Friday, January 15, 2010


I hate rallies and assemblies. 

Seriously, when was the last time that either of the two entities provided anything that couldn’t be said in my class in less time, or be done after school in a different setting.  Most assemblies do little to my population (some Juniors, mostly Seniors) except give them an excuse to listen to Lil-Wayne on their iPods.  By this time in their lives they’ve heard the “don’t do drugs” thing, the “don’t drink and drive”, and the “be nice to people” thing.  The best assemblies are usually done by a comedian with a message about the environment of the school, although the message usually gets lost in the comedy.  The worst are those that preach a message by using a huge amount of flash that has limited substance.  Three 50 foot movie screens blasting Carrie Underwood while discussing drunk driving doesn’t penetrate the kids psyche, it makes them listen to the music and admire all the cool effects.

Rallies are not a whole lot more fun.  Students are packed into the gym (except those that want to hang out supervised outside or in the Library) and watch “spirit competitions” and contests that pretty much benefit only popular students.  I’ve railed before about the negative expanse that Homecoming has on this campus, including the rallies that promote “class spirit”, aka, “making the other classes look bad”. 

Winterfest is basically basketball’s Homecoming event, only it is one-tenth as involved as football’s version and the rally on Friday (today) includes the Faculty-Senior basketball game.  It is the only rally that I try to attend, mainly because I’m actually in it.  Ah yes, the Faculty-Senior game, where 12th graders try and cheat their way to a win versus far superior (and older) competition.  It is usually all in good fun, although for me the game is now to a point where I’m very hesitant to do anything to hurt myself.  The ankle braces are fully taped, the jumping is “credit card” high, and the defense is your regular All-Star game defense.  Varsity level basketball players don’t get to play in the game (coach’s orders), so they ref it instead.  That means that the Seniors that are out there are not basketball players, some are not at all athletic, and some are planning mean things to do to poor teachers.  In today’s game, Mr. Silva-Brown was called for a travel before he caught the ball, called for an offensive foul when a football player (that I couldn’t knock down with a bulldozer) dropped to the floor, and was given a “technical” for “arguing” the call.  The ref that gave me all those fouls was, of course, one of my students and one of my ex-basketball players.  I played it up and walked off “dejected”. 

I have to admit, I could have done without it and caught up with my coursework, but then again I have three Advanced Placement classes so every day really does matter.   

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