Hot and Sour Soup

Years ago, I used to write software and a friend of mine published it and did a great deal of marketing for me/him.  He was a real lover of Chinese food.  He used to date a young lady who, apparently, was a fabulous cook.  He turned me on to Hot and Sour Soup and we were on a mission to find a restaurant that made it as good as he remembered.

I think that we must have hit every restaurant in Windsor.  If you’ve ever dined in Windsor, you’ll appreciate that the favourite ended up being the Wah Court, open at the time.  In the beginning of our trips, if the soup wasn’t up to his standards, he’d call the server over and ask for “more sour” or “more hot” and have the soup doctored at the table.  This ended up morphing to ask for vinegar and chili on the side so that he could “fix” it to his taste.  So embarrassing for me but he would continue to tinker until he got what he thought was right.

On a whim once, we made a batch here at home.  We had no concept of volume and the recipe that we used I swear made enough for a small restaurant.  Some of the ingredients made us do some searching but we got them all before we started.  After making a big, no huge, pot we agreed that if we did this again that we now would fiddle with the amounts to make less.  This was amplified when we realized that you can’t freeze any that’s left over.

Royan Lee happened to drop by and leave a comment on my post yesterday.  He added some additional thoughts to what I took away from his original post.  Short summary – are we really moving forward or just making old practices efficient?

Just before this, Aviva Dunsiger had read my post about This Week in Ontario Edublogs.  This started a conversation with Mrs. Wideen.  It bounced back and forth between the two of them on Twitter and the original post on Mrs. Wideen’s blog.  It was hard to keep up with the conversation!

But, I think the point here and with Royan’s original comment is important.  It’s the conversation that is happening that’s important.  Like the search for the perfect bowl of hot and sour soup, they’re talking and tweaking their professional approach in search of the best solution.

There is no way that any of them are stomping their feet and saying “You’re wrong – this is how it’s done.”

Such professionalism is so admirable.  If there was a solution, it would be bottled or packaged and doled out as needed.  These folks realize that we’re not there yet – wherever “there” is.  But, they’re not giving up or digging in to some preconceived notion.  They’re moving towards the goal, extending the conversation, and asking the right questions. What could be better?

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6 Replies to “Hot and Sour Soup”

  1. Such smart writing and thinking here. And I am happy to see the conversation about “bilingual” classrooms as well (that’s what I call my space, where we use both BYOD and paper/pencil technology). I just had this conversation with some fellow bloggers in our G+ group – so much digging, and pushback, and inquiry and amazing learning happens in the comments. I, too, am amazed at how willing/wanting we are to engage in conversation to help us keep tweaking.

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  2. Thanks, Lisa There’s a great deal that can be done when people converse in a challenging, intellectual manner. As you know, it really irks me when the jerks get involved!

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  3. Thanks for including me in this post, Doug! I think that the one thing I love best about Twitter is the ability to have these kinds of rich dialogues. We need this chance to read, question, re-think, and question again. I loved that I could do this here and through Mrs. Wideen’s blog. I guess a true Professional Learning Network allows for this rich, professional dialogue.

    Aviva
    http://www.weinspirefutures.com

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  4. Thank you Doug and Aviva for always pushing my thinking. Isn’t that what it is all about? Twitter is a fantastic venue, for the sharing of ideas and pedagogy, however, I have to agree with Aviva that the best part of Twitter is having those thought provoking conversations that make you think about what you are doing in your classroom and how you can change or “tweak” things to make it better for your students.

    Kristen Wideen

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  5. Thanks, Aviva and Kristen, for dropping by and adding to the conversation. As I noted, when you see a productive conversation like this, you just feel so badly about those who elect not to get connected. The two of you should submit a proposal for #ecoo13! – Pros / Cons / Realities of Going Paperless!

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