“I Can’t Hear You, LALALALA!”

24 10 2006

Favorite Daughter just posted a day-in-the-life parody of her first job at her first blog. Thinking Parents might laugh, maybe a lot.

I recommend it here though, for its power of story about unintended lessons, and also because it happens to fit my “sounds as story” theme today. It’s about real world sounds overheard by captive young people dutifully trying to stay on task in a small room together (not school but an office, though the parallel power of story is striking) and what they privately learn from these public dialogues of random parents and children, teachers, and other strangers on business in their lobby.

From “I Can’t Hear You, LALALALA!”

I can’t help but listen, when it’s late afternoon on a slow day, shuffling papers provides only so much distraction from the endless litany of psychosis sitting what must be a mere four feet away. . .hands over ears

It’s lightly fictionalized, but I affirm that it does come from her real unschooling life. Like Dave Barry, she is not making this up! 🙂

A Long, Rambling Interview

24 10 2006

of Garry Trudeau.

Here’s one snip:

“Having a successful daily comic strip,” Trudeau says wryly, “is the closest thing to tenure that popular culture offers. But it doesn’t seem to have freed up creativity any more than tenure for professors has. It’s been an open invitation for complacency.”

Have fun! 🙂

Sounds Like Political Theatre to Me

24 10 2006


Now that’s what I’m talking ’bout — it’s the sound, stupid?

But the differences voters likely are to notice when the two veteran politicians square off are widely contrasting styles.

Athletically trim with photogenic smiles, both candidates have a natural ally in the TV camera.

Nelson’s soothing baritone carries a folksy twang, leading to a frequent criticism that he lacks sizzle. A policy wonk, Nelson reels off statistics comfortably, like a veteran corporate trainer.

Harris’ Ivy League diction has a harder edge. She proved at a Jacksonville candidate forum this summer that she can quickly turn up the heat on an opponent or a questioner. Liberals and the news media are a favorite target.


Something else just occurred to me about this, that might be relevant to understanding how kids learn about their own freedoms and acting politically to protect them — read the post again and notice how tuned in my son is to “sounds.”

He loves music and he does voices and accents. He even imitates instruments and sound effects when he sings, acts in sketches or tells stories.

He could hear that O’Reilly and Limbaugh “sound” the same, without knowing or caring that their political thinking is similar. He trusted his own ears and drew his own conclusions, completely in his own mind. Who knows what else he has already decided for himself about the world?

When my husband and teen daughter did get home last night, they had been listening to the Bill Nelson-Katherine Harris Senate debate on public radio. I had tuned into it on the local PBS channel to see them side by side, though I already know a great deal about each of them as politicians, and all their issues. So I was watching (but not listening much) while Favorite Daughter and her dad were listening intently in a dark car and seeing nothing at all. Shades of Nixon-Kennedy! Read the rest of this entry »

When Education Isn’t

24 10 2006

“The battle over charter schools has little to do with education, and everything to do with labor and economics. Unless we address it that way, there is no resolution possible.”