Monday, March 10, 2008

ESD#22: a young Mussolini

Sophomore year of high school, my World History class read mini biographies of Hitler, Stalin and Mussolini. (I know, weird, right?). After the teacher passed out the Mussolini books and asked us to turn to the introduction, the entire class let out a collective, "Aah!" A sixteen-year-old Mussolini looked exactly like a kid in the class.*

Today, the NY Times reviewed a documentary on high school life, and included this quote:
"Hall was a serious, stern-looking man; yet he still understood just how soul-searing it can be when the Noxzema fails and the only boy to ask you to homecoming looks like a young Mussolini."
Is this a common occurrence? Awkward teenage boys being compared to Mussolini? I found this to be disturbingly coincidental.

On a related note, the Stalin bio included a picture of a young Stalin's mug shot, and let me tell you, all the sixteen-year-old girls in the room were like, "damn, he's cute." So I made it my mission to popularize the slang "stalin" to describe a cute boy. "Ooh, did you see Brad's new haircut? He's stalin."

In retrospect this is pretty creepy, but I think (hope) we recognized this at the time.

*Far more embarrassing, the following year, our AP US History class collectively discovered that Harriet Beecher Stowe looked exactly like another boy at the school.

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