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Monday, January 22, 2007

Episode 5

"Nonsensical, Clueless, Lost, and Basackwards"

Episode 5

FADE IN:

EXT. – DAY Briarpatch bordering a smooth sandy beach

Eddie comes stumbling out of the patch, pamphlet still in hand. To his left he sees a tower immediately surrounded by architecturally functional administrative buildings. These were surrounded by a grouping of architecturally functional cracker box houses. Residents were going about their business wearing black robes, mortar boards, and multi-colored stoles. He spots what appears to be an information kiosk.

Minister of Information
How can I help you?

eddie
You can start by telling me where I am.

MOI
You are at the Ivory Tower Center For Advance Learning. Would you like a copy of our mission statement? We worked really hard on it.

Eddie
Yes please.

MOI struggles to hand a telephone book size packet to Eddie.

MONTAGE – Reading sequence
A) Eddie Reading.
B) Dissolve to flipping pages.
C) Dissolve to scratching head.
D) Dissolve to flipping pages.
E) Dissolve to Eddie emphatically placing the packet back on the kiosk.

Eddie
So to summarize your mission is to ensure that students do not fall through the cracks.

Moi
Of course, we said it a little more eloquently and verbosely.

Eddie
Doesn’t the fact that I am here prove that you are failing your mission.

Moi
One, don’t get smart. The last guy to do that was thrown into the briar patch. And two, you may have noticed the banner hanging from the tower. It says, “Mission Accomplished.”

Eddie
One, I thought it was your mission to make me smart. Two, I met Br’er Rabbit in the briar patch and he is doing just fine. And Three, the existence of a banner is not a priori evidence of anything.

MOI
Now that we have established a baseline measure of your reading and math abilities you may enter.

Eddie
That was a test?

MOI
A basic skills test yes. You read the mission statement and counted to three. You are good to go.

Eddie
Those are your standards for admission?

MOI
They used to be higher but too many students were falling through the cracks so we lowered them. Here is your i.d. that must be worn at all times. You must remove your hat, and your pants must be pulled up at all times. There will be not electronic devices allowed past this point including but not limited to cell phones, headphones, and gramophones. You must wear this uniform at all times and remain in your assigned seat. All staff must be address with appropriate salutation. Failure to adhere to any of these rules will result in severe consequences. You will be test every half hour to mark you progress. If you fail to make progress your teacher will be reprimanded. Do you understand?

Eddie is pulling a pair of khaki pants and a blue oxford shirt. He looks up.

Eddie
Not entirely.

MOI
Here is a discipline handbook. You spend the first month of your education studying this. Of course there will be a test.

Eddie
Blood, hair, or urine?

MOI
Do you think that you are funny. I am not laughing. There are random and scheduled drug tests for anyone who thinks they are funny. Here is your schedule of courses. There is a map of the campus on the reverse side.

Eddie grabs the paper and morosely saunters onto the campus. As he walks away we notice a slogan on the back of his shirt. It states, “It is cool to be smart.”

Fade Out: