Due to several different situations that arose, I came to a very maddening realization this week ... my family apparently has very little idea of what I actually do for a living. When asked, "Why do you think I do with my time?" the response I got (with a "DUH" tome of voice) was, "Teach class?" I've been a full-time faculty member for over 10 years now and all they've gotten from it is that I teach class.


Great. And what do you people think I do after that six to nine hours per week are over? File my niles? Play solitaire on my computer? Curl up and sleep under my desk?

For crying out loud. I'd list my specific duties here, but I don't want to doxx myself. Generally: I'm the editor of a journal. I have a role in faculty governance on campus. I have an administrative role in my academic program. I'm the project director on a federal grant. Then there's the regular faculty roles, such as the advising of my masters' and doctoral students and doing my research and publishing. I have a hard time sleeping because I can't shut my brain off most evenings.

But by all means, I can drop everything and run your errands or be at everyone else's beck and call to be a personal taxi service. Class times mean nothing; I'm sure students don't actually expect me to be there during scheduled course hours for realsies. It doesn't matter if I'm advising a student or in a meeting with administration; I can stop in mid-conversation to answer my cell phone at any time. Sorry for acting like this was a "real" job or something.