Friday, August 05, 2005

What Are You Reading For?


The late comedian Bill Hicks related an experience that happened one late night at a Waffle House in Alabama. The story goes that he was at the table reading, and the waitress asked, “What are you you reading for?” After he discussed the absurdity of that question, he told us one of the patrons chimed in, “Welllll! Looks like we got us a reader!”

I think that patron was in a Waffle House this morning here in the Atlanta area, sitting in the booth adjacent to mine. He was on a rant. A genuine, southern, right-wing, conservative, ill-informed angry rant. He referred to the ACLU as the “A-C-L-L” twice. He whined about the Brits. He decried the evils of welfare and the welfare state. At one point, I had the urge to get up and tell him, “You don’t know me, but you know everything about me. All you have to do is think something, anything, and then think of the exact opposite of that thought, and that is me.”

Of all the stupid, angry, twisted, anti-intellectual bile that invaded my greasy yet tasty breakfast, the one thing that he said that really disturbed me went something like this:

“When we was young, we didn’t try to understand the stupid kids. We didn’t bring in counselors, give them extra help. We believed they were stupid because they didn’t work hard enough. They were ridiculed by the teachers and the other students, and that made them work harder. I think we should go back to that.”

I got up, walked over to his table and said, “What? The world doesn’t have enough aggressively ignorant imbeciles like you? We need more?”

Well in my mind I did that. In reality I pretended I didn’t hear a word he was saying, I finished my breakfast, and walked back to my car thinking, “I don’t want to die here in the south.”

8 Comments:

Anonymous Kevin Wolf said...

This is where I go all soft and try to say something nice: Maybe that guy is just the stereotypical suth-ren gent and is not truly representative of the majority south of the Mason-Dixon.

Okay, well, I was nice and I said it - I don't have to believe it.

Bill hicks was great, wasn't he?

11:28 AM  
Blogger The Viscount LaCarte said...

Kev,

Yeah, sadly I discovered him after he was gone.

11:32 AM  
Anonymous Ron Jeremy said...

I love Waffle House.

5:53 PM  
Blogger fuckstick2020 said...

Maybe you should have "accidentally" flipped some food at him.

I do have to say this as a former teacher (newly former still struggling with my decesion) he is half right. The education system doesn't need to go back to insane ridicule like it used to but it does indeed need to get out of the pattern it is now. Just read a book called "One Nation Under Therapy" has some excellent points about how we are making pussies out of our youth because we are taking the competition out of school and then throwing them into the real "capitalist" world with no real preparations.

Sorry... I am rambling.

1:31 AM  
Blogger The Viscount LaCarte said...

LNF - I agree, there are issues with the schools to be sure. My kids' schools in GA are competitive and they are getting a good education, but we live in an affluent part of town. There is the anti-evolution bias and some misinformation with sex-education, but overall the schools are good. We need to fix the broken ones.

6:58 AM  
Blogger XTCfan said...

You don't want to die in the South? Viscount, me old noble, the entire country has been becoming the South over the last 20 years or so ... I don't want to die in the South either (or live there, for that matter), but I'm wondering if I'll need to move out of the country to escape that fate.

I bet Ron J. likes the sausages at (W)awful House...

8:08 PM  
Anonymous Ron Jeremy said...

I think it's you that likes the sausages, fanboy.

7:49 AM  
Blogger XTCfan said...

Sorry, RJ, I'm an egg man myself.

Where's Sticky when you need him?

8:34 AM  

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