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You Can't Always Get What You Want...

docoflove1974

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Wow, I finally finished. It took the better part of 5 weeks of planning, learning, and implementation, but the major summer project was finished as of Friday morning: the Workshop Site.

 

Ok, I'll explain: like many community colleges (and often in 4-year universities), our college has workshops for those learning and/or improving their English reading and writing skills. Some of the workshops are grammar-based, others are study-skill-based, but they're all open to any student so that they can improve their chances at a higher grade in their courses. For the foreign language students, well, there ain't squat. We have been sending them to these grammar courses, since many times students will come in with questions on parts of speech and the like--the product of not having studied these elements since elementary school or, in very rare cases, middle school. The problem is that, since these courses are geared for those who either are learning English or who are very poor readers and writers, they aren't really helpful for those who are fully literate and capable English-speaking adults. They needed something a bit different...but we didn't have anything.

 

So, I made it my mission to create an on-line solution, using the online course management software that we use in the district, which I have been using for the last several years extensively. It took a lot of time to conceptualize what I wanted it to look like, the content both on the site and in the movies/animated PowerPoint slides...but I finally got it done. And I did it on my own...as in, without pay. (Such a dedicated employee....) As a reward, I decided to take the weekend off.

 

Yesterday, I packed some stuff to work on in my leisure (why can't I just lay on a beach and sleep???), a picnic lunch, and took off in my car. I started down Ca



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In Blighty we don't usually see amrican versions of our own shows, both because the media in America is so all-pervasive, but also because no-one in britain buys them. What we have seen is a little perlexing to us. Okay, we sort of recognise who the main characters are supposed to be, but they're translated into a different stereotype and to be honsest, since much of British humour is based on absurdities concerning our way of life, the jokes from american perspective just don't work. That doesn't mean american comedy isn't funny - we fall off our seats with some imported shows, but these are home grown shows that are internally consistent.

 

Perhaps one exception might be Shameless. I haven't seen the US version, but the trailers were as deadpan as British humour and I think that's why it might work for us too.

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Hmmm. I don't know that one, either the British or the American version. Then again, I don't watch or even pay attention much to sitcoms and the like.

 

There are two exceptions of successful imports are All In the Family (the 70s sitcom based off of Til Death Do Us Part) and The Office. The former, well, you had great writing and a great cast--Carroll O'Connor was a high caliber actor, and he made Archie Bunker a true character of his own. The latter, well, while I wasn't a huge fan--I kept expecting to see Sir David of Brent and the rest--it was a great translation. Again, great writing and a great cast. And in both cases, a true understanding of the original series, and how to accurately translate it to an American audience so that you don't lose the main messages, but you use subtleties that are local.

 

I remember reading about the American versions of AbFab...and gagged. I don't like Roseanne Bar, in anything...and absolutely couldn't see her as Eddie. Not to mention that, those characters could easily be understood by Americans as they were played by the original cast. And I hated how Men Behaving Badly was done up...Rob Schneider is funny comedian, but not a good actor. Martin Clunes...good actor, and good comedic actor.

 

Then again...I wonder how many times the Beeb (or other non-American broadcaster) have tried to re-incarnate an American show, only to fail? Could another culture really try to do their version of Seinfeld?

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I think it got solid reviews, basically because it's on one of the cable channels (I want to say TNT, but not sure).

 

NBC this fall is unveiling their version of Prime Suspect, with Maria Bello as the central character. I don't know...something tells me that a show like that should have been done on cable instead. Then again, there are enough crime dramas on there already.

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You know, just lately someone asked me about my title and what all that stuff was about. I told him why I went for it, what it means to me, and so forth. That made me think. It's been a while since I've honoured clear thinking, common sense, and right of all human beings to look askance at convention, but you've earned it. So then...

 

Henceforth, Docolove, thou art an honourary citizen of the Imndependent Peanut Republic of Rushey Platt. Congratulations. :)

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What an honor! Or should I spell it honour, considering my honorary citizenry?

 

Lord Caldrail, I am most honoured and humbled...I promise to uphold my new-found status with the respect and dignity it deserves. Grazie mille, Don Caldrale...or can that be said here?

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probably. No-one in England knows any spanish. We learned a long time ago that shouting louder saves you all the effort of learning :D

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