Adjectives on the Typewriter

she moves her words like a prizefighter

06 June 2007


She got so excited when she was spouting this ahistorical countertextual nonsense, and I caught myself thinking, ‘What an idiot her teacher must be,’ and thinking about her teacher made me realize—the kind of excitement she was showing as she mindlessly spouted back the nonsense she learned in college, that's just the excitement some of my own students show. And it occurred to me that what we professors think of as a ‘brilliant student’ is nothing but a student who is enthusiastically converted to whatever idiotic ideas we've been teaching them.

~Orson Scott Card, Enchantment

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Blogger Alan said...

I like this quote. It reminds us not to be arrogant or overly enthusiastic just because we (college students) think we know some insightful or essential piece of knowledge. Most often, what we actually have is a cleverly delivered idea that one of our professors has persuaded us to pass on like phonies in a meaningless competition of reproduced wittiness.

June 7, 2007 at 11:00 PM  
Anonymous Anonymous said...

I was about to yell at you for leaving another quote on your blog, but then I read this and was like, 'wow. Emmilee is a genius. I should just go shoot myself right now.'

So you just made me feel a little bit like one of my favorite writers, Ernest Hemingway. Thank you for that inspiration, mi yunta!

Yunta= Chilean slang for 'best friend'. Yay for putas!

But seriously, that's a good quote. I like it. Can we please print it out and post it on Maria's door?

PS. Don't worry, Fat Kid is definitely being saved for Alan. I even told Mom about it and she's all excited about Fat Kid going to a nice home. I didn't tell her Alan's probably going to jack Fat Kid/El Gordito up, that might make her sad.

PPS. It's me, Melissa.

June 25, 2007 at 7:55 PM  
Blogger em²ile² said...


Don't yell at me for my quotes-- I love them so! Haha, to think I actually inspire someone, even though it is not at all a work of my own :)

Also, thank you for the Chilean slang. Your Spanish is ever so much more practical than mine will ever be. And that makes you a genius.

The best part about us posting that on Maria's door is that it came out of the book she recommended I read over the summer, Enchantment. Which is an excellent book, by the way. Agh! I can't wait to live with you two!

Tell me about the books you are reading this summer...

June 25, 2007 at 9:22 PM  
Anonymous Anonymous said...

Aw you posted it in two places! Que inteligente! You knew I'd only likely check one, bwaha. De nada for the Chilean slang... apparently, 'pinche' in Chile is slang for 'cool', whereas in Mexico it's slang for the f-word as an adjective. I better be careful about that...

Dad pilfered some more Putumayo CDs for us!!! You know, those cholos who sing the 'La Bruja' song? Yay!! I have a bunch of Cuban music now! Let's torment Maria lots! Speaking of cholos, have you heard the new song 'Like a Cholo'? Haha it's such a sucky song, but it's SOOO funny. "Elbows up, side to side... I lean like a cholo!"

Re: Books... I read Momzillas the other day. It's fiction. It reads like someone was dictating it aloud (tons of slang). It was surprisingly funny. I tried to finish a biography on Pablo Neruda (Chilean poet), but I got insanely bored and went back to the mind-numbing fiction. I think after reading 3 absorbing nonfictions, my brain got fried.

Tengo un blog nuevo! It's for Chile, so I can put up pictures easier (LJ confuses me and is too much work). Check it out!

Tu eres tan pinche! :)

June 28, 2007 at 9:53 PM  
Blogger ReadyReckoner said...

I like the quote :) It's nice to be the star student by repeating back what the teacher thinks, but it's better for you in the long run to take it with a pinch of salt. Why do they believe this? How come they believe this while other, equally smart people, believe something completely different? Take what you can from as many sources as you can and make it your own. You'll find fewer people willing to approve of you because you can spout chapter and verse, but as compensation you will be moving towards your own understanding of the world. Just don't expect to get there by the time you leave college!

Of course it would be better to explain what the quote means to you as well as just to quote it :) But hey, if your regular readers are cutting you some slack then I guess I should too!

August 9, 2007 at 10:32 AM  

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