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"F" Reading

Yesterday I wrote about reading a young friend’s Facebook profile and discovering their immense hatred of reading. Today I press forward to take a look at some more Facebook-based reading hate.

The thing about Facebook is most everything one types into their profile becomes a link to search for other people with similar interests, and by clicking the “F*** Reading” in one person’s profile, I found 46 people in my two Minnesota-based “networks” who included some variant of F Reading under the section “Books” in their Facebook profile. Here are the results:

27 Peope who outright say F*** Reading:

F*** reading

f*** reading

f*** reading

f*** reading

f*** reading

F*** reading

f*** reading

f*** reading

f*** reading

f*** reading

f*** reading

f*** reading

f*** reading

F*** reading

f*** reading

f*** reading

f*** reading

f*** reading

f*** reading lol

F*** reading!!!!!!!!!!

f*** reading…it sucks

yeah, f*** reading

F*** reading. Yes i can i just choose not too!

f*** reading (Their About Me section: “im 5 11 dirty blonde hair. great looking. and i like to f*** around alot so yeah.)

F*** ReAdInG (1st of 3 females)

F*** reading. I got other b*****s to read for me. (2nd of 3 females)

i started reading a book once, and then it came out on dvd, so i said f*** it!

11 People who appear to enjoy at least some aspect of reading:
Magazines f*** reading

F*** reading unless its a magazine or shopping catalog!

f*** reading, unless i have to for school (I’m not sure he means he likes his school books, but that’s certainly what he wrote.)

F*** books (It’s possible they like other forms of reading.)

rolling stone… car and driver, the five people you meet in heaven, me and hank, f*** harry potter im not reading that bull * * * * , chronicles of narnia

jaws would have to b my favorite book but other than that. F * * * READING!!!

F*** Reading lol naw but -The Outsiders & Night

F*** reading, but there are a few good books I know of. “I Hope They Server Beer In Hell” by Tucker Max. “The Alphabet of Manliness” by Maddox and “Piercing the Darkness”

Thousand Splended Suns, Opium Season, and 1 fish 2 fish…f*** reading I wanna go fishing.

f*** reading, (Goosebumps?) (<- Is that a question?)

2 People who may or may not enjoy reading:

YAY!!! Reading Rainbow!!!!…..haha f * * * !

f * * * reading. numbers rule (I guess he prefers math.)

1 Person who isn’t going to lie and who has no time for reading:

BOOKS??? what the F * * * are books??? nah, just playin, id have to go with the NOTEBOOK! lol RIIIIIIIIGHT! the notebook, what the f * * * ! Not goin to lie, no time for reading, id rather be drinkin and hoofin it or sleeping!

1 Person who has a question for you:

who the f*** really enjoys reading?!!!

3 People who feel reading is synonymous with sexual orientation and want you to understand they are clearly of one sexual orientation and not another:

reading is g** as f***

f*** reading its g** as f***!!!!!!!

reading is for f * * * ing f * * s (Favorite Activities include: “PARTTYYYYY!!!! otherstuff…”)

1 Person who uses the words F * * * and reading in their profile but who actually reads for enjoyment:

All time favorite book: The Great Gatsby, by: F. Scott Fitzgerald

Other favorite authors: Mark Twain, F. Scott Fitzgerald, Sylvia Plath, Richard Wright… There’s this book Ishmael by: Daniel Quinn…I recommend it to all who are reading this…it will f * * * up your mind, but you’ll be okay… I love to read, love literacy, love writing…if you know of good books…put me on!! I’ll put you on…we’ll have a grand ol’ time. (3rd of 3 females)

This is already a pretty unscientific sampling, so I hasten to include stats on, for example, how many of these people list themselves as liberal or conservative, religious or atheist, single or in a relationship, in high school or out of high school, are drinking in their profile photo, use the F-Bomb at least one other time in their profile, or how many of them aren’t wearing a shirt so they can show off their grill in their profile photo (okay, there is one guy who did this, FYI). Those sorts of statistics have their place in some sort of actual, factual research that requires a grant, not my fifteen minutes writing up this post.

Stay tuned for tomorrow’s Part III “How to fail at reading” and this week’s Your Friday Recommendation – “Five Books For Boys.”

-nm

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Teaching reading vs. teaching sex

I have met a lot of teenagers who don’t like reading, some of them outright hating it. They were forced to read a novel they considered boring or had too much reading homework for comfort or just didn’t understand the significance of Oedipus no matter how much their English teacher tried to explain, and so on.

This morning I was on Facebook and in under “Books” in the profile of a teenage friend (I know this person, I’m not a stalker), they have written, “F*** Reading,” only spelled out in its entirety. Sorry, I won’t pretend the F-Bomb doesn’t exist but I’m not interested in having it appear in my blog (you can send me an email about the hypocrisy of self-censorship later, dear reader). I know this person doesn’t like to read – they and I have spoken about it – and while they can’t pinpoint what made them decide reading wasn’t for them I was surprised by their volatile, public (yes, Facebook is pretty public, no matter how private you think it is) proclamation against reading.

I’m concerned for two reasons. First, much of what I write is aimed at teenage boys, often considered the most difficult demographic to get to pick up a book on their own for the sheer joy of reading. Second, in my anecdotal experience, it appears if a young man dislikes reading, they really, really hate reading and it often takes a grand and profound experience for them to be open to reading ever again.

All of this has lead me to believe a radical new proposal that will shift how America conducts its public education system is in order. Maybe instead of pushing reading or English class altogether they could replace that curriculum with classes about drugs, swearing, sex, and all the other things parents don’t want their teens doing and let the classes cover every single detail, no matter how “obscene.” Maybe this way the youth of America will stop wanting to have unprotected sex and start sneaking away to read copies of Charlotte’s Web in the closet or jump in the back seat with a special someone to analyze Walt Whitman poetry or get together with a group of friends in someone’s basement when their parents are out of town to have dirty, nasty group book club meetings.

What do you think? Will my new educational platform fly, or have I doomed my chances of ever running for office against someone who doesn’t understand satire? Do you know anyone who hates to read and do they tell you why?

Stay tuned for tomorrow’s Part II (“F” Reading) and Thursday’s Part III (“How to fail at reading”) and this week’s installment of Your Friday Recommendation – “Five Books For Boys.”

-nm