DUBAI, United Arab Emirates –
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The miseducation of me
I went to a high school where monitors would use a ruler to measure the length of our hems (no more than two inches above the knee). We wore black leather shoes and sneakers were only for “games’’ on Fridays. It was illegal to walk across the grassy areas of the compound and you had to get past the sixth-former posted outside the staff room to speak to a teacher during the lunch break. Sucking your teeth got you detention and bling was confiscated until the end of term.
I was a plodder and get-by-the-skin-of-my-teeth-er. My parents, bless them, never expected much from me, so I was allowed to muck around. I spent my days floating on magic peaches; flying on winged horses; and trying to find out if it were true that if I ate the cascadura I would always return to Trinidad. Daydreaming was my best subject.
Sorry, Miss, but my real education is happening today, on the maxi-taxis and the buses, from YouTube, chat shows, and the Game of Thrones series. The story of life is unfolding before my stained eyes, though I feel like a very old kindergartener—nervous, curious and can’t wait to discover what tomorrow will bring.
I am a better student today than I ever was. I learn fast. Here is the synopsis of my last thesis for which I will be awarded an honorary doctorate in playengdephul, an obscure but highly-regarded area of pedagogy, in which there are only eight known experts in the whole world. It is titled, Nine-and-a-half Things I Did Not Know Last Week.