Monday, March 1, 2010


Ambivalence is a word i learned today because i finally agreed to take the SAT, which has 100000 words on it you've probably never heard of. If you would have asked me last summer if i was at least going to finish high school, i probably would have said no. This idea of dropping out/ getting out ASAP was inspired by my hatred for the insidious passivity that accompanied going to school for 7 hours a day + 2 hours of homework etc. This idea/hatred, if your familiar with my blog as been expressed more thoroughly in previous posts, but it is reoccurring and present every day of my life.

Today i am really feeling the wrath of Ambivalence. My ideas are screaming in and out of my head" Fuck you!!! Fuck you!, Fuck you!: Teacher, SAT, Homework, College, Patriarchy, Racism, Capitalism blah blah the list goes on"...but now i find myself here...

And this book isn't just filled with every tip you need to "ace" the Sat, its filled with every step you need to uphold your privilege. I really think the SAT no matter how they much they try to deny it, isn't a test of your intelligence. It tests your ability to jump through a hoop, this hoop has many factors that make you more able or less able to jump through it. If you come from a privileged family you are likely to take a course, or get a tutor etc. This can be more than 500$ while the back of my book advertises that it "tests your skills in reading, writing and mathematics- the same subjects your learning in high school" it is really full of bullshit you have to learn how to do. Lets not forget also that an exhausting number of low income neighborhood based schools are having difficulty passing REGENTS exams, which are far less rigorous tests. Some people are "learning" in high school, some are passing without knowing how to read past a 6th grade level. True story.

so the in short SAT really sucks and Ive been sucked right into it. Which makes me feel like a tool, and a poser, and depressed..I guess
Where i am torn is between everything mentioned previously and the two reasons i decided to take it.
1. If i do well my Mom is taking me to India with her in November
2. I will be "keeping my doors open" which is not a bad idea, but then i ask myself where does the suffering and treason stop? Do i have to compromise all my ideals and conform to standardized methods of valuing education to continue to keep options open. in the name of success? its all very narrow and subjective.


1 comment:

mabel Nash-Greenberg said...

Hi Ari it’s Mabel
interesting blog.

As much as I agree with you that the SAT is not a test of intelligence, I hate all this talk of ‘privilege,’ it is counterproductive and isolating. To play devil’s advocate, ultimately it’s a standardized test so is intrinsically not accommodating of all people and circumstances. I, too, was opposed to taking the SAT on principle, in the same way that I too protested busy work in school (among other things) and did really shitty all throughout high school. I took the SAT because if I didn’t there is no way I would be accepted to any college (which I only recently decided that I wanted to attend.) However easy it is to shit on the SAT and all manifestations of The Man, in order to be successful at anything, I think errone needs a certain degree of adaptability to the system (I guess this is why i’m not an anarchist.) I realized this summer that if i wanted to achieve social change then i needed to earn the credentials to actually make it happen; because nobody would take me seriously as a high school dropout. (I also was planning on dropping out this year.) so i decided to pull my shit together, take the Sat and go to college. The ends justify the means: All for social justice!