Friday, January 20, 2006
Cell phones for dummies
A couple of days ago I got stuck in that twilight zone of numbness that takes over your television between 6 and 8.30 pm. A camera crew that wasn’t the slightest bit interested in the global war on terror or the financial scandals in Japan followed a social worker who was supposed to help children with learning problems.
The voice off-camera told us, the brain-dead viewing public, that he got a call from a technical school where a couple of girls were in need of help. The exams were coming, and the three little pigs were seriously worried about the number of pages they had to cram into their respective heads.
They ‘really had to learn a lot’, explained one of them.
‘So what courses are we exactly talking about’, asked the social worker with a tired look in his eyes (I bet he just hates kids).
The girl numbered three courses, of which I promptly forgot the first two when she mentioned the third: ‘we have to learn about cell phones’.
ABOUT WHAT ?!?!?
As if to rub it really in, the scene switched to the girl’s house. We saw her hard at ‘work’, studying about cell phones. Mind you, I’m not talking about the complex electronics of a cell phone or even the basic principles of ultra high frequency wireless data and voice communication. No. The girl read aloud from her – thin – learning manual, which had more images than text. ‘To insert the SIM-card, you have to blah-blah-blah-blah…’
I heard rumours that the quality of the educational system is going downhill, but this is ridiculous. In my days, we had to learn 300 pages of historical dates by heart, add them up, calculate goniometric functions with them and translate those in French and German at the same time.
And can someone please explain me the use of learning kids how to use a cell phone? They use cell phones in their sleep, blindfolded and upside down in a barrel of water. And still, these girls have troubles remembering all of it? Forget teaching them, club them to dead. If they are not able to memorise that, they’ll probably forget their own names too if someone doesn’t remind them constantly.
I’m seriously wondering how those girls ever passed their breathing exams. You know, because you have to learn two courses at once: breathing in AND breathing out. And no trying again next year!