Don’t Upset Apple-carts
Don’t upset apple-carts:
Smash them into splinters;
Burn the splinters into embers;
Cook cider with what’s left,
But don’t upset apple-carts.
(I’m pretty sure that’s not the proper format. It’s been years, so I hope for a little give here.)
The faculty are a bunch of employees, and we’re the raw material! But we’re a bunch of raw material that don’t mean to have any process upon us, don’t mean to be made into any product, don’t mean to end up being bought by some clients of the University, be they the government, be they industry, be they organized labor, be they anyone! We’re human beings!
There is a time when the operation of the machine becomes so odious, makes you so sick at heart, that you can’t take part; you can’t even passively take part, and you’ve got to put your bodies upon the gears and upon the wheels, upon the levers, upon all the apparatus, and you’ve got to make it stop. And you’ve got to indicate to the people who run it, to the people who own it, that unless you’re free, the machine will be prevented from working at all!—
Mario Savio - December 3, 1964
I try to communicate the same ideas through my work. He communicated it better.
A burning flash filled the air ahead of me, followed by an ear-splitting boom as the second of two cars smashed into a pole and did a half somersault into the air, then screamed to a halt. A pole lay across the road and the car was wrapped in wires, and no one was going to see if they were live. The driver burned rubber from the tires to bare metal, and a brave soul shouted
"Don’t get out! The tires are saving your life!"
No one could do anything except watch, wait and hope.
A woman in the next car over, a passenger, took out her phone and squealed,
"I’m going to make a video!"
Thank you, reality television, for making us into a society of spectators to others’ troubles and suffering. My God.
Hearing the wit and wisdom of infants;
A hot cup of cocoa on a colorful November afternoon;
A soothing voice on a frightening day;
A first kiss from a first love;
The smell of roasting leaves from a neighbor’s field,
And the precious sense that things are the way they should be.
—-It’s the holidays. Feeling a bit sappy and nostalgic I suppose.—-
Poetic Proficiency versus Educational Anemia
Poor players get banned to the bleachers,
Dull directors get ditched and film ‘features,’
So it should be the same
In school-learnings blood-game
For Congress-folks thinking they’re teachers!
Education and Media
Education magazines depict photographs of attractive teachers with brilliant smiles stretched across their faces. The students are brightly dressed; smiling; attentive and eager to learn. The products are cheerfully highlighted and organized in neat rows for easy cross-indexing and ordering. In the movies, the teachers have snappy (or sappy) lines to the students’ questions and demands. At times, the teachers are uninspirational icons with superficial flaws and a can’t-do attitude that is “rehabilitated” within the next twenty minutes or so with an inspirational speech from a well-meaning student.
But you know what? It’s all scripted, my dears. Everything is backlit; rehearsed; edited; airbrushed and digitally altered/enhanced. They’re actors, unionized by a SAG-AFTRA franchised talent agency. You, however, are real. Your discouragement, feelings and frustrations are real, and they matter. Please do not let anyone treat you as if you are a doormat character in their child’s film.