Picking the best apples

apple-661670_960_720It seems that people have finally got used to the fact that they are the masters of their own lives. They can choose the best fitness centers, the best hairstylists, the best insurance companies, or the best dentists. They can even choose the best schools to send their kids to. It feels so good to have a choice. It’s wonderful to live in a world of endless opportunities.

It seems, though, that too much choice is not always a good thing. When there is a wide range of something, making the right decision then becomes more difficult and time-consuming. It can even become stressful and frustrating.

Now, with so much choice available everywhere you look, people have inevitably started to believe that they can pick everything like apples at a fruit market. Do you find an apple asymmetrical? Too small? Too soft? No problem. Squeeze it hard and then just throw it back if you don’t like it. Never mind that you damaged it completely. Choose another one. It’s your privilege. You’re the customer.

Does your teacher happen to wear an old-fashioned jacket? You don’t like her hairstyle? Criticize her openly or ask for a new teacher. Does she speak too quietly? Too loudly? Is she not a native speaker? Is she not interesting enough? Do you prefer a male teacher? Does she dare to discipline your kid? Accuse her of being incompetent, boring, aggressive, you name it, and ask for a new one. There’s no need to see the teacher in action or talk to her (or the headmaster) – it’s too much work and your schedule is full anyway. Organize a petition instead. Create a web page and make fun of everybody. Or, perhaps, let your child do the work. Let him have fun. Then support him without further questions and second everything he says. You trust him unconditionally cause he is mature enough (already 15!) and we have the freedom of speech stuff, remember? Anyway, you are the customer and you have the right to pick the best apples and dispose of the asymmetrical ones. So, go ahead!

 

 

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About Hana Tichá

I'm an EFL teacher based in the Czech Republic. I've been teaching English to learners of all ages for more than 20 years. I love metaphors and inspiring discussions concerning teaching, learning and linguistics.
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9 Responses to Picking the best apples

  1. Marc says:

    Oh my goodness. I hope you are OK. I can imagine all to well the situation you are talking about. We live in a society of internet experts. 😦

    Liked by 1 person

  2. Zhenya says:

    Read it. Nodded in understanding. There is also another side of the medal: teachers may choose where to work, and when to leave/change the (language) school. Had a conversation with three Directors of Studies recently: all work in my city in Ukraine, one in a private chain language school, one in a smaller language center, one in a semi-private school. All share similar examples: ‘You want me to fill in this (electronic) every week? It is too much. I will leave.’ Many other examples. Is this an industry crisis? Is education becoming a ‘business’ more than anything else (and thus ‘satisfying’ the immediate needs and wants of a customer becomes a priority? Hope you are okay, and that summer vacation is starting soon! Zhenya

    Liked by 2 people

    • Hana Tichá says:

      Thank, Zhenya. Yes, there are always two sides of the same coin. I know this all too well. But they say that everything bad is good for you. I take this as another lesson. Another awakening. Sometimes, the thought that you can always leave and thus escape an unbearable situation is liberating. You don’t actually have to turn this into reality, but the idea that you are free to do what you think is best is healing. I’d like to stress that I’m not involved in what I describe in my post directly. Still, I’m part of it and have to take a stand on this. And yes, the prospect of holidays is healing too. 🙂

      Like

  3. Giulia says:

    Sometimes I feel exactly the same way, especially if DoS or headmaster don’t stick up for you.
    Be strong!

    Liked by 1 person

    • Hana Tichá says:

      Thanks, Giulia. Unfortunately (or luckily?), we’re all in this together; the headmaster is one of the targets and victims.

      Like

  4. Sandy Millin says:

    Such a well-written post, and there must be a lot behind it. I’m sorry that somebody has put you into a situation where you feel you have to write this, and I hope that the writing of it has helped.
    There are two sides to every story when people are involved, and we need to listen and gather information before making decisions. Blind faith in what one person says is never enough.
    Good luck!
    Sandy

    Liked by 1 person

    • Hana Tichá says:

      Thank you, Sandy. I absolutely agree that communication/listening to others is the key. Unfortunately, some people don’t want to listen and if you repeat a lie often enough, it eventually becomes the truth for those who want to hear it. I’m really sorry I had to write the post, but not everything’s coming up roses, I’m afraid.

      Liked by 1 person

  5. Chrysa says:

    Being a part of and having to take a stand on it even if not directly involved can also make you feel sad and disappointed. It affects everyone. I know the feeling. Take care.

    Liked by 1 person

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