Wednesday, January 30, 2013

...genes  (part 1).....

I don't know how, because I rarely missed school.  I was/am one of those strange beings that tend to gravitate towards all things academia.  Almost every subject was interesting to me and I mostly paid attention in all of  my classes. (We'll leave my hate-hate relationship with computer classes for a different post!)

This is why I find myself vaguely confused.  I clearly remember being in my psychology classes when we covered the whole nature vs. nurture debate.   I still have my notes from the biology and anatomy classes I took (sigh, yes, nerd, move on).  Dominant and recessive genes, traits inherited from mothers or fathers, eye color, hair color, height, etc.   Fruit fly projects and plant experiments, DNA, RNA, x vs y chromosomes....I can remember it all.

What I can't remember is the day we covered the specifics on exactly how extended family members transmit their genes over vast distances AFTER the grandchild/niece/nephew has been born. 
Also missing from my notes are the discussions on the specific genetic anomaly known as sarcasm and its likelihood of being the one family trait to be passed on through the phone lines instead of the blood lines.
But I must have missed it.  That is the only explanation I can offer for the conversations I have been having with my pre-teen son recently. At most he gets to see his maternal grandparents twice a year.  Yet he recently has started sounding more and more like his uncle and grandfather.  Not in voice, but in speech patterns.  He and my brothers have more than enough words in their heads to make a phone company's "unlimited talk" plan beg for mercy.  My son and my father both get the same look on their face just before they are going to say something to deliberately provoke whatever woman happens to be in the same room with them. 
Case in point....a recent exchange with said son as I was tediously laboring over the stove to prepare his day-end meal....

Son: Hey're not starting a grease fire over there, are you?

Me:  No, my dearest, sweetest boy.  I am attempting to prepare a gourmet selection of protein and vegetables for your evening repast.  Grease fires are not in my repertoire and I would never, ever do anything to put your life, or your dinner in such jeopardy.

Son: (in perfect reincarnation of uncles and grandfather)  Sure.  That's what they all say.

I am very tempted to throw in the towel now, rather than spend the next six years or so verbally sparring with the genetic equivalent of my son, brothers and father.  Tempted, but not ready to give in to that temptation.   Instead,  I think I will spend the next few years searching through my notes and science texts looking for that elusive paragraph discussing the electronic transmission of the sarcasm gene.  Because he surely doesn't get it from his current environment.
I know I will need that information in the future, if my son can curb his witty genetic predispositions long enough to get married and have children.  Then I will have grandchildren....and a phone....  ;)

I think I have a few years to complete my research, but research I must....

'Cause I missed the class on that!

Wednesday, January 2, 2013

An open letter to my former students.

This covers a few hundred people out there in the big wide world.  People who have gone on to make some beautiful and powerful contributions to the world.
Such as:
Serve in the military.
Start a non-profit for education in Africa
Work in a demanding health care profession
Debate conservative politics in a respectful manner while attending a liberal leaning university
Get involved in local politics
Invest your life in ministry
Share the world through photography/writing/art
Accept learning/academic challenges head on and become stronger through them
Learn how to be leaders in business, law, technology and many other professions
Become spouses
Become parents
Become servants

You are in many different walks and stages of life.  You may even be in different generations....I don't think about that too often...makes me feel old.

Some of you are no longer with us.

Some of you are about to embark on your student teaching this upcoming semester and will soon have a classroom of your own.

You will work harder than you ever have in any course thus far.....and you will love almost every minute of it.  You will become protective of your young charges and want to see them succeed almost more than they want that for themselves.  You will wonder what they will be when they grow up.  You will laugh and cry with them and about them.  You will cherish every note they leave on your desk or in your mailbox.
You will be a teacher.

Regardless of your place in life, I am so proud of all  of you.

Don't miss the class on that!


Mrs. A  (Miss B)