Won’t somebody think of the children?

In a shocking exposé, a Maine couple announces that schools are scheming to teach young people, actually going so far, in some cases, as to use books:

“They see it as, they say, ‘Hey, it’s a book, let’s expose the kids to it, and see what they learn from it,’ ” said Minnon, who with his wife operate [sic] a greenhouse on Route 202 in Lebanon.

The Minnons, parents of a first-year student at Noble High School, object to his class’s study of The Catcher in the Rye. Not satisfied with the school’s provision to allow their son to study another book, the Minnons are attempting to prevent the entire first-year literature class from studying Salinger’s classic.
(link thanks to Bookslut)

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biblio

So many bloggers keep a pretty sidebar with links to “Books I’m Reading!”, and I love to see that, since my usual broad-spectrum foraging technique for contemporary fiction is woefully unfocused. I typically go into the library and fling myself toward the new fiction shelves, castigating myself for not writing down that author’s name and hoping I can find something promising in the ten minutes before my bus is due.

I’d love to maintain a “current reading” sidebar myself, truly I would, but with the quantities of texts I’m reading for classes and research, it simply isn’t feasible to be entering and linking them here. No, really.

No, really.

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Teacher’s pet becomes Schrödinger’s cat

This term, I am taking my first class with Legendarily Scary Professor™. So far, she has handed back each of my papers littered with remarks like articulate and good clarity, very thorough. Phew!

Yesterday, we had the midterm, and at the end I walked out with absolutely no notion how I did.

I now find myself in a state of indeterminacy. The prof has not graded them yet, and her faith that I am still the same solid A student is touching. I, however, am breathlessly waiting for her to open the box and report the dead cat.

My brain, how it works, and why you shouldn’t eat it

Out of nowhere, a prof asked, “So, who knows what kuru is?” Mind you, this has nothing to do with our classwork; he just likes to make conversation Jeopardy-style.

I happen to have read an article about kuru several years ago, so I was able to shoot back (or, more honestly, stutter back) “Um, the disease brain-eaters get, right? Human brains? With the, the, the prions?” (I am less than eloquent on the spot, but all the key points are there, my friends.)

But who, having read this once in her life, wouldn’t remember it? Brain-eating cannibals, people.

Just do what the brain says and no one gets hurt

BlogFast 2004 is over! Am I done with finals? No. Have I finished my papers and study guides? No. Have I given up? Oh, hell, yes. Can I get an AMEN?

In the interests of full disclosure, I should add that BlogFast ended up being more like BlogRation, which doest have the same pithy sound, but which does conjure up images like WWII domestic propaganda posters, one of my favorite forms of graphic image. I think their main appeal for me is the acknowledgement, at long last, of the many roles that women play: we are shown as mothers, wives, homemakers, defense workers, and citizens. Also, look at all the pretty colors. Oooooh. Vivid.

Ahem. As I was saying, BlogFast would more properly be called BlogDramaticReduction, but that would be a mouthful. I did visit a few select blogs during the past week, but dramatically curtailed the surfing. Did it help? Hard to say — I found myself woefully behind schedule all week, and have only stopped now because my brain is threatening to leap out of my cranial vault if I brandish any more data at it.

Now that it is in recovery, my brain has evidently started a cleansing purge to remove all contaminating knowledge. I studied thoroughly, calmly, and meticulously for an anthropology exam on Tuesday, only to discover that the information vacated my brain Monday night and never did return. This is an experience I’ve not had before, and I didn’t much care for it.

So, it is midnight, I have an exam in the morning, and I have packed my books away and am celebrating my brain’s revolt with Ben & Jerry’s, because nothing says I give up quite like a brimming bowl of butterfat.