It’s something I’ve done literally over a thousand times – open the door and walk into my classroom.
Well last week that simple action did not go as planned.
This time, as I went to step into my classroom, I forgot about the first part of that process, opening the door. And the result is what you would expect when your face meets an immovable object.
But even worse than the pain was having to face the 30 students that were sitting there and witnessed the entire event.
Since I have all of my classes videotaped, the episode was somewhat captured for everyone to enjoy. While you can’t actually see me walk into the door, that large sound at about seven seconds is yours truly walking full speed right into the glass door shown at the top of this post.
You can also hear one student say “He just walked into the door”, and another student ask me if I was OK. At the end of the video you can see me walk into the classroom trying to act as if nothing happened.
I’m sure that the students were trying hard to suppress their laughter, and I tried to make light of it the rest of class. As the day went on, a lump started to form on my forehead, and after a couple of days, this is what I looked like.
So I think I’ve officially bottomed out with this class in terms of humiliating myself, so it can only get better from here. Perhaps the only thing that could be more embarrassing is if I mistakenly said that I was supporting Donald Trump for President.
I’ve had other embarrassing moments as a teacher, such as the time I was chatting with a student in my office, and in the middle of my pontificating I leaned back too far in my chair and it tipped over, and I somehow ended up partially inside my trash can. Another memorable moment was early in my career and I was teaching students about debits and credits, and I realized near the end of the lecture that I had completely reversed which was which.
I’m sure there will be many more such moments (and who knows, they may begin increasing in frequency), but somehow I’ve survived all the others, and I’m sure that just like the glass door to my classroom, I’ll survive this latest episode of life’s embarrassing moments.
By the way, I found this stand up routine from Ellen Degenres where she talks about the pain and humiliation of walking into glass doors. The clip is interspersed with real examples of such events. After watching the clip, I felt like I was now part of an exclusive club. If you’d like to join, it’s a pretty simple initiation…