Thursday, September 27, 2012

Mind = Blown

Southern Hospitality vs. just being a nice person.

Southern Hospitality definition: “Showing graciousness, kindness, and warmth to others. Behavior that is altruistic.”

I’m not really sure if “vs” is the correct term in my first statement. I don’t find much difference between the two phrases above. I have begun eating lunch in the teacher’s lounge again; something I abandoned last year. I figured it’s a new year, and most of the new teachers are in there, so I want to set a good example! We’ve had some good lunch convos and I think we’re surprising the last of the older people that are in there! But I’m ok with all of that!

What I’m not ok with is the fact that while we were eating the other day something got said about the janitors in our school.
The lady that cleans our hall’s name is Raina and she is from Honduras. She has 11 siblings and three of her sisters are in the states. I practice my Spanish with her and she practices her English with me. Every day when I say bye to her she says, “God bless you Mollie.”
*Time in*
They kept calling her “the cleaning lady” and I finally stopped and said, “Are we talking about Raina?” Here’s where my mouth drops open. Their next statement was, “I don’t know her name.”

For some reason I immediately went into defense mode and blurted out, “Well, it’s Raina and if you want I’ll introduce you next time.”  

How could you not know her name?? She’s in your classroom every day after school cleaning up the mess that you and your 100 students left, scrubbing your white boards that you’ve been writing on, emptying your trash that you place in the trashcan. And you can’t even give her the decency to know her name? It was one of the first things I did when I got to this school and if I ever leave it will be one of the first things I do at my new school. I am so thankful for their positions. I am so thankful that I do not have to stay even later and clean my own classroom. I am grateful that they are here every day and that most of them have a day job in addition to their night cleaning at the school. How do my coworkers not value them? They can spend all day complaining how teachers are not valued in our society, however they do not value people within their own building.

How dare you. Show some southern hospitality… or how about this bright idea – just be nice. 


  1. Word. One would think that this is common sense although these days its more like uncommon sense.

  2. Couldn't agree with you more Mollie! I love our janitors, Eloisa and Maria! Very sweet ladies :)

  3. You go girl! So proud of you in so many ways. Some of the most important people are the admin assistants and the "sanitation engineers" :-). Keep speaking up!