Did you know that there’s an animal that imitates Sonic the Hedgehog’s Speed Roll? Or that there’s another that knows how to ROCKET JUMP? All this is true! You can either trust me or click on that link, but I prefer you click on that link because the guy recruited me from Cracked.
Jose Antonio Vargas has been a reporter for the Huffington Post, the San Fransisco Chronicle and the Washington Post. In 2008 he won a Pullitzer Prize for his participation in coverage of the Virginia Tech Shootings.
In this article, he reveals to the world that he has been an illegal immigrant since he moved to the United States in 1993.
A student blows up at a teacher, drops the F-bomb. The usual approach at Lincoln – and, safe to say, at most high schools in this country – is automatic suspension. Instead, Sporleder sits the kid down and says quietly: “Wow. Are you OK? This doesn’t sound like you. What’s going on?”
He gets even more specific: “You really looked stressed. On a scale of 1-10, where are you with your anger?” The kid was ready. Ready, man! For an anger blast to his face….”How could you do that?” “What’s wrong with you?”…and for the big boot out of school. But he was NOT ready for kindness.
The armor-plated defenses melt like ice under a blowtorch and the words pour out: “My dad’s an alcoholic. He’s promised me things my whole life and never keeps those promises.” The waterfall of words that go deep into his home life, which is no piece of breeze, end with this sentence: “I shouldn’t have blown up at the teacher.” Whoa.
With the kids at our centers we talk about getting them from their brain stem to their frontal lobe. They can’t really do anything when they’re in that primal state, so we work on moving them out of that into a clearer, calmer head space.
Most of the time when they start going demonic, they’re just freaking out over something.
Hi, I just wanted to let you know I really appreciated your article on Cracked today. Its nice (and unfortunately rare) to see a piece on gender that is funny and well, not sexist haha. Keep up the good work :)
I couldn’t think of a good answer, so I decided to use this almost-appropriate gif.
Look, I understand that dealing with racist people fucking sucks
but can we stop pretending that refusing to deal with them is a something to be proud of? Ignoring behavior only makes it go away if you have authority, and right now racist people have all the authority.
Now, I know that dealing with racist folk is particularly easy for me because I’m a heteronormative college educated white guy with piercing green eyes and a disarming smile —
And I certainly don’t mean to imply that anyone should be ashamed of their frustration and emotional agony when they encounter oppression in their daily lives —
But they also shouldn’t be proud of their decision to ignore it.
Quod Erat Demonstrandum: “I’m not friends with any racist people.” —
Like, wow, you must have an extremely tiny pool of friends —
and how do you join that pool? Is there an application process? —
This might not be the kind of thing that actually needs to be said, but I’m saying it anyway, so if you have a problem with it you can go fuck yourself. Or give me a well reasoned and articulate response. Or give me an angry response. Actually any kind of reaction is cool.
“People who are seeking to affix blame for this tragic death do need to bear one thing in mind. Gun laws that allowed a community watch volunteer to run around armed are, of course, partly responsible. But Trayvon Martin was killed by a very old idea that will likely take generations and an enormous cultural transformation to dislodge.”
That’s a great NYT article, and if I could add to it:
In my experience teaching in a prison, an inner city high school and a wealthy New England Suburb, I’ve learned two things:
1) Your High School years really are the hardest part of your life.
2) African Americans in this country are blatantly and systematically oppressed every single day.
That there represents the extent of my knowledge of the world.
Self references are the death throes of a medium. Once the core purpose of a movement is achieved, the only direction to go is inward, to explore the now-familiar tools used to make that achievement. Just as the writings of the post-modern poets would not have meant anything without the accomplishments of the romantics before them, Wes Craven’s New Nightmare would not have worked without John Carpenter’s Halloween — and yes, that progression is the same.
I’ve been a teacher for less than a year, and I’m already sick of this conversation.
"So what do you do?"
"I’m a teacher."
"Really? Let me briefly articulate every problem with the American education system and what you need to do to fix it.”
"Wow, thanks. You’re saying I should make it fun for my students? Like, by trying to engage them with the content? Wow! It’s amazing no one has ever thought of that before. Thanks! Since you’re such a wealth of information, why don’t you tell me what to do when a student keeps coming to class sobbing about her abusive parents, but when I call the police they say their hands are tied, and because WA State doesn’t recognize emotional abuse as child abuse, they’re right? What do I do about the kid whose mother takes him out of my remedial reading class because he ‘doesn’t need it’ and then he fails every class he’s in because he can’t read? If only I had a snappy one liner! If only I were more like Robin Williams in Dead Poets Society!”
When you’re president, I’m pretty sure these conversations happen a lot more frequently. I’m also pretty sure you’re not allowed to harbor crippling emotional disorders.
"Can we stop pretending that this is about anything other than jealousy? Seriously, I’m sick to death of this "family values" shit. If you cared about family values, you’d have way more support for CPS, public schools, and health benefits. You’re just a bunch of guys who wanna fuck guys but are too embarrassed to admit it and insanely jealous that there are people out there who aren’t!
It doesn’t matter what other people wanna do! It doesn’t affect you - just let them fuck each other! Wait, where are you going? Why do you look so mad? I don’t know what that means. How’s my approval rating? Stop shaking your head.”
—An Excerpt From My Potential State of the Union Address
Sure, you can start a nonprofit based on giving food to hungry people or clothes for cold people, but why deal with boring real world problems when you can prepare to fight Terminators by making yourself into an immortal cyborg supervillain who also lives in space?
There’s a concept I’ve become aware of in my work as a teacher called “skying out.” It’s when you start talking about something, and then keep going deeper and deeper into it with more and more analysis and abstraction until, finally, you’ve gotten so “deep” into the matter that you’re not actually talking about it anymore — you’re talking about a completely self-indulgent abstraction, and the matter itself is forgotten. You’re so deep, you’ve broken through the ground and gone into the sky. It’s really common among privileged white dudes with Liberal Arts degrees, and I do it all the time. But when it happens when we’re discussing politics, it allows someone to care more about the constructed integrity of the idea than the idea itself — even if that integrity exists wholly independent of anything real or tangible that will affect peoples’ lives.
I dunno if I’m alone in this, but I get this weird thrill when I’m writing in an unfamiliar place. The new sounds and smells just put me into this fuge where I’m not only being productive, but I’m excited about being productive and having a blast.
For example, I just moved into a new apartment and I have been writing so much, every day, right when I get home. It’s awesome, and easy, and I’m having a ton of fun. There’s a guy playing Skyrim in the background and I don’t care.
Same thing happened when I visited Eresbel for a few days about a month ago: I wrote two full articles for Top Tenz in two days. And they’re not shitty — they’re up to my usual standards. Maybe even a bit better than normal.
I got the same spike in productivity back in October when I moved into my (then new) place.
Hopefully I won’t, like, get addicted to moving, and spend the rest of my life having to get a new apartment every six months. That doesn’t sound sustainable.