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wwiii and education

updated mon 13 jul 09


Deborah Thuman on sun 12 jul 09

Yep, I've had the same students take classes with me. One decided she
wanted to be a CSI, but didn't need biology. Okay......

I'm a criminal defense attorney. I use both my biology and my
journalism degrees in my work (I was 25 when I started college and
wanted to get my money's worth). I wish I also had degrees in
psychology and pharmacy. Once, when Jim had some surgery done, I was
looking at the monitor, wondering what it all meant, and thinking
perhaps I should go to medical school so I could understand more. (I
did come to my senses before I racked up $150,000 in debt - but I
still think a medical degree would be handy).

I learned German and French in college. From the German, I eventually
learned that my grandmother's cruddy German was really Yiddish and I'm
Jewish. When I moved to NM, I learned Spanish. I use Spanish nearly
every day at work. When we took the South American cruise, I learned
that Mexican Spanish is not the same as the Spanish spoken in South
America and each country in South America has a slightly different
Spanish. I did manage and I didn't start any wars. Everything on
the boat was in English, Spanish, French and German. By the end of the
first week, my brain was grabbing the first foreign word that went by.
It was an interesting education for me.

A couple weeks ago, a met a woman from Germany in Jo-Ann's. We got to
talking sewing and I suddenly switched to German. It's been a long
time since I had to think in German, but I didn't start any wars so I
must have done all right. It was fun if nothing else.

When I was in law school, I went to the dental school to have my teeth
overhauled. I saved a ton of money and learned an awful lot about
teeth. There's a surprising amount of engineering involved in dental

Now I learn about clay. I've ordered a glaze book that explains glaze
chemistry on a level I can understand. (Chemistry and I never got
along.) I'm learning about what happens in the kiln and why it's
necessary to fire slowly and even more necessary to cool down slowly.
I've learned that while mixing my own clay might be interesting (it's
rather like making sourdough bread), my body isn't 22 any more and I'm
better off buying my clay ready made. I find there's a surprising
amount of engineering involved in large sculpture pieces. I've found
that loading the kiln myself means that I have to consider not only
how to keep the sculpture upright, but how to build it so I can get it
into the kiln. It's not a good idea to put sticky outie things where
you have to grab the sculpture to get it into the kiln.

If I were to hit the jackpot in the Powerball Lottery, I'd spend the
rest of my life in school. I'd get that medical degree and that
pharmacy degree. I'd learn Hebrew. I'd spend lots of time in the art
department learning other media. Metal might be fun. Depressing is the
realization that even if I had all that money now, and even if I lived
to be mid-90's (something the women in my family do), I don't have
enough life left to learn all that I want to learn.

Deb Thuman