Tuesday, August 31, 2010

An Open Letter to a Friend of Mine Who's Going to France While I Toil Here in Wretched, Abject Misery and Jealousy

Dear Matt,

So you're going au France, are you? Good for you! Of course I was only kidding before! About hating you for going! How could I, loyal friend that I am, be so small-minded and petty as to sabotage your journey? Très unlikely. In fact, I've gone so far as to try to help you out a bit.

As you probably remember, I studied French in high school and college, and had to brush up on it some in grad school for some work I did with Rimbaud. So I've dug up some of my dictionaries and idiom books and written up a list of phrases you'll be sure to need pendant votre temps à Paris. All you need to do is keep this cheat sheet handy, but I'd suggest memorizing these phrases so you can spit them out rapidly and confidently as you encounter people.

Expressions You'll Need Upon Your Arrival:

"Where is the nearest hotel? I just landed and am tired."

Où est le district de feu rouge ? J'ai faim de la chair mâle.

"I am American, but I admire this lovely country."

Les États-Unis essuie son âne avec votre pays.

When You Wish to Eat Out:

"Let's grab a bite. I have reservations at a restaurant nearby."

Nous étreignons charnellement. J'ai prophylactics que nous pouvons utiliser.

"I'm quite hungry and would like a table for two."

Je suis tout à fait content de manger votre saleté.

Random Pleasantries

"Lovely weather we're having, isn't it?"

Cette rue pue des abats.

"Greetings to you!"


"I think those clothes light up your face."

Je veux pour vous m'asseoir sur mon visage.

In Case You're Ever In the Country

"This is a beautiful farm you have here. Where is your bathroom?"

J'ai imprégné tous vos moutons. Où sont vos filles ?

When You're Getting Ready to Leave

"How far is the airport? My flight leaves in thirty minutes."

Je peux le plaisir vous dans une question de minutes.

"Let's stay in touch after I leave."

Je vous ai juste donné des herpès. (Note: It's very important to smile broadly after saying this.)

Now, I know what you're thinking, and the answer is no. No need to thank me, and certainly no need to pay me or anything. I just want you to have a good trip and take lots of pictures, especially of the people you meet and socialize with using these expressions. That alone will lighten my heart and ensure me of the good time you're having.

Your friend,

Piss Off

Friday, August 13, 2010

My Introductory Lecture and Reading List for Fall, 2010

Hi kids! Welcome back!

I'm your teacher. Hold the applause.

Yes, it's been two months and change since we've all seen each other. Joey, I see you've been working out. Mustache is coming in well, isn't it? Whoah, that's a killer grip you've got there. Good. You're growing into a fine young woman.

Sarah, not so plain and tall any more, are you? Ha. Now you're just plain.

Okay, enough of this charade of good intentions and civility. You don't want to be here. Fine. I get it. Hey, you think this is my whole life? I've got a family! Okay, I've got two dogs to train. Okay, I don't actually train them so much as I just let them lie on top of me and sleep, but they do their homework, dammit.

No, I'm not interested in how you spent your summer. Now, I spent a lot of time this summer touring Europe and wining and dining several high-rent models and call girls. I also climbed Mount Kilimanjaro (for like a few feet--that damn thing is steep!). Also, I did a lot of reading, and I've managed to construct the class syllabus around these selections. This exposes you guys to what I call high-quality literature, but more importantly, it cuts down on my workload. So here's our syllabus for the fall. Read it, get the books, and read those. We'll meet back here in a month. If anyone asks, I'm in the can.

  • The Kama Sutra: This text has been showing up on the AP Reading List for a few years now. It's technical, and skills-based, which means it aligns perfectly with the Core Standards coming out of the White House. No, I haven't seen any of the pictures, why?
  • The Anarchist's Cook Book: Enough with the whole, "I don't know what this word means" crap. Look it up! Enough with the whole "But I don't know who to vote for." Look it up! And enough with the whole, "I can't make gunpowder! I don't know how." Not my kids. Not any more.
  • Das Kapital: "Religion is the sigh of the oppressed creature, the heart of a heartless world, and the soul of soulless conditions. It is the opium of the people." Stop and think about that for a minute. Realize how bleak and meaningless your existence actually is. Okay. Now you're ready to join The Party and follow your One True Leader. Your blue overalls are in the far left cabinet.
  • Listen Whitey! by Huey Newton. Well, actually I don't know what this is about. But it says to listen, so...

Thursday, August 05, 2010

Film Notes Assignment for "Dante's Inferno: An Animated Epic"

Directions: Note observations, critical and stupid, while watching the movie and write a summative evaluation at the end.
  • Dante seems pretty buff for a would-be medieval pilgrim. I didn't know clerics had such broad shoulders, armor and deadly swords.
  • Okay, scratch the last comment: Dante is a Crusader? This is critical of the church? There's so many paradoxes here, I think my head is imploding.
  • "Hey, Dante? When you run up to a woman whose stomach is spread out about her on the ground, the last stupid question she needs to hear is 'Are you all right?'"
  • Did medieval couples always get naked and rub against each other before swearing chastity?
  • "Hey, Dante? Saying 'I don't like the look of this' before entering Hell is a pretty stupid comment."
  • Okay, unbaptized babies were in the original poem. But an army of scrimitar-wielding demon babies? I'm never going near a nursery again.
  • So the second circle is filled with horny lesbians? Then what's a Heaven for?
  • I'm beginning to sense a pattern in this movie. Is it...we're all sinners?
  • The seventh level looks pretty much like a parking lot. I think Dante was on to something. It really sucks when you have to drive around and around looking for a spot, you know?
  • In every level, Dante and Virgil have different hairstyles. So when I go to Supercuts...am I sinning?
  • Nerissa is pretty hot. Even if she has a tail.
  • Wait a minute...Mark Hamill did Dante's voice? He can't be that hard up for work.
  • Okay, I think I've got the theme figured out...we're all going to Hell? Party on my rock, then.
  • If the real Dante saw this movie, he'd probably come up with a new circle for video game movie directors.

OVERALL SUMMARY: Vivid action scenes, zooms and extreme closeups of people getting their heads chopped off, women raped, men butchering and overall mayhem does wonders for preaching a message of compassion and Catholic faith. I felt myself getting brainwashed every minute this thing dragged its nuts. It just needs a good soundtrack.