What a pain in the neck day today! I am so frustrated.

I arrived in time for the meeting with my thesis advisor. It was her first day in the office after her vacation and the phone rang constantly and various people stopped by for a quick, very important chat since she is the chair of the department. As soon as we had settled down again we were interrupted over and over again. Then suddenly students showed up to ask me for advice and by the time my advisor was available again time was over and I had to leave for the presentation. We had talked three minutes about my thesis proposal – and she had asked one question which gave me the impression that she had not really understood my research aim. I am glad that over the last year I grew confident enough not to start thinking that my proposal is stupid because she asked that question. This confidence is something I accomplished during the last couple of months. It is still in its infancy, but is is definitely there.

So I headed to the presentation where I met a colleague. The presentation went alright and his as well – until one women of the audience attacked us in a really rude way. Just for the background: this was a continued education course for high school teachers. The two of us gave each a presentation about a special topic and then we handed out a lot of related material for them to use in classroom. One of the teachers showed up late and did not really follow the instructions. When we tried to tell her how to use the material she was Mrs. Know-It-All.
Our course included a short period in which they had a task to solve in groups; part of it was to sum up a chapter and judge the usability for their class room. She of course did not work with her group. When it was time for the feedback she dismissed all the material – which would have been her right if her critic has been justified. However, everything she said was wrong – which she had figured out if she had put any effort in taking a peek at the material. We – mostly my colleague because he had prepared that section – tried calmly to tell her that everything she was complaining about was wrong. She did not pay any attention to the content of what we said and started to ramble on again, just repeating her complaints as if she wanted to show those two young people from the university that they just have no clue at all what life is about – until one of the other teachers said:”Alright, we got your point. Can we PLEASE go one step beyond?”

After the course Mrs Know-it-All disappeared immediately, but everybody else thanked us for the great class. Still, it was not a pleasure to defend yourself like a high school kid.

And now again a night shifter for the presentation tomorrow. Oy!