Yes, it’s another post about American Idol.
I swore off American Idol as a huge Time Drain after last season (the first season we’d watched in years) and was brought back into it ONLY because one of my former students, Anoop Desai, (a UNC alum who did his graduate thesis on NC Barbecue!) was in the semi-finals.
For those of you who haven’t taught in an Elementary School, let me tell you about my experience there. I was given a teaching position in a North Carolina school based on a life-long history of experience in libraries and a Masters Degree that, tangentially, involved Children and Television. It was a position that, initially, absolutely panicked me in the way that only a classroom full of eager, awaiting, innocent young eyes waiting for you to, at best, Impart Knowledge or, at least, Do Something Vaguely Interesting can instill in a person.
In those initial, stark seconds of blind panic in front of my first class, I realized just how important my new job was and how much more than Just A Job I had taken on.
And as I settled into the the role of Teacher I got to know my students as individuals, — and not to be trite — every one of those students became “My Kids.”
Now, I’m not blinded by TV stardom. I know Anoop is up against some very tough competition. Still, he’s one of my kids, and I’ll be cheering for him every week.
(And, on top of that, he stole a few precious seconds from the end of tonight’s show to give a Shout Out to Chapel Hill and to the One Year Anniversary of Eve Carson’s death that he had to miss to be able to perform on tonight’s show. Personally, I think that’s class — and exactly in keeping with the short, somewhat overweight Anoop but full of personality and appreciation for the things and opportunities around him that I knew all those years ago.)
Rock on, Anoop!