendingly, believe me. I once missed the first two weeks of a summer course at Bergen (and I don't need to tell you that summer sessions are far shorter and more condensed than, say, spring or fall semester courses) because when I finally showed up I was under the impression – erroneous impression, as it turns out – that it was the first day. Luckily for me the professor advised me that the situation was still salvageable, and I wound up acing the class. But yeah, it was definitely one of those "Leave it to me to find myself in a situation as idiotic and patently absurd as this one" moments...

  2. Yeah, it was a miserable morning, or at least turned into one. I tried not to let it bother me too much, and was actually able to refocus, so that the rest of the day went off a lot better, for the most part. Also, it was not a message that I got. had it been, I would have been able to replay it. But I picked up the phone and talked when I was half asleep. Part of the problem is that one elementary school in Rahway is called Franklin, and the other is called Roosevelt, and I keep confusing the two. It probably requires little explanation as to why, right?

  3. I have mentioned how it seems illogical to me that they should have two schools that could so easily be mistaken for one another. I can understand if it was known as the Benjamin Franklin Elementary School and either Theodore Roosevelt or Franklin D. Roosevelt School. But the way they have it is just confusing. I am trying to think of them as numbers, so that maybe that will be less confusing. But I could have sworn she said the Roosevelt School.

  4. That's ridiculous – why don't they open a third school called "Delano" while they're at it...