Blog Your Blessings: Gee Wiz

"'Gee wiz,' miss? You said, ''Gee wiz'?"

"Yes, Brandon. I said, 'Gee wiz.'"

"I never heard that before, miss."

This was yet another passing exchange with an eighth-grade student who is trying to help me bring my vocabulary up-to-date with today's street English. The child means well, surely. He tells me things like, "Don't say 'chill,' miss; say 'relax.'" And I remember and do.

But "gee wiz" got me. I told him it means "wow." But it didn't matter because it's not today's usage.

Back in the day, "gee wiz" was street English for Jesus, a way of using the name without using the name to express surprise. Now it is an indication of a middle-aged woman's enduring naivete despite her daily contact with children who haven't learned to read and write well and don't much care to because they don't see the point.

My young teacher set me on the way to thinking about that enduring naivete. It is my blessing this week. It is the gift that gets me out of bed every morning to face a full day of tough kids who resent my interfering in the despair and laziness with which they made peace a long time ago. It allows me to love the day, shake off the frustration, go home and be my daughter's mom.

Gee wiz, I am very grateful for this. And for the deep and abiding love in my life that makes it possible.

Blog Your Blessings

Comments

  1. Sandy,

    Now this little lesson you've learned has also touched me.

    Shake his hand for me and here's you a *hug*!

    Make it wonderful!

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  2. I suppose it IS a bit Mayberry, ain't it? LOL But the way you've expressed the peace they've made with despair is just heartbreaking.

    God bless teachers everywhere -- thank you, for teaching me so often!

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  3. Gee wiz he never heard "gee wiz " before? Gee...

    I like naivete sometimes. It is a blessing. Thank you for this.

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  4. I tend to say, "Ah, geez." My seventh grade daughter say, "Oh, snap!"

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  5. Your posts always find a way to educate me. (the origin of Gee Whiz. I was unaware of that intersting fact) Entertain me. )your converstion with your student) And make me think. (The resentment you mentioned your students express over your interference in "the despair and laziness with which they made peace s long time ago") will hover in my thoughts for several days. It's haunting.

    I am so grateful to have been introduced to your lovely soul!

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  6. Anonymous12:20 AM

    "Relax" instead of "chill." I'll have to remember that. Gee Wiz is rather passe; I'll have to say it to my 15 year old just to see his reaction! It's refreshing that you enjoy teaching! We live in inner city so I know what you mean. It's often a thankless job. Thank you for doing what you do! PLL, CordieB

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  7. What a beautiful perspective. Gee whiz, you're great! JP/deb

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  8. A marvellous sentiment - and I remeber 'gee wiz' from my youth.
    I've gone all nostalgic now.

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  9. Anonymous12:45 PM

    Gee Wiz I'm thankful for you and your wonderful thoughtful posts!!

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  10. Thanks for the education-- I never knew it was street language for Jesus. . . Interesting blessing! They come in all sizes , don't they?

    Surprise, surprise, I have my post for Sunday up already also.

    Paulie

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  11. Anonymous4:08 PM

    Gee Whiz!!! Thank you I had not known that before :) Happy BYB and I hope you have a great week ahead!

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  12. Anonymous5:16 PM

    This is a new one on me and I used to be a teacher. Shucks.

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  13. gee whiz that is funny! If you think about it we all had certain sayings during our time in 8th grade that we would not be caught dead using now. and as soon as i remember some I will post them here

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  14. ...but what of my oft said Gee Whillickers!?

    I often also use "Egads!" to many people's amusement... but I've never stopped to consider... on my commute, I travel with hundreds of high-school kids on their way to classes around the city... and would they be able to decipher the sentence...

    Gee Whillickers, what's happened to that science experiment I was working on? Egads! There it is and gadzooks, it's doing something rather odd!

    ...stranger to contemplate still... would I even utter that sentence? :)

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  15. Anonymous1:19 PM

    I had no idea the orgin of 'GeeWiz'. I will try to remember not to say it anymore. I am by no means perfect but try not to use the Lord's name in vain even in slang form.

    Blessings to you for teaching! I could never do that. In our area the teachers no longer have any control.

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  16. Anonymous1:59 PM

    With the way you see life, your readers like me are also touched. Have a great week, Sandy! I miss visiting here :)

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  17. We're not supposed to say "chill" either? I guess I'm out of it too!

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  18. I love this reminder of what a blessing it is to teach and learn from kids … thank you ;--)
    Hugs and blessings,

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