National Teacher's Day, Celebrated In Video And Song
Which is a shame, of course, since good teachers are some of the most indispensable people around.
To celebrate their day, such as it is, we offer five pieces of teacher-related video, from rap to classic 1930s British cinema.
Dangerous Minds (Coolio, "Gangsta's Paradise")
A white woman goes into a ghetto school and opens young minds to the wonders of education: An absolutely original idea. Usually "Based on a True Story," Hollywood code for "Don't blame us if it's the same plot, blame real life."
Fully playing the unoriginal card, Dangerous Minds doubles down by using Coolio's "Gangsta's Paradise," which doesn't just sample, it entirely uses Stevie Wonder's "Pastime Paradise" and just changes the words. "Based on a True Song," we guess.
To Sir With Love (Lulu, "To Sir With Love")
Oi, there's some cheeky 'ooligans in this classroom, wot? The world's least threatening delinquents terrorize a London school until a noble black man (Sidney Poitier, who always plays a noble black man) shows them the way.
This results in a pretty creepy title song, "To Sir With Love," which these days would likely result in a CPS investigation against the teacher. Then again, these days instead of a song Lulu would have probably sexted some hot pictures of herself -- To Sir With Tits.
The Wall (Pink Floyd, "Another Brick in the Wall")
The utter subtlety of The Wall is on full display in this clip, which of course features one of the classic anti-teacher songs of all time.
A teacher sees the kid's notebook: "What have we here, laddie? Mysterious scribblings?"
Then, to the general merriment of the class, he announces his find: "Oooh, poems, no less. Poems, everybody! The lad here reckons himself a poet!" He then reads aloud from the poem -- which turns out to be the lyrics of Pink Floyd's monster hit "Money" -- and calls it "absolute rubbish!"
Look how things turned out, old man!! Guess Pink Floyd showed you!!
"Hot For Teacher," Van Halen
The long-ago 1980s, an innocent time when this video was actually considered racy. Between the ozone damage from extensive use of hair products, the tame dancing by a woman wearing a sports bra, for crissake, to the forced-march waiting through the tedious introduction just to get to the song and the not-too-revealing bikini, this whole thing is a disaster.
Eddie's smiling guitar solo is still classic, though.
Goodbye, Mr. Chips (The original)
No, you're not going to sit through this whole 10-minute clip, because it's in black and white and is outrageously old-fashioned. But Goodbye, Mr Chips set the template for an untold number of teacher movies that came after it, as a retiring teacher realizes the impact he's had on young lives.
They're still making those movies, and they won't stop anytime soon, as long as there are still good teachers out there.
Here's to them.