Wednesday, October 14, 2009

Something Else Matters

Common sense.

Many would claim people of this country have lost it somewhere between its nanny state laws and people who dress themselves to shop at WalMart. Take for example this Delaware 1st grader who got slapped with a 45 day suspension because he brought his favorite camping utensil to school. No it was not a three-prong hot dog/marshmellow campfire fork with sharp points for potential intestines-on-a-stick accidents.

Much worse as described by Jennifer Jankowski a Special Ed teacher at the school in the AP article:

Jennifer Jankowski, who runs the special education programs at Jennie Smith
Elementary in Newark, said schools need to be vigilant about protecting
students. If Zachary or another student had been hurt by the knife, she said,
the district would have taken the blame.

"If we can't punish him, then what about kids that did bring (a weapon) for
bad things?" Jankowski said. "There's more to the school's side than just us
being mean and not taking this child's interests into account."

I doubt there's much debate if some kid is flashing some brass knuckles or daddy's homemade pipe bomb there's should be a sense of urgency about disarming the student before the kids learn the words explosion and concussion. Common sense.

No, Miss/Mrs. Jankowski is up in arms because the school shouldn't have to make judgement calls when it comes to a kid bringing in a retractable utensil tool to eat with (probably similar to one shown here) versus a weapon like ones shown here. Granted the article does not explain if the student got stabby with the kid who received her fifth straight Outstanding mark on the paper-mache planet she built versus his Satisfactory grade but we'll give six year old Zack the benefit of the doubt for now unless TMZ comes up with some sorrid history of him smoking crack rocks with Lohan and Winehouse before nap time in Kindergarten last year.


Similar lapses in common sense found this sick blogger at a packed Target Center (and I mean PACKED, no seat left empty all the way to the rafters and probably eclipsed the season attendance of the Minnesota Lynx) last night to strain his neck to the sweet melody of Metallica's Death Magnetic tour.

Its been over ten years, two kids, one four to five year span of remembering very little, three houses since I last saw Hetfield and crew tear up the stage in a pasture somewhere near a river in Wisconsin, or was it the Metrodome?

My memory sucks and do not expect a Dr. Pauly or Coventry-esque replay of the concert here. I am not an avid concert go'er anymore but it was damn fun last night to not only see my favorite band live again, but to people watch.

My body felt the chills of the first strums of Ride the Lightning, the roller-coaster of One complete with pyrotechnics, and the sorrow of Nothing Else Matters. I was forced back to deeper, darker points in my life where the guitar riffs of Cliff Burton (r.i.p.) and booming drum slides of Lars played out on my ghetto blaster that I religiously saved my Target paychecks for, to get thru the day. Self-loathing came easy for a person who had zero self-esteem, the inward struggle to finish that calculus homework just to get mercilessly teased the next day thanks to my nerdy/preppy/jock outward appearance that never caught on and tentative communication skills thanks to my partial deafness.

I closed my eyes several times last night to reach for those repressed memories but they are all but gone since there's more important things in life to reflect on, like the donkey boy in the skin tight coucert T that kept wandering in and out of the aisle tripping balls on a mix of flat beer/pot/his skanky girlfriends overuse of perfume.

Black shirts were of course the norm, some sporting The Misfits, and the seemingly buff crowd where over half proclaimed this to be their first show when asked by Hetfield, were donning the cliqued Affliction garb. Seven rows down below me on the floor was the mosh pit that in younger days I had participated in while letting out all anger to bands like Pantera and Rage Against the Machine. Shaking my head at yet more youthful stupidity as I watched more than one crowd surfing chick get dumped on her head as the mix of shirtless Tyler Durden/Brock Lesnar types blindsided each other with flying elbows to the mid-section.

Maturity and a bout of what might be the flu kept me in my seat to watch the aging band take life one more time with its encore of Seek and Destroy after several inflatable balls shot out of the tops of the stadium and this writer was snapped out of the dream scene, placed back into the present by more idiots getting carted off by the powder blue shirts of the Minneapolis Police.

Slowly my legs muscles which atrophied after standing for over two hour allowed myself to head back up the concrete steps out to my metallic green Chevy which thankfully was spared from any raging metalheads and took me back home to a softly snoring wife and to a better place wherever I may roam from here (Ok, I had to get at least one song in there!).


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