to School Special
by Mad Dog
a public service to those parents who arent sure what to tell their kidssince
they already know more about sex, drugs, and having sex while on drugs than you do
Ive made it simple.
||You can tell summers over. The
barbecue grills been unused for weeks, movies are coming out with fewer light sabers
and more plot, and the newspapers filled with Back to School ads for $200 sneakers
designed by NASA for Nikes money-making program.
And if all that didnt tip you off, the days are getting
shorter. About as short as your temper. Funny thing about summer, it hits a point towards
the end where everything gets on your nerves no matter whether youre a bored kid, an
out of patience parent, or those of us who have to put up with other peoples bored
kids and their out of patience parents.
Nows a good time to sit down and talk to your kids about
the importance of an education. Try to sneak it in during one of the (True Statistic
Alert!) 10,000 commercials the average kid will see over summer vacation.
As a public service to those parents who arent sure what
to tell their kidssince they already know more about sex, drugs, and having sex
while on drugs than you do Ive made it simple. Just cut out the following
paragraphs and hand it to them. After they look at you like you just landed from Alpha
Centauri, theyll probably surprise youby eating the newspaper. Face it, they
havent read anything since school let out and theyre not about to start now.
The second thing to keep in mind is not to worry if the other kids tease you about having
a different name. Remember, people with normal first names like Ted Bundy, John Wayne
Gacy, and Jeffrey Dahmer grow up to be serial killers.
** KIDS! START
TO READ HERE! **
The first thing to remember about going
back to school is not to draw smiley faces on your notebooks. Hearts are fine. Monsters
are fine. But if you draw a smiley face you might wind up in front of Judge Judy.
You see, in 1971 a Frenchman named Franklin Loufrani received
a trademark on the smiley face and now hes going around threatening to sue people
who use it without paying him. While this mostly upsets those people who say "Have a
nice day" when they really mean "Rot in hell", its really infuriating
the people of Worcester, Massachusetts. Thats because they claim a local man, Harvey
Ball, invented the smiley face, and theyve nicknamed the town "The Birthplace
of the Smiley Face" to prove it. I guess "The Town Without A Clue" was
already taken. But until they finish this fight, play it safe and draw something innocuous
like Barney kicking the crap out of the Tellytubbies.
The second thing to keep in mind is not to worry if the other
kids tease you about having a different name. Remember, people with normal first names
like Ted Bundy, John Wayne Gacy, and Jeffrey Dahmer grow up to be serial killers. People
with different names like, say, Franklin Loufrani, may get beat up a lot, but when they
grow up they trademark smiley faces and sue people.
Someone should explain this to the cardinal in Guadalajara,
Mexico who has taken to changing childrens names at baptism because he doesnt
think theyre normal enough. The names, not the children. The parents wanted
Giovanni, so Cardinal Sandoval changed it to Juan. A girl was supposed to be Samantha, but
he changed it to Maria. If he keeps this up serial killers will be a bigger problem in
Mexico than gato tacos.
Finally, if none of these jobs appeal to
you, you might consider becoming a beggar. While this may not impress anyone at your tenth
high school reunion, it can be quite profitable.
|| But most
importantly, Back to School is a good time to consider your future. Remember, its
never too soon to think about this, unless of course youre one of the lucky few
whose parents were on the ball enough to enroll you in an MBA program while you were still
Remember, a career is an
important decision. While most people think doctor, lawyer, or Powerball lottery winner,
there are other careers you should consider. Being a TV weatherperson is a good
choicewhat other job is there where you can completely screw up 365 days a year and
not only keep your job, but get a raise and judge the Miss Dry Rot pageant?
You might also consider becoming a scientist. Its very
gratifying to unravel the mysteries of life, like the researchers at Bristol University in
England who last year released a study showing that coffee and tea improve attention,
accuracy, and alertness. Look for their smiling faces (not to be confused with smiley
faces) on the cover of Time when they win the Nobel Duh Award.
Being a Congressman is a good career option. You get an
office, a staff, a chance to serve your country, and you can sanctimoniously accuse the
President of anything you can dream up. Another perk is free junkets paid for by
lobbyists, which they take saying it helps them shape foreign policy. Except, of course,
for people like House Majority Leader Richard Armey who wont take them. Not for
moral reasons, but because, as he says, "Ive been to Europe once. I dont
have to go again."
This brings up a civics lesson you should learn in school this
year. But just to be safe, remember that as an American you have the constitutional right
to say, "I voted for him once, I dont need to do it again."
Finally, if none of these jobs appeal to you, you might
consider becoming a beggar. While this may not impress anyone at your tenth high school
reunion, it can be quite profitable. A while back a family in Egypt was arrested for
begging and it turned out theyd salted away $294,000 plying their trade. Not bad in
a country with an average per capita income of $600.
I know this is a lot to think about. So please, talk it over
with your parents. When you stop laughing at that suggestion, go back to watching Jerry
Springer. Then during one of the 10,000 commercials youll see this summer, make a
decision. Something more important than Oreos vs. Cheet-os.
Youll find its a load off your mind and it will be
help you sit through a boring school day with a happy face. Just dont make it a
smiley face. Unless, of course, the kid sitting next to you is going to be a lawyer.
©1999 Mad Dog Productions, Inc. All
These columns appear in better newspapers across the country. Maybe
you could grow up to be a journalist.