Friday, August 1, 2008

An Ode to Educators

As students return to their classes, I'm reminded of something Angela Chase once so chastely pondered: "It's so weird that teachers actually, like, live places."

When you're in high school, it's easy to lose respect for any adult figure, but teachers always seemed to bring it on themselves. I've had my personal share: the teacher who vomited into his trash bin, the otherwise hot teacher with the wet pants crack, the teacher in daily pink swim shoes, and the teacher who stormed out crying "you're awful, just awful!"

But you've got to respect teachers on film. They've got to be ready to inspire or degrade their classes, like, on the spot. Robin Williams taught us how to seize the day and Michelle Pfeiffer taught us that if you answer questions correctly you'll get candy bars and class trips to the roller coaster!

If I were to whip my (nonexistent) kids into shape, this is the faculty on my roster.

World Affairs:
Kitano (Battle Royale)

Some teachers might educate you on friendship and brotherhood, others teach you not to fuck around! No time outs with this guy, no being sent to the principal's office. You pull a knife on him, it's off to a deserted island in a dog collar and you'll either kill yourself or someone you love. No one denies that he's preparing his students for the hard road ahead, the next 48 hours even. Though he no doubt exposes a soft side with his love of classical music and cookies.

Social Studies:
Dan Dunne (Half Nelson)

What an inspiring downfall, am I right? This teacher reminds everyone of civil rights, teaches girls sports teams, looks sexy, and does it all while drugged out of his fucking skull. Don't doubt the man's gifts. He can inspire a classroom and pass out at your coffee table in his briefs. Still, he's welcome anytime.

Guidance Counseling:
Sam Lombardo (Wild Things)

He might not be "responsible," but damn if he's not charming and tasty for a guidance counselor. I'd have definitely tried attaining an emotional disorder if I'd have gone to Blue Bay High, or even now, would instill one upon my child.

So while he may bang his students, and would probably turn on you, he knows sailing and supports school fundraisers. Such is the very nature of the student-run home car wash that it end in drug addled threeways and dog collar photoshoots. Those rape accusations are nobody's fault really.

The Headmistress:
Mrs. Appleyard (Picnic at Hanging Rock)

Her hairstyle alone hides more secrets than that schoolgirl swallowing rock, but she does turn potential harlots into prim and proper ladies. She seems a little harsh on the lesbian students, but then we all know where that's coming from in her case. Besides, Miss Appleyard does know and love her poetry, as long it's the classics, and her kids WILL learn it line by line. As long as you're paid up, your daughters will be as elegant and repressed as possible.

Sex Education:
Professor Humphrey (The Meaning of Life)

It's ridiculous this idea of Abstinence-only education. Professor Humphrey proves the worth of watching your sex-ed teacher fuck his wife on a four post bed directly in front of a lecture class. The kids will be slightly scarred thus you won't have to have those awkward talks.

"Yes. Good. Nibbling the earlobe, uhh, kneading the buttocks, and so on and so forth. So, we have all these possibilities before we stampede towards the clitoris, Watson."

Ben Woodward (Sleeping with the Enemy)

He's so cute, just imagine him with a nice haircut and a shave. Not only does he have a passion for teaching kids drama, he sets up elaborate dress up dates, makes apple pies and knows West Side Story by heart. Yes, once he comes to terms and drops the battered wife, I'm happily picking up the pieces.

Special Tutoring:
Johnny Smith (The Dead Zone)

He might creep the kids out, worse so with his visions of impending doom, but the fact remains he's good to have around in a bad situation you may not even see coming. He's actually quite sweet and loves his work. Even his assassination attempts are with the best of intentions, really.

Substitute Teaching:
Detective John Kimble (Kindergarten Cop)

Can you imagine having Arnold Schwarzenegger as your kindergarten teacher? Your kids' speech patterns might be a bit wonky but they WILL be in shape.

Can you imagine what that boy thought upon watching his kindergarten teacher hook up with his mom and then have a shootout with his absentee father, all in the school bathroom? Meh, he's still young. Kimble's a cop AND he teaches kindergarten! He'd also be a great date to any Republican fundraiser.

Physical Education:
Miss Collins (Carrie)

Woody Allen might have been right about this in most cases: "Those who can't do, teach. And those who can't teach, teach gym." He obviously never had Miss Collins. Oh she'll smack you, but she's got a heart of gold.

Not only does Miss Collins teach a belief in inner beauty, she takes an invested interest in her students. She'll hug you... as long as you learn to speak when it's appropriate!

"One more word out of you and I'm gonna knock you down! Do you understand me?"

And you should know better than to chew gum in class...

"You can choke on it for all I care, just get it out of your mouth."

She brings the guilt trip like a good teacher should and she gets repaid by nearly being split in two. It's a thankless job, teaching.

After School Sports:
Kung Fu Professor (Pieces)

He attacks even the faculty by night, but one only need blame the "chop suey." This just proves that his devotion to his craft extends beyond the work week. The campus is probably safer because of him... yet excluding him.

I could not find a photo online. That's how stealthy this man is.

Erika Kohut (The Piano Teacher)

I'm sure I'm not alone in thinking that at least a couple of my teachers were partaking in some dirty secret life upon leaving the grounds at 3pm. Turns out I was right! This one even goes to jackoff booths and fearlessly helps herself to a waste bin hankie. I don't have the courage to do that, and hopefully you don't either. Music is about dedication and that's that.

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