Saturday, November 03, 2007

Sorry Mrs. Nesbitt

In high school, I was blessed - - truly blessed - - to have as my Senior English teacher Mrs. Sandra Nesbitt.

First off, Sandy was a brilliant teacher. Instead of learning facts about the lives of the Romantic Poets and regurgitating them for a test, Sandy taught us each poet's unique style and content, so that our test consisted of poems we had never seen before. Based on the "style and content," we had to tell her WHO WROTE IT! You see, I didn't just learn in Sandy's class, I learned how to think.

And I learned how to write. Sandy critiqued our papers as if each one was our graduate thesis. If it wasn't for her, all the appeal letters and grant applications that I've found myself writing (with little or no idea what the Hell I was doing) would never have raised a cent.

And even though I know this little blog o' mine is not going to be graded by Mrs. Nesbitt at the end of the semeseter - - at least I hope it isn't - - it was EXTREMELY disconcerting to find out that a Blog Readability Test I found over at Seduced by the New... gave ARE YOU THERE, BLOG the following reading level...

cash advance

Cash Advance Loans

When I read that, I almost went all "Whitney Houston" on my laptop!!

However, since the answer I received from the Blog Readability Test attaches a "Cash Advance Loans" link when you embed it on your site, I'm considering the source.

Yes, that's bitchy of me, but trashing the test is keeping me from freaking out, going all "Jeri Blank" on everyone and re-entering high school in order to learn how to write again! Oy...


P.S. Sandy Nesbitt also kept her room as a safe haven for all of us could have easily have been trampled by life at our little Southern high school. And she was the first person to tell me to my face that she would love me no matter what I did or what I told her. It was her way of telling me she knew I was gay and it was ok to come out to her.

But since everyone I had told up to that point in my life either sent me straight into therapy to "fix me" (my father) or stopped talking to me for awhile (my best friend), I couldn't bring myself to tell Sandy I was gay. But she was there for me. And for so many other kids. She truly saved my life.


P.S.S. If your blog gets a higher score than mine on the Blog Readability Test, congratulations! But be kind and don't tell me.

The rating is making me feel as dumb as Britney and more bad news might cause me to hit a car with an umbrella... or flash my junk as I get out of a cab... or sing GIMME GIMME at karaoke. Either way, it won't be pretty...

18 comments:

Lance Noe said...

i am high school too babe

Polt said...

I only got elementary school level...which i guess isn't suprising.

HUGS...

Kirin said...

I received a score of elementary school too! :(

javajones said...

I'm afraid to ask for a grade for my blog!
Mrs. Nesbitt sounds like a wonderful soul. I'm glad she was there for you. One of my goals in life is to be a safe haven like that for lost and wounded people, afraid to come out, to be true to themselves.

Stephen Rader said...

Lance - The guys who put this together OBVIOUSLY don't understand Southern humor. They probably don't even put vinegar on their greens!

Polt - Elementary school?!? WTF?!?

kirin - Elementary school, too?!?!? Let's all revolt. Oh, and great blog!!

Stephen Rader said...

javajones - Thank you so much. Providing a safe haven for young people is truly life-saving work. And you're right, Sandy is a wonderful soul.

whimsicalnbrainpan said...

Ms. Nesbitt was the best teacher I've ever had.

I got an elementary school rating!
:-(

Not that Type of Raven said...

This meme is rigged! Mrs. Nesbitt sounds like a guardian angel.

Kristie said...

I am sure Mrs. Nesbitt is extremely proud of you and with everything you have done, including this blog.

Kristie said...

Have no fear, it is a random generator. I just ran my myspace page thru it twice. Once I was high school then I was college.

Man I graduated fast!

Stephen Rader said...

Whim - WTF?!?! You?!?! This was made by a Yankee who doesn't like us Southern folk. What are they trying to do? Make us secede from the Union again?!?!?

Raven - It is SO rigged. And Sandy was and is an angel!

Kristie - Can you imagine Sandy stumbling across this blog one day, emailing me and saying, "I need to talk to you about your sentence structure, Mr. Rader." :)

Catty Bitch said...

Come on, sweets. It's not like you're sitting here working out Unified Theory.

It's a blog, honey. Your journal should not read like the goddamn fucking preamble to the Contstitution--which, by the way, is grammatically incorrect.

But anyway.

Stephen Rader said...

Catty Bitch - Seeing as how I wouldn't know Unified Theory from "The Facts of Life" - - except I know one of them has a skating Tootie - - I must say I agree with you.

Still, I wanted a higher grade so that guys will want me for my mind. Instead of my 12 inch cock. Ah, me...

UprightGuy said...

My high school english teacher was Sandy Nichols. But we called her Candy Nipples. Is it sad that I still laugh at that?

Stephen Rader said...

uprightguy - Of course you do. It's friggin' funny! And I think that's my new drag name now. Thank you!!

cb said...

Mine is Elementary! It probably should have been flagged as "Alimentary"... oh well.

I deliberately use a short sentence structure to keep the pacing brisk and the readability high.

Guess my Hemmingway-esque style is too juvenile.

Aaron said...

C'mon, Stephen, Britney couldn't read at a high school level, so how could you have anything in common with her?

Your Sandy Nesbitt was a wonderful teacher--the kind that are in it for all the right reasons! (And which administrators usually hate because they teach kids to think for themselves instead of "follow the leader").

Stephen Rader said...

cb - I'm right there with you on the Hemmingway-esque style. I guess some people don't appreciate our "Less is More" form of writing.

Aaron - Sandy was the best. After I had graduated, we kept in touch. One of my favorite conversations with her was right before she had to have her breast removed because of cancer and she told me that she and her husband were going away for the weekend to, as she put, "Take the breast out for it's Farewell Tour." I adore her.