Episode 47 – Sick Days, Thomas Brandt

Hi everyone! Our Wombat Test Subject is not feeling well this week, and so I’ll be talking about taking sick time to be sick and get better, and not pushing yourself to be productive. After that, I have an amazing discussion with Thomas Brandt, a schoolteacher in Germany. I hope you enjoy the discussion as much as I did.

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3 Replies to “Episode 47 – Sick Days, Thomas Brandt”

  1. Alison Johnson

    The discussion of “culture fit” made me very twitchy. Culture fit is absolutely a real thing: my favorite example is Dave Mustaine getting kicked out of Merallica for being an angry drunk while the other members were happy drunks. *And* it’s important to remember that “culture fit” is often used as coded language to keep “undesirables” out of businesses or entire fields.

    Tech is notorious for this. Say that culture fit, especially at a start-up, includes going out for drinks after work. Single mothers might have difficulty participating in that culture, as might people coming from a low-income background who don’t have money to waste. Hiring will skew towards people who have both time and money to spare. Or think of all the stories of racism and sexism in a wide variety of workplaces, and notice how often some variant of, “well, that’s just part of the [workplace x] culture” is used as an excuse.

    I’m hopeful that the workshops Thomas talked about–the ones to help with organizational and study skills–are used in good faith to help students as much as possible before they’re told, “maybe this school isn’t the best fit for you.” Otherwise, the “weed them out early” approach becomes another way to keep lower social classes away from higher education.

    Unrelated: I would like to apologize *now* for the extensive length of a letter to you and Ursula that I haven’t finished yet. But I love you both, and the combination of her tweets and this podcast have played a big part in helping me survive my current mental breakdown. Thank you, thank you, thank you! <3

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