The Critical 'I'

Read. React. Repeat.

Sunday, August 01, 2004

WHY METRIC NEVER CAUGHT ON
Despite some compelling arguments and government prodding, the United States is still resisting that metric urge. As long as we keep scarfing down Quarter-Pounders, and washing them down with 44-ounce Super Big Gulps, I guess that will continue to be the case.

So why didn't the Metric Conversion Law of 1975 change things? Heck, I was there, a tyke in grade school when this big conversion was supposed to take place, and I don't remember squat ever being done.

Looking back now, it's obvious: "Schoolhouse Rock", that televised instructional force that we heeded far more than our flesh-and-blood teachers, never deigned to do a skit on the metric system. We learned all about Conjunction Junction and E-Lec-Tricity, but nothing about 10 millimeters gang up to make one centimeter. Thus a lost opportunity to ingrain that wacky decimal system of measure into the minds of America's youth!

In fact, the one half-assed effort at using animated fun to instruct the kids on metric, "The Metric Marvels", was so lame that it didn't even last one season. In fact, it was such a piece of crap that it probably left the impression with kids that the metric system itself was lame, and therefore not worth knowing about.

So there you have it. If only Schoolhouse Rock had taken action a generation ago, we probably would be heading to McDonald's for our Tenth-Kilos today. Or not.