Monthly Archives: March 2010

The Hurt Locker

Attention neighborhood high school: raise your hands and prepare to receive the Renaissance!

Here in Philadelphia, education is a topic that has everyone talking. Usually here in Philly, the topic elicits such responses as:

  • “….how do you spell that?”
  • “Education? GO BIRDS!”

But lately the key word has been “Renaissance Schools”. Ok, that’s two words, but that’s also the point–kids here aren’t learning, so the District has enacted something they’re calling “Renaissance Schools”; it’s that kind of a phrase that makes something sound powerful when it’s really quite limp, like the phrase “erectile dysfunction”.

With “Renaissance Schools”, the plan is to give every inner-city kid, in every Philly classroom an easel in an attempt to spark learning and achievement through rendered nude paintings.

Ok, not really, but the real definition isn’t much better.

See, the “Renaissance Schools” are the lowest-performing schools in the city that have been targeted for extreme reform/rebirth.

Students make their way to school

Under the provisions of Renaissance Schools, the schools will fire/release/taser the entire staff and allow up to 50% to return. From there, the school will either be managed by the remaining staff (an undoubtedly plucky bunch at this rate), or some outside manager, like a charter or Mark Cuban.

Sounds great, right? Well, let’s do a test.

The Kids Don’t Get It’s Guide to Understanding Renaissance Schools:

Ok. Take a hammer and smash your hand. You choose whichever hand you want.

Now, at this point you’re probably “crying” and possibly “bleeding”; for the purposes of this exercise we’ll call that “the classroom experience”.

Metaphor, meta-hurt.

Now, chances are, because you couldn’t evenly drop the hammer, some of your fingers are probably ok. Probably like your thumb and your pinky. Awesome. Now look at your hand. Looks pretty broken and fugged-up, huh? We’ll call your entire hand “school” and your fingers……eh, what the hell, “staff”. Man, they look pretty mangled too, huh! Bet they can’t do much good in that condition. Bet you’re probably looking over at your good hand and remembering what your mangled hand could look like, too, what with its straight fingers and coordination over there in Lower Merion I mean, on the left.

Ok, now cut all your fingers off. Please, please, bear with me.

Ok, now look at your, er, hand. Congratulations, your hand has undergone “Renaissance”!

Now, the choice is yours!

Do you:

a. re-attach 1/2 fingers in an attempt to regain some semblance of your old hand?

b. maybe just take back only one or two of the “good fingers” and leave the rest (hey, that won’t be weird, right!)

Option "C"...the new look of ed reform!

c. get a new hand altogether. I mean, there is the chance that it won’t match your body (it could be an orangutan paw, or a robot hand  or an Asian woman’s hand like in DC), but you know, it could also work

Inside the District think tank

But the choice is yours. But I warn you, if you pick “a” or “b”, you’re probably not going to get any new fingers that are going to be any good, which means you’re not getting any dates, which means now you’ll have to learn how to continue f-cking yourself with the same hand (only now it’s 50% better!). And “c”? Well…..I dunno…..I mean an orangutan’s paw might mean you get a better grip on things, and a robot hand is probably efficient and strong, but pretty cold-feeling and selective (we have that here, too) but what if you randomly get an Asian woman’s hand? You might only end up strangling yourself the whole time. Oh, and bang  former NBA All-Star Kevin Johnson. Do you want to bang Kevin Johnson? I don’t. Not anymore.

So there you have; now you understand Renaissance Schools! In no time you’ll be the talk of the town.

And there you have it; the Hurt Locker. As you can see, like virtually any and every education reform idea lately, this plan could’ve been given any number of Oscar-related titles, like:

Inglorious Basterds

Up in the Air

The Blind Side

District 9

An Education

Precious

A Serious Man–ok that doesn’t fit, but you get the idea.

So what’re you waiting for, dear reader? Get out there and show the people! Ask’em if they know what reform looks like! After all, when one finger’s pointing at someone, four are (hopefully) pointing back at you.

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The Kids In Front: Oscars!

So, this blog has been sleeping a bit, yeah? Well, to be fair, The Kids have been busy lately.

“What’ve you been up to, Kids?”, you ask? Well, I’m normally pretty private, but….ah, hell, I’ll tell ya:

What I Did During My Blogging Vacation by Don’t Get It, The Kids

During my blogging vacation, I did many amazing and exciting things sure to give you arousal and pleasure thoughts. This past month I helped Fergie re-attach her man-bits which was hard because of all the fur and bad-singing it inspired (poor Fergie!). I also convinced that girl from Precious –Gabrielle SoulaboulaSnapple-a or whatever–that she needs to sit down, take a look in the mirror and realize that she’s never getting another role in H’wood again unless someone makes a sequel called Preciouser.  I also told Tina Fey to fix that scar on her lip b/c it’s distracting me from how corny 30 Rock is. And on weekends I volunteered at the local prison drawing “tear-drop tattoos” on Lil Wayne’s face.

I also ended my affair with Michelle Obama (for now).

the end.

So that’s what I’ve been up to. You can see why things have been so quiet here. But that’s changing now with this post.

One thing that makes it hard to stay on top of this thing (twss) is that The Kids are too reactionary–far too behind events after they’ve already happened. For example, look at some of the blog posts I had queued up next:

  • President accused of sucking in office (Clinton)
  • Arsenio Hall Show going off air!
  • Now Playing Near You: reviewing movies like Short Circuit 2Willow and The Temple of Doom
  • President accused of sucking in office (Bush)
  • The Kids interviews Anne Nicole Smith

So yeah, a little behind. But that’s why this next slate of posts are going to be different as Kids is looking into a crystal ball and boldly making predictions for the coming (er, now started) year.

First up? Oscar Predictions!

The Kids In Front 2010: Picking the Oscars*

*please note that all predictions are based only on movies released so far.

Best Makeup: …..goes to the make-up team on the rom-com Valentine’s Day. With their (now) award-winning skills, they made the dead careers of Jessica Alba and Julia Roberts look downright comatose. Bravo!

Best Short Film: …..goes to Dear John, the latest Nicholas Sparks movie to enjoy a short run in the theaters. I don’t even remember what this movie is supposed to be about, but if you like senseless drivel like The Notebook, I’m sure it’s about old folks trying to

"Sure the movie is pure Smurf, but reading this paycheck makes it alllllll worth it"

remember what it’s like to cop a feel or something.

Best Sound Editing:….goes to Wolfman because a werewolf movie starring already-there-werewolf Benecio del Lobo Toro, Anthony Hopkins and Emma Blunt sounds like it should be good on paper, but then, well…..(Honorable Mention: It’s Complicated a movie

One of the few love-making scenes in "The Wolfman". The mad moon ain't the only thing rising!

starring Meryl Streep and Alec Baldwin). This narrowly beat out Lovely Bones, a movie that I thought sounded like an adult film, or perhaps something cool and funny starring Snoop Dogg. 90 limp and un-laughed minutes later, I find myself hating Wally Lamb. But high!

Best Foreign Language Film: Percy Jackson & the Olympians: The Lightning Thief wins because this title makes no fucking sense. Must be a foreign language.

Best Directing: …..goes to…..Nancy Meyers, Valentine’s Day — for her stellar work to convince Julia Roberts, Jessica Alba AND Jamie Foxx to take one big step over the career bad idea cliff together.

Best Supporting Actress: Julie Andrews, Tooth Fairy–a movie about The Rock playing an ex-wrestler (hello, acting chops!) recruited to be the new Tooth Fairy. I don’t know much else about the movie, but really, after hearing that premise and knowing that somehow Julie Andrews had to act alongside of The Rock while he was wearing over-sized maxi-pads on his shoulders, seems deservin

Don't worry Julie; it'll all be worth it come Oscar Time, 2011!

g of the award, no? Yes.

Best Supporting Actor: ….goes to….Dennis Quaid, Legion, a movie that has him starring alongside of Tyrese Gibson (sometime R&B guy allergic to shirts and not-yelling his lines, Fast  the Furious 88) and Paul Bettany (who played the pasty Darth Monk in Tom Hanks’ Duh Vinci Code). This was a movie about the apocalypse as God’s angels and, I dunno, Democrats, battle for people’s souls. So we have: Tyrese Gibson. Darth Monk. Blood-thirsty angels.Dennis Quaid. Now I’d expect Randy Quaid to be in a movie like this, but Dennis? We’re giving him this award because he needs some support. As a matter of fact, the next time you’re at IHOP and Dennis takes your order, you make sure you tip him nicely. And give him a hug.

Best Actress:……goes to….no one. I don’t see any movies here that require a lady to get nekked (Halle Berry), ugly (Nicole Kidman and/or Sandra Bullock, like, always), or get nekked with an ugly guy (Halle Berry once again), therefore no one wins this year.

Best Actor:…..goes to….er, Tracy Morgan, Cop Out! Congrats to Tracy Morgan who manages to take a one-note act (Embarrassingly

"STOP! I'M BLACK! HE'S WHITE! AND I'M BLACK!"

Ignorant, Horny and Loud Black Man) to TV and the movies. A special thanks also goes to Tina Fey, whose overrated 30 Rock makes this continual regression for black Hollywood possible. 30 Rock is a sitcom that is satirical, witty and smart because TV tells you it is.

Best Picture: ….goes to……………………………………………………………….Cop Out! Amazing, yes?! Well, Cop Out does something that we haven’t seen since Crash or Precious–make black people funny and wary of authority figures! Congrats to Tracy “Minstrel” Morgan, Bruce “When I said 12 Monkeys I didn’t mean the Morgan family, Tracy!” Willis and director Kevin “I ate the cast of Mallrats….and Clerks!” Smith for making a frenzied, schizophrenic movie about racism, class(lessness), cliches, and noise. This makes up for Precious not winning this last Oscars.

I will now lay back and wait to laugh at my genius 12 months from now. In the meantime, feel free to use this peek into the future to impress friends, co-workers and highway policemen until Oscar time.

And remember, thank The Kids!

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