For many years, I was a ghost teacher for several university professors, teaching art history on-line, fulfilling all necessary course requirements through arrangements which might be considered under the table – not from the perspective of the students, certainly, who were unaware, but from that of the professors. In university, the study of art history and philosophy were an integral part of my study of languages and cultures – Slavic and Eastern European, and East Asian. They remain a passionate interest of mine today.
I taught entire courses, from beginning to end, including all curriculum design, all individual class structuring, all evaluation and testing, and, most importantly, all daily correspondence with students. In freeing the professors to pursue other commitments – live classroom instruction, research, and/or writing projects – the students benefitted, too. Regular faculty requirements were not a distraction for me, nor was I in any way jaded from the tedium so many years of repeated activity.
At the end of each semester, the end of each course, the students were asked to submit professor evaluations. They often nearly brought me to tears. More than simply brilliantly, passionately conveying the material, I had changed lives, altered destinies, all in the name of someone else. All of that praise went to professors who never once gave a thought towards their on-line courses, except to secure their handling through me.
I greatly enjoyed the subject – art appreciation, as a foundation, followed by all periods, genres, and schools of art, and everything in-between and inter-related. I also enjoyed the teaching, the interacting with students.
Judge not a book its cover, however shiny, however battered. Interest, fascination, infatuation, obsession, love, all lie in mystery rather than identity. The proof is in the fragrance and the flavour, and in all that remains in sensation and in memory, the days, weeks, months, and years that follow.
The book of my life is resplendent in scope. Some people chose my path and changed their whole direction.