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» Hatrack River Forum » Active Forums » Books, Films, Food and Culture » The Urge to Kill Thread

   
Author Topic: The Urge to Kill Thread
Olivet
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Some kid at school told my oldest that if he wanted to be popular, he should 1)"walk like me" 2) not hug the teachers and 3) not talk in funny voices.

The same kid told him the toy he bought at the class auction was "lame".
The guy plays hockey and basketball and only thinks that stuff is cool. Well, guess what? In mY family, we think loudmouthed jocks are lame.

It's been like this all year with Robert in a class inhabited by boys who like sports and don't want to use their imaginations at recess or discuss Star Wars trivia. He's in a little cluster of two or three boys who are on the outs with the rest because they're "nerds".

Newsflash, Jerkwads! Nerds make more money. Nerds don't end up washed up and drunk in their thirties, reliving their glory days when they could still touch their toes.

Also, I'll kick your fleshy buttocks if you mess with me or mine, ever again! *glare*


Thanks. Just needed to get that out of mysystem before I volunteer in his class Thursday. [Smile]

Feel free to vent your own urges to kill.

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smitty
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Nerds can at least end up drunk in their thirties. We can just afford the good stuff! [Wink]
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Anti-Chris
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Robert does have my sympathy, Olivia, and I can relate to what he's going through. Personally, any kid who discusses star wars trivia is a kid I'd want to hang out with.
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Enigmatic
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We're still drunk, smitty, just not washed up and drunk! [Big Grin]

--Enigmatic

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Dante
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quote:
Nerds make more money. Nerds don't end up washed up and drunk in their thirties, reliving their glory days when they could still touch their toes.
<sigh> I wasn't a nerd or a jock. Essentially, I don't make much money and I didn't have any glory days. And I may be washed up, but I think I can still touch my toes.
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jh
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Not all jocks are mean; I've known quite a few nice ones.

Besides, put a jock in a class full of nerds and the jock will be the one picked on.

I am sorry about your son though.

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FlyingCow
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When I was teaching, I curbed a lot of this simply by showing a lot more interest in the extra curriculars of the "left out" kids.

Granted, I was a young male teacher that the boys seemed to pattern on a bit, so a little extra enthusiasm for the student who watched the Discovery channel special the night before went a long way.

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Tante Shvester
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(sympathetically) I'll touch your toes, Dante.

Tante + Dante (they don't rhyme, guys!)

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pH
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[Frown] Poor Robert. It sucks when another kid tries to tell you that your interests are stupid.

I would like to kill my brain, which has apparently decided that it wants to burst from my skull in Alien fashion, causing me great pain.

-pH

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Tante Shvester
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Olivet, how old is your kid? I have nothing but sympathy for his situation, but he has a cool ma, and that can help.
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Sterling
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Isn't it crazy, how in some circles (especially schools) people end up feeling they have to "dumb down" just to fit in?...

Sympathies, Olivet. But witticisms aside, the smart kids win in the end, and we all know it.

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Olivet
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Thanks, guys. [Smile]

Dante, you're kinda lit-geeky, which is my favorite flavor of dorkdom. [Big Grin] If I wasn't spoken for... [Wink]

Tante- He's eight. He actually took it really well, because one of his buddies in the class stood up for him. I think it was Skylar. He has two or three other friends in the class, but the jock contingent is much louder, if only slightly larger.

One of their homeroom teachers (it's a team-taught class where two teachers share a single job) is married to the gym teacher, and the other is kinda sporty, too. They once asked if maybe we should have him play sports video games.

I giggled until I realized she was serious. O_O Same planet, different worlds. [Big Grin]

Cow- I'm sure you were a great teacher. It really helps me appreciate the teacher Robert had last year. She was very proud of Robert because he got along so well with everyone, floating seamlessly between cliques.

In any case, it's almost over. Nine more weeks.

Hopefully, I won't have any more dreams about beating his teacher's face into a brick wall, though I did wake feeling quite refreshed. [Big Grin]

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Olivet
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quote:
Originally posted by Sterling:
But witticisms aside, the smart kids win in the end, and we all know it.

Said the smart kid to the geeky internet forum full of smart kids. [Wink]

[Big Grin] He wasn't upset about it, though, really. I think because his friend stuck up for him, and partly because he doesn't see himself as unpopular at all. He did earlier in the year, but the class composition has changed a bit, and he's made new friends.

And we know that not all jocks are jerks, but it's nicely alliterative. [Smile] There are two leagues for every sport around here -- the league where the parents fight and pressure the kids and the coaches get death threats if the team loses, and the league where sane people put their kids so they can learn sportsmanship and get exercise.

Robert has no interest in either at this time. He won't even let us take off his training wheels. [Roll Eyes]

He's a funny kid, but he's MY funny kid, and I'm a bit protective.

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Dante
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Tante, you're free to touch my toes. Unless I start to feel like you're enjoying it too much. That's just wrong.

Olivet, it's amazing how many spoken-for women find me fascinating, nay, alluring. Even when I was a kid, my friends' (and potential girlfriends') parents liked me: I was clever and cheeky while maintaining a mostly harmless persona.

And while I completely understand your frustration, I would also caution against going to the other extreme and making Robert feel like he's better than the jerky kids because he has different interests; rather, make him feel like he's a more quality person because he's not a jerk. I know in school I was certainly not impressed with obnoxious jock types, but I was no more impressed by obnoxious nerd types who talked about how smart they were and how rich they were going to be someday. I liked the kids who were good, decent people who didn't think their own particular talents and interests made them better than everyone else.

This may be why I didn't have a huge group of friends in junior high and high school, but I did have friends from each major school sub-culture.

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Olivet
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I think I actually managed what you suggest, Dante. I told him that what Jack said wasn't nice, but that everyone is a jerk sometimes.

He was smiling broadly when he asked,"Even me?"

"Yes, even you."

He knows he's mean to his brother sometimes. I have told him many times that different people have diferent interests and abilities, but it doesn't mean some have more value than others.

I just posted the short version here to get my rant on. [Big Grin]

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Altáriël of Dorthonion
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Personally, I believe that most nerds and geeks are hot. Jocks were never my thing. I am a proud nerd myself, though.
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Tante Shvester
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Tante to Dante: This little piggy went to market, this little piggy stayed home, this little piggy had roast beef, this little piggy had none, and this little piggy cried "wee wee wee" all the way home!
quote:
I was certainly not impressed with obnoxious jock types, but I was no more impressed by obnoxious nerd types who talked about how smart they were and how rich they were going to be someday.
Well said!
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Dante
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quote:
I think I actually managed what you suggest, Dante....I just posted the short version here to get my rant on.
Yeah, I guessed that. I just took advantage of your rant to seize the moral high ground and pontificate. That's what I'm good at.
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Dante
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Dante to Tante: cf. "enjoying it too much," above.
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Tante Shvester
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<sigh>
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Will B
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My thought: a nerdy kid is bright. So why can't he figure out how to run rings around the bully, socially?

I think it's because the priggishness of bullies doesn't make sense. Intelligence isn't how to win; persistence is, and nerdy kids give up before they begin. If there were an argument without all the flourishes, it would be like this:

Bully: You suck.
Nerd: No, I don't, because --
Bully: You suck.
Nerd: No, YOU suck.
Bully: No, I don't. You do.
Nerd: I guess you're right.

I don't know how the bully feels when he gets insulted. I do know that he doesn't *act* like it bothers him. The nerdy kid (including me as a kid) needed to know: throw it back at them, and keep throwing it back with the same stupid persistence they do. The reason you lose is that you give up -- not because you feel bad.

It's a tedious game, but you have to play it, at that age.

OSC has a story I wish I'd known at that age. He and his friends, who'd be nerds at another school, made up funny songs ridiculing the football team, and everyone heard them. Years later he heard the captain of the football team, who was sort of embarrassed that he'd been on the team, rather than proud as usual. The songs had hurt him.

I'm not glad his feelings were hurt, but the point is, it's not about athletics and brains; it's about confidence. Sort of like when Tom Sawyer got the other kids to pay him for the privilege of painting Aunt Polly's fence.

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pH
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Olivet, I wish your son could meet my nephew! He's ten, and he's a huge dork. My brother is also a huge dork. Zachary (my nephew) loves science fiction and computers and all sorts of non-sporty things.

-pH

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HollowEarth
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Seriously. Check out the hurt put on this basketball player.
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Carrie
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quote:
Originally posted by HollowEarth:
Seriously. Check out the hurt put on this basketball player.

Where's the jaw-dropping Graemlin? That just goes beyond rational thought.

Yeah, jocks are dumb. But retaliating nerds are even moreso.

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HollowEarth
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As a rule, I don't use graemlins. I dunno, I thought it was pretty funny.
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Chreese Sroup
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I liked some sporty things when I was younger, but I grew up with a keyboard, and all manner of electronics around me.
I remember being pretty shy about video games or things I liked because I had been teased previously, but also having 7 older brothers means I get teased about lots of things anyways.

I think my solution was to just hide it, because I was (and am) embarrassed about being geeky. I learned to be really compartmental I guess.

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Belle
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Well, Natalie wants to join the chess club next year and her friends think it's stupid of her, because there are no girls on the chess team. Natalie just answered "There will be when I join." [Smile]
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El JT de Spang
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quote:
Tante + Dante (they don't rhyme, guys!)
Huh?
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ketchupqueen
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*sigh* I knew 8-year-old girls were bad. I didn't know boys were the same. *sigh*
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breyerchic04
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Tante is pronounced more like Tan ta.
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Tante Shvester
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Tante rhymes with "want a".
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El JT de Spang
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Well that's just silly.
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Icarus
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quote:
Originally posted by jh:
Besides, put a jock in a class full of nerds and the jock will be the one picked on.

Not true. I've been teaching for eleven years, mostly honors classes, and it never fails: the nerds suck up to the jocks.
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Tante Shvester
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quote:
Originally posted by El JT de Spang:
Well that's just silly.

Is not!
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Tinros
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quote:
Originally posted by Tante Shvester:
Tante rhymes with "want a".

I always pronounced it French: tahnt.

Is it the Hebrew word, then?

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Tante Shvester
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Yiddish.
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littlemissattitude
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quote:
Originally posted by HollowEarth:
Seriously. Check out the hurt put on this basketball player.

That was dirty pool...and very, very clever.
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FlyingCow
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I think this was posted once before, but this colum/op-ed piece has some great insights into this whole phenomenon, totally from a layman's perspective.

Why Nerds are Unpopular

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pH
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(To the tune of the Fantanas song)
Wanna Tante? Doncha wanna? Wanna Tante? Doncha wanna?

You look hot in all that plaster! Drink some Tante, faster! Faster!

-pH

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Icarus
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Cow, I found that article very interesting when KoM first posted it. But I've been thinking about it for the past couple of months or so, and come to the conclusion that I don't buy its basic premise. It might be worth sharing with a geek because it's very empowering to them, but I just don't believe it's so.
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sweetbaboo
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Belle, my 10yo daughter joined the "chess club" here and it ended up that she was the only girl. But she went undefeated and won the whole she-bang! Woo hoo! One of the boys is in her class and now she is known as "smart", of which she is very proud [Big Grin]

Go Natalie!

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FlyingCow
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Ick, the premise that I liked the most was the "playing soccer with a glass of water on your head" metaphor of differing priorities.

I also really liked the point made about the lack of real world impact our teens have - that microcosmic communities develop hierarchies because their members mostly don't have impact *outside* the bounds of the community.

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FlyingCow
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Wow, that must have been one of the first things KoM posted - at least in his first few months. It's been saved on my computer since December 2004, and he started in July of that year.
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Icarus
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Or maybe someone else posted it when you saw it, and he posted it later, and that's when I first saw it.
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Carrie
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We never had a chess club, not in elementary school, nor even in high school. It was probably a good thing, though, becaue I'm awful at chess. [Smile]

In all honesty, I knew I had been labelled "smart" and "nerd" (and, more popularly, "that loser girl"), I just never cared. I think by the time late middle school/early high school rolled around, we were all pretty set in our niches, as it were, and didn't feel the need to heighten the differences. There wasn't much of a "better-than-thou" sense in the separation of groups - unless you were in choir... - it was more of a recognition of talents. This sounds all rosy-coloured and happy and whatnot, but (to the best of my knowledge) it's what I remember.

That said, loudmouthed jocks are lame. I just don't think rubbing their faces in their lameness is a way to achieve anything - not even fleeting gratification. Oh, and vice versa.

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