Terrible Teacher Quotes

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Early success is a terrible teacher. You're essentially being rewarded for a lack of preparation, so when you find yourself in a situation where you must prepare, you can't do it. You don't know how.
Chris Hadfield (An Astronaut's Guide to Life on Earth)
When asked "What do we need to learn this for?" any high-school teacher can confidently answer that, regardless of the subject, the knowledge will come in handy once the student hits middle age and starts working crossword puzzles in order to stave off the terrible loneliness.
David Sedaris (Me Talk Pretty One Day)
I had a terrible education. I attended a school for emotionally disturbed teachers.
Woody Allen
Question: I am interested in so many things, and I have a terrible fear because my mother keeps telling me that I'm just going to be exploring the rest of my life and never get anything done. But I find it really hard to set my ways and say, "Well, do I want to do this, or should I try to exploit that, or should I escape and completely do one thing?" Anaïs Nin: One word I would banish from the dictionary is 'escape.' Just banish that and you'll be fine. Because that word has been misused regarding anybody who wanted to move away from a certain spot and wanted to grow. He was an escapist. You know if you forget that word you will have a much easier time. Also you're in the prime, the beginning of your life; you should experiment with everything, try everything.... We are taught all these dichotomies, and I only learned later that they could work in harmony. We have created false dichotomies; we create false ambivalences, and very painful one's sometimes -the feeling that we have to choose. But I think at one point we finally realize, sometimes subconsciously, whether or not we are really fitted for what we try and if it's what we want to do. You have a right to experiment with your life. You will make mistakes. And they are right too. No, I think there was too rigid a pattern. You came out of an education and are supposed to know your vocation. Your vocation is fixed, and maybe ten years later you find you are not a teacher anymore or you're not a painter anymore. It may happen. It has happened. I mean Gauguin decided at a certain point he wasn't a banker anymore; he was a painter. And so he walked away from banking. I think we have a right to change course. But society is the one that keeps demanding that we fit in and not disturb things. They would like you to fit in right away so that things work now.
Anaïs Nin
An exceedingly confident student would in theory make a terrible student. Why would he take school seriously when he feels that he can outwit his teachers?
Criss Jami (Killosophy)
I know there's no way I can convince you this is not one of their tricks, but I don't care, I am me. My name is Valerie, I don't think I'll live much longer and I wanted to tell someone about my life. This is the only autobiography ill ever write, and god, I'm writing it on toilet paper. I was born in Nottingham in 1985, I don't remember much of those early years, but I do remember the rain. My grandmother owned a farm in Tuttlebrook, and she use to tell me that god was in the rain. I passed my 11th lesson into girl's grammar; it was at school that I met my first girlfriend, her name was Sara. It was her wrists. They were beautiful. I thought we would love each other forever. I remember our teacher telling us that is was an adolescent phase people outgrew. Sara did, I didn't. In 2002 I fell in love with a girl named Christina. That year I came out to my parents. I couldn't have done it without Chris holding my hand. My father wouldn't look at me, he told me to go and never come back. My mother said nothing. But I had only told them the truth, was that so selfish? Our integrity sells for so little, but it is all we really have. It is the very last inch of us, but within that inch, we are free. I'd always known what I wanted to do with my life, and in 2015 I starred in my first film, "The Salt Flats". It was the most important role of my life, not because of my career, but because that was how I met Ruth. The first time we kissed, I knew I never wanted to kiss any other lips but hers again. We moved to a small flat in London together. She grew Scarlet Carsons for me in our window box, and our place always smelled of roses. Those were there best years of my life. But America's war grew worse, and worse. And eventually came to London. After that there were no roses anymore. Not for anyone. I remember how the meaning of words began to change. How unfamiliar words like collateral and rendition became frightening. While things like Norse Fire and The Articles of Allegiance became powerful, I remember how different became dangerous. I still don't understand it, why they hate us so much. They took Ruth while she was out buying food. I've never cried so hard in my life. It wasn't long till they came for me.It seems strange that my life should end in such a terrible place, but for three years, I had roses, and apologized to no one. I shall die here. Every inch of me shall perish. Every inch, but one. An Inch, it is small and it is fragile, but it is the only thing the world worth having. We must never lose it or give it away. We must never let them take it from us. I hope that whoever you are, you escape this place. I hope that the world turns and that things get better. But what I hope most of all is that you understand what I mean when I tell you that even though I do not know you, and even though I may never meet you, laugh with you, cry with you, or kiss you. I love you. With all my heart, I love you. -Valerie
Alan Moore (V for Vendetta)
Linus: What's wrong, Charlie Brown? Charlie Brown: I just got terrible news. The teacher says we're going on a field trip to an art museum; and I have to get an A on my report or I'll fail the whole course. Why do we have to have all this pressure about grades, Linus? Linus: Well, I think that the purpose of going to school is to get good grades so then you can go on to high school; and the purpose is to study hard so you can get good grades so you can go to college; and the purpose of going to college is so you can get good grades so you can go on to graduate school; and the purpose of that is to work hard and get good grades so we can get a job and be successful so that we can get married and have kids so we can send them to grammar school to get good grades so they can go to high school to get good grades so they can go to college and work hard... Charlie Brown: Good grief!
Charles M. Schulz
Most ballet teachers in the United States are terrible.
If they were in medicine, everyone would be poisoned.
George Balanchine
All these guys picking on smart kids and calling them geeks and dweebs are going to grow up and want to know why they don't do something about the terrible state the world is in. I can tell you why. By the time they grow up, most of the kids who realy could have changed things are wrecked.
Bruce Coville (My Teacher Glows in the Dark (My Teacher Is an Alien, #3))
The students we saw were all bright, attractive, and polite, and the teachers all seemed to be smart and dedicated, and I began to appreciate the benefits of a private school education. If only I'd had the opportunity to attend a place like this, who knows what I might have become? Perhaps instead of a mere blood-spatter analyst who slunk away at night to kill without conscience, I could have become a doctor, or a physicist, or even a senator who slunk away at night to kill without conscience. It was terribly sad to think of all my wasted potential.
Jeff Lindsay
After it's all over, the early childhood, a chain of birthdays woven with candlelight, piles of presents, voices of relatives singing and praising your promise and future, after the years of schooling, fitting yourself into different size desks, memorizing, reciting, reporting, and performing for jury after jury of teachers, counselors, and administrators, you still feel inadequate, alone, vulnerable, and naked in a world that can be unforgiving and terribly demanding.
V.C. Andrews (Into the Garden (Wildflowers, #5))
Over the weekend, Bruce introduced me to the game of backgammon, which was enjoying almost cult-like popularity in Los Angeles. He told me about a private club called PIPS that held tournaments on the weekends and was all the rage. Though I had never played the game before, something about backgammon brought the two hemispheres of my brain together, as Stuart had described. To win at backgammon, one needs strategy and luck. Bruce reveled in the role of playing teacher, and I knew if I put my mind to it, I could learn the game and become a fierce opponent, which I hoped would amuse Bruce and help keep a roof over my head. We stayed awake until dawn, snorting coke and playing backgammon. I don’t know if it was the game or the cocaine, but something made me intent on becoming the best.
Samantha Hart (Blind Pony: As True A Story As I Can Tell)
Same first name as a president and an obscure comic book character. Half-Jewish. Excellent grammar. Easily nauseated. Likes Reese's and Oreos (i.e. not an idiot). Divorced parents. Big brother to a fetus. Dad lives in Savannah. Dad's an English teacher. Mom's an epidemiologist. The problem is, I'm beginning to realize I hardly know anything about anyone. I mean I generally know who's a virgin. But I don't have a clue whether most people's parents are divorced, or what their parents do for a living. I mean, Nick's parents are doctors. But I don't know what Leah's mom does, and I don't even know what the deal is with her dad, because Leah never talks about him. I have no idea why Abby's dad and brother still live in DC. And these are my best friends. I've always thought of myself as nosy, but I guess I'm just nosy about stupid stuff. It's actually really terrible, now that I think about it.
Becky Albertalli (Simon vs. the Homo Sapiens Agenda (Simonverse, #1))
A chiropractor is a doctor who performs adjustments on the spine," Rickey told the class before bending Gary backward and "adjusting" him, ripping off the false arm and spraying red hair dye all over the classroom. Gary howled in "pain" and collapsed dramatically on the threadbare school carpet, his legs flailing a bit before hitting the floor with a terrible, final-sounding thunk. That was the first time they were sent to the principal's office together. They had to apologize to their teacher and explain to their classmates that doctor visits were unlikely to result in surprise dismemberments.
Poppy Z. Brite (Liquor (Rickey and G-Man #2))
Growing up is terribly wonderful. But often it’s also wonderfully terrible. Ha, a riddle of words amounting to nothing. A stuttering cleverism that falls as short as my feeble steps. But this is true. A teacher could become rich if he ever perfected the art of helping mature students unlearn many awful things. Enjoy your innocence, my dear. Even if it only lasts the day.
S.D. Smith (The Green Ember (The Green Ember #1))
Everyone is doing his job. No one is more valuable than another. The things in the world that we think are so terrible are actually great teachers. There’s no mistake, and there’s nothing lacking. We’re always going to get what we need, not what we think we need. Then we come to see that what we need is not only what we have, it’s what we want. Then we come to want only what is. That way we always succeed, whatever happens.
Byron Katie (A Thousand Names for Joy: Living in Harmony with the Way Things Are)
Early success is a terrible teacher. You’re essentially being rewarded for a lack of preparation, so when you find yourself in a situation where you must prepare, you can’t do it. You don’t know h
Chris Hadfield (An Astronaut's Guide to Life on Earth)
Teachers, let me tell you, are born deceivers of the lowest sort, since what they want from life is impossible — time-freed, existential youth forever. It commits them to terrible deceptions and departures from the truth. And literature, being lasting, is their ticket.
Richard Ford (The Sportswriter)
Failure can be a lousy teacher, because it seduces smart people into thinking their decisions were terrible when sometimes they just reflect the unforgiving realities of risk. The
Morgan Housel (The Psychology of Money: Timeless lessons on wealth, greed, and happiness)
it’s a terrible feeling when you first fall in love. your mind gets completely taken over, you can’t function properly anymore. the world turns into a dream place, nothing seems real. you forget your keys, no one seems to be talking English and even if they are you don’t care as you can’t hear what they’re saying anyway, and it doesn’t matter since your not really there. things you cared about before don’t seem to matter anymore and things you didn’t think you cared about suddenly do. I must become a brilliant cook, I don’t want to waste time seeing my friends when I could be with him, I feel no sympathy for all those people in India killed by an earthquake last night; what is the matter with me? It’s a kind of hell, but you feel like your in heaven. even your body goes out of control, you can’t eat, you don’t sleep properly, your legs turn to jelly as your not sure where the floor is anymore. you have butterflies permanently, not only in your tummy but all over your body - your hands, your shoulders, your chest, your eyes everything’s just a jangling mess of nerve endings tingling with fire. it makes you feel so alive. and yet its like being suffocated, you don’t seem to be able to see or hear anything real anymore, its like people are speaking to you through treacle, and so you stay in your cosy place with him, the place that only you two understand. occasionally your forced to come up for air by your biggest enemy, Real Life, so you do the minimum then head back down under your love blanket for more, knowing it’s uncomfortable but compulsory. and then, once you think you’ve got him, the panic sets in. what if he goes off me? what if I blow it, say the wrong thing? what if he meets someone better than me? Prettier, thinner, funnier, more like him? who doesn’t bite there nails? perhaps he doesn’t feel the same, maybe this is all in my head and this is just a quick fling for him. why did I tell him that stupid story about not owning up that I knew who spilt the ink on the teachers bag and so everyone was punished for it? does he think I'm a liar? what if I'm not very good at that blow job thing and he’s just being patient with me? he says he loves me; yes, well, we can all say words, can’t we? perhaps he’s just being polite. of course you do your best to keep all this to yourself, you don’t want him to think you're a neurotic nutcase, but now when he’s away doing Real Life it’s agony, your mind won’t leave you alone, it tortures you and examines your every moment spent together, pointing out how stupid you’ve been to allow yourself to get this carried away, how insane you are to imagine someone would feel like that about you. dad did his best to reassure me, but nothing he said made a difference - it was like I wanted to see Simon, but didn’t want him to see me.
Annabel Giles (Birthday Girls)
Remembering is an ethical act, has ethical value in and of itself. Memory is, achingly, the only relation we can have with the dead. So the belief that remembering is an ethical act is deep in our natures as humans, who know we are going to die, and who mourn those who in the normal course of things die before us—grandparents, parents, teachers, and older friends. Heartlessness and amnesia seem to go together. But history gives contradictory signals about the value of remembering in the much longer span of a collective history. There is simply too much injustice in the world. And too much remembering (of ancient grievances: Serbs, Irish) embitters. To make peace is to forget. To reconcile, it is necessary that memory be faulty and limited. If the goal is having some space in which to live one’s own life, then it is desirable that the account of specific injustices dissolve into a more general understanding that human beings everywhere do terrible things to one another. *   *   * P
Susan Sontag (Regarding the Pain of Others)
Unfortunately, under the sway of Romantic ideology, most of us end up being terrible teachers and equally terrible students. That’s because we don’t accept that it’s honest (let alone noble) to have things we might want to teach and areas where we might need to be taught. We
The School of Life (Relationships)
He is convinced that the people who might mean something to him will always misjudge him and pass him by. He is not so much afraid of loneliness as he is of accepting cheap substitutes; of making excuses to himself for a teacher who flatters him, of waking up some morning to find himself admiring a girl merely because she is accessible. He has a dread of easy compromises, and he is terribly afraid of being fooled.
Willa Cather (One of Ours)
But that's not even the problem. What his sentence (Those who can, do; those who can't, teach; those who can't teach teach the teachers and those who can't teach the teachers go into politics.) means isn't that incompetent people have found their place in the sun, but that nothing is harder or more unfair than human reality: humans live in a world where the ultimate skill is mastery of language. This is a terrible thing because basically we are primates who've been programmed to eat, sleep, reproduce, conquer and make our territory safe, and the ones who are most gifted at that, the most animal types among us, always get screwed by the others, the fine talkers, despite these latter being incapable of defending their own garden or bringing rabbit home for dinner or procreating properly. Humans live in a world where the weak are dominant.
Muriel Barbery
Oh, we women know things you don't know, you teachers, you readers and writers of books, we are the ones who wait around libraries when it's time to leave, or sit drinking coffee alone in the kitchen; we make crazy plans for marriage but have no man, we dream of stealing men, we are the ones who look slowly around when we get off a bus and can't even find what we are looking for, can't quite remember how we got there, we are always wondering what will come next, what terrible thing will come next. We are the ones who leaf through magazines with colored pictures and spend long heavy hours sunk in our bodies, thinking, remembering, dreaming, waiting for something to come to us and give a shape to so much pain.
Joyce Carol Oates
Francie always remembered what that kind teacher told her. “You know, Francie, a lot of people would think that these stories that you’re making up all the time were terrible lies because they are not the truth as people see the truth. In the future, when something comes up, you tell exactly how it happened but write down for yourself the way you think it should have happened. Tell the truth and write the story. Then you won’t get mixed up.
Betty Smith (A Tree Grows in Brooklyn)
Ladies and Gentlemen, I'd planned to speak to you tonight to report on the state of the Union, but the events of earlier today have led me to change those plans. Today is a day for mourning and remembering. Nancy and I are pained to the core by the tragedy of the shuttle Challenger. We know we share this pain with all of the people of our country. This is truly a national loss. Nineteen years ago, almost to the day, we lost three astronauts in a terrible accident on the ground. But we've never lost an astronaut in flight. We've never had a tragedy like this. And perhaps we've forgotten the courage it took for the crew of the shuttle. But they, the Challenger Seven, were aware of the dangers, but overcame them and did their jobs brilliantly. We mourn seven heroes: Michael Smith, Dick Scobee, Judith Resnik, Ronald McNair, Ellison Onizuka, Gregory Jarvis, and Christa McAuliffe. We mourn their loss as a nation together. For the families of the seven, we cannot bear, as you do, the full impact of this tragedy. But we feel the loss, and we're thinking about you so very much. Your loved ones were daring and brave, and they had that special grace, that special spirit that says, "Give me a challenge, and I'll meet it with joy." They had a hunger to explore the universe and discover its truths. They wished to serve, and they did. They served all of us. We've grown used to wonders in this century. It's hard to dazzle us. But for twenty-five years the United States space program has been doing just that. We've grown used to the idea of space, and, perhaps we forget that we've only just begun. We're still pioneers. They, the members of the Challenger crew, were pioneers. And I want to say something to the schoolchildren of America who were watching the live coverage of the shuttle's take-off. I know it's hard to understand, but sometimes painful things like this happen. It's all part of the process of exploration and discovery. It's all part of taking a chance and expanding man's horizons. The future doesn't belong to the fainthearted; it belongs to the brave. The Challenger crew was pulling us into the future, and we'll continue to follow them. I've always had great faith in and respect for our space program. And what happened today does nothing to diminish it. We don't hide our space program. We don't keep secrets and cover things up. We do it all up front and in public. That's the way freedom is, and we wouldn't change it for a minute. We'll continue our quest in space. There will be more shuttle flights and more shuttle crews and, yes, more volunteers, more civilians, more teachers in space. Nothing ends here; our hopes and our journeys continue. I want to add that I wish I could talk to every man and woman who works for NASA, or who worked on this mission and tell them: "Your dedication and professionalism have moved and impressed us for decades. And we know of your anguish. We share it." There's a coincidence today. On this day three hundred and ninety years ago, the great explorer Sir Francis Drake died aboard ship off the coast of Panama. In his lifetime the great frontiers were the oceans, and a historian later said, "He lived by the sea, died on it, and was buried in it." Well, today, we can say of the Challenger crew: Their dedication was, like Drake's, complete. The crew of the space shuttle Challenger honored us by the manner in which they lived their lives. We will never forget them, nor the last time we saw them, this morning, as they prepared for their journey and waved goodbye and "slipped the surly bonds of earth" to "touch the face of God." Thank you.
Ronald Reagan
Quinn once told me a story.” He waits for me to moan a grievance at the mention of a story, and when I don’t, his tone sinks into deeper gravity. “Once, in the days of Old Earth, there were two pigeons who were greatly in love. In those days, they raised such animals to carry messages across great distances. These two were born in the same cage, raised by the same man, and sold on the same day to different men on the eve of a great war. “The pigeons suffered apart from each other, each incomplete without their lover. Far and wide their masters took them, and the pigeons feared they would never again find each other, for they began to see how vast the world was, and how terrible the things in it. For months and months, they carried messages for their masters, flying over battle lines, through the air over men who killed one another for land. When the war ended, the pigeons were set free by their masters. But neither knew where to go, neither knew what to do, so each flew home. And there they found each other again, as they were always destined to return home and find, instead of the past, their future.” He folds his hands gently, a teacher arriving at his point. “So do I feel lost? Always. When Lea died at the Institute …” His lips slip gently downward. “… I was in a dark woods, blind and lost as Dante before Virgil. But Quinn helped me. Her voice calling me out of misery. She became my home. As she puts it, ‘Home isn’t where you’re from, it’s where you find light when all grows dark.’ ” He grasps the top of my hand. “Find your home, Darrow. It may not be in the past. But find it, and you’ll never be lost again.
Pierce Brown (Golden Son (Red Rising Saga, #2))
They had never had a nice teacher. They were terribly afraid of nice teachers.
Louis Sachar (Sideways Stories from Wayside School (Wayside School, #1))
The path of least resistance is a terrible teacher. We can’t afford to shy away from the things that intimidate us. We don’t need to take our weaknesses for granted. Are
Ryan Holiday (The Obstacle is the Way: The Timeless Art of Turning Adversity to Advantage)
The path of least resistance is a terrible teacher. We can’t afford to shy away from the things that intimidate us. We don’t need to take our weaknesses for granted.
Ryan Holiday (The Obstacle is the Way: The Timeless Art of Turning Adversity to Advantage)
Early success is a terrible teacher.
Chris Hadfield (An Astronaut's Guide to Life on Earth)
Early success is a terrible teacher.
Rhiannon Beaubien (The Great Mental Models Volume 3: Systems and Mathematics)
A critical faculty is a terrible thing. When I was eleven there were no bad films, just films I didn't want to see, there was no bad food, just Brussels sprouts and cabbage, and there were no bad books - everything I read was great. Then suddenly, I woke up in the morning and all that had changed. How could my sister not hear that David Cassidy was not in the same class as Black Sabbath? Why on EARTH would my English teacher think that 'The History of Mr Polly' was better than 'Ten Little Indians' by Agatha Christie? And from that moment on, enjoyment has been a much more elusive quality.
Nick Hornby (Fever Pitch)
Good is to be found neither in the sermons of religious teachers and prophets, nor in the teachings of sociologists and popular leaders, nor in the ethical systems of philosophers... And yet ordinary people bear love in their hearts, are naturally full of love and pity for any living thing. At the end of the day's work they prefer the warmth of the hearth to a bonfire in the public square. Yes, as well as this terrible Good with a capital 'G', there is everyday human kindness. The kindness of an old woman carrying a piece of bread to a prisoner, the kindness of a soldier allowing a wounded enemy to drink from his water-flask, the kindness of youth towards age, the kindness of a peasant hiding an old Jew in his loft. The kindness of a prison guard who risks his own liberty to pass on letters written by a prisoner not to his ideological comrades, but to his wife and mother. The private kindness of one individual towards another; a petty, thoughtless kindness; an unwitnessed kindness. Something we could call senseless kindness. A kindness outside any system of social or religious good. But if we think about it, we realize that this private, senseless, incidental kindness is in fact eternal. It is extended to everything living, even to a mouse, even to a bent branch that a man straightens as he walks by. Even at the most terrible times, through all the mad acts carried out in the name of Universal Good and the glory of States, times when people were tossed about like branches in the wind, filling ditches and gullies like stones in an avalanche – even then this senseless, pathetic kindness remained scattered throughout life like atoms of radium.
Vasily Grossman (Life and Fate)
One of the hardest things for a teacher is to know when to keep quiet and when to let go. It is a terrible thing to hold someone back from success, or to insist on sharing credit, or to tie someone to your apron strings. We need to have faith that we have done all we can, and then we need to kick our birds out of the nest.
Tim Gunn (Tim Gunn: The Natty Professor: A Master Class on Mentoring, Motivating, and Making It Work!)
...I am beginning to understand why those ancient women had to hide in caves. Why our parents and teachers and suitors want us to behave properly and predictably. It's not that they want to protect us; it's that they fear us.
Libba Bray (A Great and Terrible Beauty (Gemma Doyle, #1))
The only acceptable hobby, throughout all stages of life, is cookery. As a child: adorable baked items. Twenties: much appreciated spag bol and fry-ups. Thirties and forties: lovely stuff with butternut squash and chorizo from the Guardian food section. Fifties and sixties: beef wellington from the Sunday Telegraph magazine. Seventies and eighties: back to the adorable baked items. Perfect. The only teeny tiny downside of this hobby is that I HATE COOKING. Don't get me wrong; I absolutely adore the eating of the food. It's just the awful boring, frightening putting together of it that makes me want to shove my own fists in my mouth. It's a lovely idea: follow the recipe and you'll end up with something exactly like the pretty picture in the book, only even more delicious. But the reality's rather different. Within fifteen minutes of embarking on a dish I generally find myself in tears in the middle of what appears to be a bombsite, looking like a mentally unstable art teacher in a butter-splattered apron, wondering a) just how I am supposed to get hold of a thimble and a half of FairTrade hazelnut oil (why is there always the one impossible-to-find recipe ingredient? Sesame paste, anyone?) and b) just how I managed to get flour through two closed doors onto the living-room curtains, when I don't recall having used any flour and oh-this-is-terrible-let's-just-go-out-and-get-a-Wagamama's-and-to-hell-with-the-cost, dammit.
Miranda Hart (Is It Just Me?)
It's one of my profound thoughts, but it came from another profound thought. It was one of Papa's guests, at the dinner party yesterday, who said: "Those who can, do; those who can't, teach; those who can't teach teach the teachers; and those who can't teach the teachers, go into politics." Everyone seemed to find this very inspiring but for the wrong reasons . . . It doesn't mean what you think it does at the outset. If people could climb higher in the social hierarchy in proportion to their incompetence, I guarantee the world would not go around the way it does. But that's not even the problem. What his sentence means isn't that incompetent people have found their place in the sun, but that nothing is harder or more unfair than human reality: humans live in a world where it's words and not deeds that have power, where the ultimate scale is mastery of language. This is a terrible thing because basically we are primates who've been programmed to eat, sleep, reproduce, conquer and make our territory safe, and the ones who are most gifted at that, the most animal types among us, always get screwed by the others, the fine talkers, despite these latter being incapable of defending their own garden or bringing a rabbit home for dinner or procreating properly. Humans live in a world where the weak are dominant. This is a terrible insult to our animal nature, a sort of perversion or a deep contradiction.
Muriel Barbery (The Elegance of the Hedgehog)
The black mother perceives destruction at every door, ruination at each window, and even she herself is not beyond her own suspicion. She questions whether she loves her children enough- or more terribly, does she love them too much? Do her looks cause embarrassment- or even terrifying, is she so attractive her sons begin to desire her and her daughters begin to hate her. If she is unmarried, the challenges are increased. Her singleness indicates she has rejected or has been rejected by her mate. Yet she is raising children who will become mates. Beyond her door, all authority is in the hands of people who do not look or think or act like her children. Teachers, doctors, sales, clerks, policemen, welfare workers who are white and exert control over her family’s moods, conditions and personality, yet within the home, she must display a right to rule which at any moment, by a knock at the door, or a ring in the telephone, can be exposed as false. In the face of this contradictions she must provide a blanket of stability, which warms but does not suffocate, and she must tell her children the truth about the power of white power without suggesting that it cannot be challenged.
Maya Angelou (The Heart of a Woman)
I don't like to overhear things, because, in my experience, things your parents are keeping quiet about are things you don't want to know. It doesn't feel good to know that your grandparents are getting separated because your grandfather lost his temper and gave your grandmother a slap across the face after fifty-two years of being married with no problems at all. It doesn't feel good to know ahead of time what you'll be getting for Christmas or birthdays so that you have to act surprised even though you're a terrible liar. It doesn't feel good to know that your teacher told your mother at a conference that you're an average student in math and English and that you should be happy with that.
Carol Rifka Brunt (Tell the Wolves I'm Home)
A playground is a great place to be a bully, and a terrible place to be a victim, if the teachers don’t care who started it.
Eliezer Yudkowsky (Rationality: From AI to Zombies)
I’m sure the driver was a great guy and all he wanted was to drive me to my hotel—but he was a complete stranger to me and the truth is that being vigilant isn’t a part-time job, it’s not about being nice to people, it’s about reality. I made a terrible mistake once, believing the monsters that want to hurt us are easily labeled and identified, rather than walking and hiding amongst us. That’s my reality.
Tucker Elliot (The Rainy Season)
Don’t seek out elaborate metaphors,” her English teacher had said of her school essays, but her mother’s death had revealed that there was no metaphor too ostentatious for grief. It was a terrible thing and demanded embellishment.
Kate Atkinson (Transcription)
Some books about the Holocaust are more difficult to read than others. Some books about the Holocaust are nearly impossible to read. Not because one does not understand the language and concepts in the books, not because they are gory or graphic, but because such books are confrontational. They compel us to “think again,” or to think for the first time, about issues and questions we might rather avoid. Gabriel Wilensky’s book, Six Million Crucifixions: How Christian Antisemitism Paved the Road to the Holocaust is one book I found difficult, almost impossible to read. Why? Because I had to confront the terrible underside of Christian theology, an underside that contributed in no small part to the beliefs and attitudes too many Christians – Catholic, Protestant, and Orthodox – had imbibed throughout centuries of anti-Jewish preaching and teaching that “paved the road to the Holocaust.” I cannot say that I “liked” Gabriel Wilensky’s book, Six Million Crucifixions: How Christian Antisemitism Paved the Road to the Holocaust. I didn’t, but I can say it was instructive and forced me to think again about that Jew from Nazareth, Jesus, and about his message of universal love and service – “What you do for the least of my brothers [and sisters], you do for me” (Matthew 25: 40). As Abraham Joshua Heschel once said, the Holocaust did not begin with Auschwitz. The Holocaust began with words. And too many of those hate-filled words had their origin in the Christian Scriptures and were uttered by Christian preachers and teachers, by Christians generally, for nearly two millennia. Is it any wonder so many Christians stood by, even participated in, the destruction of the European Jews during the Nazi era and World War II? I recommend Six Million Crucifixions: How Christian Antisemitism Paved the Road to the Holocaust because all of us Christians – Catholic, Protestant, and Orthodox – must think again, or think for the first time, about how to teach and preach the Christian Scriptures – the “New Testament” writings – in such a way that the words we utter, the attitudes we encourage, do not demean, disrespect, or disregard our Jewish brothers and sisters, that our words do not demean, disrespect, or disregard Judaism. I hope the challenge is not an impossible one.
Carol Rittner
The only person there was little Sipho Fondini from Standard Six, writing on the wall: "Liberation first, then education." He saw me and called out: "Is the spelling right, Mr M?" And he meant it! The young eyes in that smoke-stained little face were terribly serious. Somewhere else a police van raced past me crowded with children who should have also been at their desks in school. Their hands waving desperately through the bars, their voices called out: "Teacher! Teacher! Help us! Tell our mothers! Tell or fathers!
Athol Fugard (My Children! My Africa! (TCG Edition))
He is not so much afraid of loneliness as he is of accepting cheap substitutes; of making excuses to himself for a teacher who flatters him, of waking up some morning to find himself admiring a girl merely because she is accessible. He has a dread of easy compromises, and he is terribly afraid of being fooled.
Willa Cather
Preppy tries to hide his crooked smile and narrows his eyes at his son. “Bo, what did we say about using those kinds of words?” Bo recites his answer without apology, like he’s remembering them from a textbook. “Not to say them in front of my mother, my sisters, or my teachers because they don't understand that swearing is a sign of emotional intelligence according to recent medical psychological studies in major publications. And socially not acceptable for an eight-year-old to use in public because it makes mom look like she’s not doing her job when we all know that my terrible language is all your fault.” Preppy nods. “That’s right.
T.M. Frazier (King of the Causeway (King, #9.5))
He thought that in the beauty of the world were hid a secret. He though the world's heart beat at some terrible cost and that the world's pain and its beauty moved in a relationship of diverging equity and that in this headlong deficit the blood of multitudes might ultimately be exacted for the vision of a single flower.
Cormac McCarthy (All the Pretty Horses by Cormac Mc Carthy: Teacher Guide (Novel Units))
I've thought of myself a girl on several occasions because I like to polish shoes and find household tasks amusing. There was once even a time when I insisted on mending a torn suit with my own hands. And in winter I always light the heating stoves myself, as though this were the natural course of things. But of course I'm not a real girl. Please give me a moment to consider all this would entail. The first thing that comes to mind is the question of whether I might possibly be a girl has never, never, not for a single moment, troubled me, rattled my bourgeois composure or made me unhappy. An absolutely by no means unhappy person stands before you, I'd like to put quite special emphasis on this, for I have never experienced sexual torment or distress, for I was never at a loss for quite simple methods of freeing myself from pressures. A rather curious, that is to say, important discovery for me was that it filled me with the most delightful gaiety to imagine myself someone's servant.... My nature, then, merely inclines me to treat people well, to be helpful and so forth. Not long ago I carried with flabbergasting zeal a shopping bag full of new potatoes for a petit bourgeoise. She's have been perfectly able to tote it herself. Now my situation is this: my particular nature also sometimes seeks, I've discovered, a mother, a teacher, that is, to express myself better, an unapproachable entity, a sort of goddess. At times I find the goddess in an instant, whereas at others it takes time before I'm able to imagine her, that is, find her bright, bountiful figure and sense her power. And to achieve a moment of human happiness, I must always first think up a story containing an encounter between myself and another person, whereby I am always the subordinate, obedient, sacrificing, scrutinized, and chaperoned party. There's more to it, of course, quite a lot, but this still sheds light on a few things. Many conclude it must be terribly easy to carry out a course of treatment, as it were, upon my person, but they're all gravely mistaken. For, the moment anyone seems ready to start lording and lecturing it over me, something within me begins to laugh, to jeer, and then, of course, respect is out of the question, and within the apparently worthless individual arises a superior one whom I never expel when he appears in me....
Robert Walser (The Robber)
I know an American family that spent several years living in England. They had one son, who was an average student: not great, but not terrible. When the family returned home to the United States, the parents enrolled him in the local public school. Mom was startled by the continual drumbeat from teachers and other parents: “Maybe your son has ADHD. Have you considered trying a medication?” She told me, “It was weird, like everybody was in on this conspiracy to medicate my son. In England, none of the kids is on medication. Or if they are, it’s a secret. But I really don’t think many are. Here it seems like almost all the kids are on medication. Especially the boys.
Leonard Sax (The Collapse of Parenting: How We Hurt Our Kids When We Treat Them Like Grown-Ups)
This, to be sure, is not the entire truth. For there were individuals in Germany who from the very beginning of the regime and without ever wavering were opposed to Hitler; no one knows how many there were of them—perhaps a hundred thousand, perhaps many more, perhaps many fewer—for their voices were never heard. They could be found everywhere, in all strata of society, among the simple people as well as among the educated, in all parties, perhaps even in the ranks of the N.S.D.A.P. Very few of them were known publicly, as were the aforementioned Reck-Malleczewen or the philosopher Karl Jaspers. Some of them were truly and deeply pious, like an artisan of whom I know, who preferred having his independent existence destroyed and becoming a simple worker in a factory to taking upon himself the “little formality” of entering the Nazi Party. A few still took an oath seriously and preferred, for example, to renounce an academic career rather than swear by Hitler’s name. A more numerous group were the workers, especially in Berlin, and Socialist intellectuals who tried to aid the Jews they knew. There were finally, the two peasant boys whose story is related in Günther Weisenborn’s Der lautlose Aufstand (1953), who were drafted into the S.S. at the end of the war and refused to sign; they were sentenced to death, and on the day of their execution they wrote in their last letter to their families: “We two would rather die than burden our conscience with such terrible things. We know what the S.S. must carry out.” The position of these people, who, practically speaking, did nothing, was altogether different from that of the conspirators. Their ability to tell right from wrong had remained intact, and they never suffered a “crisis of conscience.” There may also have been such persons among the members of the resistance, but they were hardly more numerous in the ranks of the conspirators than among the people at large. They were neither heroes nor saints, and they remained completely silent. Only on one occasion, in a single desperate gesture, did this wholly isolated and mute element manifest itself publicly: this was when the Scholls, two students at Munich University, brother and sister, under the influence of their teacher Kurt Huber distributed the famous leaflets in which Hitler was finally called what he was—a “mass murderer.
Hannah Arendt (Eichmann in Jerusalem: A Report on the Banality of Evil)
You see that God deems it right to take from me any claim to merit for what you call my devotion to you. I have promised to remain forever with you, and now I could not break my promise if I would. The treasure will be no more mine than yours, and neither of us will quit this prison. But my real treasure is not that, my dear friend, which awaits me beneath the somber rocks of Monte Cristo, it is your presence, our living together five or six hours a day, in spite of our jailers; it is the rays of intelligence you have elicited from my brain, the languages you have implanted in my memory, and which have taken root there with all of their philological ramifications. These different sciences that you have made so easy to me by the depth of the knowledge you possess of them, and the clearness of the principles to which you have reduced them – this is my treasure, my beloved friend, and with this you have made me rich and happy. Believe me, and take comfort, this is better for me than tons of gold and cases of diamonds, even were they not as problematical as the clouds we see in the morning floating over the sea, which we take for terra firma, and which evaporate and vanish as we draw near to them. To have you as long as possible near me, to hear your eloquent speech, -- which embellishes my mind, strengthens my soul, and makes my whole frame capable of great and terrible things, if I should ever be free, -- so fills my whole existence, that the despair to which I was just on the point of yielding when I knew you, has no longer any hold over me; this – this is my fortune – not chimerical, but actual. I owe you my real good, my present happiness; and all the sovereigns of the earth, even Caesar Borgia himself, could not deprive me of this.
Alexandre Dumas (The Count of Monte Cristo)
The greatest challenge a teacher has to accept is the courage to be; if we are, we make mistakes; we say too much where we should have said nothing; we do not speak where a word might have made all the difference. If we are, we will make terrible errors. But we still have to have the courage to struggle on, trusting in our own points of reference to show us the way.
Madeleine L'Engle (A Circle of Quiet (Crosswicks Journals #1))
France always remembered what that kind teacher told her. "You know, Francie, a lot of people would think that these stories that you're making up all the time were terrible lies because they are not the truth as people see the truth. In the future, when something comes up, you tell exactly how it happened but write down for yourself the way you think it should have happened. Tell the truth and write the story. Then you won't get mixed up,
Betty Smith (A Tree Grows in Brooklyn)
All teachers must face the fact that they are potential points of reference. The greatest challenge a teacher has to accept is the courage to be; if we are, we make mistakes; we say too much where we should have said nothing; we do not speak where a word might have made all the difference. If we are, we will make terrible errors. But we still have to have the courage to struggle on, trusting in our own points of reference to show us the way.
Madeleine L'Engle (The Crosswicks Journals: A Circle of Quiet, The Summer of the Great-Grandmother, The Irrational Season, and Two-Part Invention)
Terrible as this is, there’s worse news. An article in the New York Times points out a statistic that should make our nation’s leaders tremble… suspension rates, kindergarten through high school, have nearly doubled from the early 1970s through 2006. Whatever is happening with our test scores, something else, something catastrophic, is going on in our schools. As countless teachers across America can testify, disruptive kids are hijacking our classrooms.
Chris Biffle (Whole Brain Teaching: 122 Amazing Games!: Challenging Kids, Classroom Management, Writing, Reading, Math, Common Core/State Tests)
It is the teacher's and the lawmaker's responsibility to allow the child to express his feelings about growing up. What happens to a child at that particular age? It is a terribly vulnerable time, and if we provide youths with an environment to be free, to be expressive, without embarrassing them, without shaming them, they would grow up to be healthy, compassionate adults. Instead, if we force them to “belong, belong, belong,” they all become repressed. There is a complete absence of options.
Cyril Wong
False hope?’ repeated Professor McGonagall, still refusing to look round at Professor Umbridge. ‘He has achieved high marks in all his Defence Against the Dark Arts tests –’ ‘I’m terribly sorry to have to contradict you, Minerva, but as you will see from my note, Harry has been achieving very poor results in his classes with me –’ ‘I should have made my meaning plainer,’ said Professor McGonagall, turning at last to look Umbridge directly in the eyes. ‘He has achieved high marks in all Defence Against the Dark Arts tests set by a competent teacher.
J.K. Rowling (Harry Potter and the Order of the Phoenix (Harry Potter, #5))
As the first clod of earth hit her mother’s coffin, Juliet could barely catch a breath. Her mother would suffocate beneath all that earth, she thought, but Juliet was suffocating too. An image came to her mind—the martyrs who were pressed to death by stones piled on top of them. That is me, she thought, I am crushed by loss. “Don’t seek out elaborate metaphors,” her English teacher had said of her school essays, but her mother’s death had revealed that there was no metaphor too ostentatious for grief. It was a terrible thing and demanded embellishment.
Kate Atkinson (Transcription)
A reflection on Robert Lowell Robert Lowell knew I was not one of his devotees. I attended his famous “office hours” salon only a few times. Life Studies was not a book of central importance for me, though I respected it. I admired his writing, but not the way many of my Boston friends did. Among poets in his generation, poems by Elizabeth Bishop, Alan Dugan, and Allen Ginsberg meant more to me than Lowell’s. I think he probably sensed some of that. To his credit, Lowell nevertheless was generous to me (as he was to many other young poets) just the same. In that generosity, and a kind of open, omnivorous curiosity, he was different from my dear teacher at Stanford, Yvor Winters. Like Lowell, Winters attracted followers—but Lowell seemed almost dismayed or a little bewildered by imitators; Winters seemed to want disciples: “Wintersians,” they were called. A few years before I met Lowell, when I was still in California, I read his review of Winters’s Selected Poems. Lowell wrote that, for him, Winters’s poetry passed A. E. Housman’s test: he felt that if he recited it while he was shaving, he would cut himself. One thing Lowell and Winters shared, that I still revere in both of them, was a fiery devotion to the vocal essence of poetry: the work and interplay of sentences and lines, rhythm and pitch. The poetry in the sounds of the poetry, in a reader’s voice: neither page nor stage. Winters criticizing the violence of Lowell’s enjambments, or Lowell admiring a poem in pentameter for its “drill-sergeant quality”: they shared that way of thinking, not matters of opinion but the matter itself, passionately engaged in the art and its vocal—call it “technical”—materials. Lowell loved to talk about poetry and poems. His appetite for that kind of conversation seemed inexhaustible. It tended to be about historical poetry, mixed in with his contemporaries. When he asked you, what was Pope’s best work, it was as though he was talking about a living colleague . . . which in a way he was. He could be amusing about that same sort of thing. He described Julius Caesar’s entourage waiting in the street outside Cicero’s house while Caesar chatted up Cicero about writers. “They talked about poetry,” said Lowell in his peculiar drawl. “Caesar asked Cicero what he thought of Jim Dickey.” His considerable comic gift had to do with a humor of self and incongruity, rather than wit. More surreal than donnish. He had a memorable conversation with my daughter Caroline when she was six years old. A tall, bespectacled man with a fringe of long gray hair came into her living room, with a certain air. “You look like somebody famous,” she said to him, “but I can’t remember who.” “Do I?” “Yes . . . now I remember!— Benjamin Franklin.” “He was a terrible man, just awful.” “Or no, I don’t mean Benjamin Franklin. I mean you look like a Christmas ornament my friend Heather made out of Play-Doh, that looked like Benjamin Franklin.” That left Robert Lowell with nothing to do but repeat himself: “Well, he was a terrible man.” That silly conversation suggests the kind of social static or weirdness the man generated. It also happens to exemplify his peculiar largeness of mind . . . even, in a way, his engagement with the past. When he died, I realized that a large vacuum had appeared at the center of the world I knew.
Robert Pinsky
At this point, perhaps you Hushlanders are beginning to doubt the truth of this narrative. You have seen several odd and inexplicable things happen. (Though, just as a warning, the story so far has actually been quite tame. Just wait until we get to the part with the talking dinosaurs.) Some readers might even think that I’m just making this story up. You might think that everything in this book is dreamy silliness. This book is serious. Terribly serious. Your skepticism results from a lifetime of training in the Librarians’ school system, where you were taught all kinds of lies. Indeed, you’d probably never even heard of the Smedrys, despite the fact that they are the most famous family of Oculators in the entire world. In most parts of the Free Kingdoms, being a Smedry is considered equivalent to being nobility. (If you wish to perform a fun test, next time you are in history class, ask your teacher about the Smedrys. If your teacher is a Librarian spy, he or she will get red-faced and give you a detention. If, on the other hand, your teacher is innocent, he or she will simply be confused, then likely give you a detention.)
Brandon Sanderson (Alcatraz Versus the Evil Librarians (Alcatraz, #1))
A critical faculty is a terrible thing. When I was eleven there were no bad films, just films that I didn't want to see, there was no bad food, just Brussels sprouts and cabbage, and there were no bad books - everything I read was great. Then suddenly, I woke up in the morning and all that had changed. How could my sister not hear that David Cassidy was not in the same class as Black Sabbath. Why on earth would my English teacher think that The History of Mr Polly was better than Ten Little Indians by Agatha Christie? And from that moment on, enjoyment has been a much more elusive quality.
Nick Hornby
WHEN ASKED “ What do we need to learn this for?” any high-school teacher can confidently answer that, regardless of the subject, the knowledge will come in handy once the student hits middle age and starts working crossword puzzles in order to stave off the terrible loneliness. Because it’s true. Latin, geography, the gods of ancient Greece and Rome: unless you know these things, you’ll be limited to doing the puzzles in People magazine, where the clues read “Movie title, Gone ____ the Wind” and “It holds up your pants.” It’s not such a terrible place to start, but the joy of accomplishment wears off fairly quickly.
David Sedaris (Me Talk Pretty One Day)
For the rest of Kat’s childhood, she moved from one relative’s house to another’s, up and down the East Coast, living in four homes before entering high school. Finally, in high school, she lived for a few years with her grandmother, her mom’s mom, whom she called “G-Ma.” No one ever talked about her mom’s murder. “In my family, my past was ‘The Big Unmentionable’—including my role in putting my own father in jail,” she says. In high school, Kat appeared to be doing well. She was an honor student who played four varsity sports. Beneath the surface, however, “I was secretly self-medicating with alcohol because otherwise, by the time everything stopped and it got quiet at night, I could not sleep, I would just lie there and a terrible panic would overtake me.” She went to college, failed out, went back, and graduated. She went to work in advertising, and one day, dissatisfied, quit. She went back to grad school, piling up debt. She became a teacher. Kat quit that job too, when a relationship she had formed with another teacher imploded. At the age of thirty-four, Kat went to stay with her brother and his family in Hawaii. She got a job as a valet, parking cars. “I’d come home from parking cars all day and curl up on my bed in the back bedroom of my brother’s house, and lie there feeling desperate and alone, my heart beating with anxiety.
Donna Jackson Nakazawa (Childhood Disrupted: How Your Biography Becomes Your Biology, and How You Can Heal)
God’s people have turned to the amusements of the world to try to squeeze a bit of juice out of them for the relief of their dry and joyless hearts. “Gospel” boogie singing now furnishes for many persons the only religious joy they know. Others wipe their eyes tenderly over “gospel” movies, and a countless number of amusements flourish everywhere, paid for by the consecrated tithes of persons who ought to know better. Our teachers took away our right to be happy in God and the human heart wreaked its terrible vengeance by going on a fleshly binge from which the evangelical Church will not soon recover, if indeed it ever does. For multitudes of professed Christians today the Holy Spirit is not a necessity. They have learned to cheer their hearts and warm their hands at other fires. And scores of publishers and various grades of “producers” are waxing fat on their delinquency.
A.W. Tozer (The Root of the Righteous)
And those terrible angels—the angel of annihilation—is a beautiful thing, is the maker, too, of joy, and is partly what Zadie Smith’s talking about when she talks about being in joy. That it’s not a feeling or an accomplishment: it’s an entering and a joining with the terrible (the old German kind), joy is. Among the most beautiful things I’ve ever heard anyone say came from my student Bethany, talking about her pedagogical aspirations or ethos, how she wanted to be as a teacher, and what she wanted her classrooms to be: “What if we joined our wildernesses together?” Sit with that for a minute. That the body, the life, might carry a wilderness, an unexplored territory, and that yours and mine might somewhere, somehow, meet. Might, even, join. And what if the wilderness—perhaps the densest wild in there—thickets, bogs, swamps, uncrossable ravines and rivers (have I made the metaphor clear?)—is our sorrow? Or, to use Smith’s term, the “intolerable.” It astonishes me sometimes—no, often—how every person I get to know—everyone, regardless of everything, by which I mean everything—lives with some profound personal sorrow. Brother addicted. Mother murdered. Dad died in surgery. Rejected by their family. Cancer came back. Evicted. Fetus not okay. Everyone, regardless, always, of everything. Not to mention the existential sorrow we all might be afflicted with, which is that we, and what we love, will soon be annihilated. Which sounds more dramatic than it might. Let me just say dead. Is this, sorrow, of which our impending being no more might be the foundation, the great wilderness? Is sorrow the true wild? And if it is—and if we join them—your wild to mine—what’s that? For joining, too, is a kind of annihilation. What if we joined our sorrows, I’m saying. I’m saying: What if that is joy?
Ross Gay (The Book of Delights: Essays)
I looked over at her, surprised. Susan Brooks was one of those girls who never say anything unless called upon, the ones that teachers always have to ask to speak up, please. A very studious, very serious girl. A rather pretty but not terribly bright girl-the kind who isn't allowed to give up and take the general or the commercial courses, because she had a terribly bright older brother or older sister, and teachers expect comparable things from her. In fine, one of those girls who are holding the dirty end of the stick with as much good grace and manners as they can muster. Usually they marry truck drivers and move to the West Coast, where they have kitchen nooks with Formica counters-and they write letters to the Folks Back East as seldom as they can get away with. They make quiet, successful lives for themselves and grow prettier as the shadow of the bright older brother or sister falls away from them.
Stephen King (The Bachman Books)
As youngest among us, but small no more, Your life can be trying, for we have the chore Of becoming your teachers, a terrible bore. "We've got experience! Take it from me!" "We've done this all before, you see. We know the ropes, we know the same." Since time immemorial, always the same. One's own shortcomings are nothing but fluff, But everyone else's are heavier stuff: Faultfinding comes easy when this is our plight, But it's hard for your parents, try as they might, To treat you with fairness, and kindness as well; Nitpicking's a habit that's hard to dispel. Men you're living with old folks, all you can do Is put up with their nagging -- it's hard but it's true. The pill may be bitter, but down it must go, For it's meant to keep the peace, you know. The many months here have not been in vain, Since wasting time noes against your Brain. You read and study nearly all the day, Determined to chase the boredom away. The more difficult question, much harder to bear, Is "What on earth do I have to wear? I've got no more panties, my clothes are too tight, My shirt is a loincloth, I'm really a siaht! To put on my shoes I must off my toes, Dh dear, I'm plagued with so many woes!
Anne Frank (The Diary of a Young Girl)
teacher in class. “The Divorce Fantasy will never happen,” I mumble finally, staring at my fingernails. “The Divorce Fantasy will never happen,” he repeats with emphasis. “The judge will never read a two-hundred-page dossier on Daniel’s shortcomings aloud in court, while a crowd jeers at your ex-husband. He will never start his summing up, ‘Ms. Graveney, you are a saint to have put up with such an evil scumbag and I thus award you everything you want.’ ” I can’t help coloring. That is pretty much my Divorce Fantasy. Except in my version, the crowd throws bottles at Daniel too. “Daniel will never admit to being wrong,” Barnaby presses on relentlessly. “He’ll never stand in front of the judge, weeping and saying, ‘Fliss, please forgive me.’ The papers will never report your divorce with the headline: TOTAL SHIT ADMITS FULL SHITTINESS IN COURT.” I can’t help half-snorting with laughter. “I do know that.” “Do you, Fliss?” Barnaby sounds skeptical. “Are you sure about that? Or are you still expecting him to wake up one day and realize all the bad things he’s done? Because you have to understand, Daniel will never realize anything. He’ll never confess to being a terrible human being. I could spend a thousand hours on this case, it would still never happen.
Sophie Kinsella (Wedding Night)
Morning comes. I go to my class. There sit the little ones with folded arms. In their eyes is still all the shy astonishment of the childish years. They look up at me so trustingly, so believingly - and suddenly I get a spasm over the heart. Here I stand before you, one of the hundreds of thousands of bankrupt men in whom the war destroyed every belief and almost every strength. Here I stand before you, and see how much more alive, how much more rooted in life you are than I. Here I stand and must now be your teacher and guide. What should I teach you? Should I tell you that in twenty years you will be dried-up and crippled, maimed in your freest impulses, all pressed mercilessly into the selfsame mold? Should I tell you that all the learning, all culture, all science is nothing but hideous mockery, so long as mankind makes war in the name of God and humanity with gas, iron, explosive and fire? What should I teach you then, you little creatures who alone have remained unspotted by the terrible years? What am I able to teach you then? Should I tell you how to pull the string of a hand grenade, how best to throw it at a human being? Should I show you how to stab a man with a bayonet, how to fell him with a club, how to slaughter him with a spade? Should I demonstrate how best to aim a rifle at such an incomprehensible miracle as a breathing breast, a living heart? Should I explain to you what tetanus is, what a broken spine is, and what a shattered skull? Should I describe to you what brains look like when they scatter about? What crushed bones are like - and intestines when they pour out? Should I mimic how a man with a stomach wound will groan, how one with a lung wound gurgles and one with a head wound whistles? More I do not know. More I have not learned. Should I take you the brown-and-green map there, move my finger across it and tell you that here love was murdered? Should I explain to you that the books you hold in your hands are but nets with which men design to snare your simple souls, to entangle you in the undergrowth of find phrases, and in the barbed wire of falsified ideas? I stand here before you, a polluted, a guilty man and can only implore you ever to remain as you are, never to suffer the bright light of your childhood to be misused as a blow flame of hate. About your brows still blows the breath of innocence. How then should I presume to teach you? Behind me, still pursuing, are the bloody years. - How then can I venture among you? Must I not first become a man again myself?
Erich Maria Remarque (The Road Back)
What did Kavinsky say about it?” Chris asks me. “Nothing yet. He’s still at lacrosse practice.” My phone immediately starts to buzz, and the three of us look at each other, wide-eyed. Margot picks it up and looks at it. “It’s Peter!” She hot-potatoes the phone to me. “Let’s give them some privacy,” she says, nudging Chris. Chris shrugs her off. I ignore both of them and answer the phone. “Hello.” My voice comes out thin as a reed. Peter starts talking fast. “Okay, I’ve seen the video, and the first thing I’m going to say to you is don’t freak out.” He’s breathing hard; it sounds like he’s running. “Don’t freak out? How can I not? This is terrible. Do you know what they’re all saying about me in the comments? That I’m a slut. They think we’re having sex in that video, Peter.” “Never read the comments, Covey! That’s the first rule of--” “If you say ‘Fight Club’ to me right now, I will hang up on you.” “Sorry. Okay, I know it sucks but--” “It doesn’t ‘suck.’ It’s a literal nightmare. My most private moment, for everybody to see. I’m completely humiliated. The things people are saying--” My voice breaks. Kitty and Margot and Chris are all looking at me with sad eyes, which makes me feel even sadder. “Don’t cry, Lara Jean. Please don’t cry. I promise you I’m going to fix this. I’m going to get whoever runs Anonybitch to take it down.” “How? We don’t even know who they are! And besides, I bet our whole school’s seen it by now. Teachers, too. I know for a fact that teachers look at Anonybitch. I was in the faculty lounge once and I overheard Mr. Filipe and Ms. Ryan saying how bad it makes our school look. And what about college admission boards and our future employers?” Peter guffaws. “Future employers? Covey, I’ve seen much worse. Hell, I’ve seen worse pictures of me on here. Remember that picture of me with my head in a toilet bowl, and I’m naked?” I shudder. “I never saw that picture. Besides, that’s you; that’s not me. I don’t do that kind of stuff.” “Just trust me, okay? I promise I’ll take care of it.” I nod, even though I know he can’t see me. Peter is powerful. If anyone could fix such a thing, it would be him. “Listen, I’ve gotta go. Coach is gonna kick my ass if he sees me on the phone. I’ll call you tonight, okay? Don’t go to sleep.” I don’t want to hang up. I wish we could talk longer. “Okay,” I whisper. When I hang up, Margot, Chris, and Kitty are all three staring at me. “Well?” Chris says. “He says he’ll take care of it.” Smugly Kitty says, “I told you so.” “What does that even mean, ‘he’ll take care of it’?” Margot asks. “He hasn’t exactly proven himself to be responsible.” “It’s not his fault,” Kitty and I say at the same time.
Jenny Han (P.S. I Still Love You (To All the Boys I've Loved Before, #2))
They had this course you had to take, Oral Expression. That I flunked. 'Why?' 'Oh, I don't know.' I didn't feel much like going into it. I was still feeling sort of dizzy or something, and I had a helluva headache all of a sudden. I really did. But you could tell he was interested, so I told him a little bit about it. 'It's this course where each boy in class has to get up in class and make a speech. You know. Spontaneous and all. And if the boy digresses at all, you're supposed to yell "Digression!" at him as fast as you can. It just about drove me crazy. I got an F in it.' 'Why?' 'Oh, I don't know. That digression business got on my nerves. I don't know. The trouble with me is, I like it when somebody digresses. It's more interesting and all.' 'You don't care to have somebody stick to the point when he tells you something?' 'Oh, sure! I like somebody to stick to the point and all. But I don't like them to stick too much to the point. I don't know. I guess I don't like it when somebody sticks to the point all the time. The boys that got the best marks in Oral Expression were the ones that stuck to the point all the time—I admit it. But there was this one boy, Richard Kinsella. He didn't stick to the point too much, and they were always yelling "Digression!" at him. It was terrible, because in the first place, he was a very nervous guy—I mean he was a very nervous guy—and his lips were always shaking whenever it was his time to make a speech, and you could hardly hear him if you were sitting way in the back of the room. When his lips sort of quit shaking a little bit, though, I liked his speeches better than anybody else's. He practically flunked the course, though, too. He got a D plus because they kept yelling "Digression!" at him all the time. For instance, he made this speech about this farm his father bought in Vermont. They kept yelling "Digression!" at him the whole time he was making it, and this teacher, Mr. Vinson, gave him an F on it because he hadn't told what kind of animals and vegetables and stuff grew on the farm and all. What he did was, Richard Kinsella, he'd start telling you all about that stuff—then all of a sudden he'd start telling you about this letter his mother got from his uncle, and how his uncle got polio and all when he was forty-two years old, and how he wouldn't let anybody come to see him in the hospital because he didn't want anybody to see him with a brace on. It didn't have much to do with the farm—I admit it—but it was nice. It's nice when somebody tells you about their uncle. Especially when they start out telling you about their father's farm and then all of a sudden get more interested in their uncle. I mean it's dirty to keep yelling "Digression!" at him when he's all nice and excited... I don't know. It's hard to explain.' I didn't feel too much like trying, either. For one thing, I had this terrific headache all of a sudden. I wished to God old Mrs. Antolini would come in with the coffee. That's something that annoys hell out of me—I mean if somebody says the coffee's all ready and it isn't.
J.D. Salinger (The Catcher in the Rye)
Obama’s narrative culminates in his month-long journey to Africa, where he talks to various relatives about who his dad really was, and then weeps at the man’s grave. It’s powerful stuff. But at first glance it’s a little hard for the reader to understand Obama’s depth of allegiance. His dad was, after all, a complete jerk. He married Kezia in Kenya and had two children with her. Before the second child was born, he abandoned his family to come to America. There he met Obama’s mother Ann, got her pregnant, and then married her, but without telling her he was already married. When Obama was two, his father abandoned him and his mother to go to Harvard; there he moved in with a teacher, Ruth Nidesand. Eventually he took Nidesand back to Africa, married her, and had two children with her. But he also rejoined his African wife, Kezia, and had two more children with her. Later in life he took up with still another woman, Jael Otieno, and impregnated her. The two of them planned to get married after the child was born, but the marriage never took place. By the time he was done, Barack Sr. managed a grand total of three wives, one wife-to-be, and eight children. He was a terrible husband and a worse father; he neglected virtually all his offspring, and one of his sons has accused him of domestic violence. In the words of Mark Ndesandjo, who is the son of Obama Sr. and Nidesand, “I remember situations when I was growing up, and there would be a light coming from our living room, and I could hear thuds and screams, and my father’s voice and my mother shouting. I remember one night when she ran out into the street and she didn’t know where to go.”11
Dinesh D'Souza (The Roots of Obama's Rage)
The Master's Eyes Shining with Secrets Those bells ringing on the mist-covered mountain signify that the Master of the Temple is dead. The fact of the matter is that the monks there finally killed him. It seems that a few years ago the Master of the Temple began to exhibit some odd and very unpleasant forms of behavior. He apparently lost all sense of earthly decorum, even losing control over his own body. At one point an extra head sprouted from the side of the Master's neck, and this ugly little thing started to issue all sorts of commands and instructions to the monks which only their lofty sense of decency and order prevented them from carrying out. Eventually the Master of the Temple was confined to a small room in an isolated part of the monastery. There, this once wise and beloved teacher was looked after like an animal. For several years the monks put up with the noises he made, the diverse shapes he took. Finally, they killed him. It is whispered among students of enlightenment that one may achieve a state of being in which enlightenment itself loses all meaning, with the consequence that one thereby becomes subject to all manner of strange destinies. And the monks? After the assassination they scattered in all directions. Some hid out in other monasteries, while others went back to live among the everyday inhabitants of this earth. But it was not as if they could escape their past by fleeing it, no more than they could rid themselves of their old master by killing him. For even after the death of his material self, the Master of the Temple sought out those who were once under his guidance; and upon these unhappy disciples he now bestowed, somewhat insistently, his terrible illumination.
Thomas Ligotti (Noctuary)
Her mother cleaved him, cracking open like a peach pit split the tender centre mewling, a monster turned a baby. They snatched up the infant, innocent, beastly, from Half World they fled, they fled to the Realm of Flesh. Gee could not stop the words in the terrible book from popping up in his mind. The images that formed filled him with fear and fascination. Confusion. A creeping sense of recognition. The déjà vu of dreams…. Half World. The words whispered, echoed inside him. Like something almost familiar. Something he’d forgotten— How could Popo do this to him? Gee pounded the heels of his fists on the thick table. He pounded and pounded until he could feel the physical pain. Maybe Popo had written this book herself…. Maybe it was an elaborate psychological experiment? Maybe she was a psychotic, abusive person. Those irregularities in his adoption…. There were no papers. He had no birth certificate. His grandmother had found someone to forge documents. It had cost a lot of money. Popo had kidnapped him from somewhere and his real parents were still looking for him, far far away. That made more sense than the gibberish book. He wasn’t a murderous monster from a different Realm! Ridiculous! Mad. Popo! he raged. You did this to me! It’s all your fault! That’s why he didn’t have a real name. Baby G. Like a foundling in a basket. Baby X. John Doe. Why hadn’t she given him a proper name? The school had written his name as “Gee” when they saw Ms. Wei, saw that his papers identified him only as “G.” They must have thought she was illiterate. Did the teachers think it would make him more Asian? Because it hadn’t! When he’d finally asked his popo about his real name, she had been silent for a long time. You must seek your own name, she finally said. When the time comes.
Hiromi Goto (Darkest Light)
Tradition? Kadash, did I ever tell you about my first sword trainer? Back when I was young, our branch of the Kholin family didn't have grand monasteries and beautiful practice grounds. My father found a teacher for me from two towns over. His name was Harth. Young fellow, not a true swordmaster -- but good enough. He was very focused on proper procedure, and wouldn't let me train until I'd learned how to put on a takama the right way. He wouldn't have stood for me fighting like this. You put on the skirt, then the overshirt, then you wrap your cloth belt around yourself three times and tie it. I always found that annoying. The belt was too tight, wrapped three times -- you had to pull it hard to get enough slack to tie the knot. The first time I went to duels at a neighboring town, I felt like an idiot. Everyone else had long drooping belt ends at the front of their takamas. I asked Harth why we did it differently. He said it was the right way, the true way. So, when my travels took me to Harth's hometown, I searched out his master, a man who had trained with the ardents in Kholinar. He insisted that this was the right way to tie a takama, as he'd learned from his master. I found my master's master's master in Kholinar after we captured it. The ancient, wizened ardent was eating curry and flatbread, completely uncaring of who ruled the city. I asked him. Why tie your belt three times, when everyone else thinks you should do it twice? The old man laughed and stood up. I was shocked to see that he was terribly short. 'If I only tie it twice,' he exclaimed, 'the ends hang down so low, I trip!' I love tradition, I've fought for tradition. I make my men follow the codes. I uphold Vorin virtues. But merely being tradition does not make something worthy, Kadash. We can't just assume that because something is old it is right.
Brandon Sanderson (Oathbringer (Stormlight Archive #3, Part 1 of 6))
And one of the things that has most obstructed the path of discipleship in our Christian culture today is this idea that it will be a terribly difficult thing that will certainly ruin your life. A typical and often-told story in Christian circles is of those who have refused to surrender their lives to God for fear he would “send them to Africa as missionaries.” And here is the whole point of the much misunderstood teachings of Luke 14. There Jesus famously says one must “hate” all their family members and their own life also, must take their cross, and must forsake all they own, or they “cannot be my disciple” (Luke 14:26–27, 33). The entire point of this passage is that as long as one thinks anything may really be more valuable than fellowship with Jesus in his kingdom, one cannot learn from him. People who have not gotten the basic facts about their life straight will therefore not do the things that make learning from Jesus possible and will never be able to understand the basic points in the lessons to be learned. It is like a mathematics teacher in high school who might say to a student, “Verily, verily I say unto thee, except thou canst do decimals and fractions, thou canst in no wise do algebra.” It is not that the teacher will not allow you to do algebra because you are a bad person; you just won’t be able to do basic algebra if you are not in command of decimals and fractions. So this counting of the cost is not a moaning and groaning session. “Oh how terrible it is that I have to value all of my ‘wonderful’ things (which are probably making life miserable and hopeless anyway) less than I do living in the kingdom! How terrible that I must be prepared to actually surrender them should that be called for!” The counting of the cost is to bring us to the point of clarity and decisiveness. It is to help us to see. Counting the cost is precisely what the man with the pearl and the hidden treasure did. Out of it came their decisiveness and joy. It is decisiveness and joy that are the outcomes of the counting.
Dallas Willard (The Divine Conspiracy: Rediscovering Our Hidden Life In God)
We must become what we wish to teach. As an aside to parents, teachers, psychotherapists, and managers who may be reading this book to gain insight on how to support the self-esteem of others, I want to say that the place to begin is still with oneself. If one does not understand how the dynamics of self-esteem work internally—if one does not know by direct experience what lowers or raises one’s own self-esteem—one will not have that intimate understanding of the subject necessary to make an optimal contribution to others. Also, the unresolved issues within oneself set the limits of one’s effectiveness in helping others. It may be tempting, but it is self-deceiving to believe that what one says can communicate more powerfully than what one manifests in one’s person. We must become what we wish to teach. There is a story I like to tell psychotherapy students. In India, when a family encounters a problem, they are not likely to consult a psychotherapist (hardly any are available); they consult the local guru. In one village there was a wise man who had helped this family more than once. One day the father and mother came to him, bringing their nine-year-old son, and the father said, “Master, our son is a wonderful boy and we love him very much. But he has a terrible problem, a weakness for sweets that is ruining his teeth and health. We have reasoned with him, argued with him, pleaded with him, chastised him—nothing works. He goes on consuming ungodly quantities of sweets. Can you help us?” To the father’s surprise, the guru answered, “Go away and come back in two weeks.” One does not argue with a guru, so the family obeyed. Two weeks later they faced him again, and the guru said, “Good. Now we can proceed.” The father asked, “Won’t you tell us, please, why you sent us away for two weeks. You have never done that before.” And the guru answered, “I needed the two weeks because I, too, have had a lifelong weakness for sweets. Until I had confronted and resolved that issue within myself, I was not ready to deal with your son.” Not all psychotherapists like this story.
Nathaniel Branden (Six Pillars of Self-Esteem)
As we pulled up at the big school gates, I saw tears rolling down my dad’s face. I felt confused as to what part of nature or love thought this was a good idea. My instinct certainly didn’t; but what did I know? I was only eight. So I embarked on this mission called boarding school. And how do you prepare for that one? In truth, I found it really hard; there were some great moments like building dens in the snow in winter, or getting chosen for the tennis team, or earning a naval button, but on the whole it was a survival exercise in learning to cope. Coping with fear was the big one. The fear of being left and the fear of being bullied--both of which were very real. What I learned was that I couldn’t manage either of those things very well on my own. It wasn’t anything to do with the school itself, in fact the headmaster and teachers were almost invariably kind, well-meaning and good people, but that sadly didn’t make surviving it much easier. I was learning very young that if I were to survive this place then I had to find some coping mechanisms. My way was to behave badly, and learn to scrap, as a way to avoid bullies wanting to target me. It was also a way to avoid thinking about home. But not thinking about home is hard when all you want is to be at home. I missed my mum and dad terribly, and on the occasional night where I felt this worst, I remember trying to muffle my tears in my pillow while the rest of the dormitory slept. In fact I was not alone in doing this. Almost everyone cried, but we all learned to hide it, and those who didn’t were the ones who got bullied. As a kid, you can only cry so much before you run out of tears and learn to get tough. I meet lots of folks nowadays who say how great boarding school is as a way of toughening kids up. That feels a bit back-to-front to me. I was much tougher before school. I had learned to love the outdoors and to understand the wild, and how to push myself. When I hit school, suddenly all I felt was fear. Fear forces you to look tough on the outside but makes you weak on the inside. This was the opposite of all I had ever known as a kid growing up. I had been shown by my dad that it was good to be fun, cozy, homely--but then as tough as boots when needed. At prep school I was unlearning this lesson and adopting new ways to survive. And age eight, I didn’t always pick them so well.
Bear Grylls (Mud, Sweat and Tears)
In the painting, the face has been horribly lacerated by blows, swollen, with terrible, swollen and bloody bruises, the eyes open, the pupils narrow; the large, open whites of the eyes gleam with a deathly, glassy sheen. But strangely, as one looks at this corpse of a tortured man, a peculiar and interesting question arises: if this is really what the corpse looked like (and it certainly must have looked just like this) when it was seen by all his disciples, his chief future apostles, by the women who followed him and stood by the cross, indeed by all who believed in him and worshipped him, then how could they believe, as they looked at such a corpse, that this martyr would rise from the dead? Here one cannot help being struck by the notion that if death is so terrible and the laws of nature so powerful, then how can they be overcome? How can they be overcome when they have not been conquered even by the one who conquered nature in his own lifetime, to whom it submitted, who cried: “Talitha cumi”8 – and the damsel arose, “Lazarus, come forth”,9 and the dead man came forth? Nature appears, as one looks at that painting, in the guise of some enormous, implacable and speechless animal or, more nearly, far more nearly, though strangely – in the guise of some enormous machine of the most modern devising, which has senselessly seized, smashed to pieces and devoured, dully and without feeling, a great and priceless being – a being which alone was worth the whole of nature and all its laws, the whole earth, which was, perhaps, created solely for the emergence of that being! It is as though this painting were the means by which this idea of a dark, brazen and senseless eternal force, to which everything is subordinate, is expressed, and is involuntarily conveyed to us. Those people who surrounded the dead man, though not one of them is visible in the painting, must have felt a terrible anguish and perturbation that evening, which had smashed all their hopes and almost all their beliefs in one go. They must have parted in the most dreadful fear, though each of them also took away within him an enormous idea that could never now be driven out of them. And if this same teacher could, on the eve of his execution, have seen what he looked like, then how could he have ascended the cross and died as he did now? This question also involuntarily presents itself as one looks at the painting.
Fyodor Dostoevsky (The Idiot)
I wondered what was going on in neuroscience that might bear upon the subject. This quickly led me to neuroscience’s most extraordinary figure, Edward O. Wilson. Wilson’s own life is a good argument for his thesis, which is that among humans, no less than among racehorses, inbred traits will trump upbringing and environment every time. In its bare outlines his childhood biography reads like a case history for the sort of boy who today winds up as the subject of a tabloid headline: DISSED DORK SNIPERS JOCKS. He was born in Alabama to a farmer’s daughter and a railroad engineer’s son who became an accountant and an alcoholic. His parents separated when Wilson was seven years old, and he was sent off to the Gulf Coast Military Academy. A chaotic childhood was to follow. His father worked for the federal Rural Electrification Administration, which kept reassigning him to different locations, from the Deep South to Washington, D.C., and back again, so that in eleven years Wilson attended fourteen different public schools. He grew up shy and introverted and liked the company only of other loners, preferably those who shared his enthusiasm for collecting insects. For years he was a skinny runt, and then for years after that he was a beanpole. But no matter what ectomorphic shape he took and no matter what school he went to, his life had one great center of gravity: He could be stuck anywhere on God’s green earth and he would always be the smartest person in his class. That remained true after he graduated with a bachelor’s degree and a master’s in biology from the University of Alabama and became a doctoral candidate and then a teacher of biology at Harvard for the next half century. He remained the best in his class every inch of the way. Seething Harvard savant after seething Harvard savant, including one Nobel laureate, has seen his reputation eclipsed by this terribly reserved, terribly polite Alabamian, Edward O. Wilson. Wilson’s field within the discipline of biology was zoology; and within zoology, entomology, the study of insects; and within entomology, myrmecology, the study of ants. Year after year he studied
Tom Wolfe (Hooking Up)
Why would this teacher not be afraid in the face of such a terrible threat? Unless what he saw and what the others saw were two different realities. Where they saw a threat, he slept in peace. This was perhaps his greatest miracle, much greater than the healing of a rash.
Ted Dekker (The Girl behind the Red Rope)
A critical faculty is a terrible thing. When I was eleven there were no bad films, just films that I didn’t want to see, there was no bad food, just Brussels sprouts and cabbage, and there were no bad books - everything I read was great. Then suddenly, I woke up in the morning and all that had changed. How could my sister not hear that David Cassidy was not in the same class as Black Sabbath? Why on earth would my English teacher think that The History of Mr Polly was better than Ten Little Indians by Agatha Christie? And from that moment on, enjoyment has been a much more elusive quality.
Nick Hornby (Fever Pitch)
Martin the Charitable The example of Martin’s life is ample evidence that we can strive for holiness and salvation as Christ Jesus has shown us: first, by loving God with all our heart, with all our soul, and with all our mind; and second, by loving our neighbour as ourselves. When Martin had come to realise that Christ Jesus suffered for us and that he carried our sins on his body to the cross, he would meditate with remarkable ardour and affection about Christ on the cross. Whenever he would contemplate Christ’s terrible torture he would be reduced to tears. He had an exceptional love for the great sacrament of the eucharist and often spent long hours in prayer before the blessed sacrament. His desire was to receive the sacrament in communion as often as he could. Saint Martin, always obedient and inspired by his divine teacher, dealt with his brothers with that profound love which comes from pure faith and humility of spirit. He loved men because he honestly looked on them as God’s children and as his own brothers and sisters. Such was his humility that he loved them even more than himself and considered them to be better and more righteous than he was. He did not blame others for their shortcomings. Certain that he deserved more severe punishment for his sins than others did, he would overlook their worst offences. He was tireless in his efforts to reform the criminal, and he would sit up with the sick to bring them comfort. For the poor he would provide food, clothing and medicine. He did all he could to care for poor farmhands, blacks and mulattoes who were looked down upon as slaves, the dregs of society in their time. Common people responded by calling him “Martin the charitable.” The virtuous example and even the conversation of this saintly man exerted a powerful influence in drawing men to religion. It is remarkable how even today his influence can still move us towards the things of heaven. Sad to say, not all of us understand these spiritual values as well as we should, nor do we give them a proper place in our lives. Many of us, in fact, strongly attracted by sin, may look upon these values as of little moment, even something of a nuisance, or we ignore them altogether. It is deeply rewarding for men striving for salvation to follow in Christ’s footsteps and to obey God’s commandments. If only everyone could learn this lesson from the example that Martin gave us.
Universalis Publishing (Liturgy of the Hours 2022 (USA, Ordinary Time) (Divine Office USA Book 14))
Q. How can I be certain that what I fear will happen will never really happen? A. Sadly, the answer is you can't be certain! If you suffer from OCD you probably want a 100 percent guarantee that you will never do anything dangerous or that no harm will ever come to you or your family members. Unfortunately, life does not work like this. If I think about it, I know that there is no guarantee that I won't be hit by a car coming home from work today - but somehow my brain automatically accepts the very small chance of this happening and so permits me to go on living my life. More than two thousand years ago the Buddha (a great psychologist besides being a religious teacher) warned that one of the key things that makes us suffer is that we always want more than we will actually get - whether what we want is material like gold and jewels, or (my addition) in the case of OCD, more certainty than you will ever achieve. Thus the solution the Buddha might have offered you in northern India those thousands of years ago might have been something like this: "To stop suffering you must learn to accept that you will never achieve as much certainty as you want, no matter how much you pursue it; so it is up to you to choose: Either accept this truth and live your life happily, or fight against this truth and continue to suffer." Let me say it again for emphasis: you will never be certain that you won't act on the urges you have, or that the terrible things you fear will happen will not actually happen - but I can assure you that the odds of these things actually happening are small enough that it is not worth wasting your life trying (in vain) to get 100 percent certainty. Better to trust in yourself, your religious beliefs, or in evolution having prepared us well for surviving in this world. If evidence from brain studies better helps to convince you this is true, brain imaging studies of OCD sufferers now suggest that there really is something wrong with their "certainty system"; whatever automatically lets someone without OCD feel that things are OK does not function correctly in the OCD sufferer's brain (who then tries to convince himself that everything is OK, eventually becoming tired and frustrated when he cannot use other brain functions to achieve 100 percent certainty).
Lee Baer (Getting Control (Revised Edition)
Miss Daisy seemed like a pretty cool lady, for a teacher. Anybody who hated school and liked to sit around watching TV and eating chocolate treats was okay by me. Me and Miss Daisy had a lot in common. Maybe going to school wouldn’t be so terrible after all.
Dan Gutman (Miss Daisy Is Crazy! (My Weird School #1))
To that end, she must win every competition she enters. (Here are your four hundred participation trophies, distribute accordingly.) She must feel that everyone likes and loves her and wants to be with her at all times. She must be constantly entertained and amused; every one of her days on Earth must be like Disneyland, but better. (If you go to actual Disneyland, get a fast pass because she should never be forced to wait. For anything, ever.) If other kids don’t want to play with her, call those kids’ parents, find out why, and insist they fix it. In public, walk in front of your child and shield her from any unhappy faces that might make her sad, and any happy faces that might make her feel left out. When she gets into trouble at school, call her teacher and explain loudly that your child does not make mistakes. Insist that the teacher apologize for her mistake. Do not ever, ever let a drop of rain fall upon your child’s fragile head. Raise this human without ever allowing her to feel a single uncomfortable human emotion. Give her a life without allowing life to happen to her. In short: Your life is over, and your new existence is about ensuring that her life never begins. Godspeed. We got a terrible memo. Our terrible memo is why we feel exhausted, neurotic, and guilty. Our terrible memo is also why our kids suck. They do, they just suck. Because people who do not suck are people who have failed, dusted themselves off, and tried again. People who do not suck are people who have been hurt, so they have empathy for others who are hurt. People who do not suck are those who have learned from their own mistakes by dealing with the consequences. People who do not suck are people who have learned how to win with humility and how to lose with dignity. Our memo has led us to steal from our children the one thing that will allow them to become strong people: struggle.
Glennon Doyle (Untamed)
The unions are the worst thing that ever happened to education because it’s not a meritocracy. It turns into a bureaucracy, which is exactly what has happened. The teachers can’t teach and administrators run the place and nobody can be fired. It’s terrible.
Steve Jobs
Fear of Asking for Help If you have social anxiety, it is probably very difficult to ask a teacher or classmate for help. Asking for help draws attention to yourself and makes you appear less than perfect. At the beginning of the semester, Juan didn’t understand a concept in his algebra class. Everyone else seemed to get it, so he didn’t ask any questions. He was also too afraid to ask the teacher for help after class. He didn’t want to bother her or make her angry. The course material for the next two weeks built on that same concept. Juan fell farther and farther behind in his homework and failed every quiz. He felt terrible and told himself he was stupid, which made the problem even more difficult. If Juan had asked the teacher to explain the concept again, he wouldn’t have gotten into this situation. Most teachers are willing to go over difficult material several times to make sure everyone understands. If you don’t comprehend something, it may be that the teacher didn’t explain it clearly. Most schools have tutors or advisers available to help students. Taking advantage of such resources does not mean you are stupid. On the contrary, it means you are smart enough to realize when you need extra help.
Heather Moehn (Social Anxiety)
There is no defeat more terrible than the defeat of the human heart driven wild by its desire of a mystical mirage. What makes this defeat so cruel is the inexorable complacency of the teachers of the spiritual life who insist that “if you have not found God it is because you have refused Him something. You have not consented to pay the price.” As if union with God were something put up for sale in monasteries like ham or cheese, a kind of secret bargain offered to men on the contemplative black market—offered to this or that unfortunate buyer at the precise moment when his pockets were empty.
Thomas Merton (New Seeds of Contemplation)
He had watched the world around him, and the people who professed their decency and humanity every Sunday morning, then schemed and lied their way through each other for orgasms, dollars and trinkets. They were frauds, children dressing up and playing at being mature beings. Every policeman, every teacher, every politician, every celebrity, every clerk in every store, every dishwasher and trash collector and banker and priest and doctor and disc jockey and athlete and all of them, all apes. He saw the worst in them and was unsurprised. He saw the best in them and was unimpressed. They deserved their suffering, every salty tear, every drop of blood. He could have become a scientist, perhaps found a cure for something that could save millions; or a leader, dragging a nation of selfish idiots forward, until they blew his head apart with a bullet. He could have done anything, given them anything, but, in the end, he could only hate them and the world they maintained, the imbecilic gaggle of sports bars and theme parks and megachurches. No, he would not waste his gifts on such as them. He would dedicate his life to the only choice he saw before him: to make them suffer more, to punish them for their stupidity. If they could not or would not improve themselves, they deserved neither mercy nor life. He would beat and bludgeon and choke and pound and slash and crush them like ants under his shoes. He would watch them beg and squirm and cry and bleed and tremble like the weak, disgusting, pathetic monkeys they were. It would be a service, not only to them, not only to the world, but to himself. He deserved to live in a world uncontaminated by such vermin. He knew that they lived in constant terror of monsters, both real and imagined. Phantoms and devils and viruses and gods and spirits and every pain that their feeble minds could imagine. Well, he would give them a monster: a real one. He had reached into the American mythos and learned from their first, best architect of terror, using that knowledge to create the embodiment of everything they feared, a killer who struck out of nowhere, without explanation, a pitiless agent of death. They would learn of him, and his power, and be helpless to stop him. They would live in fear, lying awake at night worrying if he was coming for them or their children. He would walk among them, but they would never know his face. They would see him in the eyes of every stranger. He would be everywhere and nowhere, omnipresent and invisible. He would be the closest thing to an actual god that they would ever know. A higher being, out of their reach forever. They would look at him in awe, blinded by his terrible beauty. Israfel incarnate." -excerpt from "Israfel Rising
Steve R. Gans
Failure can be a lousy teacher, because it seduces smart people into thinking their decisions were terrible when sometimes they just reflect the unforgiving realities of risk.
Morgan Housel (The Psychology of Money: Timeless lessons on wealth, greed, and happiness)
Harry (6): Mrs. Kelly? Teacher: Yes, Harry. Harry I just wanted to say that I really like you. Teacher: Oh, that’s sweet. Harry: I know everyone thinks you are a terrible teacher but I still find you funny.
James Egan (Hilarious Things That Kids Say)
A long time ago, in a small village, there lived a wise old monk named Tenzen. One day his neighbors discovered that their sixteen-year-old daughter was pregnant. Furious, the parents confronted her and demanded to know the name of the baby’s father. Through tears she confessed, “It was the Zen master, Tenzen.” The parents went to Tenzen and angrily accused him of betraying their trust. “How could you do this?” they cried out. “You are going to raise this child!” The great sage listened attentively, replying with no emotion. “Is that so?” When the baby was born, they brought the infant to the master’s door and said, “This baby is now your responsibility.” Taking the child in his arms, he replied, “Is that so?” He then compassionately cared for the newborn. As word of the teacher’s misdeeds spread throughout the countryside, he lost both his reputation and his followers. This meant nothing to him as he continued to care for the child with great love. A year later, feeling terrible about what she had done, the young mother confessed to her parents that Tenzen was not the father. Instead, it was the young man in the butcher shop whom they had forbidden her to see. Horrified and embarrassed, the parents returned to the master’s compound to seek forgiveness. “We are so sorry,” they said. “We have just learned you are not the baby’s father.” “Is that so?” “With your blessing, we would like our baby back.” “Is that so?” And with that the master gently returned the child to the parents.
Paul Dolman (Hitchhiking with Larry David: An Accidental Tourist's Summer of Self-Discovery in Martha's Vineyard)
Then one day in biology class the students were dissecting frogs and the teacher, Mrs. Joan Thomas, watched him and said, “Kermit, you’re doing an excellent job.” He was terribly embarrassed and he was sure that she was making fun of him. All the other kids began to laugh too, sure that she was mocking him. After all, Kermit was the boy who had never been praised before and who was often the butt of a teacher’s frustrated criticism. “No,” she corrected them, “I mean it. Kermit is doing an excellent job.” That was the first time that anyone had ever told him that he was good at anything in his entire life. With that he began to feel confident in biology and he began to study and get good marks. Soon he had good marks in biology and poor marks in everything else. Then Mrs. Thomas became his homeroom teacher and she looked at his report card and told him that he ought to try to do better in other courses too. “You know, Kermit,” she said, “you’re intelligent and you could get good marks if you wanted to.” He was stunned by that, by the idea that she thought he was intelligent. In his last year at Calvin Coolidge he made the honor roll. He was very proud of that.
David Halberstam (The Breaks of the Game)
In Sunday school, they always make hell out to be a place for people like Hitler, not a place for his victims. But if my Sunday school teachers and college professors were right, then hell will be populated not only by people like Hitler and Stalin, Hussein and Milosevic but by the people that they persecuted. If only born-again Christians go to heaven, then the piles of suitcases and bags of human hair displayed at the Holocaust Museum represent thousands upon thousands of men, women, and children suffering eternal agony at the hands of an angry God. If salvation is available only to Christians, then the gospel isn’t good news at all. For most of the human race, it is terrible news.
Rachel Held Evans (Faith Unraveled: How a Girl Who Knew All the Answers Learned to Ask Questions)
Donald Trump is a special kind of cultist. He is in no way totalistic—his beliefs can be remarkably fluid—nor is he the leader of a sealed-off cultic community. Rather, his cultism is inseparable from his solipsistic reality. That solipsism emanates only from the self and what the self requires, which makes him the most bizarre and persistent would-be owner of reality. And in his way he has created a community of zealous believers who are geographically dispersed. A considerable portion of his base can be understood as cultist, as followers of a guru who is teacher, guide, and master. From my studies of cults and cultlike behavior, I recognize this aspect of Trump’s relationship to his followers. It is evident at his large-crowd events, which began as campaign rallies but have continued to take place during his presidency. There is a ritual quality to the chants he has led such as “Lock her up!” and “Build that wall!” The latter chant is followed by the guru’s question “And who will pay for it?,” then the crowd’s answer, “Mexico!” The chants and responses are less about policy than they are assertions of guru-disciple ties. The chants are rituals that generate “high states”—or what can even be called experiences of transcendence—in disciples. The back-and-forth brings them closer to the guru and enables them to share his claim to omnipotence and his sacred aura. Trump does not directly express an apocalyptic narrative, but his presence has an apocalyptic aura. He tells us that, as not only a “genius” but a “very stable genius,” he alone can “fix” the terrible problems of our society. To be sure these are bizarre expressions of his extreme grandiosity, but also of a man who would be a savior to a disintegrating world.
Robert Jay Lifton (Losing Reality: On Cults, Cultism, and the Mindset of Political and Religious Zealotry)
It has ever been my lot, though formally myself a teacher, to be taught surely by none. There are times when I have thought to read lessons in the sky, or in books, or from the behavior of my fellows, but in the end my perceptions have frequently been inadequate or betrayed. Nevertheless, I venture to say that of what man may be I have caught a fugitive glimpse, not among multitudes of men, but along an endless wave-beaten coast at dawn. As always, there is this apparent break, this rift in nature, before the insight comes. The terrible question has to translate itself into an even more terrifying freedom.
Loren Eiseley
Mrs. Henderson, Riley’s fifth-grade teacher, surveyed her class appraisingly. “Capital city of Brazil? Johnny?” “Rio de Janeiro,” Johnny answered quickly. Riley nearly shook her head, but stopped at the last minute. It was an easy mistake to have made, and nobody liked a smarty-pants. “No,” Mrs. Henderson replied. “Anybody else?” The class was silent. Riley wondered if any of the other students could name another city in Brazil. “How about you, Riley?” Riley sighed quietly. She briefly considered pretending she didn’t know the answer, but her mother had told her more than once that pretending to be something that you weren’t was the same as lying, and it was a terrible kind of lying, because it was lying to yourself. “Brasilia,” Riley answered. “That’s right,” Mrs. Henderson smiled. “I’m glad someone in this class has been paying attention.” Riley hadn’t been paying attention. She hadn’t even realized the lesson had moved from the geography of Europe to that of South America. She’d read about Brazil in a travel magazine her parents subscribed to. She toyed with her pen as Mrs. Henderson moved on to another South American country. She wanted to start writing, and to do it the way her great-grandfather had. She could put a story down in her notebook. If it was long enough, she might even fill two of them. Maybe someday she would even be published. The thought of seeing her own book on the shelf in a bookstore was just about the best thing she could think of.
M.J. Storm (Riley Flynn and the Runaway Fairy)
He would leave his high position as the Majesty of heaven, appear upon earth and humble himself as a man, and by his own experience become acquainted with the sorrows and temptations which man would have to endure. All this would be necessary in order that he might be able to succor them that should be tempted. Hebrews 2:18. When his mission as a teacher should be ended, he must be delivered into the hands of wicked men and be subjected to every insult and torture that Satan could inspire them to inflict. He must die the cruelest of deaths, lifted up between the heavens and the earth as a guilty sinner. He must pass long hours of agony so terrible that angels could not look upon it, but would veil their faces from the sight. He must endure anguish of soul, the hiding of his Father’s face, while the guilt of transgression—the weight
Ellen Gould White (Patriarchs And Prophets)
When value-added is calculated for a teacher using just a single year’s worth of test score data, the error rate is 35 percent—meaning more than one in three teachers who are average will be misclassified as excellent or ineffective, and one in three teachers who excel or are terrible will be called average.
Dana Goldstein (The Teacher Wars: A History of America's Most Embattled Profession)
Although China is short of the people it really needs—scientists, economists, doctors, teachers, practically everybody, in fact, except Indian chiefs—it employs its best and brightest in thinking how to update its theology. A mind, as the saying goes, is a terrible thing to waste.
Gordon G. Chang (The Coming Collapse of China)
It was marijuana that drew the line between us and them, that bright generational line between the cool and the uncool. My timidity about pot, as I first encountered it in Hawaii, vanished when, a few months later, during my first year of high school, it hit Woodland Hills. We scored our first joints from a friend of Pete's. The quality of the dope was terrible -- Mexican rag weed, people called it -- but the quality of the high was so wondrous, so nerve-end-opening, so cerebral compared to wine's effects, that I don't think we ever cracked another Purex jug. The laughs were harder and finer. And music that had been merely good, the rock and roll soundtrack of our lives, turned into rapture and prophecy. Jimi Hendrix, Dylan, the Doors, Cream, late Beatles, Janis Joplin, the Stones, Paul Butterfield -- the music they were making, with its impact and beauty amplified a hundredfold by dope, became a sacramental rite, simply inexplicable to noninitiates. And the ceremonial aspects of smoking pot -- scoring from the million-strong network of small-time dealers, cleaning "lids," rolling joints, sneaking off to places (hilltops, beaches, empty fields) where it seemed safe to smoke, in tight little outlaw groups of three or four, and then giggling and grooving together -- all of this took on a strong tribal color. There was the "counterculture" out in the greater world, with all its affinities and inspirations, but there were also, more immediately, the realignments in our personal lives. Kids, including girls, who were "straight" became strangers. What the hell was a debutante, anyway? As for adults -- it became increasingly difficult not to buy that awful Yippie line about not trusting anyone over thirty. How could parents, teachers, coaches, possibly understand the ineluctable weirdness of every moment, fully perceived? None of them had been out on Highway 61.
William Finnegan (Barbarian Days: A Surfing Life)
War is the greatest of teachers, and not all of its lessons are bad. Their cost is just so terribly high.
Jack L. Chalker (Exiles at the Well of Souls (Saga of the Well World #2))
My life is ruined! My parents came home last night talking about how the teacher showed them the great essay I wrote. “I never knew you liked camp so much, son,” Dad said. “Yes, Honey. We were going to give you the summer to do whatever you wanted,” my Mom said. “Now that we know you love camp so much, we signed you up to go to camp this summer. There was a camp representative at the Parent-Teacher conference last night, so we signed you up right away.” “We even put down a non-refundable deposit for it too, son,” Dad said. “So, congratulations, you’re going to camp!” OMZ! My life is totally ruined! Now I’m going to spend my summer in the Swamp Biome at camp. Oh man, this is terrible! What am I going to do?!! I decided to ask Steve some advice on how to get out of my terrible situation. I found Steve in a cave crafting some fireworks. All of a sudden, “BOOOOMMM!” All that was left of him were his tools and his weapons. A few minutes later, Steve walked into the cave behind me. I totally understand how he does that trick now. “Hey, Steve!” “Wassup, Zombie?” Steve said. “I have a question for you.” “Shoot!” Steve said. So, I picked up his bow and arrow and I shot him. “Ow! What’d you do that for?” “You told me to shoot,” I said. “Forget about it. What’s your question?” “My Mom and Dad are making me go to camp this summer,” I said. “But I don’t want to go. I’ve got to find a way out of it, and I need your help.” “Why are they sending you to camp?” Steve asked. “Well, I kind of told them I wanted to go.” “And now, you don’t want to go?” Steve asked. “No, I never wanted to go,” I said. Steve just looked at me… Confused. “Well, I thought if I wrote an essay about how much I wanted to go to camp, my Mom and Dad wouldn’t send me to camp,” I said. After I said it out loud, I realized how dumb that idea was. “It sure made sense at the time,” I said. “So, you want to get out of camp, but your parents think you really want to go?” Steve asked. “Yeah.” “Well, you could always get in trouble and they’ll punish you by taking away your summer camp,” Steve said. Man, Steve is so smart. That was the best idea I have ever heard. So, I’ve got to get in trouble so that my parents will punish me by taking camp away. I can do that. I just have to find a class that I can fail this semester, and they’ll punish me for sure if that happens. See, this is why I always go to Steve when I need some good advice.
Herobrine Books (School Daze (Diary of a Minecraft Zombie, #5))
The wedding I was very calm the next morning when we were getting up at Clarence House. Must have been awake about 5am. Interesting--they put me in a bedroom overlooking the Mall which meant I didn’t get any sleep. I was very, very calm, deathly calm. I felt I was a lamb to the slaughter. I knew it and couldn’t do anything about it. My last night of freedom with Jane at Clarence House. Father was so thrilled he waved himself stupid. We went past St Martin-in-the-Fields and he thought we were at St Paul’s. He was ready to get out. It was wonderful, that. As I walked up the aisle I was looking for her [Camilla]. I knew she was in there, of course. I looked for her. Anyway I got up to the top. I thought the whole thing was hysterical, getting married, in the sense that it was just like it was so grown up and here was Diana--a kindergarten teacher. The whole thing was ridiculous! I cried a lot on the Monday when we had done the rehearsal because the tension had suddenly hit me. But by Wednesday I was fine and I had to get my father basically up the aisle and that’s what I concentrated on and I remember being terribly worried about curtseying to the Queen. I remember being so in love with my husband that I couldn’t take my eyes off him. I just absolutely thought I was the luckiest girl in the world. He was going to look after me. Well, was I wrong on that assumption.
Andrew Morton (Diana: Her True Story in Her Own Words)
What’s up, Sam?” “What birthday?” he panted. “What?” “What birthday, Anna?” It took a while for her to absorb his fear. It took a while for the reason for his fear to dawn on her. “Fifteen,” Anna said in a whisper. “What’s the matter?” Emma asked, sensing her twin’s mood. “It doesn’t mean anything.” “It doesn’t,” Anna whispered. “You’re probably right,” Sam said. “Oh, my God,” Anna said. “Are we going to disappear?” “When were you born?” Sam asked. “What time of day?” The twins exchanged scared looks. “We don’t know.” “You know what, no one has blinked out since that first day, so it’s probably—” Emma disappeared. Anna screamed. The other older kids took notice, the littles, too. “Oh, my God!” Anna cried. “Emma. Emma. Oh, God!” She grabbed Sam’s hands and he held her tight. The prees, some of them, caught the fear. Mother Mary came over. “What’s going on? You’re scaring the kids. Where’s Emma?” Anna just kept saying, “Oh, my God,” and calling her sister’s name. “Where’s Emma?” Mary demanded again. “What’s going on?” Sam didn’t want to explain. Anna was hurting him with the pressure of her fingers digging into the backs of his hands. Anna’s eyes were huge, staring holes in him. “How far apart were you born?” Sam asked. Anna just stared in blank horror. Sam lowered his voice to an urgent whisper. “How far apart were you born, Anna?” “Six minutes,” she whispered. “Hold my hands, Sam,” she said. “Don’t let me go, Sam,” she said. “I won’t, Anna, I won’t let you go,” Sam said. “What’s going to happen, Sam?” “I don’t know, Anna.” “Will we go to where our mom and dad are?” “I don’t know, Anna." “Am I going to die?” “No, Anna. You’re not going to die.” “Don’t let go of me, Sam.” Mary was there now, a baby on her hip. John was there. The prees, some of them, watched with serious, worried looks on their faces. “I don’t want to die,” Anna repeated. “I…I don’t know what it’s like.” “It’s okay, Anna.” Anna smiled. “That was a nice date. When we went out.” “It was.” For a split second it was like Anna blurred. Too fast to be real. She blurred, and Sam could almost swear that she had smiled at him. And his fingers squeezed on nothing. For a terribly long time no one moved or said anything. The littles didn’t cry out. The older kids just stared. Sam’s fingertips still remembered the feel of Anna’s hands. He stared at the place where her face had been. He could still see her pleading eyes. Unable to stop himself, he reached a hand into the space she had occupied. Reaching for a face that was no longer there. Someone sobbed. Someone cried out, other voices then, the prees started crying. Sam felt sick. When his teacher had disappeared he hadn’t been expecting it. This time he had seen it coming, like a monster in a slow-motion nightmare. This time he had seen it coming, like standing rooted on the railroad tracks, unable to jump aside.
Michael Grant
There was once an artistically talented teenager who felt unrequited love for a girl in his art class. It so happened that his beloved’s artwork was particularly bad, so bad, in fact, that it was often quietly mocked. One day the boy overheard two classmates laughing about how bad her artwork was. But just then she entered the room, and they quickly changed the subject. After a couple of minutes, the two classmates started playing a cruel game where they praised her for her artistic abilities. She protested, but the classmates kept insisting that she had real talent and should think about exhibiting something in the end-of-year art show. A week later she pulled the lovelorn boy to one side and asked for some advice about a painting. He jumped at the chance to talk with her, and while the work was terrible, he praised it profusely. To his horror, the praise he lavished on it convinced her to enter the painting in the school art exhibition. Because of his love, he didn’t want her to be humiliated, so the day before the show he went into the room holding all the submissions and stole her painting along with a couple of others. Once the theft was discovered, the art teacher quickly worked out who was guilty and pulled the boy out of class. Before suspending him, the teacher asked why he’d stolen the paintings. “That’s easy,” replied the boy. “I wanted to win the prize and so stole the best work.” News quickly spread around the school that the girl had created a masterpiece that might have won the prize if allowed to compete.
Peter Rollins (The Divine Magician: The Disappearance of Religion and the Discovery of Faith)
to be a high-school English teacher in modern Britain is to be a bad comedian in a hostile club. You have to deliver your terrible material six times a day to a crowd that would rather be somewhere else. And the heckling is vicious and it never ever stops.
Stephen May (Wake Up Happy Every Day)
Nonce Sense {Couplet} Once upon a time there lived a dyslexic dunce who was terrible atorthography. His special ed teachers added a nonce and now he's become a master at cryptography.
Beryl Dov
Morning comes. I go to my class. There sit the little ones with folded arms. In their eyes is still all the shy astonishment of the childish years. They look up at me so trustingly, so believingly—and suddenly I get a spasm over the heart. Here I stand before you, one of the hundreds of thousands of bankrupt men in whom the war destroyed every belief and almost every strength. Here I stand before you, and see how much more alive, how much more rooted in life you are than I. Here I stand and must now be your teacher and guide. What should I teach you? Should I tell you that in twenty years you will be dried-up and crippled, maimed in your freest impulses, all pressed mercilessly into the selfsame mould? Should I tell you that all learning, all culture, all science is nothing but hideous mockery, so long as mankind makes war in the name of God and humanity with gas, iron, explosive and fire? What should I teach you then, you little creatures who alone have remained unspotted by the terrible years? What
Erich Maria Remarque (The Road Back)
As the modern scholar Alan Cameron has put it: ‘In 529 the philosophers of Athens were threatened with the destruction of their entire way of life.’ The Christians were behind this – yet you will search almost in vain for the word ‘Christian’ in most of the writings of the philosophers. That is not to say that evidence of them is not there. It is. The miasmatic presence of the religion is keenly felt on countless pages: it is Christians who are driving persecutions, torturing their colleagues, pushing philosophers into exile. Damascius and his fellow scholars loathed the religion and its uncompromising leaders. Even Damascius’s famously mild and gentle teacher, Isidore, ‘found them absolutely repulsive’; he considered them ‘irreparably polluted, and nothing whatever could constrain him to accept their company’. But the actual word Christian is missing. As if the very syllables were too distasteful for them to pronounce, the philosophers resorted to elaborate circumlocutions. At times, the names they gave them were muted. With a masterful understatement, the present system of Christian rule, with its torture, murder and persecution, was referred to as ‘the present situation’ or ‘the prevailing circumstances’. At another time the Christians became – perhaps a reference to those stolen and desecrated statues – ‘the people who move the immovable’. At other times the names were blunter: the Christians were ‘the vultures’ or, more simply still, ‘the tyrant’. Other phrases carried a contemptuous intellectual sneer. Greek literature is awash with hideously rebarbative creatures, and the philosophers turned to these to convey the horror of their situation: the Christians started to be referred to as ‘the Giants’ and the ‘Cyclops’. These particular names seem, at first sight, an odd choice. These are not the most repellent monsters in the Greek canon; Homer alone could have offered the man-eating monster Scylla as a more obvious insult. That would have missed the point. The Giants and the Cyclops of Greek myth aren’t terrible because they are not like men – they are terrible because they are. They belong to the uncanny valley of Greek monsters: they look, at first glance, like civilized humans yet they lack all the attributes of civilization. They are boorish, base, ill-educated, thuggish. They are almost men, but not quite – and all the more hideous for that. It was, for these philosophers, the perfect analogy. When that philosopher had been beaten till the blood ran down his back, the precise insult that he hurled at the judge had been: ‘There, Cyclops. Drink the wine, now that you have devoured the human flesh.
Catherine Nixey (The Darkening Age: The Christian Destruction of the Classical World)
In an interview with Fox News’s Tucker Carlson, Jordan Peterson also challenges the leftist notion of toxic masculinity and questions why we are even talking about it, considering that the crime rates in the United States and all of North America have fallen by 50 percent in the last twenty-five years, including every category of violent crime. “So, where’s the crisis, and why in the world would we turn our children’s education over to idiot ideologues? Even the academics are waking up to this. There was an article in the Chronicle of Higher Education just two weeks ago excoriating the faculties of education for their appalling standards and their absolute ideological obssession. And this idea that we should address toxic masculinity from K to 12 is just an extension of that.”24 “The term [toxic masculinity] itself is terribly defined,” observes Peterson. “I think it’s appalling that faculties of education are pushing this sort of nonsense and I think that if your kids are exposed to that type of idiot social justice, pseudo education, you should pull them out of the schools. Everything about the idea is ridiculous.… They are not being educated; they are being propagandized. There’s also no evidence that we construct our identities as masculine and feminine by being expressly taught them by teachers. Almost all that is learned by example, to the degree that it’s learned, and a tremendous amount of it is a consequence of biological inclination.”25 Peterson’s assertion on biological inclination, of course, radically differs from the leftist notion that men and women are not that different biologically.
David Limbaugh (Guilty By Reason of Insanity: Why The Democrats Must Not Win)
You had to find the truth for yourself. That is how we all find the truth.' ' And if the truth is terrible?' 'I think you know the answer to that one, Nutt,' said the voice of Ladyship. 'The answer is that, terrible or not, it is still the truth,' said Nutt. 'And then?' said her voice, like a teacher encouraging a promising pupil. 'And then the truth can be changed,' said Nutt.
Terry Pratchett (Unseen Academicals (Discworld, #37; Rincewind, #8))
It was as though his voice came to me from another world. The man continued skillfully to draw a terrible picture of a werewolf who had been the reason for two girls committing suicide, had wrecked the life of a married woman and killed his own wife — an egoist whose whole life had been directed to the quest of pleasure. Once it occurred to me in my stupor, as I sat there listening to my former teacher, Professor Maxwell Foster- Keen, trying to save me from the gallows, that I should stand up and shout at the court: "This Mustafa Sa’eed does not exist. He’s an illusion, a lie. I ask of you to rule that the lie be killed." But I remained as lifeless as a heap of ashes.
Tayeb Salih (Season of Migration to the North)
Jesus here echoes a prayer regularly recited by Jewish people, a prayer known as the Kaddish. Its earliest form began, “Exalted and hallowed be his great name, in the world that he created according to his will; may he cause his kingdom to reign . . .” The Jewish prayer invited God’s future reign to change the world; Jesus presumably intends it the same way, although for believers in Jesus the kingdom is “already/not yet” (see the article “Kingdom”). Scripture promised that in the future God’s name would be “hallowed,” or “proved holy,” in the world (Eze 36:23; 38:23; 39:27). Even in the present, many Jewish teachers consider honoring God’s name the supreme objective and profaning it the most terrible sin. your . . . your . . . your. In Greek, the word “your” is emphatic in these first three petitions of Jesus’ model prayer (cf. v. 33).
Anonymous (NIV, Cultural Backgrounds Study Bible: Bringing to Life the Ancient World of Scripture)
Jesus can move mountains, so he can and will act on your behalf. He loves you! So receive his love and his power. Quit doubting the King of Kings and teacher of all teachers. Believe in him and step in the resurrection power that is already yours in Christ Jesus. He is who he says - believe him! The Lord exposes our weaknesses so we'll come to him and find our rest and hope in him. He wants you to come to him and stop imaging terrible scenarios. Has he not brought you this far? That's the creator of the ends of the Earth in your court! On your side! He is for you, not against you. Trust in him. Worship him. Take your position in praise and prayer and he will set ambushes for the enemy. - letter by Mrs Lucado.
Max Lucado
You know, you sound a very educated man for a barbarian,” said Rincewind. “Oh, dear me, I didn’t start out a barbarian. I used to be a school teacher. That’s why they call me Teach.” “What did you teach?” “Geography. And I was very interested in Auriental* studies. But I decided to give it up and make a living by the sword.” “After being a teacher all your life?” “It did mean a change of perspective, yes.” “But … well … surely … the privation, the terrible hazards, the daily risk of death…” Mr. Saveloy brightened up. “Oh, you’ve been a teacher, have you?
Terry Pratchett (Interesting Times (Discworld, #17))
It's been forty years of terrible waste,' she said, 'a whole country of wasted lives. It's a country of big children, people being naughty behind the teacher's back, people tattling on each other, people getting their dumb certificates for being good little socialists. People submitting to the system because they're German and because it's a system. The whole thing was stupid and a lie. But they're not arrogant, not know-it-alls. They give what they have and they take me the way I am.' The closer she came to dying, the more sure of herself she became. She'd concluded that the meaning of a life was in the form of it. There was no answering the question of why she'd been born, she could only take what she'd been given and try to make it end well. She intended to die in her mother's bedroom, in the company of her brother and her only offspring, without the indignity of a colostomy bag.
Jonathan Franzen
Carrington was busy spreading a thick layer of glue on the last of three strips of wood that would be joined and fastened to the top edge of the skiff as a gunnel. I had to smile at the sight of Gage crouched beside her, murmuring instructions, holding back one of the braids that threatened to drag through the glue. “. . . and then at recess,” the girl said, squeezing a huge bottle of wood glue with both hands, “Caleb wouldn’t let anyone else play with the basketball, so Katie and I went and told the teacher—” “Good for you,” Gage said. “Here, put more glue on the edge. Better to use too much than not enough.” “Like this?” “Perfect.” “And then,” Carrington continued, “the teacher said it was someone else’s turn to play with the ball, and she made Caleb write an essay about sharing and cooperation.” “Did that fix him?” Jack asked. “No,” came Carrington’s disgusted reply. “He’s still the terriblest boy you could ever meet.” “They all are, honey,” Jack said. “I told him you were going to take me fishing,” Carrington went on indignantly, “and you know what he said?” “That girls aren’t good at fishing?” Jack guessed. “How did you know?” she asked in amazement. “Because I was a terrible boy once, and that’s probably what I would have said. But I’d have been dead wrong. Girls are great at fishing.” “Are you sure about that, Uncle Jack?” “Of course I— wait a minute.” Together Jack and Gage lifted the assembled wood strips and fit them to the edge of the boat. “Sweetheart,” Gage murmured to Carrington, “bring that bucket of clamps over here.” Carefully he placed clamps along the gunnel, pausing to adjust the wood strips when necessary. “What were you saying, Uncle Jack?” Carrington pressed, handing him some paper towels to wipe up dripping glue. “I was about to ask you: Who is the fishing expert in this family?” “You.” “That’s right. And who’s the expert on women?” “Uncle Joe,” she said, giggling. “Joe?” he asked in feigned outrage. “Humor him, Carrington,” Gage said. “Otherwise we’ll be here all day.” “You’re the expert on women,” Carrington told Jack promptly. “That’s right. And I’m here to tell you, some of the best anglers in the world are women.” “How come?” “They’re more patient, and they don’t give up easy. They tend to fish an area more thoroughly. And women can always find the spot with the hidden boulders or underwater weeds where fish are hiding. Men, we just look right past those spots, but women always find ’em.” As Jack spoke, Carrington caught sight of me in the doorway, and she threw me a grin. “Are you gonna take Miss Ella fishing?” she asked Jack, who had picked up a Japanese saw and was cutting off the protruding end of the gunnel at an angle. “If she wants to,” he said. “Is she gonna catch you, Uncle Jack?” Carrington asked slyly. “She already did, darlin’.
Lisa Kleypas (Smooth Talking Stranger (Travises, #3))
To be effective in dealing with people—to be someone taken seriously—people must feel you have some concept of justice and you can be trusted. But, they want to feel you are human-hearted too. Terrible things have been done in the name of righteousness, but terrible things have also been allowed to happen by those who only understand benevolence. Each must act as a brake on the other, not allowing situations to become out of balance. Being judgmental and without compassion may lead to bitter cynicism. However, being compassionate with little regard for rectitude may lead, ironically, to your own or other people’s exploitation.
Jan Kauskas (Laoshi: Tai Chi, Teachers, and Pursuit of Principle)
Pierre asked his confessor: “Is it a sin to marry someone you don’t love?” Father Moineau was a square-faced, heavyset priest in his fifties. His study in the College des Ames contained more books than Sylvie’s father’s shop. He was a rather prissy intellectual, but he enjoyed the company of young men, and he was popular with the students. He knew all about the work Pierre was doing for Cardinal Charles. “Certainly not,” Moineau said. His voice was a rich baritone somewhat roughened by a fondness for strong Canary wine. “Noblemen are obliged so to do. It might even be a sin for a king to marry someone he did love.” He chuckled. He liked paradoxes, as did all the teachers. But Pierre was in a serious mood. “I’m going to wreck Sylvie’s life.” Moineau was fond of Pierre, and clearly would have liked their intimacy to be physical, but he had quickly understood that Pierre was not one of those men who loved men, and had never done anything more than pat him affectionately on the back. Now Moineau caught his tone and became somber. “I see that,” he said. “And you want to know whether you would be doing God’s will.” “Exactly.” Pierre was not often troubled by his conscience, but he had never done anyone as much harm as he was about to do to Sylvie. “Listen to me,” said Moineau. “Four years ago a terrible error was committed. It is known as the Pacification of Augsburg, and it is a treaty that allows individual German provinces to choose to follow the heresy of Lutheranism, if their ruler so wishes. For the first time, there are places in the world where it is not a crime to be a Protestant. This is a catastrophe for the Christian faith.” Pierre said in Latin: “Cuius regio, eius religio.” This was the slogan of the Augsburg treaty, and it meant: “Whose realm, his religion.” Moineau continued: “In signing the agreement, the emperor Charles V hoped to end religious conflict. But what has happened? Earlier this year the accursed Queen Elizabeth of England imposed Protestantism on her wretched subjects, who are now deprived of the consolation of the sacraments. Tolerance is spreading. This is the horrible truth.” “And we have to do whatever we can to stop it.
Ken Follett (A Column of Fire (Kingsbridge))
Farewell Warsaw, the city of joy and anguish, we shall never return! You stood uncaring when we cried to you for help in our despair. I hate you, you let a third of your inhabitants die before your eyes, without a word of protest against that terrible injustice! The ghetto was lit from above by the bright summer sun, but darkness, the smell of burning, and stench of corpses reigned inside. [*]
Matthew A. Rozell (A Train Near Magdeburg: A Teacher's Journey into the Holocaust, and the Reuniting of the Survivors and Liberators, 70 years on)
I was saddened by a poem I saw stuck up on the wall of an English reading and writing club that I visited. It was written by a 10-year-old girl, and was titled ‘Exams’. All exams are significant, And I am going to FAINT! For my poor mid-term scores Which drive grandma dizzy And make my grandpa crazy. My world is not fantasy, And my mind is in vacancy. My teachers are getting chilly, And thinking if I am silly. My classmate is not a bully Just making unfriendly raillery. I am so afraid of the terrible shouting And endless moaning. How I wish I have nubility, To improve my ability. From now on I get to know That life isn’t interesting And I must be hard-working.
Lucy Crehan (Cleverlands: The Secrets Behind the Success of the World's Education Superpowers)
I would describe my primary school experience as being an environment where I did not receive the support that I needed in order to achieve my full potential’. (Questionnaire respondent five)   ‘terrible, I spent the majority of primary school feeling inferior. I would work twice as hard as others but never get anywhere.’ (Questionnaire respondent eight)   ‘my teachers didn’t really pick up on it at all… so I didn’t really receive a lot of support for it’. (Interview participant).
Alexander Sellers (Teachers with dyslexia: conquering challenges with compensatory strategies: Undergraduate dissertation for the BA (Hons) Childhood Studies at University of East Anglia)
Christine was an attorney with a very domineering father, Joseph, who constantly pushed her to be a success. Early in our work together, she described her childhood like this: “My father controlled me. He couldn’t stand anyone having a different opinion; it was absolutely intolerable to him. I was so afraid of making the wrong choice that I made a lot of decisions based on fear. It was as if my father completely owned me. Even in college I had to be home by eleven, which was extremely embarrassing, but I wouldn’t have dreamed of challenging him.” Joseph even tried to control Christine’s thoughts. If Christine came up with an idea her father didn’t like, his response was immediate: “Don’t even think about it!” Joseph also had lack of empathy that made him a terrible teacher. He couldn’t sense what might be terrifying to a child, so he tried to teach Christine to swim by literally dropping her in a pool. As Christine put it, “He would command me to do well but didn’t offer any guidance or help. I was simply ordered to be a success.” To all outward appearances, Christine did become a success, but on the inside she felt a tremendous insecurity, like she didn’t really know what she was doing.
Lindsay C. Gibson (Adult Children of Emotionally Immature Parents: How to Heal from Distant, Rejecting, or Self-Involved Parents)
a young person wants to learn philosophy these days, he or she would be better advised to become immersed in the domain directly and avoid the field altogether: “I’d tell him to read the great books of philosophy. And I would tell him not to do graduate study at any university. I think all philosophy departments are no good. They are all terrible.” By and large, however, jurisdiction over a given domain is officially left in the hands of a field of experts. These may range from grade school teachers to university professors and include anyone who has a right to decide whether a new idea or product is “good” or “bad.” It is impossible to understand creativity without understanding how fields operate, how they decide whether something new should or should not be added to the domain.
Mihaly Csikszentmihalyi (Creativity: Flow and the Psychology of Discovery and Invention)
Coming back to the quality of our lives during that year. The invasion of privacy became more and more oppressive, as the teachers were watching whether Jewish students were absent during Jewish holidays. I remember on Yom Kippur, in October, 1940, the teachers were especially paying attention to the attendance. Some zealous communists were even trying to find out whether anybody was fasting. That Yom Kippur was the first time I fasted, although I had to go to school. When I returned home, by 3 o'clock, my parents were in the synagogue. It was cold and rainy and I was shivering from cold, hunger and terrible disappointment with this cruel, petty regime that had no humane standards, no notion of freedom, no respect for human beings - a cruel, oppressive, invasive regime - where power was everything and human life was dirt cheap.
Pearl Fichman (Before Memories Fade)
Be aware that unconscious competence is where some people start from, and it’s dangerous because they typically make terrible teachers because of their inability to explain their reasoning not based on a gut feeling. The levels of competency and creating intuition mirror the true learning process in a nutshell: Try Achieve or fail If you fail, analyze failure Go to step one. Where this process can go wrong is the following: Try Achieve or fail If you fail, analyze failure incorrectly or fail to correct actions. Go to step one.
Peter Hollins (Learn Like Einstein: Memorize More, Read Faster, Focus Better, and Master Anything With Ease… Become An Expert in Record Time (Accelerated Learning))
Our old teacher used to tell us that I was all slick perfection with no heart, which we thought was a terribly stupid thing to say. A piano is wires and wood and dull teeth. There’s no place in machines for wet lumps of meat.
Kathe Koja (Year's Best Weird Fiction; Volume 2)
FIDELITY AND BETRAYAL He loved her from the time he was a child until the time he accompanied her to the cemetery; he loved her in his memories as well. That is what made him feel that fidelity deserved pride of place among the virtues: fidelity gave a unity to lives that would otherwise splinter into thousands of split-second impressions. Franz often spoke about his mother to Sabina, perhaps even with a certain unconscious ulterior motive: he assumed that Sabina would be charmed by his ability to be faithful, that it would win her over. What he did not know was that Sabina was charmed more by betrayal than by fidelity. The word fidelity reminded her of her father, a small-town puritan, who spent his Sundays painting away at canvases of woodland sunsets and roses in vases. Thanks to him, she started drawing as a child. When she was fourteen, she fell in love with a boy her age. Her father was so frightened that he would not let her out of the house by herself for a year. One day, he showed her some Picasso reproductions and made fun of them. If she couldn't love her fourteen-year-old schoolboy, she could at least love cubism. After completing school, she went off to Prague with the euphoric feeling that now at last she could betray her home. Betrayal. From tender youth, we are told by father and teacher that betrayal is the most heinous offense imaginable. But what is betrayal? Betrayal means breaking ranks. Betrayal means breaking ranks and going off into the unknown. Sabina knew of nothing more magnificent than going off into the unknown. Though a student at the Academy of Fine Arts, she was not allowed to paint like Picasso. It was the period when so-called socialist realism was prescribed and the school manufactured Portraits of Communist statesmen. Her longing to betray her father remained unsatisfied: Communism was merely another father, a father equally strict and limited, a father who forbade her love (the times were puritanical) and Picasso, too. And if she married a second-rate actor, it was only because he had a reputation for being eccentric and was unacceptable to both fathers. Then her mother died. The day following her return to Prague from the funeral, she received a telegram saying that her father had taken his life out of grief. Suddenly she felt pangs of conscience: Was it really so terrible that her father had painted vases filled with roses and hated Picasso? Was it really so reprehensible that he was afraid of his fourteen-year-old daughter's coming home pregnant? Was it really so laughable that he could not go on living without his wife? And again she felt a longing to betray: betray her own betrayal. She announced to her husband (whom she now considered a difficult drunk rather than an eccentric) that she was leaving him. But if we betray B., for whom we betrayed A., it does not necessarily follow that we have placated A. The life of a divorcee-painter did not in the least resemble the life of the parents she had betrayed. The first betrayal is irreparable. It calls forth a chain reaction of further betrayals, each of which takes us farther and farther away from the point of our original betrayal.
Milan Kundera (The Unbearable Lightness of Being)
I know you feel like you shouldn't have to put up with racist teachers. But all of us have some racism lodged in the way we think. That's what the world we inhabit teaches us from childhood. If Mrs. Livermore is a racist, it's because she was taught to be one. It's awfully hard to unlearn those kinds of terrible lessons, especially if you don't recognize that what you learned was wrong. A lot of White people-and I don't say all White people- think they're a little bit better, a little more American and a lot of those people aren't bad people. They aren't even aware of the fact that they're a part of an entire system that is centered around them. It's complicated, Ari. I don't think I'm explaining this very well.
Benjamin Alire Sáenz (Aristotle and Dante Dive into the Waters of the World (Aristotle and Dante, #2))
When I was a girl, I was told that if I misbehaved the man with the sack would come for me. All disobedient children disappeared into that wicked old man's bottomless dark sack. But rather than frighten me, the story piqued my curiosity. I secretly wanted to meet the man, open his sack, climb into it, see the disappeared children, and get to the heart of the terrible mystery. I imagined it many times. I gave him a face, a suit, a pair of shoes. When I did, he became more disturbing, because normally the face I gave him belonged to someone I knew: my father, my uncle, the corner grocer, the mechanic next door, my science teacher. Any of them could be the old man with the sack. Even I could probably play the part, if I looked in the mirror and drew on a mustache.
Nona Fernández (The Twilight Zone)
He looked down at her. And with a terrible honesty he said: “. . . I don’t know.” Most children her age would be baffled by this. How could an adult, a teacher, not know the answer? To this question or any? But Molly knew. Molly Blyndeff already knew the terrible secret of the world. She had known it for a long time. The horrifying, beautiful truth that marks the end of childhood: Nobody knows what they’re doing.
Brendan Blaber (Epithet Erased: Prison of Plastic)
Marian considered, said, “My first flying teacher told me to learn when to ignore my instincts and give in when I wanted to resist, and resist when I wanted to give in. He wasn’t really talking about flying, though. And he died not long after in a crash.” Eddie laughed. “My strong instinct is to ignore this terrible advice, but maybe that means I should take it. You’ve given me a conundrum.
Maggie Shipstead (Great Circle)