Monday, May 25, 2009

Teach Your Children Well

On any given day, I hear some pretty interesting things as I roam the halls of the middle school where I teach. Some of the things I hear crack me up like one of my female students telling her friend that it’s hard work being “this” stupid.” Or another who shouted to the entire 8th grade wing that “everything’s good in my life now that I’m a lesbian” Alrighty then.

Mostly though, I hear a lot of disturbing stuff. Once as I was sitting at my desk during hall passing, I heard a girl scream, and I mean scream at the top of her lungs, to her friend in the hall, "I got LAID last night!" I felt like walking out there and offering her congratulations on her amazing accomplishment. God knows it is a challenge to find someone to sleep with you when you are a teenage girl with low self-esteem.

By far the most horrifying thing I have ever overheard was said by a girl that was no older than 13. I was running for my life out the door after the final bell…I mean leaving the building, and passed the mass of students waiting by the exit for their buses. This is a particularly perilous time to leave the building for various reasons, not the least of which is that you are likely to overhear students in their first moments of freedom after being held captive in school all day. They are loud. They are rude. And they are crude. Apparently, they are also whores.

So here’s what I heard on Wednesday when I left work: A few boys and one girl were standing together waiting for the bus. One of the boys was carrying a platter of cookies, which he probably made in his "Foods" class. The girl said "I'll give you a blow job for one of those cookies."

Now, you have to understand I have 900 plus kids in my building and I walk past probably every one of them on a weekly basis. I hear stuff that I have to let slide, swearing that would make a sailor blush, student’s dissing each other and teachers, arguments--even if it is my instinct is to turn around and beat the shit out of the offender. If I stopped every kid that didn’t adhere to school rules, I’d never teach a lesson. I didn’t exactly let this girl slide though, As I stopped dead in my tracks and shot her a death stare, this misguided girl realized she had offered a blow job for a plate of cookies in front of a teacher. I simply turned to her and said, "Could you please leave the trash talk for when you leave the building, I’m not interested in the services you are willing to give away in exchange for baked goods.”

When I got in my car, I could not help but think I should have said more. But what? What can I possibly say to a 13-year-old who is willing to offer a blow job for a cookie? The worst part was her reaction, or lack of one. She glanced at me with this coy look on her face, “Oh look I'm so ashamed that this teacher heard me being slutty. I'm so naughty aren't I boys?” I wanted to drag her by the hair into my car and tell her that she was making a fool out of herself, that at this rate she might as well put on the clear stripper shoes and practice her pole dancing skills.

On one hand, I find this story a bit amusing. On the other hand, I find it disturbing. If it happened in a movie that was a parody about how high school girls are turning into cheap whores with low self-esteem, I would find it hilarious. But it was not a movie. It happened in my school, with one of my students, and it was a real girl with obviously low self-esteem who, at the very least, thought it was appropriate to portray herself as a cheap whore.

*** Those of you coming to this post via the Homeschooling website should read my rebutal before you post a comment....
(Warning this is a long post so bear with me….this needs to be said) They say in the blogging world……………… That you’ve really not made it until you have your first heckler….well if that’s true I’ve made it a couple times over. You see yesterday I checked my stat counter on my blog and noticed it was going nuts. Tad bit strange because even on a good day I don’t get much more that 50-80 visitors in a given day. My count by midnight last night was over 350, ok it doesn’t take Einstein to figure out somethings up, so I pull up my stat counter account and notice a large amount of the hits were coming to the same entry….my “Teach Your Children Well” post.

So I click on one of the incoming links….it’s an article on a Home Schooling web page…and there was a link to my post in the article. Now to be completely honest the writer of the article was very pleasant when referring to my post…well actually this is exactly what she said:

Recently, my husband came across a blog entry by a middle-school teacher that was so shocking that he waited until our kids were out of the room before calling me over to read it. The blog entry [warning: obscene language] related a conversation this teacher overheard as she left school one afternoon. She passed a group of several boys and one girl (about 13) waiting for the bus. One of the boys had a plate of cookies. The teacher heard the girl say, "I'll give you a blow job for one of those cookies." (Pause for a moment to marvel at how the heck a 13-year-old girl even knows what a blow job is.)

My husband e-mailed the teacher and expressed sympathy for the toughness of her job. The woman e-mailed back a weary verbal shrug and said it was all in a day's work. Now I don’t have any gripes with the fact that this woman chose my post to promote her home schooling agenda, hell kudo’s to her…that’s just good persuasive writing skills at work, and I have to admit it’s a good example of at least one particular problem that middle school teachers face in public schools.

One thing I do have a problem with is the part where she said her husband emailed me and my response. I didn’t recall getting an email from her husband and I checked my email both in and out box back before the post date and ummmmm no you didn’t email me, and I didn’t respond with a weary verbal shrug. Now I am not calling the man a liar it is quite possible that he confused me with another person he emailed, so I’m letting it go.

But had I responded, I would certainly have stated that unfortunately it is sad that these behaviors occur, and would have given a hell of a lot more piece of my mind than a simple shrug of my shoulders, and I would have offered a solution to the problem. But moving on cuz there is soooooooo much more to this story than a fabricated email response. The big picture here was that they linked my post, comprehended it and treated me with respect, so I will in turn do the same.

Now of the over three hundred and fifty hits to this post from the homeschooling website (ummm no I am not linking back sorry no link love from me) I only got feedback from three readers. Well lets just see what my new fan club had to say about me, yes me not my post… let’s break it down….

Anonymous said... So that kind of "trash talk" was upsetting, but underneath your title, you note that you're a "little fucking ray of sunshine". Oh, I see here in the comments section, it says, "Go ahead Fuck with me I dare ya". So you can say "fuck" all day long, but this kind of language offends you? Hypocrite, much?

First off Mr/Mrs. Anonymous, I don’t go around saying fuck all day long. And I never said I was offended by the word Fuck….obviously I use it quite a bit ! What I was horrified by was the fact that she was offering to suck a guys cock for a cookie, and if you had read and comprehended both the post on the homeschool website and my post you would have gotten that.

No I am not a Hypocrite, just because I use the word FUCK along with many other offensive words on my personal blog, which by the way no one forced you to read and comment on, does not mean that I don’t know when and where it is appropriate. Hypocrite I don’t think so.

Onto new fan Number 2: “You're blog is a perfect example of adults who should be an example to teens, and are not. Your blog is ridden with profanity, toothbrushes with jokes on ''ORAL'' ''wankers'' as commenters, and ''Go ahead and FK with me, I dare you'' is the final words of wisdom I see from you.

A practicing Catholic at confession: ''Honestly I think the triple combination of premarital sex, the use of birth control and the mention of ''double penetration'' was too much for him, go figure. Incidentally, I embellished the story just a little, I admit I am evil. I wanted to see (or should I say hear) him squirm.'' Charming confession. Read your conversation to a Priest, and then write on how teens are vulgar, and speak like truck drivers! Rather hypocritical. Thank God you don’t teach my child.”

First of all as a teacher, I am not required to be your child’s role model 24/7. I am their authority figure during school hours only and guess what….It is YOUR responsibility to take care of your child outside of school. What I do during my off hours and what I say on my personal blog is my business not yours! You were warned before even clicking through to my site that it contained obscene language…YOU chose to precede. You could have looked away or better yet looked past the two offensive words you came across and looked at the big picture, the message in the post……however you chose to attack me on a personal level. Real intelligent move, and such a good example for your children, does your curriculum include lessons on sticking your head up your ass?

The fact that you then choose to root around my blog to find a post in which to rip me again just further proves your ignorance. My confession post has nothing to do with my job as an educator. And if you had half a brain you’d have realized it was for comic relief…..Charming confession, yes, honest, yes, hypocritical no, rather I believe your judgmental attitude and comments just prove how shallow you are.

Once again I never said I was offended by obscene language…..obviously you and commenter number one have comprehension problems. As for your final comment to me ---“Thank God you don’t teach my children” for that one comment you left, I have had hundreds of parents tell me “Thank God you are my child’s teacher” and that is more powerful than any trolls who could leave me cowardly anonymous comments on my blog.