Sunday, September 14, 2008

Onion Education

The following article is from The Onion. It was linked on a homeschooler yahoo group and it cracked me up. Even if you're all pro-school, I think it's still funny. I loved school as a kid and didn't get burnt out until the very end of college, but I love the idea of homeschooling now...even if it's not all warm fuzzies with my 7 year old every day. What do you guys think?

http://www.theonion.com/content/news/6_year_old_stares_down_bottomless
CARPENTERSVILLE, IL—Local first-grader Connor Bolduc, 6, experienced the first inkling of a coming lifetime of existential dread Monday upon recognizing his cruel destiny to participate in compulsory education for the better part of the next two decades, sources reported.
"I don't want to go to school," Bolduc told his parents, the crushing reality of his situation having yet to fully dawn on his naïve consciousness. "I want to play outside with my friends."
While Bolduc stood waiting for the bus to pick him up on his first day of elementary school, his parents reportedly were able to "see the wheels turning in his little brain" as the child, for the first time in his life, began to understand how dire and hopeless his situation had actually become.
Basic math—which the child has blissfully yet to learn—clearly demonstrates that the number of years before he will be released from the horrifying prison of formal schooling, is more than twice the length of time he has yet existed. According to a conservative estimate of six hours of school five days a week for nine months of the year, Bolduc faces an estimated 14,400 hours trapped in an endless succession of nearly identical, suffocating classrooms.
This nightmarish but undeniably real scenario does not take into account additional time spent on homework, extracurricular responsibilities, or college, sources said.
"I can't wait until school is over," said the 3-foot-tall tragic figure, who would not have been able, if asked, to contemplate the amount of time between now and summer, let alone the years and years of tedium to follow.
The concept of wasting a majority of daylight hours sitting still in a classroom when he could be riding his bicycle, playing in his tree fort, or lying in the grass looking at bugs—especially considering that he had already wasted two years of his life attending preschool and kindergarten—seemed impossibly unfair to Bolduc. Moreover, sources said, he had no idea how much worse the inescapable truth will turn out to be.
Shortly after his mommy, homemaker Ellen Bolduc, 31, assured him that he would be able to resume playtime "when school lets out," Connor's innocent brain only then began to work out the implication of that sentence to its inevitable, soul-crushing conclusion.
When pressed for more detail on the exact timing of that event, Mrs. Bolduc would only reply "soon." At that point, the normally energetic child grew quiet before asking a follow-up question, "After [younger sister] Maddy's birthday?" thereby setting the stage for the first of thousands of rushing realizations he will be forced to come to grips with over the course of his subsequent existence.
Madison Ellen Bolduc was born on Sept. 28.
After learning that the first grade will continue for eight excruciating months beyond that date, it was only a matter of time before Bolduc inquired into what grade comes after first grade, and, when told, would probe further into how many grades he will have to complete before allowed to play with his friends.
The answer to that fatal question—12, a number too large for Bolduc to count on the fingers of both hands—will be enough to nearly shatter the boy's still-forming psyche, said child psychology expert Eli Wasserbaum.
"When you consider that it doesn't include another four years of secondary education, plus five more years of medical school, if he wants to follow his previously stated goal to grow up to be a doctor like his daddy, this will come as an interminably deep chasm of drudgery and imprisonment to [Connor]," said Wasserbaum. "It's difficult to know the effect on his psychological well-being when he grasps the full truth: that his education will be followed by approximately four decades of work, bills, and taxes, during which he will also rear his own children to face the same fate, all of which will, of course, be followed by a brief, almost inconsequential retirement, and his inevitable death."
"Even a 50-year-old adult would have trouble processing such a monstrous notion," Wasserbaum added. "Oh my God, I'm 50 years old."
The first of Bolduc's remaining 2,299 days of school will resume at 8 a.m. tomorrow. On the next 624 Sundays, he will also be forced to attend church.

3 comments:

Karen said...

I nearly laughed my head off...thanks for those moments of reading joy!

kendralu said...

you should post more. :-D everyone likes to hear you talk. or rant. you're very interesting!

Old Man With a radio transmitter in his car said...

It's worse than the kid thought! After school is over, he gets to look forward to ANOTHER situation where he will spend most of his waking life on weekdays chained to a desk, a workstation, computer, tool set, factory stand, or some other job, listening to the boss tell him what to do, eight hours per day... and once again, he'll be looking at doing this for again, TWICE as long as he's been alive by that time! Life's a switch, and then you cry...or something like that.