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On Many Sides

Aug. 29, 2017
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I’m Art Kumbalek and man oh man manischewitz what a world, ain’a? So listen, I’ve received a couple, three gung-ho thumbs-ups for the bigger type and the briefer length of last week’s essay, which was a necessity due to the troubled eyes I got saddled with from taking a gander at that goddamn eclipse, what the fock.

So what say we go two-for-two in the type-and-length department this week, ’cause this really ought to be my gala back-to-school address to young and old alike. Yes, my yearly paean to this rite of passage—or flunkage, such as it is for the kid who’s got to go through last year’s grade again—offered to prepare the community for the rejoicing that shall come the day after Labor Day when our young Einsteins get their loins girded for another nine-month sentence of class learning required to fertilize our society’s fervent prayer that our god-fearing nation remain Top-Dog-of-the-Planet for the foreseeable future, a really great future. Or something like that.

Yeah yeah, it ought to be my gala back-to-school address EXCEPT I’m apparently too late for that kind of essay, so the only thing I’m left to say is this:

“August 14? MPS? You got to be jerking my beefaroni. They started school on August focking 14 already? Back-to-school, shback-to-school. Did they ever leave? Jesus H. Christ, how much math you’ll never use does a kid need? Sorry, you kids. And you’re right. You’re getting screwed. If I’m shocked to learn that school fires up way before Labor Day, I can imagine how you must be feeling—your idyllic idyll of shoplifting and burning bugs with a magnifying glass circumcised in its prime, it is to weep, what the fock.

“Cripes, sure seems to me like some nitwit bid out the school system to the Japanese to run, which means that since you’re starting on Aug. 14, next year you’ll probably get out after a half-day on Aug. 13. Hey, maybe that afternoon you and the family can squeeze in that trip to the Grand focking Canyon you’ve always talked about before school commences bright and early the next morning, ain’a?”

And so I would like to write the following:

School days, I believe, are the unhappiest in the whole span of human existence. They are full of dull, unintelligible tasks, new and unpleasant ordinances, brutal violations of common sense and common decency.

Too bad it’s already been written, an age ago by this guy named Mencken, newspaperman, editor, critic out of Baltimore. And you betcha, he’s also the guy who wrote: Puritanism: The haunting fear that someone, somewhere, may be happy. Amen and praise the lord, ’cause I’m, Art Kumbalek and I told you so.

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