Friday, May 10, 2013

Wasted on Fixing all the Problems that you Made in Your Own Head

So yeah. This week. Oy. So much to say, but I don't think that it would do me or anyone else good to talk about it. Though I will say this much: Friday's post was written in a study hall prior to the beginning of a very bizarre, yet very satisfying day.

I think one of the things about people today is that they believe creativity doesn't exist in our generation (or, rather, mine. I don't know how old you personally are or whatever...). To those people, I respectfully say: SHUT UP!

Saturday May 4th was the second annual Re(imagiNATION) event.

The Re(imagine) Media Crew
Photo: Me
This year we added art to the music festival, making this (unofficially) Pittsburgh's premier music and arts festival, and it was a blast.

Four bands performed, and 12 or so artists displayed everything from pencil sketches to panoramas to paintings along a stretch of sidewalk in Schenley Plaza.

I felt pretty much the same way I did during last year's, yet I was a tad more distant in choosing the individual bands/artists due to, well, musical eating my life. Yet I like what I wrote then:
The only way we were able to do this was through the generosity of WYEP, its listeners, and the amazing staff we have worked with since October-ish. I can't wait to see what's next from this group of people.
The Options
There's a side story that hasn't been told about this competition. Before we held the event last year, we asked for submissions, and we got submissions from two bands: The Actions and the Options.

Honestly, their submissions weren't that great, and neither one made it to the top 5 last year. We sent them notes saying how we thought it was awesome and all, and try again next year.

They did.

The Actions and The Options re-submitted after a bunch of separate gigs and both bands completely re-worked their sound and everything. It was quite impressive, and as a result, they were chosen to compete this year.

The Actions
The Options, as I said, completely reinvented themselves, and won the second Re(imagiNATION). This is an awesome side story that is what Re(imagiNATION) and Re(imagine) are about: creativity, and finding a passion. We give them a stage, having a passion for sharing stories and creating things, and they bring their passion of music, and the artists their own works. It's an amazing thing to see side by side, and it was all created by high school students.

So next week, I am taking my third and final Keystone Exam. The Keystones are Pennsylvania's NEW answer to the No Child Left Behind requirement for standardized testing.

I say new because originally we had these magic PSSA (Pennsylvania System of School Assessments) tests, which apparently were rendered obsolete so the criteria we were once held responsible for knowing is apparently irrelevant. I've ranted before about standardized testing, but my point is this: tests do NOT define how good education is. What should define how good an education from a school should be a measure of how much that school exposes you to the outside world.

What I propose (because I'm a crazy guy at the end of sophomore year) is a system where high schoolers are required to do an internship in at least two different fields of available interest, then present something about it: an essay, presentation, whatever. This would open the door to *gasp* relevance, as well as exposing the students to the world they'll be plunged into after school.

And maybe, just maybe, we can find more awesome artists, musicians, and Re(imagine)rs if they can find themselves. Just a thought.

If you want to see more pictures from the event, click here:
For the event page (until it gets deleted):

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