My Classroom Responds to the Inauguration Address

Here’s how it went down for me today at my high school.

Scene: My homeroom is watching Barack Obama deliver his Inauguration address

Obama:… For we know that our patchwork heritage is a strength, not a weakness. We are a nation of Christians and Muslims, Jews and Hindus — and non-believers.

Entire class: MEHTA!!!!!!

It took me a second to calm them all down.

I also had a colleague ask me later if I was ok with… “the thing.”

What thing?

“You know.”

Then he made the spectacles, testicles, watch and wallet motion.

I told him the prayers weren’t too bad. Unnecessary and wrong, yes, but still not as bad as I thought it could’ve been.

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  • “spectacles, testicles, watch and wallet motion”


  • Paul

    I second that emotion, Nick.

    Is there a video of this motion somewhere? I need to learn it…

  • I think it’s pretty awesome that you have a classroom of kids who respects you for your atheism. I can’t imagine that happening where I went to high school.

  • Rat Bastard

    LOL! It’s the sign of the cross, performed by xtians everywhere! It comes from an old joke where a rabbi and a priest were in a (pick your dangerous scenario) and the priest observes the rabbi making the motions, and accusing him of really believing in xtianity. The rabbi says, “I was just checking my important belongings- spectacles, testicles, wallet and watch!”.

  • I can’t believe you can even have that conversation in school. I need to move to Chicago. I am jealous.

  • We were there, just a bit behind the reflecting pool and 3rd street. Not too long before the ceremony started, I brought up the topic of religion and unabashedly said that I’m a non-believer. (That’s a pretty big thing for me; I’m getting better at this “out” thing.)

    During Obama’s address, the crowd around me heard that remark and turned to us and said, “hey, that’s you guys!”

    Very cool.