Back To School Lessons From the Movie Back To School
The end of August has this very funny way of temporarily cooling down. All of a sudden those email solicitations from the Gap about boots and jackets don't seem all that ridiculous. Shopping for a light sweater, in fact, sounds lovely. It's a total farce, of course. My mother used to claim that the weather gods had a deal with Macy's so that people would do their back-to-school shopping right before the weather got insanely hot again.
For some, back-to-school is a glorious time of new beginnings and excitement, seeing friends again, wearing your week's worth of new clothing and getting to learn a whole year of new stuff. But those people are crazy and probably nerds. Really, back-to-school is awful. It means summer is over, sleeping in is no more and your brain, that has spent the past three months coagulating, is now in need of use. Whether you are a student or a teacher, hitting the books again is miserable.
Let's all agree, no one likes back to school, unless however, we are talking about the Rodney Dangerfield movie of the same name! That version of Back To School is amazeballs. Not only is it a classic film that doesn't get enough "respect," there are valuable lessons that can be gleaned from Dangerfield's character Thorton Melon. Take this as a tutorial on how to succeed this year at your respective educational institutions by utilizing Thorton Melon's tips.1. When In a Jam, Pay Someone Off
The entire premise behindBack To School
is that Thorton is trying to convince his son how important education is, and, to do so, he suggests that he also go back to college out of solidarity. Thorton is a very rich man having made his fortunes in the clothing concerns of overweight men, and he doesn't really need to go to college. Lesson one may then include the subheading: You don't really need to go to college if you make a lot of money. (Kayne West would agree
Miranda Sings Live...You're Welcome
TicketsSun., Jan. 22, 8:00pm
The Curious Incident of the Dog In the Night-Time (Touring)
TicketsTue., Jan. 24, 7:30pm
Super Comedy Bowl Explosion
TicketsWed., Feb. 1, 8:00pm
Love Jones, The Musical
TicketsThu., Feb. 2, 7:30pm
TicketsSat., Feb. 11, 7:00pm
) But Thorton decides going back is the way to prove his love for his son, but he has no educational background. None. How do you get into college with neither a high school diploma, GED or SAT scores, you ask? Buy the college a new wing!
2. Making Friends Is Way More Important Than Studying This Back To School lesson is a no brainer. Who wouldn't rather hit up a raging kegger than stay at home and study for their upcoming chem exam? Boring. Let me tell you something as a grownup who has been outside of school for a while: You will never use geometry again. Never. You don't even need to know the difference between a square and circle. Someone will tell you if you ask them. They may look at you weird, but they are probably ugly anyway. Thorton proves his success in life is not because of cracking the books, but because of his ability to crack jokes and mad beers.
Rather than doing any of his own schoolwork, Thorton hires professionals in their respective expertise to do the work for him. Traditionally, getting, say, a CEO of a Fortune 500 company to take your marketing mid-term would be a fabulous use of your funds, but be warned. As Thorton learns inBack To School
, not every pro knows his or her stuff. This point is proven when Thorton gets an F on a paper about a Kurt Vonnegut novel which was written by the author Kurt Vonnegut. Justifiably, if this happens to you, you may want to point out to your teacher that he/she has no idea what he/she is talking about because the author of the book you were writing about wrote your essay, but think before you do that. Take the F, rather than expulsion.4. You Can Pass All Of Your Classes By Cramming For Like a Week
How many classes are you taking this semester? Four? Five. Blow them all off, a la Thorton Melon, party hard (but refer to it as partying "hearty," please) and then beg for forgiveness at the semester's end. If your professors are anything like the ones at the highly accredited "Grand Lakes University," all of them will allow you to goof off all semester and you will still pass with a D. This is because cramming for all of your courses at the very last minute is not only possible, but it is preferred. Way to save yourself time and energy; that's using your noggin.5. Your Attractive Professor Will Have a Crush On You
As sloppy, moronic, drunk, misogynistic, and unattractive Thorton Melon may have been, these facts do nothing to hurt his chance at love with his very attractive, intelligent English professor Dr. Turner. Some of us may find it very difficult to believe that such a catch of an educator would fall for such a slob, while others of us would think that the possibility of a relationship between teacher and student is immoral and probably illegal. InBack To School
, neither of these points are valid. So you're hot for teacher? Just go for it. What's the worst that can happen? Soul crushing embarrassment or possibly an arrest? Meh, that's their loss!
Use these lessons wisely and welcome back to school.
Get the Theater Newsletter
Get a rundown of upcoming theater events and ticket deals in Houston.