Sunday, January 22, 2006


First post in a few days.

But if no one is reading this, does it even matter? Maybe not.

I have found, after a bit of blog searching, that Sean Penn is often derisively referred to as "Spicoli" on some right wing blogs. This is no right wing blog, and the name for this blog came from a scene in Fast Times... that I could relate to as a former teacher.

In no way do I mean to knock Sean Penn down. I actually saw the ad he took out in the New York Times (I think) around the time the Iraq war started. I agreed with everything he said in it, too. There was lots of text to read, which is the kiss of death for far too many Americans, but it was worth the time to get through it and digest what it meant.

SO the scene I'm talking about was when Mr. Hand came to Spicoli's house. Spicoli was going to flunk Mr. Hand's class, and so Mr. Hand went out of his way to give Spicoli some extra help to get him over the top. He probably hated Spicoli, and had reasons to. (such as the Spicoli comment of "You Dick!" made in front of a classroom full of students. Bad form to show up a teacher like that). Still, Mr. Hand met Spicoli more than half-way, and in the end he let Spicoli off. Spicoli,of course, was relieved, and he said "Aloha, Mr. Hand!" in a sort of "happy that I'll never have to deal with you again" way. Mr. Hand, after a short pause that every teacher has with students who are dysfunctional beyond all hope, returns the send off by saying "Aloha Spicoli." In that moment, the humanity in the previously cold and uncaring Mr. Hand comes through. It was as if he realized Spicoli is as Spicoli does (to paraphrase Forrest Gump) and that holding it against him would have been counter-productive. Whatever it was that Mr. Hand was thinking as he said those words was a feeling I knew all too well when I was teaching in the Chicago Public Schools a few years back. So that's where the blog name come from.

Lots of typing when I should be in bed instead. Good night.

Hang in there John.


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