Math. Sure the basics come in handy, that is undeniable, but when was the last time you used a protractor? When was the last time you used a compass? If you think I’m talking about that little Boy Scout gadget that tells you which direction you’re facing, you’ve only proven my point further. When was the last time you did long division, or multiplied fractions manually? Do you even remember how? I don’t. If I have a math problem to solve, I’m not reaching for my pencil, I’m reaching for my calculator. They have those now you know. Number of times I’ve used a protractor since public school: zero.
Gymnastics. In my public school for about one month each year the gymnasium was turned into a gymnastics museum where ancient relics were hauled out of storage and dusted off for us to admire, before finding out these were to be used for some sort of athletic purposes, all having the potential of causing us great bodily harm. The spring board didn’t spring, the rope climb made me feel funny like I was going to wet my pants, and most of the “equipment” was actually wooden boxes with a thin layer of leather padding. The scariest of all was the trampoline, especially for me being the tallest kid in the class. Oh, did I mention the metal ceiling in our gym was only 20ft high! Along with the anxiety of jumping on this thing without a helmet or neck brace, I did not have a great deal of confidence that my smaller classmates who surrounded all four sides of the trampoline with their arms up, would actually catch me should I mistakenly take an errant trajectory. Number of times I’ve been on a trampoline since public school: zero.
French. I have nothing against people who know how to speak French, in fact I applaud their ability to do so. I wish I knew how to speak French, but I don’t, and do you know how many problems that has caused for me during my lifetime thus far? Absolutely none. I’m pretty sure that if I was ever dropped off somewhere in downtown Paris, I could walk out of there with a tasty croissant. Je ma pelle hungry. Or whatever. You know what I mean. I’d do just fine. Number of times I’ve spoken French since public school: zero.
Art. Simply by showing up to art class you should be guaranteed an A+. Art is an expression of oneself, not something to be graded on. But were you ever allowed to express yourself? No. Sure, the teacher would let us take turns sniffing the fruit scented markers repeatedly until we got a nice little buzz, but then just as our creative juices started flowing, she’d force us to twist a small square of tissue paper onto the end of our pencil, dab it in glue, and paste it to a piece of cardboard over and over again until we made something that resembled a turkey. That seems unnecessary. Number of times I’ve twisted a small square of tissue paper onto the end of my pencil, dabbed it in glue and pasted it to a piece of cardboard over and over again until I’ve made something that resembles a turkey since public school: zero.