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Something occurred to me today that, I think, finally explains why I've been in the dumps for so long, emotionally.

I miss being a Force.

In Fandom, I used to be a Force. I served two different fan groups at various times as their President, and if I didn't serve the latter time as well as I could have, I did try my best in the face of increasing Fan Apathy (which seems to have reversed itself in Sacramento, so I'm going to start going to clubs again at least semi-regularly). But for a time, I Got Things Done.

At EMH, I was more than an employee, I was a Force. When I began, we had three computers. When I left, we had over fifty, and they worked. I spearheaded the CATI system installation, I trained people, and I learned a HELL of a lot. I was NOT, of course, the best manager, as some on this list can attest to--in the early days, I made a crapload of mistakes, some of which destroyed friendships. But I did learn from them, and by the time I left, I had become a much better department head than I was in the beginning.

In school at Sac State, I was a Force--I belonged to a group of students who worked hard, who Made Things Happen. Not big things, necessarily, but we traded ideas, we worked together, and we grew as students and as humans together.

Now? Now I teach, and that's Good, and Fun (odd capitalization done on purpose, feel free to ask why if it's not obvious), but I don't honestly feel that I'm actually doing anything. I did last year, to an extent, but even then I often felt stopped cold by the administration's attitudes.

I'm currently serving as the contest coordinator for the California Association of Teachers of English Capitol Council, which is the division that includes English teachers from Placer, El Dorado, Yolo, Amador, Alpine, Sacramento, Nevada, Calaveras, Tuolomne, and Mono counties. This is NOT, let me stress, a super-important job. It's really kind of lame, because the Capitol Council is one of the quietest, least-active divisions of CATE.

And that means I have a job to do. See, I can be a Force. I may not succeed, but I've decided to try to make the Capitol Council active again. My favorite professor at Sac State is the Capitol Council president, so I'm working with him to try to energize the local council. CATE can be a useful and helpful force for English teachers, and I intend to spread the word in my area.

I intend to be a Force again.

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johnstonmr

August 2017

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