"Interesting" conversation with a teacher

Discussion in 'General Education' started by catnfiddle, Sep 26, 2018.

  1. catnfiddle

    catnfiddle Moderator

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    Actual conversation with another teacher (OT here)...

    Me: Today is going to be good!
    OT: You know why it's going to be a good day, right?
    Me: Um, because I decided it is?
    OT: No, because God is good, so He makes it a good day.
    Me: ...

    Once I gathered myself together and realized there were no students around, I mentioned that I had taken last Wednesday as a personal day to observe Yom Kippur. He then launched into borderline evangelism. I had no idea how to deal and extracted myself from the conversation as soon as I could.

    :dizzy::dizzy::dizzy:
     
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  3. creativemonster

    creativemonster Comrade

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    ouch!
     
  4. futuremathsprof

    futuremathsprof Aficionado

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    Here’s what I do when someone proselytizes to me: “I’m sorry, I don’t believe I care. Good day.”
     
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  5. ms.irene

    ms.irene Connoisseur

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    To be fair, it's the same God this person was going on about...not that that makes it appropriate, or even polite, for that matter.
     
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  6. greendream

    greendream Cohort

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    If you observe Yom Kippur, why would you be freaked out by someone saying God is good?
     
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  7. futuremathsprof

    futuremathsprof Aficionado

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    I think the delivery of the message was off-putting.
     
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  8. czacza

    czacza Multitudinous

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    Why be put off? One doesn’t need to share the same beliefs to just be accepting and tolerant.
     
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  9. otterpop

    otterpop Aficionado

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    While I do agree, I've found it's best to avoid political and religious conversations among coworkers I'm casually acquainted with.
     
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  10. TeacherGroupie

    TeacherGroupie Moderator

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    OT's first response to cat suggests that either he was unclear as to how conversation is supposed to work or he didn't care.

    When I say out loud that it's going to be a good day, I already know why I think so and I'm signaling that I'd like to talk about it. I think most of us know that, and my friends in sociolinguistics who analyze this sort of thing characterize a remark like catnfiddle's as a fairly standard conversational opening. The next move, on the part of a cooperative conversational partner, is to encourage cat to go on: "Oh?" or "Tell me" or even either "My day's going to be good too" or "My day's going to be rotten" followed by "But what about yours?" - the last two would signal to catnfiddle to share her good feeling and then make room for a conversational turn by the partner, or she could even decide to yield her turn in favor of his.

    But OT's responses to catnfiddle weren't cooperative; rather than encourage after her first turn, he pre-empted her response, and then he told her what he thought she was supposed to feel. That's rude, frankly, and not - what is the word they use? - "winsome", at all.
     
  11. Ima Teacher

    Ima Teacher Maven

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    Conversation isn’t some people’s strength. Sounds like that whole conversation was small talk gone awry. The equivalent of answering “how are you doing today” type questions with something other than “fine”. Now you are more prepared for the next encounter.

    “You know why it’s going to be a good day, right?” Answer? “Sure do!” Walk away. :p
     
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  12. Backroads

    Backroads Aficionado

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    I've had coworkers of various spiritual paths mention here and there in similar conversations a more or less gratitude to Deity over a day. I don't find the concept in and of itself weird if that's where it ends. "Yes, it is a good day, God is good." If the conversation avoids proselyting, I think only the fussiest will fuss over that.

    I'm quite religious and the OP strikes me as a weird conversation.
     
  13. catnfiddle

    catnfiddle Moderator

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    I have no problem discussing theology. Heck, he and I have talked about bible study in the past without incident. It was the manner in which the discussion was framed, making it seem like I was wrong for not immediately giving prayers of thanks for feeling happy.
     
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  14. futuremathsprof

    futuremathsprof Aficionado

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    Yes, but it can be done in a non-forceful manner.
     
  15. Aces

    Aces Habitué

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    I avoid conversations of religious and political matter. In that situation, I would have said something along the lines of "Aha yes, good thing Pluto saw fit not to kill us all today. Good day, sir."
     
  16. catnfiddle

    catnfiddle Moderator

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    A friend who is ill got tired of hearing, "I'm praying for you." She started responding, "Oh, I sacrificed a goat to Baal yesterday, so I'm covered."

    :whistle::spitwater:
     
  17. futuremathsprof

    futuremathsprof Aficionado

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    Pfft, lol!
     
  18. Mr.history

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    I'm not religious. I don't call myself an atheist but I also don't really consider religion in my day to day life. If this happened to me I would just say "yes he does" even though in my head I would probably thinking my day was good because of the workout I had that morning/great wife I get to see this afternoon/ect. I don't think me saying that instantly makes me religious and I would rather just agree than be off putting to someone with good intentions.

    I also work in a state where its not uncommon for everyone to pray at faculty meetings, so I just stare at my shoes :)
     
  19. otterpop

    otterpop Aficionado

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    It's so strange to me how different things can be in different parts of the US. Around here, there would be people who would definitely take issue with prayer at staff meetings.
     
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  20. czacza

    czacza Multitudinous

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    Consider that you could have not contined the conversation after our colleague’s comment that God makes it a good day. A simple ‘have a great day’ would have suffced. Wereyu trying to connect and share your belief by relating your Yom Kippur holiday or were you reacting defensively?
     
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  21. czacza

    czacza Multitudinous

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    That just seems rude. People who are praying for others are (hopefully) doing so out of kindness.
     
  22. catnfiddle

    catnfiddle Moderator

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    This particular friend IS kind of rude, to be honest. I still like her.

    The Yom Kippur comment was a nervous reaction. Too many years of people trying to bring me to Christianity has made me a little knee-jerk.
     
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  23. futuremathsprof

    futuremathsprof Aficionado

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    Right you are. I hate it when people constantly try to convert other people to their religion. It’s incredibly rude.
     
  24. Backroads

    Backroads Aficionado

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    I know the feeling. I once had a colleague that for years kept bringing up the trinity. I'm Mormon, and the faith rejects the concept of the Trinity. It quickly went past a theological discussion to just being annoying.
     
  25. Belch

    Belch Companion

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    Who would find that "off-putting"? I've worked with many people of all faiths, and it sounds optimistic.

    "off-putting"? I'm not seeing it.
     
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  26. otterpop

    otterpop Aficionado

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    It seems to me this is a situation where context, tone, and nonverbal clues could hold a lot of weight. It's easy to imagine the OP's conversation in either a conversational or a pushy tone.

    I've found, as an adult, it's good to have ways to excuse yourself from any conversation that makes you uncomfortable, whatever the reason. In a similar situation, I'd probably say, "Hmmm..." and then, "Well, I better go make some copies. Enjoy your morning!"
     
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  27. Aces

    Aces Habitué

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    Agreed...

    But I've had it backfire too. I've had teachers chase me to the copy room, back to my classroom, wherever I happen to be going to debate Jesus and everything else.
     
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  28. whizkid

    whizkid Cohort

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    Sad.
     
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  29. whizkid

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    We could just stick to "good morning" and leave the religious undertones out of it completely.
     
  30. whizkid

    whizkid Cohort

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    See post #28.
     
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  31. Bibliophile

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    This kind of reminds em of when I told a coworker about my weekend plans-I was really excited because I had ticket to a Broadway show and I had been waiting months for it. She asked what show. I replied The Book of Mormon

    She basically yelled at my and called me a religious bigot.

    My response"...Well it did win Grammy so..."
     
    Last edited: Oct 5, 2018
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  32. futuremathsprof

    futuremathsprof Aficionado

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    Why does that make you a religious bigot? Your coworker is obviously confused.
     
  33. a2z

    a2z Maven

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    There are many who believe the musical mocks the Mormon religion. Therefore anyone who would attend would be supporting the mocking of another's religion.
     
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  34. Backroads

    Backroads Aficionado

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    That's my wondering as well.

    True, while plenty of us Mormons didn't care or were amused by the musical, others of us were more offended. Betwixt those emotions, I don't think there was much room for any religious bigotry.
     
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  35. Backroads

    Backroads Aficionado

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    Sorry, I didn't see this.

    I didn't really think that's what was meant by the religious bigot comment (though I'm not involved in that conversation). The term doesn't quite imply, at least to me, the mocking of another religion.

    (am Mormon, am slightly bewildered by the nature of the musical, but also don't feel it meant any harm)
     
  36. Geologygirl

    Geologygirl Comrade

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    I can see how someone trying to use your comment as a opportunity to convert you would be annoying. I used to live in the south and because I was the wrong type of Christian faith (not baptist) they were constantly trying to convert me. I found it annoying also.
     
  37. gr3teacher

    gr3teacher Phenom

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    Honestly, I don't particularly appreciate hearing somebody is praying for me. I know there's no malevolence involved; they think they are being kind. But it's also a way to get out of a conversation without the possibility of needing to provide real help. Example:

    Person A: [sad story]
    Person B: Thoughts and prayers
    Person A: Thanks

    Alternate scenario
    Person A: [sad story]
    Person B: Well if there's anything I can do to help...
    Person A: Well actually... (or) Thanks, I'll keep that in mind.

    In one situation, Person A gets words. In the other, Person A gets the possibility of some assistance if it's needed.

    I know there's a decent bit of illogicality to it, and I certainly know I'm overthinking it... the whole prayer thing just always rubs me the wrong way.
     
  38. Aces

    Aces Habitué

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    Alot of people realize I'm not Christian or Atheist which leads to whole conversations about what religion I actually practice. Then when they find out, there are several people who have been very gung-ho to convert me or remind me that I'm not following God's plan. That's nice, Janet, I'd be more concerned about that if I believed in Christianity...
     
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  39. czacza

    czacza Multitudinous

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    Consider you being ‘rubbed the wrong way’ is on you. The person sending prayers may genuinely believe they are helping in the same way the person does who is offering if there is anything they can do.
     
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  40. futuremathsprof

    futuremathsprof Aficionado

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    It can also be done rudely and invasively. For example, I once had a sub at my school inquire about why I’m not married or plan to ever have children. I told this person that I’m not the romantic type and don’t want to enter into a romantic relationship of any kind in my lifetime, that I don’t date and have never wanted to date, and have never aspired to have a wife and children. The sub — a very religious person — went on to tell me how God instructed humans to go forth and multiply and that I was going to burn in Hell unless I changed my ways and that she would pray for me.

    It shocked me how vitriolic her response was and it shocked my colleagues, too.
     
    Last edited: Oct 6, 2018
  41. czacza

    czacza Multitudinous

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    Thats WAY different than the corcumstance to which I was responding
     

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