A Utah school language specialist was fired after using the word "homophone" in a blog post, according to reports Thursday, July 31.
Tim Torkildson was a language specialist at Nomen Global Center, in Provo, Utah, until last week, when was accused of bringing a gay agenda to the school and fired. The entry was centered on homophones--words that sound alike but have different meanings. However, school head Clark Woodger found the use of the word dangerous to Nomen's reputation.
“I had to look up the word because I didn’t know what the hell you were talking about," Woodger said in a WTVM.com report. "We don’t teach this kind of advanced stuff to our students, and it’s extremely inappropriate. Now our school is going to be associated with homosexuality.”
Woodger wasn't wasting any time. Immediately after seeing the post, July 24, Torkildson was being shuffled out the door.
“I’m letting you go because I can’t trust you.” Woodger said of the firing. “This blog about homophones was the last straw. Now Can you have your desk cleaned out by eleven this morning? I’ll have your check ready.”
Torkildson said his reaction to the firing was one of disbelief.
Woodger also accused Torkildson of using his blog to go "off on tangents," filling the space with offensive material. Since the firing, he's also using it to ridicule his former boss.
"You’d probably make a great college professor," Torkildson paraphrased Woodger on his blog. "But, since you don’t have a degree you’ll never get that kind of work. I would advise you to try something clerical, where you’ll be closely supervised and have immediate goals at all times."
Torkildson has been accommodating on his site. Among such entries about picking cherries, sewer smell and singing in church, Torkildson provides a definition of "homophone."
"A homophone, in case you do not know, is a word that has a different meaning for each different spelling, but always sounds the same; such as 'be', 'bee', and 'Bea'." he wrote. "There are hundreds of these in the English language, and it is one of the first subjects tackled when teaching ESL. It is a subject that has been taught and discussed with absolutely no controversy for well over a hundred years."