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    Defying Gravity

    | London, England, UK | Math & Science, Teachers

    (During science class, my teacher is busy explaining the principles of gravity and how anything with mass exerts some gravitational pull. She initially describes this effect by using a board marker and herself to represent objects with mass but decides she isn’t getting her point across.)

    Teacher: “[My Name], stand up a second, please.”

    Me: *seeing where this is going* “Please, no…”

    Teacher: “Don’t be silly. Stand up now.”

    (I slowly stand.)

    Me: “Look, miss, I know what you’re about to say and I’m begging you, please don’t. Really, just don’t.”

    Teacher: *ignoring me and to the rest of the class* “Now both [My Name] and I have mass and therefore we are attracted to one another.”

    (At this the whole class bursts into laughter making all the usual remarks and causing me to become quite embarrassed; however, rather than noticing, my teacher decides to persist with the explanation.)

    Teacher: “And since we are attracted to each other in a zero-gee environment we would… come together.”

    (The class is continuing to laugh and I am just too embarrassed so I shout out.)

    Me: “Not really. More likely, given our current separation, we would bounce and then settle into some kind of orbit – i.e. we wouldn’t touch. Now if you are done humiliating me, I’m leaving.”

    (With that I walked out of the class. The teacher later phoned home and spoke to my Mum to apologize for what she later realized was inappropriate and to commend me on my understanding of gravity and orbital mechanics.)

    Baby Boom Goes Bust

    | USA | Rude & Risque, Teachers

    (I am in 8th grade history class. Our teacher is an older, eccentric man with an off-the-wall attitude about teaching. We love him. Today, we are a little more rowdy than usual before the start of class. After failing to get our attention, my teacher tries a different tactic.)

    Teacher: “Let’s talk about sex!”

    (Everyone stops talking and just stares at him.)

    Teacher: “Sex… between your grandparents!”

    Us: “Ewww!”

    Teacher: “Fantastic. Now that I have your attention, let’s talk about the Baby Boom…”

    Lord Of The Dance

    | IL, USA | Bizarre/Silly, Religion, Sports, Teachers

    (Twice a week in gym class, we can pick an activity for that day. I am in the dance room to do step aerobics. The dance teacher comes in. She is known for being very liberal.)

    Teacher: “Good morning! The step aerobics video we were supposed to use today wasn’t in the video drawer. This one was available. I haven’t used it yet, but it should be just as good.”

    (We begin working out with the video. The workout is good, but I start to notice something weird. The music on the video sounds like Christian pop music, and the instructor keeps shouting things like ‘praise Him!’ I am Jewish, so this makes me uncomfortable. Halfway through the period we take a water break.)

    Me: “Ms. [Teacher], did you tape this off of a Christian aerobics hour?”

    Teacher: “What do you mean?”

    (I explain what I heard in the video.)

    Teacher: “Oh. Did anybody else notice this?”

    (Other students nod.)

    Teacher: “I’m so sorry. We don’t have another video to use, but let’s just get through this one today and we won’t use it again.”

    (She starts the video again. The Christian elements get more frequent until the end.)

    Video Instructor: “I hope you enjoyed our workout today. But what’s even more important than a physical workout is making sure that you get a good SPIRITUAL workout—”

    (The teacher stops the video.)

    Teacher: “Class, I have to say something. I am a firm believer in the separation of church and state, and that… that was weird.”

    Third World Problem Solving

    | London, England, UK | Awesome, Geography, Politics, Students, Teachers, Top

    (Our geography class has been divided into groups, each representing a country, and sent to a table in the school dining hall. The tables are filled with a mix of paper, pencils, scissors and rulers. Each country is given $500 of its local currency and we are told we have to create shapes from the paper to sell at the world bank, who is represented by our usual geography teacher. The catch is that countries like the UK and USA have lots of scissors, pencils, and rulers but not much paper, and the third world countries have lots of paper. Since their national currency isn’t worth anything they cannot afford to buy the scissors or rulers to cut their paper, but rich countries with lots of money can buy the paper really cheap and make shapes to sell. I wound up in a third world country and decide I wasn’t going to lose, so I take all of our paper and money and go to the USA.)

    Me: “Hi. I’m from Ghana but we’re losing badly. If I give you my nation’s resources and money can I be American?”

    USA Team Member: “No. Go away.”

    Me: “Okay, fine.”

    (I go to the UK instead.)

    Me: “Hi. I’m from Ghana but we’re losing badly. If I give you my nation’s resources and money can I be a UK citizen?”

    UK Team Member: “Sure. Just start cutting out squares quick.”

    (My best friend is also in a third world nation and decides he wants to win, too, and cheats by stealing from other countries and ‘sneaking’ across international borders when restrictions of trade were put in place. At the end of the class we are speaking to the head teacher.)

    Me: “So, you aren’t annoyed that I cheated my way into another country?”

    Head Teacher: “You stole your countries natural resources and sold them out for personal gain… Who said that was cheating?”

    Me: “You mean to say that although probably not what you expected I behaved exactly like someone with power in a third world nation might by exploiting his own nation to benefit himself, right?”

    Head Teacher: “Exactly.”

    (To this day that ‘geography’ class is still the best education I have ever had on how world politics works.)

    Maybe He’ll Be A Late Bloomer

    | Staffordshire, England, UK | Extra Stupid, Geography, Staff, Students, Theme Of The Month

    (I work in my students’ union as a receptionist. The university has two main campuses in a city and a town about 20 miles apart. I’m sat at work and a prospective student walks in.)

    Prospective Student: “Hi. Where’s the… Oh, it starts with a ‘B?'”

    Me: “Brindley?”

    Prospective Student: “No, it’s not that.”

    Me: “That’s the only academic building on this campus that starts with a ‘B.’ What are you here for?”

    Prospective Student: “I’ve got an admissions Interview. I’ve got the letter here.”

    (He hands the letter over. Sure enough he’s supposed to be at the other campus, 20 miles away, in half an hour. At the top of the letter it has the full address of the department including the town. Further down it has the time of the interview, the building, and the town the campus is in. At the bottom of the letter in bold capital letters it says ‘please note your interview is at [town campus] not [city campus]‘.)

    Me: “Okay, so you’re at the wrong campus. You need to go to [Town]. Did you drive here?”

    Prospective Student: “No. How do I get there?”

    Me: “Well, you can get the train and then a bus which will be at least 40 minutes or the bus which will take an hour but drops you off right at the campus. The next bus is due in a couple of minutes though.”

    Prospective Student: “But I’ll be late.”

    Me: “Give me your name and the interviewer’s name and I’ll ring and let them know.”

    (The guy says thanks and runs for the bus stop. I ring the other campus and try to explain the guy would be late without blaming him too much.)

    Interviewer: “Let me stop you there. This guy went to the wrong campus, right?”

    Me: “Yup.”

    Interviewer: “I don’t know why we bother telling them the.campus in the letter. They don’t pay attention. Oh, well. I’ll see him but if he can’t follow simple instructions written multiple times then he better hope he’s some sort of genius at coding if he wants a hope in hell of getting an offer here.”

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