Wednesday, November 27, 2013

Fear, Fork and Other F Words


The title of this blog has nothing to do with its content but hey, what can I say?

I read something the other day. The article in question announced that the average person who learned a useful trade right out of high school is now actually making more dough than a college graduate. This comes as no surprise to me. Today’s college education is waaaay overrated. Mostly, today’s college is for those who can’t. A reasonably intelligent person with a twink of ambition will side-step four years of pointless time waste and get busy with their life right out of the chute.

I have heard that one of the richest men in the world, Bill Gates, either never attended college or dropped out early. Some of the brightest people I have met in my life have never even whiffed a college classroom. While some people clearly don’t need college, some obviously do. Like the scarecrow in the Wizard of Oz, some people have the brains but lack the confidence that only a piece of parchment can provide.

Alas, many college degrees today are good for lining a bird cage, and little else. For decades now we have been spitting out over-educated insurance agents and Starbucks barristas and calling the scam “higher education.” The sad fact is, nine out of ten of those currently in college have no business being there. Most of these dolts enroll in college to party on their parents’ dime for the next seven to ten years where they then proceed to major in drinking and minor in screwing. College athletes--semi-literate and barely able to spell their own names upon graduation--also make a mockery of pomp and circumstance. Many of these “stoont-afleets,” at the same time as they are committing crimes on campus, major in “criminal justice” in the hope that it will help them escape that same criminal justice system when they join the “work force” after graduation.

Of course, the current river of college mediocrity began its flow from the headwaters of the American high school system. Long ago, a high school education lost its credibility.  Increasingly, a secondary education seemingly does little more for our kids than run them through metal detectors, dispense condoms upon request and offer them a diet of sports. Teacher morale long ago sank lower than a toad’s belly in a wagon rut. In addition to long holidays and a two-week “spring break” siesta, numerous “in-service” hiatuses mean today’s high school and elementary teachers spends less and less time in the class room (given the sad state of education among some teachers, keeping them out of the classroom may not really be such a bad thing).

Here in Florida, high school officials are considering a “pay to play” scheme in various districts. I like the idea. As America settles solidly into a “Second World” status and lags further and further behind First World countries, this old scam of kids in high school spending three-fourths of their school time as a cheerleader or working out all day as a 4-sport letterman is losing its cachet with taxpayers.


A “Good” Pit Bull--Seems that this most news worthy of all American dog breeds is back in the news again, but this time in a much more positive light. A pit bull over on the wrong side of Florida was--ho-hum, ZZZZZZZ, what's new?--running around loose this week, looking for just one more thing to kill before he curled up for the night. However, before the hundred-pound killing machine could latch onto a poodle, pom or peke to tear into shreds, a ten-foot alligator latched on to the pit bull instead. The result: The Sunshine State today finds itself minus one more murderous mutt. Unfortunately, instead of giving the gator a medal and a live chicken or two as a reward, a trapper has been hired to hunt down and destroy the armored hero. I hate stories with bad endings.