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What We Signed Up For

Teaching a remote lesson in the "Music Den."
"...[T]he tough thing about this is we all signed up for this, you know? In a pandemic, that is EMS' time to shine, right? Treating viruses is what we do all day long." The voice is weary, frightened, confused. His name is Anthony Almojer, and he's an Emergency Medical Technician in New York City. He was being interviewed for the March 27 episode of This American Life, entitled "The Test." It's well worth a listen, but be prepared to be moved. I listened to it while putting away dishes and preparing my breakfast, and I had to take three weeping breaks before it was over.

"I didn't sign up for this" was a tired old cliche long before we heard the terms "coronavirus" and "COVID-19." In this time of quiet, isolated upheaval, it's really wearing out its welcome. I hear it a lot from my colleagues as we hold online staff meetings to brainstorm how to teach children ove…

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