This post has nothing to do with parenting. It has everything to do with the downfall of society, communication and the lack of self satisfaction that one gets from an argument with a complete stranger via Facebook.
So last night, I was minding my own business and avoiding school work, dishes and a bunch of other grown up crap…which is code for perusing Facebook. Side note: Remember when people use to say surfing the internet? I digress.
While on Facebook, I came across this status update written by a friend, and it went something to the effect of:
“OMG! Schools have really changed now. I got a letter from a classroom representative asking for a donation for my daughter’s teacher’s holiday gift. Gift giving is not what Christmas is about. Plus, I already got her a gift!”
I use to be a teacher. Gifts that I received from my first grade students involved the following:
- Partially eaten food.
- A quinceanera (similar to a sweet sixteen) table center piece.
- Body lotion products
- A mug
- A stuffed orca
- Tons of pictures
All in all, I received a motley crew of gifts; however, I appreciated the thought involved with every one…except for the partially eaten food because I am pretty sure that kid told me it was a gift so he wouldn’t get in trouble for eating it in my classroom. One of the golden rules of teaching is to never accept food that is given to you by a child; a parent is fine, a child is a no no.
To be honest,I would have been flattered if a parent decided to organize a special gift giving for me. In fact, I would have felt like teacher of the year or at least like a high school homecoming queen. BUT I totally understand that some people don’t like to partake in these things, and so the initial comment didn’t bug me. But like an idiot, upon realizing that there were two additional comments, I decided to read on.
This is what the second comment read:
“OMG, that is terrible. My kid’s school has a Christmas tree with decorations all over it that have the teachers’ names. You can see a wish list on each decoration created by the teacher that tells you what she would like for her classroom. My kid’s teacher wanted a gift card for some games. Like she would really use a gift card for a kid game? Who knows where my money would be going? And why does my kid need to play games in school. It is her job to learn not play!”
There are roughly 5.7 million things wrong with that statement…trust me, I counted all the possibilities of wrongness in my head. But here is the one that struck me right out of the gate.
IF YOU THINK THAT YOUR KID’S TEACHER IS GOING TO STEAL MONEY AWAY FROM HER STUDENTS, WHY THE FREAKITY-FREAK DO YOU SEND YOUR KID TO SPEND 8 HOURS A DAY WITH HER, EVERY DAY FOR 180 DAYS OUT OF THE YEAR?
Seriously, does she arm her second grader with a tazer in case the teacher eyes her lunch money?
And the comment after that posted by the original poster, the person that I actually know, said she agreed!
Now, take a moment and look at this picture:
Me and some fellow robbers, uh, I mean teachers, graduating.
Do we look like people who steal from children?
In my infinite wisdom, I decide to post a response. This is exactly what I posted:
“Kids learn a lot from games. Kids learn best through play. Teachers spend a boat load of money on their classrooms, a crap load of time planning activities, and spend less time with their own families to help improve the lives of their students. Where I taught, we didn’t do anything like that, but I would have loved getting things for my classroom instead of kids buying me personal gifts. Rant over.”
Not bad. I just had to purge my thoughts for my own sanity, ya know? You have to do that every once in a while to keep from losing your marbles or drinking before noon.
But then poster number two responded with this:
“I know all about teachers. My sister in law is one. Most teachers do not have to take time away from their family to do their job. If the teacher wanted games, she should have just asked.”
My dad use to be a narcotics agent, but I can’t even tell you what pot smells like. And my mom sometimes invites her doctor friend over for gatherings, but I am pretty sure that I am unqualified to give an eye exam. I guess the theory of being able to understand something by association or osmosis doesn’t always work.
And isn’t filling out a list with items wanted for a classroom the same as asking for them?
So I responded with:
“I don’t know you, so I don’t want to argue with you.”
Look how nice and mature that sounds! But then that bitch came back with.
“Why don’t you just shut up and say NOTHING AT ALL next time!”
YES! She went there with all CAPS which is code for being BITCH-TASTIC on Facebook.
So, now what am I suppose to do? I mean, do I argue with somebody that I don’t know, will never meet and could care less about? No, I should ignore her. I mean, my time is very precious, and I have none to spare…..nope, no time to spare…..well…
So I posted fragments of my conversation on my blog’s Facebook page
. And people totally agreed with my point of view. So, if we were in a bar, it would have been the equivalent of people buying me drinks and telling me I rock and shouldn’t let her get away with it. Actually, no, it was more like a scene from the Real Housewives of Who-the-Hell-Cares. If I were to go over and give her a verbal slamming, it would have been the equivalent of causing a scene in another woman’s house about really stupid shit with people who desperately need attention. So I couldn’t do that. I am not prepared to jump the shark and become Ramona Singer or Jill Zarin.
But I HAD TO DO SOMETHING. She wrote in caps! So I wrote this:
“Out of respect for (insert name of person who’s page we were on) I will not argue with you. People who argue with complete strangers on pages that do not belong to them are annoying. Love you (name of person’s page).”
It felt good. But definitely not as good as getting to say something like that to somebody’s face. And that is how Facebook is ruining society. Arguments are so dull and anti-climatic. Not to mention I spent another 10 minutes like a loser checking back to see if the woman who meant nothing would respond. But then again, it is hard to sleep when people are wrong, stupid, idiotic, ridiculous, mean-spirited and bitchy on the internet. And there are a lot of those people online.