Monday, October 8, 2012

Hope it sucks down there....

A few weeks ago I was sitting in the teachers' room planning some lessons. It's not uncommon for teachers to ask me questions regarding English as I am the only native speaker in the school. This day was  no different. A teacher (left unnamed to protect the guilty) asked me if it was okay to say "I like drawing" or if the correct way was to say "I like to draw". After I told her that both were correct, she told me she was taught that the phrase "I like drawing" was incorrect. Not willing to bash her university professor's instruction, I simply said that I had never heard that before and I was pretty sure both were fine. She then dismissed me and said she'd rather ask a non-native English speaker because people from the States always use English incorrectly. Oh. Okay. Way to generalize an entire nation of people and insult me all in the span of five seconds. You can go to hell now.


  1. What an incredibly stupid comment to make - I mean that unnamed teacher. The only time I think it would make a difference in the meaning is for example, I like singing vs I like to sing. The first one could mean I like singing in general, not necessarily me doing the singing. In any case, I hate people who make generalizations about entire groups of people. It's just so ignorant!

  2. Most speakers are often just unaware of the way they use their own native language, so that they cannot give proper explanation of grammatic rules, for example. But what a stupid comment to make to a teacher!


  3. I might - if feeling snippy - have come up with the following (with the help of google translator):

    ¿Lo que es un sinónimo de "ignorante"? y ¿sería tan amable de darme un ejemplo en la primera persona singular - pasado, presente y futuro?

    If the teacher does you can follow that up with a smile, agreement, and thanks.

    If the opportunity presents itself again I would either avoid answering or go into a long Joe like explanation that goes on forever and every time it appears like you are coming to a close, where he/she might head for the door, add more information going into the minutia and a myriad of possibilities. Chances are if you ever let her get away she wont ask you anything like that again.
    --------- better

    Ignore it.

    --------- best

    Lucy comment below: uyyyyyyyyyyyyyyyyyyyyyyyyyyyyyyyyyyyyyyyyyyyyyyyyyy7??????*IU

  4. Maggie, I don't understand this person's logic. Though both are correct, if she wanted a "second opinion," so be it. But her logic of asking a "non-native" English speaker doesn't make sense to me. Totally insulting. If I were in your shoes and she ever asked me another question, no matter what the nature of it or how trivial it was, I would tell her to go ask a "non-native."

    1. Sally, I think that is an excellent idea!!