Punishment of the Righteous

I ran across this cartoon [Link]

this morning and it struck a lot of resonances.

Despite the blatant extrovertist aspect, it reminds me of my own shule days, at least prior to college when I got to exercise a bit more control over content.

It may be argued that the children are a great deal more practical and realistic than the adult educationalist. Except I’m not at all sure what a “cootie-catcher” is. But the hat bit is definitely more useful and satisfying than an origami duck. Which does not look like a duck, or even a coot. After all, a paper hat can be of service when one has to endure weather, such as rain or snow or even low temperature and want to retain body heat. After all, the brain uses about 60 watts and that heat can get lost fast through the skull.

It may also be argued that origami is an art form. I fear I take the attitude that something is an art form only if (a) it gives me some form of mental satisfaction, and (b) I choose to learn it. The extent of my origami learning is folding paper airplanes. At one time I could fold a hat but once my head got too big for a standard sheet of paper I ceased and lost – effectively – the skill. Neither is an art form IMHO, any more than mopping floors or metabolizing. Although emptying one’s bladder after a long drive may be, at least in terms of intense mental satisfaction.

This was the paradigm of shule in my day. Almost all of what was covered there was slow, vapid, and uninteresting. I learned a lot more after schule and on weekends reading on my own. It is very hard to get much out of a class when you have read the whole textbook in the first week but still have to pay a reasonable amount of attention to avoid harassment by the educationalists, who are usually very insecure and unable to cope with intelligence or rationality. Hence the punishment of the righteous. And paper cuts would inevitably result from all the worthless paperwork that had to be done. Of course only the intelligent were punished for not doing meaningless busy work. Extroverts who didn’t do it were excused because they were real people. Or football players. Or some such.

Occasionally I have a reverie of being young and imprisoned in a contemporary shule where they only teach the test. I fear I should be a suicide datum.

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