Thursday, April 27, 2006

That was before I learned to swear


When I was in high school, my worst subject was English. Also math. But English I hated on a personal level--all the literature we were forced to read pissed me off extraordinarily for some reason. I also hated my teachers. I found them smug and hateful.
In 12th grade I took one semester of a class where we had to read "Man and his Symbols", which still triggers boiling rage. This is how much patience I have for bullshit pseudoscience: . We also read, and were supposed to perform, "Waiting for Godot", which I find profoundly irritating. I know! Smart people like these things! But I am not that smart, so I don't.
The play only has two parts. (Spoiler: Neither of them is Godot.) So two students would act for a while, then the two more would tag in. Somehow I was either absent or stubborn on that day. Since I remember it, obviously, stubborn. And I didn't take my turn. So, to make up for it, I had to come after school to perform "The Lesson" with another kid who had been legitimately absent.
Are you familiar with this play? There are again only two real parts. A tutor and a pupil, and the tutor hates the pupil by the end. By the end (Spoiler: the tutor kills the pupil in a scene of barely-disguised sexual violence!) the guy is shouting and yelling at her.
I took the role of teacher, and Pete took the role of student. In retrospect I should have read it through before choosing, because the tutor has this line (while stabbing):
"That'll teach you, bitch!"
When the time came for me to speak this line, I gagged on it, and skipped the word. I was young! My teacher was there! I couldn't do it!
Afterward, Pete was mad, as he thought maybe our grade would be lowered because I failed to swear.

And so I am not much for absurdist plays. And now I can say that Beckett, Ionesco, and that fucking Godot are all bitches.

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