Homeschooler Joke on SNL Weekend Update, Sigh

11 01 2009

A tired old lame one, too.
Sitting here minding my own business with my brilliant, amazing homeschoolers who love SNL and just got home from a performance eager to see it back live after the holidays, when Seth Meyers reports that the number of homeschoolers has reached “one point five million” or, if you’re homeschooled, “five eleventy thousand.”

Yuk yuk yuk. Pun intended.

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13 responses

11 01 2009
writestuff444

Just cause they don’t know our brilliant, wonderful, intelligent, hopeful, amazing kids..Perhaps we should introduce them in some way?? Or are we just courting the wrong folks? I’m not for sure the satirist at SNL would really “get” us, JJ. 🙂

11 01 2009
NanceConfer

In keeping with my new-found interest in eliminating unnecessary stress (with the thought that we do and will have plenty of necessary stress), I am trying not to be bothered with comments from “ignorant sluts.” Ill-informed “jokes” about hsers fit in that category.

Nance

11 01 2009
Mrs. C

I think being able to count in Hobbit would be a marketable skill. I don’t think he did it right, though.

11 01 2009
COD

If SNL had made that joke in 1978 when it was actually a relevant show…

11 01 2009
sunniemom

Jokes fall flat when they don’t resonate. The best humor is that which has just enough truth in it to form a barb at the end- and those are the jokes that stick with us. 😉

I think SNL lost its relevance at the same time Jimmy Carter did.

11 01 2009
JJ

Ooh, good one Mrs. C! Elevensies!

11 01 2009
JJ

Dunno about loss of relevance, guys — this fall with Tina Fey was on-target and it seems like the ratings reflected it . . . maybe it was relevant, then irrelevant, then turned around again since the 70s?

12 01 2009
sam

Five eleventy thousand is kind of funny no matter who you blame. The same joke could be applied to public schools and, as a lame joke, still be at least mildly humorous. Imagine Bart Simpson saying five eleventy thousand.

I think the best way to win converts to the understanding of alternative education models in general is to prove that our kids really are the same as/not so different from their kids, and we do in fact have a sense of humor.

12 01 2009
BucolicAmbition

I’ve noticed a few homeschooling jokes or skits on SNL lately. Before the election they had one with a game show premise. I found it hilarious until I realized that people who don’t know us may be laughing at the same portrayal, not because it was over the top and bizarre, but because they think that is who homeschoolers are.

12 01 2009
JJ

Hi Sam — or the joke could take the same Simpsons-style shot and hit a truer target (as sunniemom advises) if it were Ned Flanders teaching his kids that the world couldn’t have been created five eleventy thousand years ago, how silly!

Wacko young-earth creationists who insist their myths are science, are absurd and funny to mock imo. But what does that have to do with homeschoolers, or black or gay or wimmin folk who are NOT wacko creationists? It’s not funny unless you actually believe the stereotype beneath the joke is on target, and there’s nothing funny about dangerously indoctrinated or abused-by-ignorance real live children, no matter who is teaching them the lies.

Yet over the years I’ve met a “memeful” of otherwise smart, funny, liberal folks who really believe their own in-group myth that when it comes to “homeschoolers” any level of small-minded public derision, prejudice and political opposition is socially acceptable. Tina Fey was the head writer for SNL before she penned the movie Mean Girls, which opens with the most insulting sequence about homeschoolers *I* can imagine — but then the main character turned out to be a math genius who learns social conventions good and bad just like any teenager, so it wasn’t just a smear but a smart and very funny human portrait, and a skewering of School and Society rather than just Homeschool. Seth Meyers is SNL’s head writer now, without Fey. Maybe he’s as fair-minded in his humor as she but when it comes to homeschooling, he has yet to show it.

And he may not even be liberal so I shouldn’t automatically lump him into the Tiny Cat Pants-Amanda Marcotte self-referential narrow-minded sensitivities crowd, considering that his dad’s in high finance and he’s from New Hampshire. Maybe he just has an unexamined view on all this because his mom is a schoolteacher, or because he’s young (just turned 35) and like so many thoughtless homeschool-bigots including too many young feminists, hasn’t yet had his own kids’ education to worry about, who knows.

When first we met, she was a happy, secure, homeschooling SAHM with two beautiful and smart little girls, wanting to start their own home-education Brownie troop. We spent a lot of time together because Favorite Daughter was the same scouting-curious age, and as moms we had values in common, including independent thinking and libertarian leanings. . .

Until.
From that time to this, this settled and happy mom faced a difficult divorce and the need to find a family-sustaining career for herself, which meant getting different kinds of educational “support” than we typically dwell on in independent unschooling circles — child care and legal advice and putting the older kids in public school after custody challenges, and even “going back to school” herself. I know there were times she agonized about her kids, but not whether they mastered the state learning standards and passed algebra — it was what they were learning about life!

So, long story, to me it just felt like another careless class derogation that wouldn’t be allowed if it slurred any group THEY — the cultural definers — care about. (They once took me apart in a completely serious discussion of education for retorting to another commenter I did not know, “Who’s we, kemosabe?” — how dare I slur him or her when she or he might possibly have been of color, and offend all the other people reading who ARE of color? Huh??)

12 01 2009
JJ

Thought this was interesting, from IMDB’s thumbnail bio of Meyers:

“He sees three distinct Windows of Rejection, which refers to the fact that ideas on SNL have three different opportunities to get rejected before being aired.”

12 01 2009
JJ

Welcome to the conversation BA — I remember the game show gag now that you mention it. More evidence against balance in Meyers’ mind . . .

26 04 2009
DC

Hi

Would somebody mind explaining the “five eleventy thousand” joke?
I don’t get it :S 😛

Thanks!

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