Monday, November 14, 2011

(It's Not Me) Talking

Last Thursday's class was all about interpersonal communication and listening barriers. Well, after each group presented with a PowerPoint about their assigned topic. We'll knock out the presentations and then get to the good stuff.

I, as always, crafted a wonderful presentation about interrogations and the legalities of certain techniques used and a very informative section on false confessions with some alarming statistics. Had I been presenting this myself, there would have been a standing ovation given that lasted anywhere from 3 to 9 min, followed by requests for me to teach the class. This thing was choice. I even included the "Good Cop, Baby Cop" video spoofing an interrogation from It was brilliant. Unfortunately, my team is not. Right before class, Tejas Mo tells me he has a video he wants to play instead of us presenting our presentation. He says it is a video that HE MADE and it sums up our whole topic. I politely tell him that we have already submitted the presentation to be graded and that we cannot add anything else. He says "NOooooo, not to add it mira. Insteeeeed." I tell him that this is simply not an option, but he tries to convince Joe Cool that we should do it. Joe Cool sort of looks at the video and I glance over to see that it is NOT a video he made, but a segment from a documentary on the border patrol that I recently watched on the History channel. Nothing to do with interrogation tactics and nothing at all to do with our assigned topic.

So our instructor starts class and Tejas Mo interrupts her to inform her that he wants to play a video for the class instead of us doing our presentation. I am emphatically shaking my head no and as she is trying to hold in her laughter, she winks at me and tells him "Well, I think you should discuss that with your group and then your team leader can let me know". He says "Oh, well they said no but I made it and it's really good." I couldn't hold it in. I look at him and say "Oh, you produced and directed a documentary on the border patrol for the History Channel? Wow, what are you doing here then". He quickly backed down, but not before mumbling in Spanish that I was something. I wanna say he said sucia but he not only has an accent, he has a gay lisp so it;s hard to tell.

We presented and I swear to Bob, this had to have been Tejas Mo's first time looking at the presentation. He tried to to my part, he tried to talk over the video and he kept interrupting Joe Cool and I saying that his video HE MADE would have covered it. Our instructor, who needs a name since she'll be my teacher again soon, finally closed her grading book and asked him to sit down so Joe Cool and I could do it right. I think I'll call her Dark Phoenix. She's kind of a bad ass in law enforcement and teaches at fictitious bird university so it'll have to do. the other two groups followed and no surprise, even with our Tejas Mo fucking it up, we were still better. Just a word of advice, if you are not a native/fluent English speaker, please take note that RAPPORT and REPORT are not the same thing.

We then took this little quiz to determine our communication style. No surprise, I am an Assertor. What was a surprise was that 4 other people were as well....well, until Dark Phoenix read the traits and they all realized they didn't add their totals correctly. I was then the only Assertor. Tejas Mo's total said he was a Demonstrator. Here are some traits that were listed: somewhat disorganized, have trouble being on time and keeping track of details, wear bright colors, and sits in an open posture. Tejas Mo looks at these and says "Well, I do like bright colors". Really, that's all you see? REALLY?

After that, we had to list our PERSONAL listening barriers and interpersonal barriers. I put that my need to be right was a listening barrier. Well, not so much that I have to be right, but I want others to admit that they are wrong. If I am talking with someone who is unable to see reason, I tend to tune them out. I had a long list of interpersonal barriers, all of which Tejas Mo fit into. I put down that people who are unmotivated, smelly, liars, and needy are people that I am unable and unwilling to communicate with. We had to discuss these as a group and come up with solutions to these barriers. Joe Cool listed similar barriers to mine and we both said that the only solution was to not be around these types of people. Tejas Mo apparently didn't get this task either because he said his listening barrier was finishing peoples sentences. I said "Okay, but do you think that maybe you also have selective hearing? Because when you had to introduce me to the class, you just made up a bunch of stuff about me that wasn't true and I had already told you what to say". He replied with "Oh, I think that's like finishing sentences". *Slaps hand across own forehead*

Dark Phoenix went around the room and asked each person to say what there barriers were and the solution. TejasMo said his was "like when people gossip about me". How he got that from finishing people's sentences and selective hearing, I guess we'll never know. Tejas Mo also interrupted me and says "And you have to be minded like a window." What. The. Fuck.

Me: Oh, do you mean open minded?
TM: No. Because a window closes.
Me: Okay, but it opens as well, so you're saying that MY personal barrier is that I need to be minded like a closed window?
TM: Yes. Of course.
Me: Perhaps you mean that I need to be minded like a screen door, because that still allows some things to flow through.
TM: No, that's astupid.

Rico Suave joined in by telling Tejas Mo that he is by far the stupidest mother fucker he has ever met. Tejas Mo said "You just don't get it because your minded like a door". I pretty much lost all faith in humanity after that.

Some memorable moments:
I had to explain what the word "frugal" meant, as well as what "quick-witted" meant to the four people surrounding me. I actually had to give a second definition for quick-witted because the first time I replied with "Something you will never be".

Dark Phoenix said that if we learned to control our interpersonal barriers, we would be golden (my last name) and then she looked at me and said "Pun not intended", to which Tejas Mo said "what's that? Pun? Like an ass?"

Organizing is now OrGANzing. The not native English speaking kid in the other group told me that I was saying it wrong because it is OrGANzing. This is also the same kid that thinks RAPPORT and REPORT are the same thing and that Tiffany is pronounced with some rolled R's in it. Don't ask me where he added them, I cannot for the life of me figure out how to pronounce my name with rolled R's.


Shannon said...

Please tell me these students are NOT trying to be Law Enforcement??? HOLY crap. I snorted my water when I read "Like an ass?" bahahaha!! Dark Phoenix. That is perfect. I hope they have bring a friend to school night... I could be the "bad guy" and you could arrest me. :) BAHAHA!!! It could be a play.

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