Most of you who read this blog are familiar with the fact that I'm an art teacher. Most of you who read this blog already knew that I have purple hair. Many of you remember me mentioning that I had a feather hair extension. Like since last May, the end of last school year. So, me and new, unusual things = not unusual at all.
A co-worker of mine, who I consider to be a pretty good friend, posted a comment on Facebook in reference to the number of middle school girls with feathers in their hair and how tired she was of it and how she can't wait for this "trend" to die. Several other coworkers expressed their agreement in their liberal usage of the "like" button on her comment. One even expressed concern about the "trouble" that feather hair extensions were causing to the fishing industry because of a lack of feathers for their lures (um, what?! who cares about the sport-fishing industry?! We're not talking about endangering panda bears or killing babies! It's FISHING!). Sigh.
Yes, we came back to school this year with LOTS of our students having a feather extension. I thought it was cute, and kind of rad that we have so many supportive parents letting their daughters try out a form of self-expression that is seen by some as "radical" or "weird." (We smart people know it's not weird at all, but fun and harmless, but I won't go into that...)
I did feel weird that a trend being enjoyed by 11-13 year-old-girls was also something I was partaking in (and might actually make it "uncool" for them to see a teacher wearing the same thing as them - gasp!), so I actually cut my extension out last week - before the infamous Facebook status update by my coworker...
It bothers me that a.) she posted this, and b.) that so many other teachers jumped on the "yeah, me too!" bandwagon. She KNOWS, and my coworkers KNOW that I had feathers in my hair. They also KNOW that I'm on Facebook, too.
It gives me one of those weird self-conscious moments, where I'm all "are they secretly talking about me, criticizing me behind my back?" to which my adult self says, "who cares what they think?"
...but these are (for the most part) people that I think of/thought of as my friends, so I do care what they think, to a certain degree.
And I bet, if I asked them, that they'd brush the whole incident off (if they even remembered it) as a "we were just referring to the students, not YOU Jen" kind of moment.
That doesn't make it okay. That's like stereotyping an entire gender or race, then turning to your friend who is a member of that gender or race and saying, "oh except for you."
Not acceptable. Not okay.
Yes, I'm hormonal and paranoid and weepy at the drop of a hat because of the pregnancy, but it still bugs me anyway, so I thought I'd come here and vent.
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