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Thread: Intellectuals vs Non-Intellectuals

  1. #16
    GOLDEN DREAMS RealtorGal's Avatar
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    My Mom and I still giggle over the story of how when I was a baby she came home one day to find that my Dad--B.S. from MIT and a Ph.D. in Nuclear Engineering--had put me down for a nap WITH MY SHOES ON. No, they were not little booties, and no, he didn't do it so as not to disturb me. It was because my Mom didn't specifically TELL him to take them off me!

    She asked him "Do you sleep with YOUR shoes on?" to which he replied, "No." She asked, "So why should SHE?"

  2. #17
    Da' Spellin' Homegirl Grgranny's Avatar
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    "even those with college degrees" can't spell.

  3. #18
    On Edge Piel's Avatar
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    Quote Originally Posted by Mathman

    Suzy, I have the opposite problem. Everybody thinks I am book smart but no common sense. When I am at a social event and someone asks me what I do, and I say, "mathematics," well, that's the end of the conversation, LOL.

    MM
    There is an old Appalachian saying (and you MUST get the accent right ...."All that book learnin' and not a lick of common sense."

    Mathman, that's when you need to add..."but I have this tattoo of Michelle Kwan...... :D :D :D "
    Last edited by Piel; 08-17-2004 at 06:35 PM.

  4. #19
    ~ Evgeni's Sex Bomb ~
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    Yana, my students are 9th graders. Please re-read my original post. I suggested Headline News because it SKIMMED the events that affect Americans. It's hard enough to get these kids to look outside their freakin' high school (sorry, school started today, I think I picked up their language), much less at what's going on in Africa. So, yes, baby steps. I did also recommend a national and local news broadcast. While Suzy is an adult, if she's busy and short on time, HN can give her the same overview.

    My students also love the Daily Show. If it gets them interested in current events, I'll take whatever I can get. :D

    Laura

  5. #20
    Tripping on the Podium
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    Intellectual or not, people should have manners enough not to exclude you. Of course, you need to assert youself as well. Just bring up those things that are interesting to you. It's an art. I'm over 40 and am still learining it.

  6. #21
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    Laura, sorry about that.

    Now that you mention that the kids are just 14-15, I see what you mean. Sorry about the school starting already! Do you teach in a private school? Just curious since it's a bit too early.

    The reason why I like to check out the news on line is that it's fast and the front page usually provides a summary of the most important events of the day (abcnews.com is good for National news). You can always expand on the categories to get more in depth news, but at least you don't have to put up with annoying commercials or wait for the news to appear every 15 mints (that's still the format, right?).

    I suggested BBC b/c for every story they will provide links to the previous related events so if somebody can't really follow the story the background info is right there.

    Cheers, Yana

  7. #22
    ~ Evgeni's Sex Bomb ~
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    We'll do a news unit at the end of the year, and they have to check out different international sources, so I will keep those in mind.

    I'm at a public school in somewhat rural area, and we get out in mid-May so the kids can work on the farms. To get out in mid-May, you start early and give up spring break. But it's cool. :D

    Laura

  8. #23
    Custom Title Joesitz's Avatar
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    Hi Suzy - Reading your post was like reading a confession and bravo to you to allow others in on the problem.

    As one person has said, you should be seeking a more rounded outlook on life because you want it and not because others want you to. Now there is a world of source material, and I think you can use a bit of entertainment with it to get you going. You might want to check out the History Channel which often has some interesting compilations on different events. this is good background info for the present.

    There is also a nice boyfriend who just might be a history or a poly sci major whom you might ask him about things he has been studying. In fact I bet some of your close friends would also be helpful. And your family should also help instead of just putting you down.

    Joe

  9. #24
    Forum translator Ptichka's Avatar
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    One thing I love about America (vs. Russia) is that people here on average are not afraid to be what they are. In Russia, people (in many circles) tend to be far more afraid to let anyone see they are not super-intellectuals. So, whenever a certain "intellectual" book hits the shelves, everybody suddenly has to have it, and it becomes "Oh, you haven't read such-and-such? Ah, but you absolutely have to! Reading it is just so profound!". In general, Americans are more willing to admit they don't like something, or are just not interested. So my advice is -- while you're young, try a little bit of everything, and find something you really enjoy. As to appearing intellecutal -- it's very easy, but what's the point? I recall an episode of the old "Boy meets World" sitcom, where Eric gets book that teaches him how to appear smart -- please don't be like that.

  10. #25
    Custom Title Mathman's Avatar
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    Hi Ptichka. Unfortunately, the flip side of that attitude is all the young people in the U.S. who think it's cool to be dumb. If you try to learn anything at school, that's "acting white."

    Mathman

  11. #26
    Tripping on the Podium
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    Quote Originally Posted by Mathman
    Hi Ptichka. Unfortunately, the flip side of that attitude is all the young people in the U.S. who think it's cool to be dumb. If you try to learn anything at school, that's "acting white."

    Mathman
    We went through that in the 70's. Our class got cured of that one real fast. We had a very popular science teacher who, incidentally, was black and the coach of the school basketball team. He said, after the class laughed at a student for popping-off a particularly smart answer;

    "Hey -- there's nothing wrong with being SMART." Suddenly, at least for a couple of weeks, being smart was "cool."

    Keep in mind that you can be smart without being an "intellectual," and you can pursue intellectual thinking without being overly smart. (Then you get a radio show, like Rush Limbaugh.) :D

  12. #27
    Forum translator Ptichka's Avatar
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    Quote Originally Posted by Mathman
    Hi Ptichka. Unfortunately, the flip side of that attitude is all the young people in the U.S. who think it's cool to be dumb.
    Yah, I've noticed that too. And the list of things that make you "a geek" grows each day. People may still consider me a non-geek when they find out I am a software engineer, but if I dare mention I actually like it...

  13. #28
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    Suzy,
    It's obvious you've already got a lot of great advice. I just wanted to say "good for you" for trying to improve this problem with your family, which is just as much their fault, if not more.

    I also wanted to say I totally agree with everything Bronzeisgolden and Longhornliz said. I agreed with most people, but those two seemed to sum things up. You're probably not the one with the problem, but it's great that you're trying to expand your horizons. As someone else said in a slightly different way, whether your IQ is 180 or 80, you should be able to talk about cooking with someone without trying to show off your understanding of the quantum mechanics of baking a cake.

    Finally, one of my former professors used to say something about questions I always liked: "There's no such thing as a stupid question as long as it's asked sincerely."

    Good luck and don't let your family get you down. I bet we would all enjoy getting to know you. I don't know if we'd enjoy getting to know you family as much--nothing against your family of course. But let's face it, we all have family members we're happy to see leave early from family functions.
    Rgirl

  14. #29
    On Edge Piel's Avatar
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    But let's face it, we all have family members we're happy to see leave early from family functions.
    Rgirl

    AMEN

  15. #30
    Sal-Kowabunga!
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    I suspect the family "intellectuals" have the same IQ as you. My daughter always used to complain that my son and I were smarter than her. That was never true, as her IQ is similar to her brother's and mine. Even after I told her she had the IQ and the test scores to join Mensa if she wanted to, she still found it hard to talk with either of us about current events because she just isn't interested in them enough to know about them.

    The point is, it's great that you are taking the initiative to learn about the things THEY want to talk about. But maybe you could also (politely) ask if they might learn a bit about the things that interest you. After all, your interests are important to you and it's only fair for them to know what you know and value..

    And most important -- find people who are interested in the same things to talk about them After all, you come here because we all have figure skating in common. My high school speech teacher (he was also the shop teacher, so I guess he qualifies as a well-rounded individual) said that he was told he never had to be alone. That making friends was easy if you were involved yourself in an activity you loved. His was theater. Not only acting but scene construction, etc (Hey, he was the shop teacher).

    Don't let this get you down on yourself.

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