Where’s a Birther When You Need One?

Woman, 34, poses as 16-year-old student at private school for 7 months

John Luciew  May 16, 2014; Pennlive

“Charity Johnson passed herself off as sophomore for seven months at New Life Christian School in Longview, Texas. Her teachers and principal say she was a serious student, never any problem in class. Only thing is, she is 34 years old…

“…’Everyone who associated with her accepted her as being 16 years old. She came in saying she had been home-schooled. She filled out a form with her birthday. I didn’t ask for her birth certificate, and that is on my shoulders,’ the principal said…”

A)  She apparently needed education.

B)  She must have been born again.

C)  The school is called “New Life.”

D)  She claimed to enjoy watching music videos on MTV, wondering how you could watch them on “an Internet.”


“And no, you cannot play ‘Hangman’ in detention!”

Principal Calls Cops on Middle School Student Over Doodle

Paul Joseph Watson
Infowars.com; May 15, 2014

“A principal at a middle school in Portland, Ore. suspended a student and then called the cops after the boy doodled a picture of a man hanging, another example of the mindless overkill that is becoming prevalent in American schools…”

If he had drawn a sword, would they have confiscated the drawing or the pen first?

What’s in a name?

California School District Under Fire for Holocaust-Denial Assignment

“A California public school district has backpedaled after an eighth-grade assignment — to write a persuasive essay on whether or not the Holocaust occurred — came under serious fire and prompted death threats to administrators.

“’We are aware of the controversy surrounding the distribution of an eighth grade Writing Prompt during the third quarter of the academic year,’ notes a press release issued Monday by Rialto Unified School District interim Superintendent Mohammed Islam…”

Mr. Islam admitted that some students were concerned that the assignment would detract from their home economics project of burning American and Israeli flags; their music lessons of shouting “Death to infidel pigs!”; legal studies of Shariah law; and the demanding art classes where they practice not drawing Mohammed.  He added that “Some of our students can barely build bombs at a 6th grade level.”


What’s in a name?

California School District Under Fire for Holocaust-Denial Assignment

The Chess Club is Weighing its Options

A new way to battle bullying: Make a ‘Glee’-style music video

By Nick Kirkpatrick–April 25

“…The humorous video shows young kids being tormented by their peers while singing a special rendition of the classic disco song ‘I Will Survive’ by Gloria Gaynor…”

I see absolutely no potential blowback to this well-reasoned, common sense idea.  I never thought of singing and dancing to ward off my few childhood tormenters.  I just wish my parents had taught me some show tunes.  That would have shown them.

Drug Education Needed

Smartie sniffing hits York County

4th To 6th grades: Shallow Brook Intermediate sees rash of students using Smarties treats inappropriately.

By NIKELLE SNADER– yorkdispatch.com–4.25.2014

“…But in the past several weeks a ‘rash’ of students have been grinding the candy into a powder and ‘sniffing or smoking’ it, according to an email Walker sent to parents. Some students have also been sniffing crushed Cheerios, according to the letter…”

Kids, kids, kids:  snorting a candy called “Smarties” does not make you smarter (although it will protect your teeth from the evils of sugar.)  You’re supposed to snort your older siblings’ Adderall for that,

Did He Snap?

Palmyra High school principal Benjamin Ruby placed on unpaid leave for ‘poor judgment’ in bra incident

By Monica Von Dobeneck | Special to PennLive The Patriot-News
March 27, 2014  

“Palmyra High School principal…showed an isolated case of poor judgment, but will keep his job, according to a statement read Thursday night by superintendent…

“…will be placed on unpaid leave for an unspecified period,…said.

“…said the district investigated the allegation that…photographed a Victoria’s Secret bag containing a bra which a mother had dropped off at the school for her daughter, then emailed the photo to the staff with the subject line, ‘If you need a laugh.’

“The body of the text read, ‘A parent just dropped this off in the office, as is, for her daughter to pick up.’…

Maybe his curiosity was piqued because he’s a closet cross-dresser.

Words Can Hurt (Me)

With the exception of friends, I generally do not correct others’ grammar.  Raised by an English teacher, I am aware how annoying and condescending that can appear.  I didn’t receive any formal grammatical instruction after middle school, but I just have an intuitive acuity of the subject.  When I studied and later taught philosophy, logic, e.g., symbolic logic, and analytic philosophy were two areas of keen interest.  In general, the field reinforced the ideal of applying academic rigor to thought and communication.
How “bad” can I be in this regard?  I love the Stones, and am always quick to point out that Keith Richards and I share the same birthday.  Ergo, from an astrological standpoint, I should likewise be indestructible.  If/when humanity gets wiped out, among the survivors will be  cockroaches, Keith, and me.  (Lamentably, the former will probably be easier to communicate with.)
Still, when I did “(I Can’t Get No) Satisfaction” for karaoke many moons ago, I sang it as “(I Cannot Get) Satisfaction.”  Some to most of the bargoers enjoyed my correction.  (Actually, my only complete flop during a karaoke performance was when I attempted, at a bar where no one knew me, “Girls Just Want to Have Fun.”)
I don’t know if this expression is unique to Baltimore, but I’ve heard a lot of people say, “That don’t make no sense.”  How ironic.  I will joke to an intellectually inclined friend, “That is an irrational statement/action,” or “That is logically unsound.”
Surely we’ve all heard “I could care less,” which struck me as wrongheaded even as a precocious kid.  Depending on my familiarity with the speaker, I will say, “I, for one, could not,” or “I could care more.”
But what really irks me, mainly because of its ubiquity, is the tautological “It is what it is.”  I actually once heard an acquaintance say, “This is my life philosophy:  it is what it is; that’s all that it is; and it ain’t a damn thing more.”  Stressing that it was his “life philosophy” implied that much thought had gone into such a maxim.
I knew the guy well enough to add, “So you’re saying, ‘It is,’ or ‘It has being,’ which merely resulted in his reiteration of the motto.  I thought that if we ever really hung out together, I could make banal observations like “There’s a tree” or “That house is yellow.”  Perhaps he would be fascinated, whereas any passersby would think I was autistic.
Of course, sloppy grammar can be useful when one is trying to lie in spirit while technically being truthful.  Slick Willie, a lawyer before he was a politician, erred in trying to explain why he wanted a blowjob by trying to parse the word “Is.”  He would have done better to follow the example of this sage:

A Waste of Time

In the 2.24.14 issue of Time, Rana Foroohar lauds the idea of extending high school by two years, after which one would graduate with an Associate degree. 

Extend high school by two years in lieu of college?  I did some research to assess local students’ opinions about the proposal.  Jocks and cheerleaders loved the idea.  Nerds and shop kids abhorred it.  One band member threw his trombone to the ground to express his contempt for the concept of “being in this fucking place one more second than I have to!”  An official spokesperson for the partying crowd commented, “But, like, there will still be keggers and hook-ups, right?  I mean, I just got this totally awesome Floyd poster that glows under a black light.  You’ve gotta’ see it, man.  Where would I hang it up?”

No thumb’s up


Ten-Year-Old Suspended For Pointing Finger Like A Gun

School cites “level 2 lookalike firearm”

Steve Watson
March 4, 2014

This occurred in Ohio, which is not that far from me in relative terms.  But I’ve got a lot going on, what with the books, trying to solve the world’s problems, and drinking cheap vodka.  But I think anyone with the means to do so should travel to Columbus, OH to give their own digital expression to the school officials responsible for this punishment.

(Hint: it’s not the one expressed on the left.)

Skater flips double middle finger at foe