Tuesday, June 8, 2010

Caveats To My "College Is Bullshit" Post

(The post I'm caveating.)

First, I'm a big fan of thorough education. I went to a very good high school; CNN came to my high school to do a feature on "The Harvard of High Schools," and I was reading Latin and ancient Greek when I was 16. I think that if you can't read Latin and ancient Greek, you can't really read English either. Second, I'm not saying don't educate yourself. I've been in classes continuously since 2007, and near-continuously since 2002; mostly acting classes, but also art and music, and hypnotherapist certification training. Third, I read way more books than average; probably a hundred or more per year. Recently, when I had the flu and was stuck inside with nothing to do, I was averaging a book per day.

Last but not least, I have a giant chip on my shoulder about education. In my childhood, suburban conformity pulverized me for my precociousness. I was speaking in primitive sentences at 9 months old - e.g., "Dad out dog", meaning "Dad is out walking the dog" - and I frequently got punished in kindergarten for knowing how to read. Teachers took my books away, and the other kids made fun of me. I've never gotten over it. You'd think I'd be able to take a more grownup attitude about this, more than thirty years after the fact, but on a fundamental level, I hate intellectual authority figures with the unreasoning, unrelenting, and unforgiving fury of a toddler who wants his toy back.