As a college advisor I consult with students about their course requirements and their schedules. Perhaps you will find the following exchange refreshing. I know I did.
Advisor: Hello, how are you? I see you have your baby with you.
Advisee: Yes. Ester came with me today.
Advisor: She was the size of a teacup when I last saw her. How old is she now?
Advisee: She is five months. She was five weeks old when you saw her in January.
Advisor: Let’s get started. We want to review your transfer credits, your current classes, and look for classes for Fall. I will clear you.
Advisor: How did the semester go?
Advisee: Good. I finished your course, and I am done with the rest of the courses. Are you teaching anything for Fall? I didn’t bring my glasses today to look at the print out you are showing me.
Advisor: Let’s look at the Fall listing.
(The Advisor goes over the courses that are available and the instructors.)
Advisee: I cannot take Dr. Somewhere, I was told he is hard. What about Dr. Whodunit?
Advisor: He is good. He has one class you can take.
Advisee: No, you will put me in a hard class. I guess I will take Dr. Somewhere.
Advisee; Oh, look at that picture of your father.
(The advisee spots a plaque given to me by my former students. It features a grainy picture of me with the signatures of several students. The plaque reads “We love you.”)
Advisor: My father?
Advisee: Oh, wait. I’m sorry. He is deceased.
Advisor: Father? Deceased? (I begin to laugh.)
Advisee: I’m so sorry. Why are you laughing. Ester, he’s laughing at us.
Advisor: You misunderstand. That picture. It’s me.
Advisee: You? I thought it was your father.
Advisor: That’s rich. I am my father, and he is late.
Advisee: That’s not funny. Ester, we have got to leave. I’m so embarrassed.
Advisor: Don’t be. You just have to understand. Today I have become my own father, and I have become late. Wait until I tell that story.
Advisee: Oh, really I must leave. Can I just come back.
Advisor: You’ve had my class. you know how I like to tell stories. Don’t worry about it. Let’s pick out your classes while you are here. Everything will be just fine.
Advisee: Okay. Ester you okay? Are you hiding my keys? I want to take four classes.