Welp, here I am again, writing at 10:00.
Ok, 30 minutes on the treadmill and three sets of push-ups and squats slowed me down, but still.
Oh yes. Ugh is right.
But, tonight’s blog, it’s all about truth.
As I’ve mentioned far too many times, I listen to a podcast called the Washed Up Walkons, three former walkon players at the University of Iowa giving their take on football, current issues, and life in general. The three of them speak their truths on this podcast, other peoples opinions be damned.
I don’t usually pay for content, but I pay for two subscriptions. Medium is one because I want to start writing over there to expand my voice (not that is too shabby, but the idea of getting paid to write, no matter how small the check, is a goal of mine). The other is to the Walkons for additional content, discounts on merch, and a Discord channel to chat with other Iowa fans. I don’t get much from the Medium subscription other than the opportunity to learn from writers who are light years better than I am, always a good thing. But the Walk On subscription is pretty cool in that half of what I am paying will be giving the Stead Family Children’s Hospital in Iowa City. So I’m getting benefits in belonging to the “Walk On Army” and half my money goes to help the children? Yes, I’m a sucker, but sign me up! 🙂
Hush. Between the two extra podcasts and their regular content, they’ve been on a roll lately, ripping into former teammates, the offensive line (which was pretty offensive during game one of the season), just telling it as it is.
I’m all for this. 100%
As I listened to Monday’s podcast after Iowa’s absimal showing, winning 7 – 3 without scoring a touchdown, it struck me.
During our beginning of the year meetings, we were given the “teachers are held to a higher standard, so becare what you post of social media”.
Yup, and it’s not the first time we’ve gotten the talk and it wouldn’t be the last. We hear about how a teacher got fired for this or that because pictures made it to social media. We’ve also heard about how teachers have been in trouble for posting their own truths. These guys, on their podcast are speaking their truths to thousands each week. I am envious because, as a teacher, I have to temper my truths because “someone might see (my words, not anyone elses)”. The podcast scoffs at your opinions and I’m 100% for that energy.
We as a profession are getting railed on because we speak our truths. We are being called lazy, selfish, ungrateful, socialists, communists, and worst of all, groomers. All for speaking our minds on a world that’s flat out gone crazy. Whether it’s books or current events or elections or teaching a history that isn’t completely whitewashed, our truths need to be silenced.
Now, I tell my students multiple times: my opinion means nothing in this class (social studies), so don’t ask. My job is to present you facts in an objective (we learned a new vocabulary word) way so YOU can think about those facts and make your own decision. My truths in that context doesn’t matter, and for good reason. However, why should I feel that need to temper things elsewhere? As teachers, we know we can’t be posting picture of illegal things, that’s obvious. However, if I’m out partying somewhere, and not being an idiot, why can’t I post a picture? Why should I be worried about cameras around? Again, if I am not going something stupid or illegal, why should I worry? Better question, why should my community care if I’m having a great time?
Now, I’m sure someone could give the ethics things and the board policies and on and on. I get it and I’ve played the game fairly well. However, I’m of an age where the games I’ve played, I’m tired of them. This is one of those games.
As I listened to tonight podcast, and they were being entirely inappropriate, swearing and talking about topics my angelic ears should not be listening to, I thought, “Damn, enjoy this time in your lives where you can speak those things. That time is short-lived.”
As we age, we loss that spirit, that desire to speak up. While that wasn’t my personality, I wish we’d keep that fire more. It gets smothered by life, which is sad.
So, speak up, speak out, let your voice be amplified and your truths echo.
We need more brave souls out there, so make it happen! 🙂
September 7, 2022 at 8:16 am
This is one thing that drives me crazy about our profession. On my OWN time, on my own social media, I’m not supposed to have -or rather EXPRESS- my opinions. Yes, I know I can’t (shouldn’t) disparage my employer, or talk about students, or more likely, their parents. But does that mean I can’t say anything about anything?
Obviously your post hit a nerve. I hope more people learn that teachers are human and deserve to express their thoughts & opinions, and share that having-a-good-time picture.
September 7, 2022 at 11:15 am
I absoltely agree with you. No, I shouldn’t be talking down my school, my students, parents, or anything else school related. HOWEVER, I should be able to express myself, right? No, this won’t get solved in a blog (dangit all), but I think it does us good to express our displeasure about how those “high standards” don’t apply to parents, bankers, doctors, and others in the public view.
But, no one asks me, so I write about it!
Thanks for the comment and I’m sorry I raised your blood pressure! 🙂
September 7, 2022 at 10:44 am
You pose some good questions here: If not “being an idiot, why can’t I post a picture? Why should I be worried about cameras around? Again, if I am not going something stupid or illegal, why should I worry? Better question, why should my community care if I’m having a great time?”
It is interesting to compare teaching with the career that the three former walk-ons have created for themselves. Your post really illustrates the complexity of this chapter we find ourselves living in. All the best as you navigate the complexities in your teaching, and best wishes in writing on Medium!