Friday, May 29, 2009

If you don't have anything nice to say, don't say anything at all.

I hate Kindergarten. Everyone always coos when I tell them I'm subbing for a kindergarten teacher, about how cute it is going to be. Tuesday I subbed for a Kindergarten teacher and I was wished "good luck" by some of the parents. I don't know if you could confuse this, but to be clear, this was spoken in a foreboding manner, a warning of sorts.

The kids were pretty bad for kindergartners, nothing too violent, just a lot of whining and talking out of turn. One of the kindergartners asked me if I ever subbed for pre-K. I told him that I had but I try not to. "Why not? All the cute babies are there!" he cooed. For some reason, one or two years allows little kids to think of themselves as grown and others as little. Pre-K is kindergarten void of anything I might like about kindergarten. And I'm having a hard time thinking of what that might be.

So I was psyched when I got the call to work a three day job at a certain high school 5 minutes from my house. Instead of a half hour drive to tie shoelaces and listen to how someone doesn't want to be Katie's friend anymore, I can leave the house at the same time, drive five minutes, be home an hour earlier, and have a far less dense parade of problems to deal with.

Same kids, three days in a row. High Schoolers have come down from their hormonal obnoxiousness of sixth through eighth grade; they chill out and stop trying to fight you as much. All three days, the plan was to watch To Kill a Mockingbird. Suite.

The second day some kids started to tell me that I look like an old actress. One girl said I looked like I was from the sixties. Could the striped turtleneck have anything to do with that?

Most of the kids were really well behaved and just watched the movie. I got to watch it five times, in small increments. As I never read the book, and had never seen the movie before, this was the most suspenseful thing possible. I rewatched Mayella's flawed testimony and Tom Robinson's defense over and over again.

Some of the kids complained that the movie was boring. Kids always complain that things are boring. Just because you'd rather be making out in the bathroom or beating somebody up at the flagpole doesn't mean that the activity you are engaged in is intrinsically insipid. Many of them supported this claim with the fact that the movie is in black and white. Apparently, this hurts their eyes, and is less entertaining than a color film. I thought it was really interesting that I got this comment from three girls who were reading. Books. Without pictures. With black text on white pages. If you have the imagination to enjoy a novel, how can you find fault in an old film?

Speaking of old, black and white films, I finally watched Jean-Luc Godard's seminal piece Á Bout De Souffle (Breathless). Last year I read the entire Youth in Revolt series. (I'm patiently awaiting the film release). This movie is so important to the character of Sheeni Saunders. It is mentioned many many times throughout the book(s); Nick Twisp does things to make himself more Belmondoesque (not that Michael Cera will have to try too very hard for this). However, now that I've seen this movie, I can understand that Sheeni is, or desires to be Patricia Franchini. And I too have a love for Jean-Paul Belmondo. He might have been the most attractive man of the sixties.

Also, as I often do when I see someone with hair I admire, I chopped mine off.

If no one mentions your haircut, does it mean they dislike it?

1 comment:

Picked Off said...

I think there's just one kind of folks. Folks.

PS Watched the fist third of season one of A.D. s