Wednesday, December 19, 2007


My parents never gave me that line about hoping I had kids exactly like me. They were too nice to wish that on anyone, but if they had, their wish would be coming true right now.

I was an unenthusiastic student in high school (understatement of the year candidate right there). Slept through Uncle Jimmy's Algebra class, meandered my way through Money Matters twice, did homework only when threatened. My parents heard the same thing at every conference: "He'd do well if he'd only apply himself."

And that's a good way to describe my Comp students--many of them, anyway. They're smart, they articulate their ideas well at times, and they're interested in improving themselves. But they are capable of some stone-headed statements. Such as:
I also believe sending Soldiers to Iraq was a good idea, and that the nine/eleven attack was Saddam Hussein’s way of declaring war on us, so it was necessary for his capture.
This is the kind of stubborn ignorance that earns the conservatives their reputation for willful stupidity. Wow.

Or this gem:
I believe that by partially eliminating suffrage in the United States, we have inevitably created suffrage in other countries.
On what planet do you spend five weeks writing an essay, submit two drafts for peer review, pretend to assemble an argument about a topic, and fail to learn the meaning of the word at the core of said essay? Blergh.

Then there's the need to point out the durability of certain phenomena:
Abortion has been around for a long time.

Immigration has been around for centuries.

The career of nursing has been around longer than I have been a live.
Poorly-developed essays have been around for longer than they should have been. Yikes.

Some of the ideas can't be classified as anything other than WTF?:
Is abortion safer than childhood?

Tuition should be considered highly for picking a university as don’t let it be in the way of a dream for there is many scholarships and grants available for students if they only search hard enough.

In June 2007, Louisiana passed the law that any undergarments being exposed due to their pants not being pulled up enough, will be charged with indecent exposure.

Everybody cares about their belongings right? Well we belong to the earth and it can’t take care of us we have to take care of it.

When the experiment was over the scientist got the results that water was just as good for you than water and that Gatorade did not do any good for you than water.
At least those nefarious undergarments are facing punishment. And so is my brain. Maybe even capital punishment:
The Death Penalty speaks to us all; everyone has an opinion on it.
And euthanasia is always an option:

There are a couple different types of ways to apply euthanasia. The two most common are a lethal dose of narcotics or a narcotic that cancels out the drug that the patient needs to survive. Most times the patient’s doctor will only hook them up to a device which holds the lethal dose. Then the patient pushes a button to release it whenever he or she likes. This is the only way I know about. I don’t think it would be very professional for a doctor to use a gun instead. More importantly it would hurt everyone’s ears.

I can appreciate when a student knows that he's not doing what he needs to be doing and embraces the humor in his failure. Because that's how I see these examples of bad writing. My failure. How did I let this happen? I'm glad it was only a few of them.


Jerry said...

I personally hate it when my undergarments strut around the house without their pants pulled up. I am thinking after reading this post I would have shone in your class. Can I has an "A"?

Mike said...

Wow...they say the worst students make the best teachers. I think in your case rings true. The good thing is that you have real life experience to draw on in understanding where these students come from. The only problem is like you..they could give two shits right now in their life and won't realize that you meant them well until they are old enough to know better. And by that time many of them will be experiencing the same thing you are now.

Mike said...

A perfect example is me. I can't fucking stand the teenagers of today. They are self absorbed, cocky little fuckers that I would like to stomp me a mud hole in them as much as look at them. Looking back...I wasn't much better. Youth is truly wasted on the young.