My kids discovered Tom and Jerry last year, so we go them a DVD. This disclaimer runs at the beginning. Our obsession with publicly “washing our hands” of every shred of anything in the past that might be interpreted as not in harmony with our current sensibilities is very sad. It’s neither healthy nor productive. It starts as a dog and pony show, and ends as a witch hunt. I wish this society would grow up and be more innocent.
I know this is hardly new, but it’s great and I was reminded of it again this week when a student, giving a speech in class about (naturally) hating school, actually said that he wouldn’t be controlled by our system.
Just like the narrator of this song, who creates a perfect parody of this attitude: an arrogant rejection of some grand conspiracy to oppress him (a conspiracy which clearly doesn’t exist because, in the ultimate insult to the pompous sensibilities of the young, the mundane world is actually oblivious to their insignificant, predictable narcissism).
I was also reminded of this fantastic little Onion article from last summer.
I’m still tired. Last week was a big one, work-wise.
For my main teaching job, I show up by 7 AM, and the last class ends at 2 PM. That’s a 35-hour week. Not bad. Most years I sell one of my two prep periods and teach an extra class–it lowers class sizes for the school and boosts my paycheck–but this year my school didn’t do that, so I have even more productive time during the school day (but, alas, a lower salary).
I also teach part time at UNLV–usually two freshman writing classes per semester. This time I have those classes on Tuesday and Thursday, from 5:30 until 8:15. On those nights, I get home around 9:00. I use the time between the two schools for office hours–grading papers, mostly.
I read with abject sadness this BBC article last week. I know that Downton Abbey has been all the rage for small-screen Anglophiles of late, but I’ve especially loved Agatha Christie’s Poirot for years.
The series was an unabashed love letter to the period settings, with little bombast and constantly restrained dignity from all characters. Watching these subdued murder mysteries always felt, oddly enough, calming in their quiet culture.
David Suchet’s portrayal of the cool, mincing Belgian genius who loves exercising his “little gray cells” was masterful. Suchet truly loved the character, and it showed. Such acting is rare, and a treat to enjoy.
Over 25 years, Suchet has made several dozen Poirot episodes and films–now encompassing everything Christie ever wrote about the detective. I didn’t realize there were so many. I think I’ve only seen about fifteen. I’ll catch up on the rest before the final episodes air here in the States next year.
My favorite Poirot memory: a few years ago when they made Murder on the Orient Express. My eldest son and I watched it, including a charming documentary about it beforehand. We were both very impressed. It was a delightful evening.
Here’s some Sunday fun for you: open a Book of Mormon and try putting the chapters of the Book of Mosiah in chronological order. If nothing else, this frustrating little exercise will help you appreciate the narrative complexity of the work.