BERKELEY, Calif. – Professor Gordon Lievschitz began his class this past Monday with the reassuring phrase, “there’s no such thing as a stupid question,” in the hopes that students might feel more comfortable. But how can he know that when he hasn’t even heard what I’m about to ask?
Classmate June Caster shared her thoughts on my conundrum.
“I guess I’m just confused about this whole thing. So what, she’s nervous about asking a question in class? That’s what we’re talking about here?” Caster shook her head. “I really don’t see how that’s an issue. The professor said he’d welcome all questions, so obviously it’s fine. I mean, I guess I wouldn’t fully understand how that feels because I never need to ask questions. I always know exactly what’s going on and perfectly understand the course material without assistance. I guess that means I’m smarter than you? And I’m probably perfect in every other aspect of my life as well, while you aren’t.”
Awesome, thank you June!
With further commentary to share is my older sister, Lillian.
“Of course there’s such thing as a stupid question. She asks me stupid questions all the time. ‘Can I borrow this top?’ ‘Would you like to try a bite of my dessert?’ ‘Can you drive me to Emily’s house?’ The answer to all of these is clearly no. But she asks anyway. I have to give her credit for being persistent, but at the end of the day, it’s all still annoying. That’s probably why I’m Mom and Dad’s favorite.”
Professor Gordon Lievschitz himself also chimed in.
“Oh man,” he laughed. “She’s — nervous — about — asking — a question?” He said between wheezes. “She thinks that she might have a question that actually IS stupid?” Lievschitz had to wipe tears from his eyes, he was laughing so hard. “Well, she probably does! Of COURSE there’s such thing as a stupid question. I was totally lying when I said that at the beginning of class. ‘There’s no such thing’ my ass! I get stupid questions from stupid students all the time. ‘When is the homework due?’ ‘What does this essay prompt mean?’ ‘Why does it say I got a bad grade on this purely because I “look ugly”?’ And all of those questions then completely affected the way I saw the student and how I perceived their intelligence. So yeah, she should be worried.”
At press time, it was revealed that none of these people actually said these things, but I know they’re true because my brain told me so.