Expanding Networks

For more than a year I’ve had a Facebook page for The Writingwolf. There I’ve shared interesting articles, links to both the fun and the profound, and helped publicize my blogging. For longer than a year I’ve resisted branching outward and expanding my social media network, but you may have recently noticed that’s changed: For the past few weeks, I’ve had links to both my Twitter and my Instagram profiles–where I’m Writingwolf2010 on both–but I’ve yet to make an announcement or explain why.

So a few words are in order–why have I branched out, and why should you follow?

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Building Utopias in Five Easy Steps

It’s curious. This morning I went to a B’not Mitzvah for two girls who I helped teach in the fourth grade when I was their madrich. When I got to the synagogue, I ran into our director of adult education. She asked me if I was finished for the summer yet, so I told her I had been since the middle of May and was now researching colleges. She asked what I was studying and I told her math. Then she asked if I knew someone, and I didn’t, but I recognized his name as someone my sister had confirmation with years ago. He went to U of M and has since gotten his doctorate in math.

Funny things, these connections we make.

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All for One

Thankful Thursday and I’m tired and exhausted and starting to feel the first week of school getting to me. Physics and Calculus every day overwhelming enough as it is, plus computer programming, a rush across campus for yoga (which is only relaxing after I get there), and tutoring in math. It’s busy. But I enjoy it (until I get home and feel it all get to me). All this running around and doing stuff, however, leaves me little time to think about being thankful.

But it somehow leaves me plenty of time to think about people. I mean, it’s people that I’m around all day.

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Things to Stand By

1.6          Joshua ben Perahya and Nittai, of Arbel, received the tradition from them.

Joshua ben Perahyah taught:

Select a master-teacher for yourself;
Acquire a colleague for study;
When you assess people, tip the balance in their favor.

A day late. I’ve been hours late before, and I’m sure I’ll be hours late again, but being a day late upsets me. What’s most upsetting specifically is that, although earlier in the day I had recalled it was a Saturday, by the time the end of the day had arrived, I had forgotten, and only remembered before I had gone to bed. It felt like I had failed myself in some way, but I knew I only had two choices at that point: I could give up entirely, or I could accept that I make mistakes and just try to fix that. So that’s what I did. I gave myself time to sleep and now I’m making up for it.

I think my post on Thursday, about being thankful for my teachers, serves as good a segue into this week’s teaching as any. But then, what defines a master-teacher? And in the realm of colleges where you get what teacher you get and can hardly select them at all, how are you supposed to choose a master-teacher then?

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