It's where elected officials -- Democrats and Republicans alike -- go to bicker, snipe, obstruct, and splash around in their unproductive, fetid twaddle. Ugh. See Gerald Seib's column in today's WSJ. A pox on both their houses.
Last year, I came across a great idea to liven up my teaching: the daily lie. See an explanation of it here.
I printed out that blog post when I saw it last year, but I set it aside and it soon got lost in the mounds of detritus on my desk. But some archeological excavation yesterday uncovered it, and I have decided to implement the idea in my own courses.
I tried it for the first time this morning, and it worked just as advertised. My students were more alert, engaged, and attentive than usual. Today's lie in my U.S. History class was that during the Pottawatomie Massacre, John Brown and his men stuck their victims' heads on sharpened fence posts to terrorize other supporters of slavery. (There seems to be no evidence of that, though they clearly dismembered the bodies of their victims.) I'll let you know how this experiment pans out. And I gladly accept your suggestions of lies to foist off on the unsuspecting, gullible youth of America.
This morning's Times carries a front-page article about professional actors needing help from off-stage with their lines. Apparently, some people are scandalized at this thought. While I would prefer to think that professional actors who are good enough and lucky enough to appear on Broadway will know their lines flawlessly, I also would prefer to have an actor be fed a line than have him miss it and possibly throw other actors off course, missing plot points or other matters of importance.
Still, in this age of tiny transmitters and earpieces, it seems ridiculous that Matthew Broderick was being fed lines by a prompter sitting in the front row.
I have had a number of thoughtful, considerate readers of this blog (you know who you are!) who, prompted by the inactivity at this blog site for the past month, have inquired about my health, my mortality, my sanity,
and my masculinity. Only my beloved wife can vouch for the last. As
for the others: I am healthy, alive, and no more crazy than before.
You're disappointed, I know, to hear all that.
On the other hand, it will gladden the hearts of some of you to know
that I have been insanely busy in the past month. What (you ask) has kept me so busy? Big house projects. A big celebration in Boston of my beloved wife's long-term contribution to a better environment. And a celebration of my elderly mother's 90th birthday (accompanied by out-of-town relatives (you know who YOU are)).
What the hell (you say)?! Can't you handle all that and STILL
keep up your steady stream of vitriol about Republicans, conservatives,
and other sorts of lowlifes?
The answer: No. I cannot. I'm old. Feeble. Infirm. Tired. I need Sarah Palin back in my life to raise my political libido.
Okay. Maybe I don't need Sarah Palin back. (But what would be
wrong with that? We could beat her like a drum.) Maybe THIS is what I
need: I need YOU to comment here. Write in and SAY SOMETHING, for
godsake. DO something. ANYthing. This goddam blog is going the way
of dog poop unless you STEP UP TO THE PLATE NOW and PARTICIPATE. Say
something, for chrissake. I'm not going to whistle into the wind any