Tuesday, March 16, 2010

Blog: Making Staple Connections

TORONTO, ONTARIO - I used to think that the whole key to writing commentaries was finding unusual connections between things around me, and then presenting them. Sometimes this created insightful material, and sometimes it was just entertaining. Take this audio commentary that I did right about 21 years ago, the "Glitchon File" for 11-March-1989, transcribed from the original hand-written script:
One of the very serious problems facing Odle [Middle School, in Bellevue, Washington] this year is theft. Particularly in the far sector of the school where Tech Ed [shop], Home Ec[onomics], and PRISM [Program for Intellectually Stimulated Minds; a gifted program] classes are held, there has been a rash of missing items. Students have lost money and calculators. [A teacher] lost her Feudal game and $20. The third copy of "Motel of Mystery" has still not been returned.

Perhaps the most interesting case of theft involves the missing staplers. First one of the PRISM staplers disappeared. However, knowing the organizational reputation of [the PRISM teachers] passed this one off as misplacement. A week went by, and soon their were no staplers in [PRISM] rooms 401 or 402. One turned up under thousands of papers; there are still no signs of the other two. Other teachers have noticed staplers missing as well, so the accepted theory is that a Stapler-Maniac or a Great Stapler Thief is hoarding them somewhere, perhaps using them to gain staples for his own usage.

Now, take [a PRISM student], learning with her own style at Sammamish [High School]. Apparently, some high school students got tired of her denseness and decided to do something. Their decision was to throw staples at [her]. They began to gradually bombard her back. [She] isn't stupid, and she noticed the incoming bogies. However, her response was exactly what the goofballs wanted--she raised her hand and announced that staples were being thrown at her.

[The teacher] didn't want [the student] picked on, and he also didn't want unsafe behavior during class. So immediately after class he had a talk with none other than [someone with the last name of] Stapleton. He inspected Stapleton's bag (no staples, though he could have used them all), drilled him with questions, and then released him to his next class.

How does this all tie together? Is Stapleton the Great Odle Stapler Thief, stealing staples so he has ammunition to throw at [other students]? I certainly don't know, but when [a PRISM teacher] sees people using more staples than they need to, she doesn't think "there goes another tenth of a cent" anymore, she thinks "There goes another stapler."

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