I hate being so caught up with my daily drudgery that I do not get to pay proper attention to blog or my friends’ blogs. Fortunately, this Thursday signals the beginning of a slight vacation and I will get to pay proper attention to my subscriptions and write more often.
For a few years, The Rothechilde Foundation has bestowed much generosity on a local elementary school. For five years, to be exact (maybe six?). Whatever the case, the group of fifth graders at this school had their “graduation” (which has to be placed in quotes or substituted with “celebration” in order to appease the Department of Education Bureaucrats) and I was fortunate enought to attend. This group is one of two very special groups to me: this group because they were all kindergarteners when The Foundation began working with the school and the other group is next year’s fifth graders, who were all pre-schoolers at the time.
I did not expect to be moved at all by this occasion. In fact, I had not even planned to attend. However, I was reminded that my coal black heart does hold a modicum of sentimentality and I attended the ceremony. The students were surprised to see me enter the gymnasium and all proceeded to run up and invade my space with their grubby hands and personal space violating hugs. “Mr. Rothechilde! Mr. Rothechilde! Thank you for coming! Will you sit up with us?” Of course, I could not do that, but I did sit in the front row (against my better judgement) and watched the proceedings.
The children were all dressed nicely for the occasion and were especially well-behaved. Who knows? Knowing that they were all about to get the fuck up out that joint may have spurred them to show some self-discipline. After a welcome from the principal, and an annoying speech from a local Middle School administrator (who stands about three feet tall, drives a hummer, and needs sixty kicks to the groin), one of the students approached the podium and whispered something to the principal of this elementary school. Soon, I discovered the misdoings afoot:
Principal: “Mr. Rothechilde, the students would like you to say a few words to them. They have grown to love and respect you and really want to hear something from you on this, their day.”
Hmm…me give an unprepared speech? Charlotte would approve. Madame Secretary would insist on writing a quick draft with a two minute time limit. Smeagol would be tazed to keep him silent, undoubtedly traumatizing a gym full of children and parents with his spasms and yelps. Manthony would have gotten the Hell out of that place, there was no air and it was roughly one hundred degrees with the fan blowing on me.
So, what the Hell, I approached the podium, and delivered this address, then hugged a few youngsters and then left the gym. With that as a precedent, I will write my words, hug my secretary, and leave WordPress for the night.
My Words to the Munchlings
“Parents, teachers and staff, and most importantly, future sixth grade students, I find it humbling to be standing here before you in this outrageous heat to celebrate the passing of these youngsters on to the next phase of their education. It seems like just a few minutes ago that I walked into this building for the first time and answered a billion questions from your kindergarten brains about my wondrous head of locks and penchant for black suits. However, it was not a few minutes ago, and you all have grown much in character and much in brain. As you leave this building for the last time and venture to the next stage of academia, remember that nothing is being given to you. What you want, you have to take. From your education, to future employment, the world is definitely not an ally of convenience. No, what you wish for success can only come from your blood, sweat and tears…then the world will gladly share her bounty with you. Remember, the system is no longer educating you for factory labor; it is now grooming you for poverty, ignorance and prison through cutting those important programs such as art, music, math, and science. You have to conquer the system. It is time to rise to the occasion, grab your rifle of enlightenment, and seek knowledge everywhere and anywhere you can. Take their theories and generate new ones, take their history and make it stories of truth, take their lack of compassion and shove it down their throats with a loving wooden spoon! Indeed the planet is yours to inherit, and now is the time for you to do so. I will miss you all terribly, and it breaks my heart to see you all go. However, it will be good to see you progress and I am sure our paths will cross in this life again. Take care and be well.”