Saturday, March 10, 2007

Trips and Tips

Amelia and I have had some good times in the past few weeks, which is partly why I haven't posted in a while. We spent a weekend in Savannah a couple weeks back (verdict: very cool town. I'm excited to go back. I also realized I need to re-read Midnight in the Garden of Good and Evil, so that's on the shelf). It was a lot of fun. We wanted to eat at Paula Dean's restaurant (a word I always spell wrong) Lady and Sons but they don't take reservations before the day of (and then only in person) and by the time we got there they were booked for the day. Instead we ate at the Pirate House, which has been around Savannah for ages. Rumor has it there are tunnels in the bottom of the house in which unsuspecting travellers (it used to be an inn) were shanghaied and taken to the docks.

Plus, they had Captain Jack Sparrow.

Anyway, we took a trolley tour of the historic city, and it was really excellent. The downtown area is this cool mix of old money and art students (Savannah College of Art and Design is spread around the city) and it's just got a nice vibe. I'm looking forward to going back and exploring more.

We also recently had a chance to go to Jacksonville to see this guy:

I don't know how much longer Hal Holbrook is going to live; he's older now than the Mark Twain he portrays. But he is so good. He's done this show yearly since he was basically 25. He has somewhere around 18 hours of material in his head, so each show is different depending on how he feels and what the audience responds to. It was so good. We got $20 tenth-row tickets because no students at school signed up to go (regular price was $50 per ticket). I've never been so happy that students didn't want to be cultured.

Oh, right, I promised some tips:
  • Ghost Rider is exactly as bad as you think it's going to be
  • If you ever are teaching teenagers and need to kill a class period, just bring up a topic like "generation gaps" and let them go to town
  • Borat, though funny, was pretty overrated
  • So was The Departed (though not so funny, except for Marky Mark), especially if you've seen Infernal Affairs
  • Don't always assume your students know as much as it might first appear. What follows is an actual conversation that took place on Thursday.
Student A: What's a Tearjerker?

Student B: A movie that makes you cry.

Student A: That's the stupidest things I've ever heard. It jerks a tear out of me.

Student B: It's just a term. Like "snuff film."

Me: OK, things I never thought would come up in my class--snuff films is at the top of the list.

Student B: What? It's just a movie where someone dies in the end. Like "Old Yeller"--it's a sad doggy snuff film.

Me: [remaining silent]

Me: Yep.

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