OK, so there was a call for papers on PhilUpdates, a philosophy announcement list. It seems Robert Arp is compiling a volume on the pressing topic of The Onion and Philosophy. This wouldn’t be particularly notable except that it called my attention to this classic article in The Onion: “Guy In Philosophy Class Needs To Shut The F— Up” (they solicit articles about the article; yep they really do):
HANOVER, NH—According to students enrolled in professor Michael Rosenthal’s Philosophy 101 course at Dartmouth College, that guy, Darrin Floen, the one who sits at the back of the class and acts like he’s Aristotle, seriously needs to shut the f— up.
His fellow students describe Floen’s frequent comments as eager, interested, and incredibly annoying.
“He thinks he knows about philosophy,” freshman Duane Herring said. “But I hate his voice, and I hate the way he only half raises his hand, like he’s so laid back. We’re discussing ethics in a couple weeks, but I don’t know if I can wait that long before deciding if it’s morally wrong to pound his face in.”
“Today he was going on and on about how Plato’s cave shadows themselves represent the ideal foundation of Western philosophical thought,” said freshman Julia Wald moments after class let out Monday. “I have no idea what Plato’s ideal reality is, but I bet it doesn’t include know-it-all little shits.”
The outspoken student has not gone unremarked by the course’s professor.
“Mr. Floen is a valuable contributor to our in-class discussions,” Rosenthal said. “His tendency to question and challenge everything before him captures the very essence of philosophy itself.”
Rosenthal added: “Having said that, I do wish he would occasionally do me the valued service of shutting his damn cake hole.”
Actually I think I would enjoy writing that commentary for The Onion and Philosophy. Maybe — just maybe — because I once was that guy. No snide comments from the peanut gallery there!