To Cover or Not to Cover

The back of my head, as you can see here, says U.S. out of Iraq. Sometimes it is faint. Sometimes it looks like USOUT of IRAB but you get the message. Most people do when they look carefully, usually from above. My dentist noticed when it had faded completely, and thought I'd had a change of heart, and was reassured when I returned with the protest back in place. I would not wear a political button in class but by default, I cannot remove my scalp wherever I go. I can, though, cover it up. I wore a scarf during two official events where I represented WRU (Well-Regarded University) and I was going to wear one tonight at a student orientation. I didn't cover it last night at Intellectual University, because I was teaching students I'd taught before, and felt comfortable enough with them to be informal. I also felt that they were comfortable enough with me to voice any opposition. During class there's the illusion we're by ourselves, not being watched by anyone, because it's evening and we're surrounded by business-school students who don't pay attention to us. We're in our own Literary universe.

I used to wear a Code Pink button on my winter hat and was stopped in an elevator at WRU by a woman who said she liked Code Pink very much. I gave her the button. She said she couldn't wear it at work but took it to wear away from work. She did something in catering, I think, at WRU. I wonder, What if I had a permanent tattoo that said PEACE? Or PAX PACIS, as would be more appropriate at IU, where Latin adorns the walls and my boss used Latin twice in a meeting? It's that kind of place, even though the ivy covers buildings on its main campus, miles away from my modern classroom. But that's a different issue: Peace in itself is non-controversial. Everyone wants peace. Some believe that invasion is a necessary prerequisite.

I think I will be uncovered next week when I start teaching again at WRU. But I truly don't want students who disagree with me to feel uncomfortable. I will talk to them about my scalp. It is a class on how to teach, and we will talk about personal politics in the classroom.

I just found out that I won't be needed, after all, tonight at the official WRU event. So I will go to yoga and afterwards may ask my friend G to touch up my head, front and back.