more backtalk

You guys leave me comments, which is just so wonderful of you, and sometimes you ask questions that should be answered. It takes me ages to get around to it, but here are a couple things I’ve been meaning to address. Re my utter and abject failure to complete a simple online class, people were so nice.

KimberlyDi Said:

Don’t forget to forgive yourself after you accepted responsibility for the failure. We’re only human

James Said:

Sometimes you’re better off to cut your losses and leave it at that. I have been searching for a job, but so far I am not having any luck. Hopefully I will get lucky soon…..Keep your chin up!!

dagoril Said:

      To paraphrase Vedek Barial from Star Trek hehe…

“Maybe you should try exploring being useless for a while…see what it’s like.”

In other words, are you your permanent record? Or are the things in your life there to bring you more joy? Does worrying about grades enhance your life somehow? Think about it! 🙂

Thanks guys, you’re right. I will try not to beat myself up anymore. Dag, re being useless for awhile, I think I’ve about used up my time allotment for that. I’ve been a housewife for most of the last twelve years, with a husband who doesn’t really see that as legitimate work. Okay, with some justification there – housewifing the way I do it isn’t really work. Until we moved in here, our house was always dusty and cluttered and my sons are still both howling barbarians: when they put on a t-shirt, they can only tell where the front of it is by locating the food stains. Housewives with tidy houses and well-behaved children can be said to be working, but anyone would be justified in wondering just what I do all day.

Since we moved here, though? I’ve gotten all house-proud, dusting and swiffing daily, almost keeping up with the laundry pretty much, and get this: ironing my dish towels. Well, they get all rumpled and hard to fold! When I told my former neighbor about that, she said, “Yeah. Definitely time for you to get a job.”

Re a post on rude Germans at the old blog:
Melanie said…

Is the absence of – sometimes insincere – politeness actually rudeness?

It’s not really absence of politeness, it’s real, actual rudeness. E.g., my friend Nigel tried to pay for a train ticket with a €50 note, and the conductor said “Do I look like a change machine?” And when I complained to a Bahn employee that the ticket machines didn’t work, she said “That’s not my problem.” DrBob’s had a few run-ins with Bahn people too, and he finally wrote to the Bahn to complain about late trains and rude employees, and their customer-service dude wrote back, “What’s wrong with you, nobody else complains about this stuff.” We’re are not talking about a simple failure to say something nice, but about behavior that would get you fired in the States.

Do Germans actually think they are rude or do they view themselves as less frivolous?

Um, I don’t know. I suppose they think they are more honest than we are, and that that is a virtue.

I think manners are almost by definition somewhat fake.

Sure, but they help societies function and are therefore still important, I think. Besides, there’s the AA concept of “fake it till you make it” – saying nice things, making an actual effort not to be an asshole, may actually turn you into a nicer person. But nice doesn’t seem to have any value here.

Also, should I just get my own damn blog if I’m going to continue to leave comments this long????

Hee. Ummm, yes and no. That is, I love your long comments, and I wouldn’t want you to stop them, but I’ve been telling you for years – well, months anyway – that you should have a blog.

Re a post on religious instruction in public schools, also at the old blog:

samirah said…

Also, how come they don’t teach kids about Judaism in German schools? I mean shouldn’t they being, you know, Germans and all.

That is an excellent question. Yes, they really should, but basically, you “belong” to a particular religion (e.g. my kids are registered as Catholic) and the public school teaches you the basic precepts of “your” faith. Yes, they should teach the basics of all major religions to all children – that makes a lot more sense. But they don’t. Although, one thing I do like about the current approach is that they did take care of all the ceremonial stuff, like First Communion, without any input from me. I mean, I showed up, but I didn’t have to know anything.

So they would teach Judaism in German schools to Jewish kids if there were any, but there… really… aren’t. I mean, there really were no Jews left here at all 60 years ago, which is too horrifying to think too much about, and they’ve been understandably reluctant to come back. They’re starting to now, gradually, but it’ll be a long time before there are enough in small towns like this one to make Judaism classes necessary in public schools. One would hope, by that time, that the survey-of-all-religions idea has taken off.

They do teach about the Shoah though, extensively. Field trips to Dachau and that sort of thing. It’s still a very important part of the national consciousness, and the schools work to keep it so.

Song du jour of the day: Ask Me, by the Smiths

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One response to “more backtalk

  • samirah

    1) ask me is a fantastic song.
    2) thanks for answering
    3) yo, that’s a really messed up theory. it’s like “here let me highlight how different and strange your neighbor is from you.”
    4) i was taught from birth to be wary of germans. i don’t think i am though.

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