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Your most memorable teacher/professor moment.

Discussion in 'Archived Threads 2001-2004' started by Dome Vongvises, Jan 24, 2002.

  1. Dome Vongvises

    Dome Vongvises Lead Actor

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    I"m pretty sure most of the members of this forum are either in high school or college. What's the most memorable (be they funny or tragic) moment involving a teacher in school for you? Read my sig.
     
  2. David Lawson

    David Lawson Screenwriter

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    "All syphillis is not splotchy, and all splotches are not syphillis."

    I can't remember the name of the elderly English professor or the name of the story we were discussing, but I do remember that comment having the class in an uproar.
     
  3. Scott Weinberg

    Scott Weinberg Lead Actor

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    The year was 1993. I was a junior at George Washington High School in Northeast Philadelphia. My all-time favorite English teacher (Mr. Teplitz) was asking us what we enjoyed writing. I, of course, responded with "movie reviews" and that started off a period-long discussion about the art of film criticism.
    During this discussion, I mildly criticized a local print critic's analytical technique and stated my opinions on why I did not enjoy this critic's reviewing style.
    Three months later, out of nowhere, Mr. Teplitz announces the following:
    "I'd like to take a minute to applaud Mr. Weinberg on his observations of [Reviewer X]'s film analysis from a few months back. I've been keeping up with this writer's work, and I agree with Scott's criticisms entirely."
    Needless to say, I was very happy at the time, and I remember this teacher very fondly for his attention. Apparently this had a big influence on my future years. [​IMG]
     
  4. Mark Hayenga

    Mark Hayenga Supporting Actor

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    From my favorite high school English teacher, to an entire entire class of seniors:

    "Reading Cliff's Notes is like sex with a condom - you just don't get the full experience."

    I shit you not.
     
  5. DanaA

    DanaA Screenwriter

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    When I was in graduate school at U.C.L.A. (Go Bruins!!!), I used to socialize quite a bit with certain professors. One of the professors was of Mexican-American heritage and one night we were out to dinner with a fellow student I hardly knew named Debbie. He suggested that we go to this great place to hear mariachi music. So, we go somewhere in East L.A. and it's this huge hall where mariachi bands perform. Well, the line was well out the door and I thought we'd never get in. He went to the front of the line and the bouncer suddenly started to smile, happily waving us forward and into the front of the hall where we were given prime seating. During the next break in the music, I saw the bouncer walk up to the band, who in turn announced something in Spanish over the mike, before starting to play a cheery, upbeat song. Then, the crowd started clapping to the beat and yelling the Spanish word for kiss at US. I turned to the professor and asked, "Why are they doing that?"

    He responded by saying, "You didn't want to wait all night in line did you? I told the guy that you two were just married and that this was your wedding night, but that you needed a drink and music to carry you through."

    After a while, I gave Debbie a quick kiss on the lips to try and appease the crowd, but they wanted more, much more. Unfortunately, I couldn't deliver. I guess they questioned my manhood after that.
     
  6. JasenP

    JasenP Screenwriter

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    Mr. Wallace Haight 11th grade American Literature class

    Mr. Haight was setting up a VCR and Monitor when I went over to inquire what we were watching. Mr. Haight looked up at me, smiled and said "We are watching 1776, it's a musical, they're (the class) gonna shit."

    I had a very good laugh and I enjoyed the film.
     
  7. Dave_P

    Dave_P Stunt Coordinator

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    When I graduated HS in 1991, my english teacher Tom Haggerty gave all his students a little personalized letter about the year.

    Mine said:

    Dear Dave,

    Thanks for your contributions to our class this year. I appreciated your warmth and your sensitiveness. You seemed to really enjoy much of what we attempted, and I hope the overall view back is a satisfying one for you. I saw real growth and development in you as well as prizing your friendly, laid-back approach to life.

    Good luck in the years ahead. You have the ability in yourself and the sensitivity to others to make a real difference in the world. I hope happiness and achievment are yours.

    Sincerely,

    Tom Haggerty

    This letter is still to this day carried around in my wallet. It has been an inspiration to me when times are tough. He was a very nice man, and a great teacher that all the students loved and respected.
     
  8. John Thomas

    John Thomas Cinematographer

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    Mine starts off with a teaching assistant in my OChem class @ UTK..she invited me over her house She tried getting me drunk and played some romantic music. She started telling me about her personal life and that her husband wouldn't be home for hours.
    She tried to seduce me.
    And it succeeded. [​IMG]
     
  9. RussR

    RussR Stunt Coordinator

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    I had a wonderful history professor in college. T.W. was one of those guys: WWII vet, unapologetic conservative (although his bark was worse than his bite) who stood behind the desk and lectured, stopping to discuss only when someone had an interesting question. He had also done a considerable amount of amateur acting, which really helped to liven up his already great lectures. At the beginning of each semester, he would pass out a sheet describing his grading policies and his views on absenteeism and tardiness. These last two were signs of rudeness and indifference and "your instructor has no patience with either", if I recall correctly. You really didn't want to be late to one of his classes.
    One day, when I was in my junior year, we were in class in a lecture hall we called the Fishbowl. It was one of those stepped level halls, like a theater, with those hideous chair desks bolted to the floor in rows. There was an entrance at the back that almost everyone used and an entrance at the front, behind where the instructor stood, that very few people used. It was about 10 minutes into class, T.W. was in full form, standing behind the science lab at the front of the hall, when this frosh opened the door behind him and came in with a huge pile of books in his arms. T.W. stopped dead, turned around and looked at this kid. The poor kid had no idea that T.W. was waiting on him. He stumbles down the stairs, crosses in front of the lab and finds a desk in the front row. The professor is just looking at this kid with a completely neutral look on his face. The other 40 or 50 of us in the class, most of us having taken classes with T.W. before, are sitting there in stunned silence, wondering what he's going to do to this poor schmuck. It just kept getting worse. The guy goes to sit down and knocks this huge pile of books over. Papers and books scatter everywhere and the kid starts grabbing left and right. He eventually gets everything together, takes his time getting out a notebook and pen and finally arranges himself to start taking notes. It's at this point that he realizes that T.W. is staring him down. The professor stood there for about 15 long seconds, just looking at this kid, while the rest of us waited for the world to end. Then, T.W. looked up at the rest of us and, with perfect timing, said:
    "Now that, by God, was an entrance!"
     
  10. Nate Anderson

    Nate Anderson Screenwriter

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    Well, I will quote my teacher I have this term. On the first day, we all wrote on the chalkboard what we really wanted to do when we grow up. We had a wide range of things, mainly in the Mass Comm field, since it's a Mass Comm class.

    I put up Screenwriter/Film Director, as that's what I'd really like to do.

    After everyone was done, he took one hard look at the board and said, and I quote, "There isn't one thing on here that isn't attainable."

    Quite inspiring, my friend.
     
  11. Jason Handy

    Jason Handy Second Unit

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    To me, it seems like many of the most inspiring professor experiences happen with english teachers. This is no different in my case. While I currently work as an engineer, my english professors from high school will always stick in my mind as some of the brightest, most effective teachers I have ever had.

    High school english teachers have the toughest job in the world - they have to teach us how to write, how to express ourselves effectively. Grammar, spelling - these things are the foundation for the house built by high school english teachers. (As a side note, it seems like these foundation pieces are crumbling in today's youth, but I digress).

    My specific story comes from my 10th grade english professor, Mr. White. I went to an all boys Catholic school, and this guy was a lay professor who was a recovering smoker and always had a piece of chalk up to his lips during class. Well, one day he came in to class - it was early in the year - and told everybody that we could be the smartest person in the world, but all that knowledge is useless unless you can communicate it to other people.

    The task was to write an essay describing how to make a PB & J sandwich. Describe it in essay form, as if you are describing it to a martian. It was my first step into the larger world of real writing and it was a humbling experience. His method of grading was that you would submit a paper, he would tear it apart with red pen, and you would revise. Ultimately, he would not accept it for a grade until it was as good as he thought you could do. Brilliant! Anyway...writing an essay about building a PB&J sandwich is much harder than it seems at first. It is not just about writing the facts down; you have to relate the experience of building a PB&J. Not a trivial task, but I am a better writer because of it, and I feel like his class armed me with the tools I needed to get where I am today.

    Jason
     
  12. Mike_Mig

    Mike_Mig Stunt Coordinator

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    This one came from a female professor in my fluid dynamics class in college. There were four problems on the final and things were fine for about a half hour while people worked on the first problem. Then things got tough on the second problem. Whatever I did I could not get an answer, the problem was unsolveable. I figured I was just clueless. The problem dealt with water flow through pipes and such. This was about four years ago so I don't quite remember all the terms , but I'll get the point across. There are values in pipe flow referred to as velocity head, elevation head and pressure head. Due to friction and turns in the pipes and such you get some head loss. This value of head loss was needed to continue with the problem. It was not possible to come up with this number from the numbers given. After a while a bunch of students went up and were asking her questions, apparently about this problem. She then stood up and said something like this.

    "On problem 2 the information I gave you needs to be modified. The value for velocity head needs to be increased from 3 to 25. You all need to give yourselves more head."

    :b

    Everyone tried to contain their laughter but finally everyone just cracked up. She turned red and sat down quickly. That is the funniest moment I have ever had in class.
     
  13. Dave Morton

    Dave Morton Supporting Actor

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    I guess I'm the geek in the crowd. My favorite teacher in high school was my math teacher. At the time I thought he was the worst. I had him for college algebra my junior year in high school. How I hated memorizing the SOHCAHTOA rules and cos(60)=.5 and got B's and C's. I had him for calculus my senior year and remembered everything he taught the year before and aced his class with straight A's. I still remember everything to this day and his class made it possible for me to test out of a couple semesters of calculus in college so I can expand my mind further. Thanks Owen Glennon.
     
  14. Patrick Sun

    Patrick Sun Studio Mogul

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    My high school senior English teacher marked on one of my papers (that counted for 1/3 of my grade for the semester) with a "Re-do" note on it with no grade on it. Suffice it to say, I was crushed. Then I kept pestering her for a numerical grade, over and over (it help that I sat near her desk in the classroom). Finally I struck a nerve with some sarcastic remark (like "how much effort should I put into re-writing the paper if I don't know how much it sucked"), she grabbed my paper, whipped out her red pen and scribbled a huge "30" on it, and tossed it back to me. The entire class probably saw the grade, and I was bit mortified. The hush from the classroom and then the outbreak in whispered squeals confirmed my suspicion of the "announcement" of my paper's grade.
    Anyhow, flash forward a week, I turned in my paper re-write, and gotten back the re-graded paper, she took off 5 points for the privilege of re-writing it, but I wound up with a 92 on it, so I guess it turned out okay. And as a sidenote, I did fairly well in my English classes in college, actually picking up hard earned A's in them (for an engineering students, A's are really hard to come by at my college). And I'm guessing my high school senior English teacher had something to do with it. She was still a whack-job, though. [​IMG]
     
  15. Bhagi Katbamna

    Bhagi Katbamna Supporting Actor

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    Best: My 7th grade English teacher(who was the grandson of Admiral Byrd--no lying) told me "God-dammit, it is kids like you who keep me in teaching instead of getting a better paying job."
     
  16. Jeff Ulmer

    Jeff Ulmer Producer

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    While it has been decades since I attended the institution of learning known as high school, my biggest revelation came from my 12th grade art teacher. Like most kids, I depised school, but unlike most others in art class, I actually wanted to learn something. Dan Aporta was also my homeroom teacher, which meant he rarely saw me in the morning, but one art class after everyone else had left, we got into a discussion about the current project, when it dawned on me that this guy could be out working on his art, rather than teaching a bunch of unappreciative brats. We got to talking about it, and like Bhagi's teacher, his response was that if he could make a difference for just one kid in his classes, it made sacrificing his own ambitions worthwhile.

    That really made me think, and changed my whole perspective on my teachers. I still hated school, but respected the fact that the instructors could be doing something they were more rewarded for. Too bad I didn't learn that until the last year of school.
     
  17. Rain

    Rain Producer

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    I'm sure I've posted this before, but...
    Mr. John Liandzi, Grade 12 English. William Aberhart High School, Calgary, Alberta.
    He showed us such films as
    Gone With the Wind
    A Man For All Seasons
    2001: A Space Odyssey
    He also got me interested in A Clockwork Orange.
    My love of film began in his class and I thank him for that. [​IMG]
    Best Liandzi quote: "Difficult? Of course it's difficult. If it were easy, it wouldn't be worth doing, would it?"
     
  18. Glenn Overholt

    Glenn Overholt Producer

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    I got stuck with the worst teacher in the school for 8th grade English. Even moving the wrong way in class would get you a mark.

    I walked in on April 1st and didn't recognize anybody. A girl up by her desk said, "We're swapping classes with Mr. Wright in 212."

    I thought she was nuts, but when I got over there, my classmates were there too. He walked in and just froze. We didn't say one word to him. Then he walked out and I'm sure that my English teacher was in the hall as well.

    To this day I am really glad that she took it for the joke that it was.

    Glenn
     
  19. Andrew S

    Andrew S Stunt Coordinator

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    The most memorable moment about a teacher has to be about my grade 9 gym teacher. A friend of mine was just joking around with him and goes up to him and says, "Hey, I hear you have herpes," (he's the kinda teacher you can joke around with). He just stood there and looked at my friend and said, "Yeah, I got it from your mom."
    That's something I'll never forget, can't wait to have him again this year [​IMG]
     
  20. Rob Lutter

    Rob Lutter Producer

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    Last year... my 11th grade History teacher, whose mother is in fact TV's RHODA from MARY TYLER MOORE (no kidding)... (who is also huge chain-smoker) was trying to quit smoking. During the class, out of the blue, he takes out a piece of Nicorette and puts it in one hand. Then, he takes a cigarette in the other hand. He began looking back and forth for about 1 minute. Then he said "FUCK IT," threw the Nicorette behind him and lit up the cigarette.
    Also, my Composition (Writing) teacher keeps calling me 'Butter' to the amusement of the class [​IMG]
    [​IMG]
     

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