Saturday, February 13, 2016

Not Being My Best Me

Yesterday was a faculty and staff development day at work. We had no students and most departments were deep in meetings all day. I went to a course focused on workplace diversity called "Is it OK to Ask?" We considered different workplace scenarios that might give rise to employment complaints or legal action -- like telling off-color jokes in the office, that kind of thing.

I was going to attend a second workshop in the afternoon, called "Being the Best You," which somehow involved Method acting. A coworker of mine took it in the fall and said it was worthwhile, but unfortunately only two people signed up, so it was cancelled. I guess we'll never be the best us.

(In the end, the cancellation was a good thing, because learning whether or not it was OK to ask took 3 1/2 hours. By the time that was over, my best me was done for the day.)

I spent the afternoon catching up on some odds and ends in the library. And now, we're off work for the next week! This is what's known as February Break, or Half-Term Break in English schools. Dave and I aren't traveling anywhere, and I'm looking forward to getting stuff done around the house and having a few days out and about in London.

On a completely different subject: Want to see something really annoying? Have you heard that banks are exploring charging negative interest rates to depositors -- in other words, charging you to store your money?

(Photo: Brixton, South London. Information about the campaign to save the small shops in the Brixton Arches can be found here.)


  1. It is funny how the word "workshop" gets misused in the world of education. A 'workshop" is a place where things are made - like a small cupboard or a garden ornament. Such outcomes would have given you a much more tangible sense of achievement than remembering all the in-service bullshit.

  2. Ah, in-service workshops! I remember one in which we were instructed to walk around for the rest of the day with a penny in our shoe - I have no idea why.
    I think I'll go savor the glories of retirement.

  3. Sometimes professional development is awesome and sometimes it really stinks. However I participated in all the PD sessions I could get into and attended many conferences and one o those was in Washington DC

  4. Many years ago, I attended a "diversity training" class where someone in the class asked if it was okay to say something I can't even remember now. The instructor responded with "No, I wouldn't. Those people don't like that". I couldn't help thinking that the instructor could have used a little diversity training himself.

  5. Good article. I'd heard of negative interest rates but had not read up on them yet.

    The only workshops I ever took were with a parent group for French immersion. We didn't study French, we learned how to advocate for immersion for our kids (school boards in some areas are notoriously unwilling to provide it). I learned mostly that the appeal of the workshop was directly related to the ability of the speaker!

  6. negative interest rate? didn't they use to call that 'service fees'? we have to keep x amount in our accounts to avoid service fees.

  7. Ah, now I know why we are exhorted to save our money - and lots of it... so the banks will be able to scoop the pool with their negative interest payments/deductions.

    Aren't they a cunning lot!

    Ms Soup

  8. It's ok to ask!
    By my lights anyway.

  9. I guess we'll never be the best of us - nearly scalded myself on my hot tea. Too funny!
    My bank is already charging me more than my interest to bank with them. I've been considering switching to an online only account but been too lazy.