My name is Derrick and I am twenty-three years old. It has been an oddly disappointing little life I’ve led. Let me be honest. I was expecting better. I was promised jet packs, magical swords, lasers, cackling super villains and girls with impossible proportions wearing improbable and improper clothing. These things have not come to pass. In these twenty three years I have been faced with only the soul crushing banality of reality. I try to make the best of it. I read mostly, I try to write a thousand words a day, most of them, poorly. And so it goes. I trudge, lollygag, and dilly dally through this underwhelming existence. Nowhere do I see Excalibur waiting for me. Nowhere do I see anything but concrete and frail human beings tittering and tottering. So I make the best of it.
In short, I have been irrevocably tainted by fiction. I’m trying to become a real boy and failing, horribly. I enjoy the following: foods of all sorts/lamenting and celebrating my Asian-ness/ Reading/ Writing/ Videogames, where in I curse creatively/ Girls who dress like they’ve taken some color theory courses/ Comics/ Making mixes for women who will never love me/ Learning to draw and sculpt better.
I hope to teach college level creative writing. I picked up education as a minor because my mother insisted I be somewhat practical, and she pays the bills and happens to be a 5’2 ball of flip fury. (Flip is a derogatory term for Filipino. I’m brown; it’s alright if I say it.) Originally, I wanted to be a doctor in the great tradition of giving in to filial pressure. But I cut open some corpses and thought better of it. Eventually, I took some creative writing courses and got enough good feedback I thought, what the hell, I’ll ruin my life. I do not inherently want to teach all that badly, but I don’t think it would suck all that much, either. I’ve been told it’s a fantastic gig if you can land it and tolerate the typical slop that is slapped upon your desk as if it were manna from heaven. In short teaching is my safety net. I will either be a somewhat snarky but endearing college professor or an embittered, spiteful high school teacher, who uses his course as a means to punish the world that has failed to recognize his genius. My favorite authors include: Alan Moore, Brian K. Vaughan, Kurt Vonnegut, John Gardner, Neil Gaiman, Charles Bukowski, Allen Ginsburg, and Junot Diaz.
Alright, so onwards to the teaching philosophy: mostly, I just hope to not be a jerk-off. Can I type jerk-off on here? I want to be an actual human being, and as an English teacher I’d love to shake up the traditional canon a bit. Let’s face it; reading is dying a slow and terrible death. And what’s killing it is not the so called low-brow, fluff like Twilight. What’s killing our beloved lady of the letter, is the holier than thou pretentious way the material is approached. Students might actually enjoy English if say, they weren’t reading Beowulf for the fifteenth time, or getting vague justifications for every text they read. “It’s a friggin great book, it’s right there in the name, kid “, is the average response a student can expect from a teacher.
It’s insanely hard to not find something enjoyable in the world of literature, yet most curriculums are dedicated to this masochistic goal. I can see the root of the problem now, a large angry Anglo-Saxon, like some final boss in an NES game, his jowls quivering as he pounds one ham like fist against a table of dark, expensive wood shouting, “Those little snots think they can get into my world? Think reading is enjoyable do they? By God I’ll show them. Quick, put the Yellow Wallpaper on every damn syllabus you can find.” (Presumably this man is the president of Education, possibly the king.)
I would like to have my students read comic books with me. I would like them to read something from the last forty or so years, that may, possibly, be enjoyable. I don’t ever want to hear someone say reading is boring again. Because it’s not, it’s the best. If you don’t agree with me, we’re going to have to arm wrestle. We’re going to have words. I have some books to lend you. I would like to be progressive and hip, and get a high rating for hotness on ratemyprofessor. Hopefully, I can nerd up whoever enters my class room and have them flipping through the remnants of a mutilated tree corpse in no time. I want my students to appreciate the classics because they understand and love them, not because they are told to. I would have them be creative and funny, rather than automatons who bark the collective agreement of the literati about what constitutes fine art. I hope to foster a small army of idealistic, brilliant, tragically doomed students.