Saturday, February 25, 2012

Corn Farming in English Class

Sitting in college classrooms each and every day (except Fridays), I often marvel at who my fine university has let inside. For example, Raspy Voice Number One of 20th Century American English.

We are discussing Sam Shepard (see Noah's father in The Notebook) and his Pulitzer Prize winning play, Buried Child. Namely, we are talking about the various props that Shepard uses to make statements about the themes prevalent throughout the play, I digress. Raspy Voice Number One, a frequent participator in our happy class, raises her hand to expand upon our professor's probing question: Why did Sam Shepard choose carrots and corn?

Normally, Raspy rambles on and on and on, even saying "so on and so forth," "blah blah blah," to fast-forward through the slower parts of her speeches. Today, however, she kept her stupidity short and sweet:

"Well, I mean, I know that corn and carrots grow underground and become unearthed so perhaps that could represent the family not wanting their past unearthed."

Oh, Raspy made a good point, but I'm sorry, did she just make the claim that corn grows underground like a carrot? To his credit our professor takes her point in good grace for a moment, applauding her insight about the carrots. Though, smirky as shit, and seemingly unable to resist he adds, "I should point out though that corn doesn't grow underground."

Thank God, I thought I'd had an aneurism. Apparently, all the corn I'd ever seen growing wasn't actually corn for a minute. Raspy, however, was unconvinced, "No, yes it does."

Again my eyes go wide, I'm shaking my head. "I swear there's some corn that grows underground."

I want the government checking this girl, her town grows mutant corn.

Now, our professor has a choice here, he can ignore her, just laughing and nodding his head or he can do what he actually did. Smile with good nature, and then shake his head and say "no" just ever so softly, but with enough emphasis and condescension that she should know just how stupid she truly is.

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