Friday, December 7, 2012

Laser-Guided Ears and Conquering Copiers

When we think of talents, we often think of the obvious. Someone's good at drawing or writing or singing or playing an instrument. The arts come up a lot. Or they're an amazing runner, swimmer, or basketball player. Sports come up a lot, too.

I have some of those. I imagine many of you reading this post do as well. But I have other talents that are much more rarely acknowledged. My secret superpowers.

In my years of working in schools, I've yet to meet a copy-machine paper jam I couldn't unravel. And in a classroom with nearly forty teenagers, I can hear a student use an inappropriate word from twenty feet.

I know, I should get Lynn Phillips to draw me as a superhero, right?

Okay, maybe not so much.

My paper-jam and other tech-related powers mostly come down to an ability to read directions. Or in the case of copy machines, the ability to decipher cryptic diagrams that think they're showing you what to do under the ridiculous assumption you can tell which portion of the machine is represented in the drawing.

I really doubt my hearing is all that good. In fact, given the volume I've been known to set the music in my car to, I'm pretty sure there's at least a little damage in my cochlea. It's just often the kids whose voices carry best (and who have a natural tendency to loudness) who go blurting things they shouldn't.

But the kids sure seem to think it's amazing that I can hear them. And the other teachers definitely don't mind when some of us know what to do with the new machine. So I'll bask in it a little longer.

Do you have any uncelebrated "superpowers"? Go on and brag and a little.

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