Wednesday, December 14, 2011

Where Have All the Cusacks Gone?

Bill Maher said, “Any teacher that says, 'I learn as much from my students as they learn from me' is a shitty teacher and must be fired.”

If he’s right, then I am an extra shitty teacher: I don’t learn as much from my students as they learn from me; I learn more.


Judging from the research essays I’m in the midst of grading, my students haven’t learned anything from me at all. They’re not citing their sources correctly, they're sticking apostrophes in non-possessive plurals, they’re comma splicing like WE DIDN’T GO OVER IT A MILLION TIMES.


I did, however, learn something fascinating from them yesterday. One of my male students bragged to the class that he scored a date with a girl because she was impressed that he asked her out in person rather than by text.


I learned that a young man asking a young woman out in person these days is as rare as a student starting an essay earlier than five minutes before it’s due. Apparently, the preferred methods are text messages and Facebook.


Not only are texting and Facebook ruining this generation’s grammar; they are depriving them of life-changing, potentially wonderful, definitely awkward interactions. And you know what that means: the screenwriters from this generation are going to write terrible romantic movies.


Imagine: In their version of The Notebook, Noah and Allie would Facebook each other. Jerry Maguire would simply text Dorothy, “You complete me.” And in Say Anything, Lloyd Dobler would tweet Diane Court a link to “In Your Eyes,” (which would be a Justin Bieber remake).


18 comments:

Shelly said...

Arghh. I hear ya. I believe my students use commas as decorative accessories on their papers, more for the look than the function.

Can you imagine Hamlet texting and tweeting?

Theresa Milstein said...

I love the title of this post. Where have they been lately?

To avoid the awkward social interactions that come with interacting with the opposite sex would be terrible. John Hughes was a genius at portraying that!

The other day, I found myself complimenting a couple of fifth-graders for using apostrophes correctly. It's the exception rather than the rule.

Dylan Fitzgerald said...

Justin Bieber remaking Peter Gabriel? This, surely, would be the truest sign of the apocalypse.

Just how low can expectations go? Where will we be when TWEETING becomes the "wow" factor of romance? Extinction, that's where.

Kelly Polark said...

That is so sad! I suppose I love you is texted first too instead of said in person.

Jeffrey Beesler said...

Hopefully the texting thing runs its course before it's too late.

Crystal Pistol said...

Gah. These are awful thoughts but they are sure to be true of the future. It will only get worse. Chivalry is all but dead.

Lorena said...

"And in Say Anything, Lloyd Dobler would tweet Diane Court a link to “In Your Eyes,” (which would be a Justin Bieber remake)."

That would be a nightmare come true!! :p

PS. Love that photo of John Cusack.

James Garcia Jr. said...

Well done, my friend. Thanks for sharing that. I love it when a post has something that might interest my wife as well. She is a teacher, as I have mentioned before. She appreciates your perspective as much as I do.

-Jimmy

Jaya J said...

its sad but that seems to be the future :p
with some ppl, i'd rather have them text cuz its harder to say no in person.

Otter said...

I haven't jumped onto the whole texting thing. My wife will text me and Ill just call her back. I was just making fun of one of my coworkers for texting. Her fingers were moving so fast she didn't look human, lol.

Clarissa Draper said...

Yeah, where o where have the Cusacks gone? I love that someone did something in person. Pretty soon we'll request children by text or facebook.

DWei said...

Oh wait, I asked my girlfriend out via instant messenger now that I think about it. ._.

But if I think about it some more if I did it in person it would have scared her off. She was pretty shy.

TheRaveSite.com said...

That is a serious change in the start of relationships, it's almost like relationships are more impersonal these days.

Liz said...

Jesus, it's so true. People never ask each other out in person anymore. I don't even think people CALL to ask each other out anymore. It's all by text or email. A little scary...

anthony stemke said...

I suppose I need a teacher as I do not understand the title. I know Cusack is an actor.
I have never texted but I'm old and don't know how. Must be difficult with that tiny keyboard, I'd have to go under the speed limit while texting.
Regardless, Maher is wrong. Anybody can learn from almost anybody.
Take care and Happy Christmas.

Glynis said...

Have a Happy Christmas and Healthy 2012,
Thanks for your support during 2011. X

Pat Hatt said...

Doesn't seem to be an end to it either, there are acronyms for everything now a days thanks to texting. So many people think they can get away using them in essays and such, kind of pathetic. But IDK WTF to do about it..haha

K Najarian said...

@Pat: Exactly! The acronyms only make our (not yours and mine-those OTHER people) spelling issues worse. Thank God my children text me in honest-to-God full length words! I am even reluctant to respond to someone who texts me something like "Hi. How r u? Cn we gt tgther soon?". WHAT?? I understand it of course, but MY GOD! What's next? And Jen, how about blogging about the new etiquette of NOT double spacing after a period. I understand the reason is that with new fonts which have extra space between the letters for legibility (I'm noticing it right now as I write) there is NO NEED for the double space. Huh?? What's next? Runonexistentialstylecommunication?