Okay, so yesterday I co-taught a series of mini-classes and worked a booth for a local youth summit. It's a great event put on by the Guardian Ad Litem's office and was originally intended for kids aging out of foster care.
On a given year in this area, though, there might only be ten or twelve kids to whom that would apply, and given the scale of the event, it wasn't worth it. So...they opened it up to the PEERS (teen parenting) group and then again to kids in the juvenile delinquent system, most of whom were court-ordered to attend as part of their probation. As a result, we had a WIDE variety of participants, from the adorable kid who is raising his two-year old daughter with the help of his mom and planning on going to college to the red-eyed thug who laughed at my example about cigarette cost and told me he smokes weed exclusively to the other kid sitting in the back who, after being asked to remove his earphones did so and then put one back in the second I turned around to write on the board. The nurse I was co-teaching with asked him to take out the earphones and he goes "I've only got one in."
Which brings me to the point of this post. In between classes, the nurse I was teaching with pointed out to me that I have a tendency to say "really bitchy things, but with a smile on your face like you're talking about the weather." Is that true? Um, probably. Especially considering my response to that kid with the earphones was, while I was still writing, "Super! You're halfway there. Now go ahead and finish up." And then we continued the class. I think at that point we were talking about the true cost of owning a vehicle or something. Maybe about how credit cards are the devil...I don't remember. To me that was a pretty level-headed and lighthearted response to this kids blatant disrespect and rudeness. I would be willing to be money that he tried that with every other instructor, too, and that his days are filled with people yelling at him and taking the hard line. Did my sarcastic response change his attitude? Not really. But I didn't see the earphones again.
So anyway, having had this funny little habit brought to my attention is probably not going to mean I'll be all of a sudden sweet and gentle to everyone but at least I'm aware of it. Until I forget and someone else points it out. If, in the meantime, you are on the receiving end of a quick comment you find to be a little too blunt...sorry. It was probably really funny, though, and I can almost guarantee I wasn't trying to hurt your feelings. =)