Monday, November 06, 2006

Repetition...It Keeps Repeating

Here's a lovely story from my fellow teacher Ted.
Today his classes were visited by the local health clinic to tell the students all about their options.
Questions about STDs? Come to the clinic.
Other health issues? Come to the clinic.
You get the idea.
Here's where the story gets better.
The clinic supervisor, who was there to speak to the class, asked the students to name five "uncurable" STDs.
The students were quiet for a minute...then the ice was broken.
"That's right," the supervisor said. "Can you name some others?"
It goes quiet again.
"HIV?" another kid puts forth.
"We've already heard that one. Can you think of another?"
A hand shoots into the air and is called upon.
"Well, AIDS comes from HIV, so we already have that one. Any others?"
"Oh...Oh!" a kid starts from the corner.
"Yes?" the supervisor says quietly.
"Are you kidding? We've had that one already. Haven't you been listening? There are four others to name."
Two other hands shoot into the air.
"Bearing in mind that we have already named AIDS and HIV, name one of the other four."
The two hands slowly slink back to the depths.
Dead silence, Ted explained to me. They had dead silence for another thirty seconds while the supervisor prayed for an answer not tied to HIV.
It never came.
There are two sad factors here as I see it.
1. It shows that the kids didn't listen to the supervisor at all.
2. It shows that kids didn't listen to each other as well.
Even sadder? After the supervisor left, Ted asked his class if they could name any of the other diseases besides HIV. The first answer? "HIV." keeps repeating.

Sunday, November 05, 2006

Gimme That Card!

Oh how times have changed.
Have you seen the new Visa Check Card commercial where a guy attempts to buy lunch with (horror of horrors) CASH!!!!!!!!
Yes, it seems all is a well-oiled machine until Oliver Old-Fashioned decides to pull out a few George Washingtons instead of just handing over his card. When he reaches for his wallet, food goes flying, drinks spill, and industry grinds to a halt.
Just five years ago, you wouldn't see a commercial like this.
I can remember going to a restaurant, pulling out my card to pay, and hearing the sighs and groans from the people behind me. Their brains were almost screaming, "Why doesn't this schmuck have cash."
I wonder if those same people would get pissed off if I pulled out cash now.
It is strange, however. The other day I was in Target, and I paid cash for my purchase.
First there was the cashier, who looked angered and amazed at the green paper being handed to her. Maybe it was just my imagination, but I also got the sense she was angry about having to count out change.
Then there were the people behind me. The wait was obviously longer for them, because the cashier needed more time to count out the change.
In all honesty, I don't mind using my check card now, because the companies have made it unnecessary to sign unless over a certain amount. So when you head to your local McDonald's now, you use your card.
It's a brand new world, folks. We're becoming paperless. Still, cash, not credit, will help you out of many jams. Remember that.