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Thursday, November 02, 2006

Episode 2

"This Train is bound for Nowhere"
FADE IN:
ext. Desert. day.
Isolated wesern train depot in the distance. Train pulls in trailing steam and dust. Eddie has been traveling for a long time. He is hungry and thirsty.
As he nears the train he sees that it consists of several types of cars. Coal cars, box cars, dining cars, passenger cars, etc.
A conductor is taking tickets from a line of children boarding one of the passenger cars.

Eddie
(coughing)Excuse me. Where is this train going?

Conductor
This here is the Train of Thought. It goes straight through The Cracks with stops at every level of education.

Eddie
Where can I get a ticket?

Conductor
Choice is your ticket to education. You must choose to succeed.

Eddie
Alright fine. I Choose to board this Train of Thought.

Conductor
Now you’re on the right track

Int. passenger car- DAY
Eddie cautiously steps into the first passenger car he sees. The view out the windows is decidedly different than the desert scene he had just left. Each window depicts a serene natural local. In one there is a multi-hued sunset. In another is a steep snow covered mountain. Another depicts a field of blooming flowers. Eddie is particularly intrigued by the last window in which he could see a beautiful spiraling galaxy.

Albert
Isn’t it beautiful? You know, Imagination is more important than knowledge.

Eddie
Huh?

Albert
Imagination is more important than knowledge.

Eddie
Uh huh.

Eddie moves to an empty seat near the end of the train. Across the aisle is a cat hanging from the curtain rod.

Cat
Hang in there.

Eddie
Okay, I’ll do that.

Eddie looks down trying to avoid eye contact.

Conductor
Tickets please; thank you; Tickets please.

Eddie
I thought you said all I had to do was choose to board the train.

Conductor
Only the educated are free.

Eddie
It’s not my fault. I fell through the cracks. How am I suppose to get educated if I can’t get back?

Conductor
Like umbrellas, minds only function when opened.

Eddie
My mind is opened; now fill it.

Conductor
Education is not the filling of a pail, but the lighting of a fire.

Eddie
Then light the fire. Get this thing going.

Conductor
Let your flame light the fire in all people. Knowledge is power.

Eddie
Can we get this train moving?

Conductor
Think outside the box.

Eddie
I’m not in a box; I am on a train. Sam I Am.

Conductor
You cannot teach a man anything; you can only help him find it within himself.

Eddie
I don’t need to find myself. I need to find my way home.

Conductor
You can’t change the tide, but you can learn to swim.

Eddie
Learn to swim? We are in the middle of the freakin’ desert. Where am I going to swim?

Conductor
You don’t fail until you quit.

Eddie
Quit? We haven’t even started. I’m going to get out of here.

Conductor
You can’t build a reputation on what you’re going to do.

Eddie
You guys are all wrong. You said that this Train of Thought could get me out of here, but you’ve offered nothing but trite sayings.

Conductor
It is never right to do wrong, and never wrong to do right; It is always right to do right and always wrong to do wrong.

Eddie
Does that even make sense?

Conductor
Everyone is special in their own way.

Eddie stands ready to leave.

Conductor
Here have this bookmark.

It is a picture a giant question mark floating on a stellar background. It states “The meaning of life is to give life meaning.”
Eddie begins to run. Slipping on piles of laminated posters, bookmarks and book covers. Leaping from the train he lands face down. Looking up with a beard of sand he sees the same cat from the train.

Cat
Hang in there, Eddie

Fade Out

2 comments:

Dolphin said...

I think that there should be something like an annotation at the bottom of many of the lovely sayings that we post up in the schools. What good are they if no one gets them besides the teachers that just think "oh this is cute". But for those of us that live in a world where your work is graded on the asthetic appearance of your room (amongst many other things of course) what do you put up. Whatis the message that we want our students to get? What are we trying to tell the students that are falling through that infamous crack? WE can tell them over and over again that they can do it and that this is how you do it, but how do we get them to really see and understand that they have to do something beyond what people have said about them to go beyond that crack. Are our posters and sayings really just cutsy or are we trying to say something and don't really know how to get it across?

Dan Holden said...

I agree that sometimes the message is important, but the message is lost on the audience. They have been trained to ignore these posters just like they ignore PSAs.

As for a solution. I am merely a critic. I don't have to come up with solutions.