14 December 2006

Feliz Hanukkah!

This year, my pet peeve is people who are crabby that they "have" to say "Happy Holidays" instead of merry xmas, as well as the people who take Wal-Mart's reclamation of "Merry Xmas" as some sort of F-You PC-ers! victory. First of all, weird. Second of all, I grew up in Madison, home of the Freedom From Religion people, so the idea of any sort of xmas in schools is totally foreign to me. Third, I grew up a Unitarian Universalist in a town that was 50/50 Catholic/Lutheran, so the winter holidays were always a little rough and weird for me personally, especially in school. And fourth, I just don't see why taking other religions/cultures/beliefs into account is such a huge problem that you have to be such a smug asshole about it.

Anyway... the other morning at a staff meeting, the Spanish teacher got up and waved his arms in his special way, announcing in this very aggressive way: "We're going to be singing Christmas carols in Spanish next week, so if that OFFENDS anyone, we'll make sure not to sing too close to your room! We will be singing CHRISTIAN songs, so let me know if that's a PROBLEM!" (He stared right at me the whole time, even though I've made absolutely no mention of my non-xianity. Anyway.)

The next day, some students told me they had to go to his class next, and they were all moaning and whining like they do. I said, "You guys are learning xmas carols, right?"
"Tell him you want to learn some Hanukkah songs in Spanish," I said. "That would be awesome."
The kids laughed and agreed.

Later that afternoon, I was out on the bus pad when I heard the teacher screaming at me. "THIS IS YOUR DOING! JEWISH SONGS?????? YOU TOLD THEM TO SAY THAT!!!!!"
I shrugged and said mildly, "Hey, if your students want to express appreciation for a diversity of religious beliefs, I think you should support that."

And then I walked away, laughing quietly to myself, while he waved his arms and yelled after me.

Good times.

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