Tuesday, November 10, 2009

Marble Hill English Teacher is Confused, Racy

Teacher reassigned over racy essay

I saw this headline and immediately thought, "who's the dumbass that wrote this? Shouldn't it be 'resigned'?" Turns out, I'm the dumbass, because the teacher was reassigned, much like the title suggests.

By most accounts, Greg Van Voorhis, or "Mr. V," is a very popular English teacher at the Bronx School of Law and Finance. Students like Lauren Henriquez say he knows how to relate to them.

"He's a really, really good teacher," she said. "He understands. You can speak to him about anything."

"Even talking about dirty stuff, like masturbating with carrots and shit!"

But school officials say Van Voorhis may have gone too far when he gave his 11th graders a graphic short story about masturbation involving a carrot, among other things.

Whoa hey! Fancy that. A couple of things: this article nowhere mentions the name of the short story, who wrote it, or just how sexy it is. But there's also a video on the site, and it shows that the story this guy chose to share with his eleventh graders was one called "Guts" by Chuck Palahniuk. A story that was originally published in Playboy. First and foremost, if the guy should get in trouble for anything, it should be for using a Palahniuk story. Have you ever read anything by him? Holy hell he fucking sucks. All of his main characters speak in that same way that the guy in Fight Club does where he thinks everything he does is super badassed and they're always having sex with ultra hot girls all the time. It's fucking stupid. Anyway, if he should get in trouble, it should be for the following quote from his student:

"I don't feel there was nothing bad about it," Henriquez said. "It was just a story. We read it outside of class, so why can't we read it inside class?"

Guess what honey, trying to save your ENGLISH teacher by saying something like "I don't feel there was nothing bad about it" is a step in the wrong fucking direction. But honestly I kind of agree with like, who cares how racy as long as it's something worth teaching/reading - which I think I've made clear Palahniuk is not, but still. These kids are going to learn about masturbating with carrots somewhere, why not have it be school?

But Louella Hatch, who has a grandson in the tenth grade at the school, isn't laughing.

"If it is true, he can't still be around the school, you know?" she said.

It's funny how in print a quote can seem so different than when you see it. I read this and was like, "aw this woman is concerned for the well-being of her grandson" but watch the video:

Actually watching her say it is more like "holy crap she's old. She probably doesn't even know where she is! Who gives a shit what she thinks about schooling!"

Alec Nightengale is also an English teacher at the school and a personal friend of Van Voorhis. He says his colleague deserves to be back in the classroom.

"I've known him all my life, and I know he had the best of intentions," Nightengale said. "And he only wants what's best for the kids."

"And the carrots."

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