Monday, March 27, 2006

Mars and Venus

Here's a prime example of "Men are from Mars, Women are from Venus";
offered by an English professor from the University of Colorado for an
actual class assignment:

The professor told his class one day: "Today we will experiment with a
new form called the tandem story. The process is simple. Each person
will pair off with the person sitting to his or her immediate right.

As homework tonight, one of you will write the first paragraph of a
short story. You will e-mail your partner that paragraph and send
another copy to me. The partner will read the first paragraph and then
add another paragraph to the story and send it back, also sending
another copy to me. The first person will then add a third paragraph,
and so on back-and-forth.

Remember to re-read what has been written each time in order
to keep the story coherent. There is to be absolutely NO talking outside of the
e-mails and anything you wish to say must be written in the e-mail. The
story is over when both agree a conclusion has been reached."

The following was actually turned in by two of his English students:
Rebecca and Gary.

THE STORY:
(first paragraph by Rebecca)
At first, Laurie couldn't decide which kind of tea she wanted. The
chamomile, which used to be her favorite for lazy evenings at home, now
reminded her too much of Carl, who once said, in happier times, that he
liked chamomile. But she felt she must now, at all costs, keep her mind
off Carl. His possessiveness was suffocating, and if she thought about
him too much her asthma started acting up again. So chamomile was out of
the question.

(second paragraph by Gary)
Meanwhile, Advance Sergeant Carl Harris, leader of the attack squadron
now in orbit over Skylon 4, had more important things to think about
than the neuroses of an air-headed, asthmatic bimbo named Laurie with
whom he had spent one sweaty night over a year ago. "A.S. Harris to
Geost Station 17," he said into his transgalactic communicator. "Polar
orbit established. No sign of resistance so far..." But before he could
sign off, a bluish particle beam flashed out of nowhere and blasted a
hole through his ship's cargo bay. The jolt from the direct hit sent him
flying out of his seat and across the cockpit.

(Rebecca)
He bumped his head and died almost immediately, but not before he felt
one last pang of regret for psychically brutalizing the one woman who
had ever had feelings for him. Soon afterwards, Earth stopped
its pointless hostilities towards the peaceful farmers of Skylon 4.
"Congress Passes Law Permanently Abolishing War and Space Travel,"
Laurie read in her newspaper one morning. The news simultaneously
excited her and bored her. She stared out the window, dreaming of her
youth, when the days had passed unhurriedly and carefree, with no
newspaper to read, no television to distract her from her sense of
innocent wonder at all the beautiful things around her. "Why must one
lose one's innocence to become a woman?" she pondered wistfully.

(Gary)
Little did she know, but she had less than 10 seconds to live. Thousands
of miles above the city, the Anu'udrian mothership launched the first of
its lithium fusion missiles. The dimwitted wimpy peaceniks who pushed
the unilateral Aerospace disarmament Treaty through the congress had
left Earth a defenseless target for the hostile alien empires who were
determined to destroy the human race. Within two hours after the passage
of the treaty the Anu'udrian ships were on course for Earth, carrying
enough firepower to pulverize the entire planet. With no one to stop
them, they swiftly initiated their diabolical plan. The lithium fusion
missile entered the atmosphere unimpeded. The President, in his
top-secret mobile submarine headquarters on the ocean floor off the
coast of Guam, felt the inconceivably massive explosion, which vaporized
poor, stupid Laurie.

(Rebecca)
This is absurd. I refuse to continue this mockery of literature. My
writing partner is a violent, chauvinistic, semi-literate, adolescent.

(Gary)
Yeah? Well, my writing partner is a self-centered, tedious, neurotic,
whose attempts at writing are the literary equivalent of
Valium. "Oh, shall I Have chamomile tea? Or shall I have some other sort of F--KING TEA??? Oh no, what am I to do? I'm such an air headed bimbo who reads
too many Danielle Steele novels!"

(Rebecca)
Asshole!

(Gary)
Bitch!

(Rebecca)
F**K YOU - YOU NEANDERTHAL!!

(Gary)
In your dreams, Ho. Go drink some tea.

(TEACHER)
A+ - I really liked this one.

Hat tip to Eric Saunders!

1 Comments:

Anonymous AZ Dave said...

That was some of the funniest shit I have read in a long time. I teach a psychology class at a community college and I think I might have to try this little experiment.

5:09 PM  

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