Copyright © Louis Schmier and Atwood Publishing.

Date: Wed, 26 Jan 2000 06:37:47 -0500 (EST)
Random Thought: Unnoticed

Brrrrrrrrr. G-g-g-g-g-ood M-m-m-m-m-orning. Haven't thawed out yet. I'm afriad to hit the keyboard for fear that my fingers will break off.

Icy chill. Sting of the wind. Study in browns. Bundled grubbies. Drifting silence. Soft crunch of pine needles, spanish moss, twigs, pine cones, oak nuts underfoot.

Monday's storm had dumped an accumulation of 12 inches on Valdosta. No, not snow, not rain. Pine needles! Down here after Nature's squally rebuke for taking her winter for granted, we have to trudge around in pine shoes instead of snow shoes. The streets are in disarry, still shrewn with the remnants of an inundating pine cone and spanish moss slide. I plodded through the deep matting, head bowed tilted slightly off-center like a cutting plow, eye brows frosty, watery eyes squinting, reddened nose leaking, paying special attention to make sure the next step doesn't land on a hidden ankle spraining pine cone or a tripping branch,

As I gingerly stepped along my new route, questioning my intelligence and education, I took the risk of looking up through the opaque, slushy tears in my eyes. In this frozen moment, Valdosta seemed depopulated, abandoned. The tan monochrome blur dulled everything's distinctive lines. Nothing seems noticeable. Everything consequently seemed to withdraw, droop, shrivel, and slink away with a quilty sense of unworthiness.

That sight and a consoling conversation I had had with a disraught student yesterday threw a thought, a very personal thought, across my shivering mind. If you really want to hurt a student--or anybody for that matter--don't get in his or her face and threaten. Don't loudly berate. Just ignore that student, let him or her go unnoticed. See through him or her as if he or she doesn't exist.

Make it a good day. 


Louis Schmier           
Department of History    
Valdosta State University
Valdosta, GA  31698                        /~\    /\ /\
912-333-5947                       /^\    /   \  /  /~ \     /~\__/\
                                  /   \__/     \/  /     /\ /~      \
                            /\/\-/ /^\___\______\_______/__/_______/^\
                          -_~     /  "If you want to climb mountains, \ /^\
                             _ _ /      don't practice on mole hills" -\____

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