Can I Say That?

Can I ask for my room to be changed because the one we were moved to smells like white male privilege? It’s the second day meeting in that room and the colleague whose class is in that room before and after my class has left late and arrived early and today, to add icing on top, began erasing my white board without so much as a by your leave at 22 minutes past the hour. My class ends at 12:20 and the professional courtesy, in most cases, is to split the 10 minutes between classes when set up or break down time is needed.

As I slowly packed my things with this professor behind me, I considered saying something but couldn’t trust myself to remain professional or civil. Twenty years of the S.O.S has left me raw around the edges. So instead of saying something to my colleague, I told the three students with questions that I would meet them for further discussion outside. After two were satisfied with clarification offered about the homework, I led the third to the computer lab where we tried unsuccessfully to get him access to the network. A HELP Desk ticket was submitted and access is expected within the next two days.

As I walked across campus back to my office, I considered putting in a request to change rooms and thought the better of it. Occupy till I come is the Lord’s command. Occupy, I will. And, if my colleague persists in his privileged ways and disrespects me again, I will be sure to return the favor. Sometimes, experience is the best teacher.