a quote from my favorite author

“The most solid advice, though, for a writer is this, I think: Try to learn to breathe deeply, really to taste food when you eat, and when you sleep, really to sleep. Try as much as possible to be wholly alive, with all your might, and when you laugh, laugh like hell, and when you get angry, get good and angry. Try to be alive. You will be dead soon enough.”

-William Saroyan, The Daring Young Man on the Flying Trapeze

Monday, March 1, 2010

You're Not a Chick

One of my students wrote his persuasive letter to me, convincing me to play Modern Warfare 2.

The next day in class I overheard him telling his friend, “Chicks can’t play Modern Warfare.”

So, naturally I interjected, “Hey, you told me to play it and I’m a chick.” A weak argument, I know, but the point was to call him out on his sexist statement. In the moment I thought it would be most effective if I pointed out his hypocrisy.

Little did I know, he was not being hypocritical, “You’re not a chick; you’re a woman.”

There you have it: I am old.

If it’s true and I really have reached the threshold between youth and adulthood, I really need to start doing something with my life.

And so, this blog begins with the hope that the act of challenging myself to take the time to make meaning of my world will cause me to breathe more deeply, to open my eyes wider, to talk less and listen more, to be in the moment—each moment of my days, to spend less time on the filler and more time on the good stuff, to live with intention.


  1. Love this story! The honesty of students never ceases to amaze me!!! :) Thanks for sharing!!

  2. You had me laughing outloud and then pausing and soaking in the deeper meaning of it all. What a thought-provoking ending. What a perfect first post! Welcome to the blog-o-sphere, I hope you fall in love with it as I have.
    Happy writing,

  3. Great first post! I enjoyed your student's re-definition and clarification. I'm looking forward to reading all of your writing this month!

    -Carrie F.

  4. This is wonderful. Hey, at least you're a woman. When I had a similar experience with one of my students and I called him out, I got something along the lines of: "you're not a girl, you're the teacher" ... whaterver strange, genderless creature that must be!

  5. There's a fine line between being a "chick" and a "woman"...and it takes a savvy student to call it. Your post reminded me of the time a student of mine was trying to draw a distinction between me and another (much, much younger) colleague - "You just know so much more Mrs. Smith because you are an old lady teacher,not a new lady teacher." There was a compliment in there somewhere...I'm sure..at least I think there was!

  6. Love it! I'm must be getting old, too, because I actually had to Google a "very bad word" that was used on the playground. Turns out that it was, indeed, a very bad word.