Sunday, November 18, 2012

Not Your Father's History Channel

Maybe it's the fact that I've been sucked back into the academic world of teaching history to seventh graders but I have been a big time History Channel nerd recently.  

They have had some AMAZING series on lately, starting with The Men Who Built America which chronicled the rise of the mega-businessman through the Industrial Revolution of America and ended finally with the break up of monopolies by Teddy Roosevelt.

This week started Mankind - The Story of All of Us which tells the story of man from the most primitive of times but yet how each generation and civilization built upon one another to form the world we know today.

It's all rather fascinating and I'm really enjoying geeking out over it.

Because let's be honest........I'm a nerd at heart.  I think people at work have always kind of seen me as the young, (possibly) pretty volleyball coach who also teaches PE but never really as the intellectual powerhouse that I can be when it comes to history and math.  One day at lunch.......and I can't really remember HOW we got onto the topic........but we were discussing Germany, Berlin and how it all was divided after World War II with the Berlin Wall through the city and the much greater Iron Curtain that was shielded over most of eastern Europe.  

Again.  I really don't know how it came up.  Possibly vacations people have taken to Europe or a place that a teacher lived?  I guess it's not really that important.


One of the teachers asked for a little bit of clarification on the separation of Germany and how the wall came to be and all that.

Oh boy.

I launched into a lecture about the division of Germany after World War II between the UK, the Americans, France and the Soviet Union.  I talked about how the Soviets only joined up with the Allied forces because in Stalin's mind, we were the lesser of two evils with the much greater evil being Hitler.  I explained how the city of Berlin was in the Soviet's side of Germany and had to be divided up as well because the Americans were leery of giving complete control of that strategic city to the Soviets.  Then there was the part about how all the East Berliners were fleeing to the west side of the city because, you know.....democracy > communism, which of course made the Soviets angry so overnight they laid out barbed wire throughout the city, thus trapping the East Berliners in the eastern portion of the city.  I went on through the building of the wall, the no-man's-land in between and the numerous escape attempts and even the airdrops the Americans made in an effort to deliver food and other necessities to the beleaguered East Berlin captives.

As I sheepishly wrapped up my diatribe on what happens to be one of my most favorite subjects, I noticed that everyone was kind of staring at me....many in bewilderment and amusement.

The lady to whom I had been speaking said "you are the coolest nerd I've ever met."

I beamed.

Yes.  I am a nerd.

And in closing to my nerdiness.....I found this today on Pinterest.

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