Wednesday, February 02, 2011

Of Education, Men and Women

One of my sisters has begun blogging. She is intelligent, educated and many other good things. She is opinionated (unlike me). One thing she is not is brief, to-the-point, of few words. To my surprise, like me but not to the same degree, she makes typos!

Recently I sent her an email asking instructing her to read a post by AnvilCloud entitled Of Men and Women. She posted a comment, a LONG comment, to his article. I find her response interesting.

My brother Paul sent this to my email. He was supposed to be answering a question but told me I had to read this first. I loved it! (He knew I would. Glad I was compliant.) Not only did I thoroughly enjoy the blog post, but I loved the unretired grampa part and the picture of you little granddaughter. She is precious and wonderful!

I will soon be 62 so this is particularly interesting to me. For several reasons. First because of the grief my dad had to put up with when the men he worked with found out I was going to college. (He was a machinist.) I guess his co-workers kept telling him how foolish it was for him to let me go to college. They said I would only get married anyway. Although my dad really liked the guys, he was truly irritated. He finally responded that evidently they considered their daughters second class children. He went on to say that he had two daughters and they were not second class children to his son. I guess he couldn’t resist. But he ended the conversation that had persisted several days by saying that if I wanted to get married some day, at least at college I might find someone who would appreciate me; and he liked that idea a whole lot better than thinking I would marry someone like them who would not. When he was telling me about the incident, he went on to say, “Remember honey, you never have to work for a man if you don’t want to. You can do whatever you want. Let them work for you!” I doubt my brother or sister have ever heard that story. I don’t see why they would have. He was ahead of his time, and I am so glad for it!!

The second reason I love the story is that from the first day of school I knew I wanted to teach. I loved school! Imagine if I had lived at a time or in a place where little girls were not educated. At that time, at least in West Virginia, there was no kindergarten. So we entered first grade. My brother and all my cousins next door were already in shcool. And I thought it highly unfair that I couldn’t go when I wanted. When I finally got to go, I waited patiently for the teacher to give me homework like by brother and cousins had. She didn’t! So finally I asked for some. She wisely gave me some. When questioned at home about why I had homework, I explained I had asked for it. I’m SURE Paul does not remembe this, but he went around complaining that he had the dumbest sister in the whole school and everyone would know it and he didn’t want to go the next day. I ignored it all and did my homework!

I like these stories. I had never heard the one about my father since I was in the Army at that time. I like the first grade story and do not remember my reaction.

My father had an eighth grade education. There was no bus service to a high school so he attended eighth grade twice in hopes that rumors of impending service were true. After the second year he gave up and went to work in the coal mines.

My father and my sister knew the value of education many, many years before I saw the light.

(Read AnvilCloud's article. I think you'll find it interesting and informative.)


Blogger Anvilcloud said...

Older generations sure had a hard time being able to explore "their authentic selves." But I am guessing he found ways to educate himself. I remember my mother once saying that her Dad, the humble bricklayer, would read Chaucer -- I assume in his retirement, but I don't know.

2/02/2011 02:33:00 PM  
Blogger Alex Pendragon said...

The women in our lives, one way or another, will always show us up.

2/02/2011 05:51:00 PM  
Blogger Regenia said...

Darn! Now by brother has been right twice in one week! He was right that I would love the Anvilcloud blog. And, well...he's not exactly wrong that I have trouble being concise. There will be no living with him! But I'm sure glad he enjoyed the story.

And you know something? I'll have to think about whether or not I'm opinionated. He's probably wrong about that, at least!

2/05/2011 07:58:00 AM  

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