Golf Therapy

Golf Therapy

I spent my work day today taking ALICE training to prepare for the possibility of an “active shooter” loose in the school.

ALICE stands for Alert, Lockdown, Information, Counter and Escape. It’s the current training standard for things I never imagined could happen when I started teaching thirty years ago.

The day-long training involved progressing through various scenarios in which we try to slow, distract or escape a gunman intent on killing students and teachers. Parts of it involved the local constabulary shooting at us with fully automatic nerf guns and then recording how many of us were dead.

Not fun.

To its credit, the district had mental health professionals on hand to help people for whom the training became too intense.

Thirty years ago, during my first week of teaching, I took a gun away from a junior high kid. He wasn’t pointing it at anyone; just showing it to his friends. He was suspended for a couple of days and life went on. I definitely didn’t think that much of it at the time.

These days it would be a much bigger deal, because a kid with a gun probably just isn’t showing it off to his friends.

Thus, the intense and high stakes training.

I had plans to accomplish several things after work but instead just decided to blow them all off for a round of therapy at Washtenaw. It is after days like today that I really appreciate having a quiet refuge from the rest of the world.

The air was crisp and the wind was up. Clouds came and went. There was some rain in the air at times.

It was perfect.

I am ready to go back to the classroom tomorrow, even while thinking about all the ways it could all go south.

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