I signed up for a writing class the other night. Now I know what you’re thinking: You’re thinking, “But Greg, you don’t need to learn how to write!” And of course you’re right. No one knows how to make goodly words on the screen like me does. But there was a very specific skill that I wanted to learn (how to write effective ransom notes), and I figured that it might be fun to take a class on the subject. It’d be like going to college again, only this time I’d actually attend the class rather than stay home drinking beer out of paint buckets.
The first place I looked at was the main community college in the Phoenix metro area. They had the perfect class for me and I could take it after work, at home, or a combination of both. The only problem was that, technically, I live in a different county and if I wanted to take the class, it was going to cost me over $1,000. If I’m taking a 10 week class for $1,000, that class had fucking better be Counterfeiting 101, because I have better uses for a thousand dollars (beer).
So I checked with the community college that serves my county, but I live in a relatively rural county, and their course catalog didn’t really line up with my needs very well.
- STR 101 – Small Tractor Repair. Students will learn the ins and outs of repairing small tractor engines. Denim overalls, NASCAR hat, and a willingness to diddle your sister are prerequisites.
- CHEM 370 – Bathtub Meth Manufacturing. Students will learn how to assemble and operate a small meth lab. Must have completed a previous CHEM 300 level class and prove that you’re not a cop.
- AGR 290 – Toothless Hog Calling Theory. Please note, this class only covers theory. Students will learn the basics of toothless hog calling, and upon completion of course will be eligible for AGR 300 – Applied Toothless Hog Calling.
So then I checked with the large online university that is headquartered here in town, Phoenix Online University. They had a class that contained what I wanted to learn, but I had to slog through a lot of other, worthless shit to get to it. Poetry, for instance. Now, I’m not anti-poetry or anything, but I am certainly not operating under the delusion that anyone wants to read poetry that I’ve written. Everyone thinks they can write poetry, but only three or four people in the world are actually good at it, and I’m pretty sure that they didn’t learn their craft from Phoenix Online University. Plus, all of my homework would have looked like this:
Rose are red, violets are blue
Phoenix Online University – Fuck you!
So to hell that. Next, I checked with several prestigious universities that have opened up their courses for anyone to take. MIT, for instance, has an extensive catalog of online courses that you can take for free. This is basically new-age trolling. “Hey, alumni! Remember that time we charged you $340,000 for a bunch of classes? Well, here they are online. For free! BUWAHAHAHAHA!!!”
(MIT can get away with this, incidentally, because they are currently building the next generation of Robot Overlords.)
I tried with a number of other prestigious institutions, but either the courses were too expensive, full, or the college mascot was so fucking stupid that I couldn’t imagine taking an online class with them. The Minnesota Gophers? Are you fucking kidding me?
Finally, I found an online company offering writing classes for rock bottom prices. They can get away with this because the course has already been taught. You’re paying $60 to see the lessons, watch the videos, take the tests, etc. But it does have the advantage that a real professor will read your writing assignments and provide feedback, which was what I was after.
It was while I was signing up that it dawned on me that it would be pretty funny to troll the professor. But would I really spend $60 to troll an English professor? The answer, of course, is an emphatic Yes! (If this surprises you, please note that I once paid Joyce DeWitt (Janet from Three’s Company) $25 to thank me for giving her herpes.)
Assignet the Nomber 1: Introduces
Hello! I am greeting you myself, the Ombokwe! I will get you help me right the Words to make happy Ombokwe! Excite I am and willing to do hard workings and mow lawns. Please tell me all the things regard you right now!
As advertised, my professor “graded” my assignment within 24 hours.
Dear Ombokwe Mahalingonolololo,
Hello, and nice to meet you! Thank you for signing up for my course. I have given you 5 out of 5 possible points for completing the introduction assignment.
I am wondering, however, if perhaps you would be better off taking our ESL Basic Grammar and Writing class. I think that it would give you the skills you need to be successful in this class. If you like, I can ask about getting your course fee applied to that class instead.
Well, that was sweet of her.
Please for me explain the thing. My fee for tenting of the purpose is cause me grate shamings. Is needed to get great Madicine Man for help to this? And the Darkness?
I’ll let you know how the class goes, but it’s already 100 times more entertaining than anything I took in college.
You make goodly words awesomest!
To you I give the thanks!
Plus, you’re top of the class. Why would you give that up so soon?
I’m also sleeping with the teacher – Ombokwe