On May 6, 1988, my mother wrote this.
[My professor] gave me an A, but he said although I was sometimes brilliant, and never bad, I was often dippy. But he gave me the A for my brilliance.
It is hard for me to imagine my mother ever being dippy. She was silly from time to time, but I don’t see that as the same thing. Sometimes I wonder what my professors thought of me, but that is probably a dippy thing to do.
I can definitely be dippy.
Well, maybe that depends on how you define dippy.
What did your teachers think of you?
15 thoughts on “Dippy is as dippy does.”
You know, I never really knew. Interesting question. I’d bet they thought less of me as I got older though. 😉
You never know. I was shocked when I ran into a teacher years later and she remembered me. I’m always sure they’ve forgotten.
Heh, my teachers loved me. “Good at asking questions, listens well in class.” I liked school and I liked my teachers.
Then I moved and went to high school. And the world spun off its axis.
Is high school ever on its axis? It rolls around squashing everybody.
Depends upon what they taught. If it was English or History or Art, I think they thought I was great. If it was anything to do with math or memorization, I think they thought I was not the brightest. I’ve only recently realized that I probably have a slight learning disability when it comes to math. I reverse numbers, am unable to retain them, I think I’m math dyslexic. So people see me fumbling about with them and they think I’m a ditz. Oh well.
Oh, I’m sure I’ve got some mental disconnect when it comes to numbers. Ugh. Mostly I think my teachers thought I was nice enough and that’s about it. But who knows. I’m sure some of your teachers saw your talent.
My teachers couldn’t make me out. But that didn’t stop them trying to change me by telling me I needed to change.
Some teachers seem to think that is their job–to make you into what they think you should be. But your good the way you are!
I wasn’t good the way I was, but no amount of being told how I should be could have changed me. My teachers only helped to undermine my self-confidence even more.
I’m pretty sure my teachers generally liked me and thought I was a good student and so on. A couple of them probably saw in me the tendency to over-reach sometimes, to try too hard for a laugh.
My high-school trigonometry/physics/calculus teacher almost fainted on the spot when I told him I wanted to be a writer. “You ought to go into engineering!” he said, and teased me quite a bit with the word “writer” over the next two years. Although I didn’t stay in touch with him, he probably would have grinned like crazy if he’d known I’d finally ended up in computers. (And then been confused all over again when I insisted on continuing to write even though I had much less to show for it.) (“Less” being relative, of course.)
I really like your mom’s professor’s comment. I suspect that he was a bit smitten by her (and that he had lots of company).
I always want to smack teachers who make fun of students’ dreams. Silly man.
Yes, I think several people were smitten by my mother. Ah. She was like that.
My teachers probably despaired of me, if they thought of me at all. Unfulfilled potential, drifting, smart but unfocused, were some of what they said, and they were generally right. But the comment I got most as I wandered through the various schools of my youth- “you write well.” Something to hang on to.
It is hard to imagine anyone despairing of you, but at least they saw your talent.
Fair enough, Miriam. I didn’t know you then, and only know you in this limited way now. But you were who you were and that was okay. Not perfect. Not perhaps something you wished for, but you all the same. And from what I know you are a good person, a decent person, and person who should be a welcome addition to anyone’s life, and so, you couldn’t be that person now without being whoever you were then–and I’m sure all those good qualities were there.
Well, I suppose in part there is the definition of good. What would it have meant to you to be good back in school? Grades? Attitude? Behavior? Mood?
I suspect you’re too hard on yourself. Part of being young is being difficult to make out.
Thanks, M. When I said I wasn’t good, I didn’t mean I was bad, but rather that my behaviour was detrimental to myself. I needed help, but I wasn’t helped by my teachers telling me to change. That had the opposite effect.
Perhaps I need to explain. From age 14 I was extremely quiet, at first out of choice and later because I had no choice. And I’ve spent the rest of my life dealing with that.