Cecily Strong on Women's Day post: 'You can't outslick the slicker'

Saturday Night Live star dedicates Instagram post to former Lincoln School teacher

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By Timothy Inklebarger

Staff Reporter

Local celebrity Cecily Strong, of Saturday Night Live fame, gave a shout out to her sixth-grade teacher at Lincoln Elementary School on International Women's Day, March 8.

And without further ado, or editing, here's the message posted to her Instagram page.

"Ok dedicating this Women's Day to one of my favorite teachers, Mrs. Betty Smitherman. She had a trick where she'd act really scary to all the young kids so that by the time you got to 6th grade you thought she was basically a witch. And the first day she'd smile and reveal that she's actually really nice and she just likes us to start scared of her. Called herself "the Slicker" because "you can't outslick the slicker". We put Hitler on trial, we wrote beat poetry about Mesopotamia, we formed our own small book clubs where we were encouraged to choose our own books to read and discuss like mini Oprah's with our desks pushed together to form a table (although we all had to see the social worker after Where the Red Fern Grows). She wrote and directed and choreographed and led the choir in Lincoln School's black history play every year she was there (she had to sing all the boy parts in the choir because her voice was octaves lower than most 12 year old boys). I still know my Mahalia Jackson monologue by heart. I did a whole project on the history of women's rights even though my basic ass was dressed up full 1996 wannabe Clueless in a short skirt and knee socks and these awful pink jelly shoe heels that are probably only found now on abandoned dead bodies. But she got me excited about learning and I even tutored her grand daughter Malia in math after school. She gave me an award once (for the Happiness Club which is hilarious on its own) and I saw her as human for the first time because she was so nervous public speaking about me that she called me Stephanie the whole time. I pushed myself hard in 6th grade because I always had this amazing teacher to impress. So thank you, Mrs. Smitherman, for showing me just how magic witches really are. And cheers to all the witches and quaynz today!


CONTACT: tim@oakpark.com

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Nichole Handy from Peoria  

Posted: June 4th, 2018 10:15 AM

OMG..."You can't outslick the Slicker" was her fav line!! I had Mrs. Smitherman for 5th & 6th grade 86-89. She said she moved up to 6th grade to "keep an eye" on me! Mrs. Smitherman was the best teacher I have EVER had hands down. She encouraged free thinking and allowed as many questions as necessary, all the genuinely caring about her students. She made learning fun with black history presentation, mock trials, even those "love notes" sent home when you didn't turn in an assignment! In fourth grade I was a kid always in the office and Mrs. Smitherman saw me and told me I was hers that next year. What a blessing that was! She inspired my curiosity to learn. #bestteacherever

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