Words Can Be Confusing

Alanis Morissette isn’t the only person who finds irony in the human experience.  I’m no song writer but I have noticed my share as well.

  • How long did the Hundred Years War last?  Answer: 116 years, from 1337 to 1453.
  • Which country makes Panama hats? Answer: Ecuador.
  • What is a camel’s-hair brush made of? Answer:  Squirrel fur.

These paradoxes make me chuckle.  Sometimes the irony in our day-to-day activities can bring me pause.

For example, our spring assessment benchmarking window starts in February. As far as I know, that is during the dead of winter.

In planning meetings, we ask for alternative and dissenting ideas as a process to reach consensus.

The Greek philosopher, Heraclitus, said “Change is the only constant in life.” His words were later adapted to a familiar saying we often use in schools, “The only thing that stays the same is change.” If something is changing it cannot be the same, and if it is the same, then it isn’t changing.

An ancient paradox says, “Only one thing is certain — that is, nothing is certain.”  If this statement is true, it is also false.  If one thing is certain, then it is false that nothing is certain.

A high school student made a comment about final exams. “What is the point of studying for finals, if they aren’t final at all?  We are coming back to school next year and will have more tests.”

Finally, a quote that we have all heard at some point in a history class  was stated by Franklin D. Roosevelt. In his first Inaugural Address he said, “Let me assert my firm belief that the only thing we have to fear is fear itself.”   Really?  I’m afraid of a lot of things, but fear itself is not one of them.

So, I will end at the beginning.  I’m with you, Alanis!














4 thoughts on “Words Can Be Confusing

  1. I just love this! After each one, I had to pause to contemplate it. My favorite was this one:
    In planning meetings, we ask for alternative and dissenting ideas as a process to reach consensus.
    I honestly had never thought of that before and it is totally ironic.

    Also, your ending killed me. Ending at the beginning! How ironic!


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