As my long-time readers know, I have a special bond with my students. I teach them oodles of cool things: How to break blockbuster stories in the school paper, how to dress to impress and how to come off as the brightest crayons in the box, among other skills. But often, we do a little bit of trash-talking.
Because I'm the newspaper & yearbook adviser, I teach these kids over the course of 3 or 4 years. I first met the young man above when he was a 14-year-old froshie. I guess you can tell what I thought of him by the time he was ready to graduate.
Apparently, I am a woman of many quaint bromides. I interject them in the middle of a diatribe about deadlines; I sprinkle them in a convo concerning intrepid interview techniques. I've compiled quite a few of these maxims over the years. So much so, that my cherubs started making a list.
Number One Scribe Saying? "It's only high school." The kids get so wound up over the least significant of details. A cross world can send them dithering into the great beyond, at the end of which~natch~is that great high school equalizer, DRAMA.
One of my journalistas wants to make T-Shirts. On the front would be the line, "What Would Scribe Say?" On the back would be "It's only high school," followed by a few more tidbits from my œuvre.
Here, to wit, is The List. Hope you get a good giggle out of some of my sayings...
- Just stop. (When they're doing too much of anything...talking, yelling, gossiping, belching, etc.)
- OK—I’ll wait. (When the decibel level reaches Mach 12 & I can't get anyone's attention.)
- Do NOT Perturb & Outrage me! (I do not care for the mental image that the common acroynym invokes.)
- Yeah—whatever. (When the little ones make mountains out of molehills.)
- Hiiiiiiiiiiiiiiiiiii… (Repeated several times, softly, to get the crowd's attention.)
- Stop picking your noses. (When they're, well, not doing what they're supposed to be doing.)
- GUYS! (To command attention when the softer approach doesn't work.)
- Let’s all sit around in a circle and sing "Kumbayah." (When they're sitting around picking their noses instead of doing their work.)
- Let’s not all jump at once. (When they "volunteer" to do something, usually involving extra credit.)
- Holy Guacamole! (A utilitarian interjection/exclamation.)
- If frogs had wings, they wouldn’t have to hop. (For those who tend to come up with far-fetched scenarios. As in "But, if so-and-so does such-and-such, wouldn't...?)
- Life in the fast lane. (When one or the other gets overwhelmed.)
- What’s up, Sweet Pea? (A greeting from my Texas youth.)
- It’s not brain surgery. (When a cherub wants to make a task MUCH more complicated than it has to be.)
- OK, I’m an idiot. (When someone points out that Mrs. Scribe's reasoning is not quite, well, reasonable.)
- Do you KISS your MOTHER with that MOUTH? (To reprimand my cherubs for the occasional stray "F Bomb" that drops in Room 215.)
- Pardon your French. (Same use as above.)
- It doesn’t matter. (Again, when the cherubs become overwhelmed. Or the teacher becomes overwhelmed. Or both.)
- Who are you tapping to? (When a student breaks out the forbidden cellie & starts texting.)
- You’re all nitwits! (A utilitarian phrase that comes in handy around teens. Believe me!)
- Talk amongst yourselves—for 5 minutes. (When someone~a friend, an administrator, a former student~appears at my classroom door & I must interrupt the "routine," I channel Mike Myers' Linda Richman. You know, the "Coffee Talk" lady from SNL back in the day.)
- Questions? Comments? Criticisms? (More rhetorical than substantive, although I really DO want to hear what they have to say.)
- It's only high school. (Because, well, it IS only high school, isn't it?)