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This post made me think of several things- 1) In high school, I read "A Tale of Two Cities" and hated it. In my first year of college, I found myself in a bit of trouble: in a lit class I never attended I was supposed to have read "Great Expectations" for a test *the next morning*. Read it straight through in 12 hours. My experience with it was somewhat different than yours- I loved it; my high school English teacher never really covered how wickedly funny and righteously pissed off Dickens was. I'm pretty sure the reason I got into it in college was that I never went to my lit class, and missed all the lectures where the prof told everyone what it meant. 2) I wish teachers would stop assigning Shakespeare to read. They weren't written to read like novels; they're plays. They're written to be seen. Everything most people complain is difficult to understand becomes surprisingly easy when you watch the play. 3) My teachers and I found a little disagreement on what the "classics" were. This didn't make my teachers wrong, but it does point out that some classics are better read later in life, when people have some context to them. I have no idea why schools don't assign more Conrad, London, Stevenson, or even Chandler. It's just a fact that the attention spans of teenagers it godawful; there's nothing wrong with assigning books appropriate to that.
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Dude. I'm a 39-year-old father of three, and, just last week, I spent an entire childless twelve hours playing "Mass Effect" and eating an entire bag of taco Doritos. People like us? We spit upon society's bourgeois concept of "maturity". Or something.
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I love how nobody asked me if I needed help with my online identity, or keeping track of my passwords. Also, I'm not sure which gives me the willies more: Silicon Valley doing this simple task for me, or the "big government initiative". Is not getting ripped off online really that hard? (I'll leave it to you to decide if it's ironic that I signed in to Typepad using Twitter)
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Jan 12, 2011