28 March 2005

Classics Update

Oddly enough, a few weeks after I post the "Classics" (my father's list of the best sentences he's read from student papers) he mails me the updated list. So here is #46-64. Damn, they just get better with age.

46. The legal age to drive should be moved up to at least eighteen years of age. I think at this age kids are more mature and will adhere to the road a lot better.

47. My chicken was perfectly balanced between the chicken flavor and lemon.

48. Love is deep and lasting. For example, looking at your wife in the morning with curlers in her hair and thinking, "God! I love that woman!"

49. Yeah, it's so funny when you're on the outside looking in, but have you ever had to eat Mac and Cheese for two weeks because the log market went belly up?

50. If they enlargened this novel I am sure they would of give her husband an incumbent.

51. As a matter of fact a lot of people living today fought in a war in which they died trying to end slavery.

52. Teenagers a lot of times think that they are invisible and can make any decision they want because they that they are old enough to.

53. An example of another use of the word is using it as a word.

54. Hey, I have an idea, what about a manage taw (Better known as a three sum).

55. As well as the outside there is an inside.

56. Some say nursing is dirty work. They say that all nurses do is whip patients' rear-ends for a living.

57. Love, in its denotative sense, means to have an intense infection for another person or thing based on personal or family ties.

58. Bolsheviks were the Russians who overthrew the Tsar and became Communistics.

59. As time progresses the eye-irritating fumes ventilating out of his workshirt could make a gorilla tear up.

60. Hi, My name is Nikki. I attended SUNY Potsdam for two years and played volleyball for them. I'm not totally sure what I want to be in life.

61. He had a dream job he was in his last twenties and would watch skate videos and listen to music all day.

62. If getting up every morning and seeing a little child smile makes you happy, then become a teacher. If killing something would make you happy, then become a butcher.

63. This essay will explain in detail why I think that as the teacher controls the student's career, the student should have a firm grip on the teacher.

64. Love is the way I feel when I wake up in the morning and smoke my first cigarette.

07 March 2005

Westchester, Briefly.

You should go buy Regina Spektor's "Soviet Kitsch" at the Apple iTunes Music Store (only $7.92) or at an actual record store. I used to watch her play at Purchase -where she went to school- and she's an acquaintance of some of my friends in the city. It's a fucking fantastic record, really smart, clever, clean, and minimal. She has a video out, a billboard outside Tower Records on 4th Street, and an unbelievable voice. It's your classic story: singer-songwriter plays a gig at a cafe in the East Village, meets some members of the Strokes later on in the evening, they hang out, they ask her to open for them, she plays at a piano before a rock band (at MSG and various other spots on the globe), they duet on a single, Warner Brothers signs her, up-and-coming director who's worked on animation with Michel Gondry does her video, some guy who remembers her dancing goofily at a party blogs about it.

On Wednesday last, Max, Bess, Nick, and I visited Westchester together for the first time in almost 4 years. The three guys drank on the train and the girl picked us up at the Metro-North station, took us back to the dorm room we all lived in (a professor's apartment now, reminiscences and trespassings cruelly thwarted). A birthday party at a friend's house, a slew of famous and infamous Westchester faces, and a ride back on the ribbon of lights of some parkway back to Manhattan. Listening to Regina's new album and thanking everything in sight (including the 18-wheeler that almost split us all into slices) that we were going back to New York. If you have three hours to get away and you do, you have 24 hours to look forward to tomorrow.

"Ghost of Corporate Future." Its .99 cents. It should be your next stop.

04 March 2005

ACC-idental Philosophy.

At a State University campus in upstate New York, students engage themselves in a fruitless struggle with the English language. My father is a benefactor in this struggle; what Halliburton is to Iraq's post-war rebuilding, my father is to English north of the 42nd parallel (Albany, NY). Over the years he's been teaching at Adirondack Community College (150, by my count) he has compiled a list of sentences from students' papers that he has found to be either incomprehensible or totally hysterical.

The list is called simply "Classics," and is composed of 45 anonymous statements, unchanged and unedited, taken directly from the works of his students. The list is ongoing, and has probably grown since I last received an update. In some cases I have added explanations where they seem necessary. They rarely do. Some baffle, some horrify. No context is needed; in some cases it would only darken the point that is trying to seek the light of comprehensible prose.

And I will make this last remark even though you may not believe it: he teaches sophomore English. These students must have received a C or better in Freshman Composition in order to make it to him. Enjoy!
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"Classics"

1. Drugs first heavily came about in the time of the hippies, which was probably their escape from all the war they were put through by our government, who wouldn't want to escape the reality of countries trying to destroy one an other.

2. Outside the wind is blowing, trees are swaying, and little creatures are running wild.

3. It does not take an expert to eat a big fat cheeseburger.

4. You don't have to be good at anything to stuff your face.

5. When it comes to food people have a lot of different tastes.

6. While primitive people could hump like rabbits, they could not get married.

7. I was feeling my nerves begin to bellow inside my stomach as I became uncomfortable. I began to twiddle my fingers and hum in my head to distract the nerves.

8. I never took an English class before. Instead I took a composition class.

9. The absence of command decisions being crammed down your throat is soothing.

10. The eating of the apple caused Adam and Eve great problems.

11. The poem pulled me in on the first sentence and dragged me at top speed till the end.

12. Perhaps more important than physical beauty is internal beauty. I'm not talking about actual innards, like internal organs.

13. If you're in jail then you should stay there and be with rotten, smelly people in a dark stale room with no privileges.

14. All criminals who are incarcerated should be locked up twenty-four hours a day, seven days a week. They should be allowed three five-minute bathroom breaks.

15. I put on my favorite cut-off shorts and an old Dead shirt that I wipe my fish-gut hands on.

16. Lust is the challenge of being with someone that you thought would never egnolig you. [acknowledge]

17. The person you are with could be your soulmate but you're just having problems concerning each other's soul.

18. Family farms fed their own families from the farm.

19. When I was three grandpa taught me how to milk dinky the cow.

20. I started collecting eggs with my cousin to see how many we could pick before breakfast.

21. I think young, handsome firemen, with their helmets, bunkers and sweaty bodies, are sexy. It's exciting to see them on their way to a call driving the big truck or holding the hose full of water.

22. There are many different meanings for short like: not enough money, lack of funds, ends of pants/cut-off.

23. I'm so short that every time I go to the bank with my sister they give me a lolly-pop.

24. What happens to the people who go to Las Vegas or those other drive-thru wedding chapels, this isn't a whopper they are going to spend the rest of their lives with, it's a real live person. You can't just eat them and throw away the wrapper.

25. Before people marry they should know their partners well enough to be able to answer all of the questions if they were put on the NewlyWed Show.

26. I need to know in my heart that this man I am marrying is the one I want to spend the rest of my life with. I would have to wake up every morning to his face no matter what.

27. How does two people of the same-sex getting married effect a neighbor? It's not like it causes taxes to rise.

28. It was an eye opening experience that lasted about three weeks.

29. At one point, I was in a convenient store reading a magazine when a large, rugged-looking man stumbled up to me and blurted out, "Are you reading a Playboy?" I could smell the Coors Light beer on his breath.

30. As the athletes ran past their coaches, the coaches were screaming at the top of their lungs with their heads about to explode.

31. As the professor talks huge heavy logs are being placed on the student until the student can't take it anymore.

32. When I hear the word criminal I think of "Mr. Bill Bad Ass" who has robbed, raped, and murdered during the course of his life.

33. In the backs of our minds we think.

34. Collectively, we made a decision to allow the beaten path to become beaten.

35. Priests and Nunss are somewhat married to God by remaining celibate. If celibacy is not taken seriously in that job field then the outcome can be severe.

36. You don't have to be in a relationship to have sex you can just call a friend up or stop by your local bar on your way home from work.

37. Around this time we had a discussion in my English class about the proper use of colons and semicolons to avoid run on sentences and sentence fragments. This may sound cheesy, but it is the honest truth; I had an an awakening. Never before had I cared about punctuation.

38. The warmth hit you like a brick as you closed the door behind you and immersed yourself into the Christmas-decoration-covered kitchen.

39. Your appearance should be neat, clean, and ironed.

40. Many people are considered dark because they conceal their feelings in the dim light.

41. Maybe there are some hobbies you have that I would consider dark, like biting your nails or brushing your hair forty-six times before bed.

42. When I got my grades in the mail, it was much worse than what I thought. I had one F, a few D's, and, oddly enough, one B.

43. As we kept walking, my mind was running with thoughts but my mouth occasionally opened for conversation.

44. Early one summer evening, while making my weekly run through my mother's belongings, I came across something that changed my life immensely.

45. [and my personal favorite] We see ourselves as removed from society, and wen the need to fit in they create their own society, this is a subculture that is ours alones of chicken and other such bonding to feel part of a group, also there were very few girls who would identify themselves as punks.