Friday, July 17, 2009

My Ad(hoc)ventures.....continued

2. It is common for college students to feel the cash crunch pretty much frequently…and I am no exception to this phenomenon. Some of my friends, who started giving out tuitions to kids in order to supplement their pocket money, inspired me to try out this means of earning some bucks for myself. Thus, I was able to add a second activity to my “have-to-do” list--- I had to get myself some kids to teach , and I would easily gain some bucks every month. I was not too much worried about the money I would be getting---after all, students from NIT, or R.E. College don’t come as cheap tutors, and the people know that…so, that was not the problem.

The real problem was scouting for guinea pigs who would willingly subject themselves to my attempts at teaching, or rather, campaigning for myself as a tuition teacher… I couldn’t find channels through which I could make it public, or atleast attract some attention. I am not the kind of guy who goes out and proclaims that he was ready to give tuitions—nah, that’s too cheap for my liking. So, I patiently waited, hoping earnestly that someone will have a brainwave like –“ Oh!! This boy’s from a good college, and he’s idle at the moment, so why not ask him to teach my daughter (ok, maybe son)....” and approach me with the request. But unfortunately no one noticed that, and I got no such requests… well, actually I got two, but accepting those would amount to travelling about thirty kilometers for three days every week throughout the three months of the vacation in the grueling summer heat; I do like a little bit of extra cash, but not so much that would make me accept such a daunting challenge…so I had to reject these offers for something more convenient (read: near home).

I did not have to wait for too long… the perfect opportunity was offered to me during a chance encounter with a former acquaintance… he literally cajoled me to teach him a few chapters of physics during the vacations as he was gearing up for some entrances at the end of the year… I was a little bit apprehensive—physics had always been my least favourite subject( I abhorred mechanics in all forms, and still do!), and I could never justify myself as an expert in teaching a subject which I myself was more than a bit uncomfortable with…nevertheless, I decided to give it a try… so I accepted the offer, without even mentioning any terms on my part…I mean, after all, he was my friend’s younger brother—obviously I couldn’t just go and ask him, “How much are you gonna pay me?”…it would have been really rude!! And then, surely he himself would broach on the topic when the time came… Thus I found myself trudging along to his place, twice every week, to explain to him the nuances of gravitation and waves and thermodynamics and all those stuff which I myself had not understood when I first studied them… I daresay I did quite a decent job, and we proceeded through waves and thermodynamics and calorimetry smoothly… at the end of one month of my first job, I was literally salivating to lay my hands on my first payment—the first time I would have earned anything by my own work!!! 
Unfortunately, pay day never came…I waited for a week, two weeks, three weeks, but there was not even a mention, even indirectly, that there should be a payment for all my exertions and toil…and by the time I had resigned myself to the fact that no one was paying me anything, not atleast now, two months had already passed, and I was getting more and more skeptical about how everything was going to turn out… for a brief period, I entertained the thought that maybe this stint as a teacher was meant to last only during the vacations, so perhaps I would be getting my payment at the end of the vacations, when I formally announce my resignation, and this thought was able to pacify me enough to continue my incentive-less job for a couple of weeks more, but after that, the sceptic in me won over, and I had to devise various excuses and yarns to avoid the classes…so one day I pretended to be out of station, another day I needed time for allotment issues, and on most other days, I had other important matters to take care of…and all the while, fervently wishing that this vacation ends so that I wash my hands off this “tuition”…..

But my student turned out to be a tough customer !!

He keeps on dutifully ringing me up every other day and asking me if I am free . No amount of veiled rebuff is enough to make him understand that I am no more interested in that job any more, not when it does not provide me with any incentive!!! But he persists, and so, on rare occasions, I still have to give in and carry myself to his house and explain all that stuff to him….. The last time I went there,I was determined to get the fact across that after college reopens, I would not be available.............                                                                                                                       But before I could say anything on the topic, he said, “You do come home for the weekend, don’t you?? We can continue the classes then…atleast one class? Please?

So much for “resigning”……………

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