Archive for the ‘Voices’ Category

Share Your Interests and Goals

March 9, 2015

Another attempt to revive this blog…after three years of inactivity. This time I’m depending on you to get it started again. Please write a brief description of your research interests, your field of study and your goals for the future, your hobbies, your pet peeves, or anything else you want to share about yourself or your experience studying in the US.

Your colleagues are encouraged to comment on your posts. Let’s get a discussion going!


Though Your Mother Never Told You So

November 14, 2012

Your innocent, tenuous attempts were met
By nervous nods and down-curved lips.
Exuberance quashed, sensuality squashed:
Just knitted brows and hands-on-hips.

A need, an ache, a wish, a hope:
Now steel-cold stance, accusing eyes.
A plea, a scream, a prayer, a curse:
Only pity-me cries and injured sighs.

You’re fifty now; you’ve learned the ropes.
The child you were you finally know.
She was beautiful and good and pure and sweet,
Though your mother never told you so.

Hate the Position, not the Person

June 13, 2011

I am a yellow-dog Democrat. As such, I watched the Republican debate tonight expecting to enjoy some comic relief from my currently-burdensome mundanities and frustrations. I found nothing to laugh about. First, I got mad – really mad about the attacks on President Obama and all the noises made about his being a one-term president.

But, as I listened, I relaxed a little and began to realize that most of these potential presidential candidates are smart and probably sincere. Take, for example, Michele Bachmann.

I really like her. She is a strong, intelligent woman. She is passionate about serving her country, believes that her policies are best for this nation, and is as patriotic as I am.  Though I am diametrically opposed to her political stances, I admire her as (to use Mark Levin’s mantra) a “great American.”  My confessing admiration for Michele Bachmann is surely anathema to my Democrat friends. So be it. I would remind them that, as Christ admonished us to hate the sin and not the sinner, we must hate the position and not the person.

If we cannot all grow up and take to heart Rodney King’s plea, then this great nation is doomed to mediocrity and discord. We are all more alike than we are diffent: Republicans and Democrats…rich and poor…young and old…black and white and Asian and Hispanic…homeowner and homeless…Christians and Jews and Hindus and Muslims. We all want the same things.

The tenor of public discourse is hateful and puerile and counterproductive. It is cruelly critical and unforgiving and precludes consensus. But come together we must. If not, we are lost. And the dream of a vital, open, inclusive, progressive, joyful America will be but a sad memory.

Pay It Forward

September 17, 2010

I bought a sweater at SteinMart, decided later I didn’t like it, went to return it today.  Although I paid about $25 for it, it was now on sale for $7 – which was all they would give me back because the return was after the 60-day deadline.  I didn’t question the policy and was in the process of docilely accepting my meager refund.

The woman waiting in line behind me felt really bad for me and reminded the clerk that I had my receipt and the policy seemed unfair.  After all, she added, I had paid full price for the sweater and the store would sell it again for an additional profit.

She made sense;  so I decided to keep the sweater, forfitting my $7.  “It’s such pretty sweater,” the woman commented.  “Yes,” added her young son.  “It’s beautiful.”  And so it was: a summery, white, crocheted work of art.

“Would you like to have the sweater?” I asked the woman.  “I will never wear it.”  She was incredulous, touched, and accepted my gift.

Before I could walk away she hugged me and said “God bless you.”

Her blessing meant far more to me than the price of that sweater.

Whaddaya Think?

February 9, 2010

For women, marriage certificates are like subordinating conjunctions.  Thoughts?

If Kids Are Awake, They’re Online

January 25, 2010

An article by Tamar Lewin published in the January 20 edition of The New York Times addresses a new study from the Kaiser Family Foundation.  The study’s findings were astounding:  the average young American now spends practically every waking minute – except for the time in school – using a smart phone, computer, televsion or other electronic device.  Those ages 8 to 18 spend more than seven and a half hours a day with such devices.

Is this constant online connectivity good or bad for youth? Read the article and make a comment.


May 27, 2007

I hope this blog will be a place where those who have  similar interests can exchange ideas about teaching and more.  I am a university ESL and French teacher.  I am also editor and webmaster of the ESL Globe, an online newsletter for ESL educators.

My blog title reflects the joy I receive from hearing the voices of my students from around the world.  To hear some of their voices, please visit my web page: Global Voices.