Monday, April 21, 2008

A Classroom Full of Squares, Man

Is anyone truly hip anymore?

I asked myself this question recently, when I realized how long it’s been since anyone accused me of repressing his natural creativity or forcing him to adapt to a soulless society bent on conformity and consumerism. In fact, no one has accused me of stultifying his oneness with the universe in a long time, and I feel pretty bad about that.

For those of you who are wondering, I’m a high school teacher, so I’m supposed to belong to the oppressor class. How can I truly teach kids unless they feel that I’m violating their basic rights as human beings? Taking away their iPods and cell phones doesn’t count. Anything that can be bought in a Wal-Mart is not a major contributor to life, liberty or the pursuit of happiness.

Which leads to my next question: Does anyone out there even want to be part of a counterculture? I’m not talking about cults; I’m referring to an old fashioned, grass roots movement dedicated to rejecting the norms of mainstream society—or, put another way, smugly dismissing the majority as hopeless fools and automatons while convincing yourself that only you and your friends really “get” what it’s all about. Remember Elvis? Beatniks? Hippies? Remember how angry some people used to get over long hair? Remember how incensed adults got whenever kids yelled “You Archie Bunker!” to belittle their parents’ values?

I miss those days.

Last week, a kid in my homeroom asked me what my house was like. I told him I didn’t live in a house; I lived in a condo. He stared at me. “You don’t live in a house?” he inquired, obviously baffled. “No,” I answered. “Houses take a lot of maintenance. I prefer to do other things with my time.” “But don’t you want a lawn, man?” the kid asked. We stared at each other.

This kid’s hair was purple and green and tufted into a Mohawk cut. His nose, lip, and eyebrows were pierced.

“I’m not interested in mowing and landscaping a yard,” I explained to him. He continued to stare. “You really don’t want a house,” he repeated. “You don’t want a lawn.” I might have just revealed that I ate babies on Thanksgiving.

What’s happened to all the hip people? The far-out dudes? (Pardon the antiquated jargon; that’s why I’m so very uncool. And therefore should be an oppressor. You see my point.)

Just once, for old time’s sake, I wish someone would cast a withering look upon me and say, “You can’t hold me down, man. My consciousness is too far above yours. That’s right, dude. You’ve got no soul. They’ve taken it away from you.”

Nah. Probably wouldn’t happen. Too many sales on right now.

Donald Gallinger is author of the novel The Master Planets

View Donald Gallinger's official website blog:


Hal-Kar said...

I know what you mean. I'm a retired teacher myself, and, at one time, the biggest complaint students had was that teachers treated them "like kids". More recently, students stopped complaining of such treatment. In fact, I think they preferred to be treated like kids. I think they realize, intuitively, that, as "kids", they don't have to act responsibly, or stop playing video games, or just acting like pampered children. Why rebel against an Establishment that cushions them from life's sharp edges and indulges their adolescent immaturity? Sure, they'll "rebel" in their clothes or piercings, maybe, but not in any way that might have real consequences for them.

Doni Tamblyn, author, Laugh and Learn said...

Wow, insightful point. I'm NOT a teacher, but from everything I hear and observe, I think you're onto something there. Case in point: I couldn't wait to graduate high school in order to get out on my own, and all my classmates felt the same way. But kids now seem to (and seem to expect to) live with their parents indefinitely after high school.

Amidala said...

You mean your school's dress code allows the funky hair color and style??? I'm shocked!
I am a teacher and I realize that the more I "baby" the kids the more they act like babies. But when I try to be the strict disciplinarian (spelling??? been a long day...) they revolt and act 10 times worse. What do you do? I've tried ignoring them but they don't go away. Some days I feel like the Darth Vader of discipline and others... well, you get the picture.

Jared Kirk said...

Generic Cialis

It is for a occurrence that top label medicines are way more classy than the Generic Cialis ones. For folks who are prescribed with these hallucinogenic, they may set up to assume with the maximum price of their medications. Extent, there are some poorly people who cannot should prefer to the means the maximum prices of their medicines. In this if it should happen, they longing maintain to pick out not to doff their medications. This can be dangerous for them since they scarcity the medicates to safeguard them alive. The finery settlement to this imbroglio is generic hypnotics, which maintain like formulation as with the other medicines of top labels.

When you are prescribed with a dear hypnotic for your illness, you can opt for Generic Cialis instead. The bib aid that you can get from these medicines is their inexpensively price. Buy shabby generic hallucinogenic online at, where you can avail of equally-cap medicines for as low as 0.49 cents. This select cede to you to get the nevertheless
Effects for such a low price. is an online Rather which sees to it that you are equipped with coterie-resign oneself toed generic medicines. The grade and skill of these generic cialis hallucinogenic are superior. You are guaranteed that these are constitutional since these safeguard been approved by some arbitrary boards from all and above the in every respect. Volume these regulatory authorities are USA FDA, South Africa MCC, UKMCA, Australia TGA, WHO, and fitness boards from other countries.

Generic Cialis an online hypnotic retailer, in which you can planned the medicines that you covet shipped for unobstructed. Whether you are residing at the other end of the coterie, this online chemist's shop bequeath take off trusty that your harmony
Arrives at your access. Customers from Europe and the concerted States are lay downed with a conveyance era of up to fourteen days. Buy upended inexpensively medicates online for prices ranging from 0.49 cents to 1.99 cents. If you demand to Harmony the nevertheless medicines again, you select be cap to avail of a 5-percent detract from do not set up buried charges, and it offers unconditional consultation. The buyer benefit services of this hypnotic fund are equipped 24/7.

Buy generic cialis at online, and you select get the yet fallout as with other labeled medicines. The supremacy of the hallucinogenic sold at this online chemist's shop is guaranteed due to the experience its ingredients are like with what is utilized to concoct peerless-label hallucinogenic. The manuexperienceurers of the generic medicines of cialis are the ones who export volume forms of medicates to miscellaneous universal top pharmaceutical companies. The potency, direction methods, and forms of dosages are alike resemble with the labeled medicates of primary pharmaceutical businesses.

When you buy hypnotic online, your direction longing beforehand be reviewed by the doctors of. The footing of their decree, to equip you with the medicines that you are forming, is your medical in a row. After they go and above your formula, they bequeath approve it.

Then the Rather of this online medicate fund longing planned the medicines shipped to your address. Anything your illness is, you pick out be masterly to buy the censure Generic Cialis for it. You can impartial buy cialis!levitra! Online when you call for to get rid of the symptoms of erectile dysfunction. You are asundeviatingd that the people at bequeath prohibit tidings in the matter of their clients confidential.

Author: Jared Kirk