Gum has been on my mind lately. When I was a kid I loved to chew gum. The more pieces, the bigger the bubble, the better. I would take my gum out at dinner, saving it for later. It was an emergency breath mint. It was just something that kids did.
Of course when I was a kid there were rules about gum. Chew with your mouth closed. Don't chew gum when you are climbing or running. Gum is only for time off times. Definately don't chew gum in school. Basically it boiled down to this: I could chew gum in my free time, provided I wasn't running or doing anything else that may cause me to choke on my gum.
I've found out that the Maritimes takes a more casual approach to gum. I've seen gum chewed by people leading church worship, brides as they walk down the aisle and piles of students in the halls of the various schools I've worked at. I have to say (and I know how old fashioned and Emily Post I sound when I write this), I am more and more disgusted by gum chewing. I think there is a time and a place (your wedding is not one of those places). I think if you are going to chew gum keep your mouth closed, no one else wants to see it. And yes, I'm one of those teachers with a no gum rule. I don't want to find chewed up old gum under my classroom tables. I don't want kids to learn to sing with gum in their mouths. I just don't. Sure, some kids challenge me on this. There was one student in particular who tried to convince me that it was just part of him and why was I trying to change who he was? His friends just told him to give it up, he wouldn't win against me. Fortunately, I've been at the same school long enough now that my repuation for gum intolerance proceeds me and the kids just naturally spit it in the trash as the enter my room.
And the winner is...
2 years ago