They Don’t Have The Heart For This Kind Of Work

, , , | Learning | March 24, 2018

(We are a medical research lab at a university. We have an undergraduate who has come into our lab to get a little bit of experience. We are euthanizing a rat in order to use its heart for experiments. We let her watch as we inject the rat with a euthanasia drug — the same stuff they use for dogs. As soon as the rat is unconscious, we open its chest, and extract the heart while the tissue is still alive. We finish with the process to extract the tissue and what-have-you.)

Research Assistant: “And that’s it. Now we have a whole dish of cardiac tissue!”

Undergrad: “Oh, that’s really cool. So, when is he going to wake up?”

Research Assistant: “I’m sorry. Who?”

Undergrad: “The rat. You put him to sleep. When is he going to wake up?”

Research Assistant: *long pause* “Um, I’m sorry. He’s not going to wake up.”

Undergrad: “What do you mean?”

Research Assistant: “We just removed his heart from his chest. He’s not going to wake up. He’s dead.”

Undergrad: “WHAT? YOU KILLED HIM?!”

Research Assistant: *sheepish* “I’m sorry. I thought you knew that was going to happen.”

Got A Different Reading Of The Situation

, , , , , , , | Learning | March 22, 2018

I have always been an avid reader, and always took a book with me to school because I rode the bus.

One day in my social studies class, we had a test. Half of the class time was set aside for the test, and I finished fairly quickly. Figuring I could put my time to good use, I pulled out my book and quietly started reading.

A minute later, my teacher was next to me berating me for reading in class. He said that it was test time and to put the book away. I apologized and then did what any book lover would do: I put the book under my desk and read it from there.

I felt like I was in the Twilight Zone, being told not to read in school.

Jiu Jitsu Believe It?

, , , , , | Learning | March 19, 2018

The gym teacher of my school was also the coach of our local soccer team. When this story happened, I had been doing German jiu jitsu for nine years, was currently preparing for the southern German championship, and simultaneously had a D in gym class for the fifth time in a row. The reason for this was that, in the eyes of my gym teacher, anyone who wasn’t on the soccer team had to be unathletic and have no interest in sports. He pretty much made us play soccer every class, only focused on the boys he knew from his team, and gave everyone else a D at the end.

After a while I was fed up with it. I was getting a D, no matter what. I stayed in my classroom doing homework when gym class started, until a classmate came to bring me to the teacher. When I got there, he immediately laid into me, accusing me of being a lazy, entitled kid, only playing computer games all day, etc.

Knowing it wasn’t true, I kept my cool and waited for him to run out of steam to explain my protest. This didn’t work out. He kept getting angrier by the minute. After a while he started to come closer and closer to me. To avoid physical confrontation, I backed up, and kept going until I arrived at the wall. He kept coming nearer, and after he grabbed my shirt, routine kicked in. I threw him to the ground. Apparently, this caught him by surprise and he hit himself in the face while trying to keep his balance. Then his nose started bleeding.

He got up without a word and left the gym. After 20 minutes, my class decided he was not coming back, and we went to our classroom. Some minutes later, the principal arrived with two police officers. They took me out of the class and explained that the gym teacher told them I attacked him. I tried to explain my side of the story, but the principal wouldn’t have any of it. My parents were called in and they took me home. We were told I was suspended until further notice, and that they’d get back to us when they knew if the gym teacher would press charges. They told us it would be best to consider a voluntary change of school. My parents didn’t know who to believe. After all, I was a teenager, and they knew the teacher and I weren’t getting along.

They took me out of my jiu jitsu dojo and started looking for other schools, saying it would be best that way. That might have been the end of it, but a friend told me after a while that apparently a student made a video with his phone. After seeing it, my parents finally sided with me and immediately confronted the principal who, sadly, still seemed to side with his teacher. After contacting a lawyer, we learned that our chances were slim at best. We were discouraged, and again began looking for other schools. However, the other parents of the soccer team now knew what really happened. The team soon decided to do what the school wouldn’t, and kicked the coach to the curb. This hit him where it really hurt. He moved soon after. I finished school with an A in gym class.

Et Tu Brute Spoilers

, , , , , | Learning | March 16, 2018

(We’re reading the William Shakespeare play “Julius Caesar” in English class. My teacher is making us take parts and read it aloud while she stops us occasionally to ask a question or clarify what the characters are saying. After watching a week-long background movie on Julius Caesar’s life, we finally start reading the actual play. We’re about halfway through the first act.)

Teacher: “Caesar has been warned to ‘Beware the Ides of March,’ and with the middle of March in just a few days, you’d think he’d pay attention, but he doesn’t.”

Me: “Man, that really came back to stab him in the back.”

(General laughter.)

Teacher: “Yup, that’s what happens when your ego gets too big.”

Student #1: “Wait, why was that funny?”

Me: *a little uncertain* “Um, well, because of the whole stabbing Caesar in the Senate thing?”

Student #1: “Whoa! Spoilers! Not cool, dude.”

Teacher: “Caesar did die over 2000 years ago, so it’s kind of old news.”

Student #1: “Wait, what? Caesar was a real guy?”

(The teacher and I stare in disbelief. The rest of the class starts snickering.)

Student #1: *getting red in the face, totally serious now* “No, I mean, I thought he was like a really cool movie character Shakespeare made up.”

(The rest of the class loses it.)

Teacher: *doing her best not to laugh in the kid’s face* “No, [Student #1]. Julius Caesar was definitely a real person who lived and died in Ancient Rome. He’s why we have the month called July and not the month called Quintilius.”

Student #2: *totally serious, but quiet and somewhat ditzy girl* “Julius Caesar was a man?!”

This Valentine’s, I Will Give You The Moon

, , | Learning | March 15, 2018

(I’m tutoring a third grader with hearing and speech impairment. Because of his condition, he’s shy about making conversation. Thus, when he finds a topic he’s interested in, I let him go on unrelated tangents a bit more often than I would normally, to encourage him to speak up more often. He just got several questions right in a row.)

Student: “Oh, my God. I’m so smart. I know everything!”

Me: “Oh, everything? Hmm… Do you know why the sky is blue?”

Student: “Because the space is blue, so when you see it far away it looks lighter blue, and that’s why the sky is blue.”

Me: “Oh.” *smiles* “Why do seas have waves?”

Student: “Because sometimes there are strong winds and they make waves.”

Me: “Ah. Why does the moon circle the Earth?”

Student: “I don’t know why, but I think I know why. I think it’s because every year, on Valentine’s Day, they get married!”

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