Tuesday, November 22, 2011

I'm Sorry and I'm Afraid.

Not really and I suppose.

A while back, I decided to stop saying "I'm sorry" for things I'm not really sorry for. For instance, if I bump into someone on accident and upset something about their personage, I'm sorry. If they bump into me and expect an exchange of "pardon me"s and "I'm so sorry"s, they can forget about it. A student is demanding something unreasonable that they feel they are entitled to?

Shaylin, I need you to tell me my exact grade over the internet even though it's not secure and kind of frowned upon and I also need you to tell me whether or not I am going to pass your class even though my performance has been pretty crappy over the past 10 weeks and I need a detailed list as to why I might not be passing so I can argue with you over it, endlessly, over the internet.
A common response would be: "I'm sorry Student. I cannot do that."

Shaylin's response:
I'm afraid that I cannot do that. Please see me in person (as per your syllabus) about your grade if you have concerns. Otherwise, all grades at listed on D2L (kind of like blackboard).
Because, what is it to be "Sorry?" To be truly and honestly regretful toward an event or attitude? No, it's now just a filler to reassure the other party and mollycoddle them into a false sense of security. It's like "I love you." Or, alternately, "I hate you." It's a diluted phrase that has lost significant amounts of meaning, true meaning, over time.

So, I'm not sorry. I am not sorry for the things I cannot control, things that are not inherently my fault, or... really anything. I am only sorry when I've done something wrong.

But. "I'm afraid?" Alternately, "I fear." That's a suitable substitution, right? Student, I fear I cannot give you this information because I don't feel like it and it's in my syllabus that you cannot demand insane things from me at all hours of the night. Student, I fear that you are taxing me and my resolve to maintain this career path of mine with your ridiculous capacity to send incomprehensible emails. I'm afraid for your future. But I am not sorry.

At any rate, that's my stance for tonight. I have much more to say, but I think I need to put it into another post. 

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