Three Life Lessons Learned from Teenage Mutant Ninja Turtles

Congratulations Twi-Hards: Your love for the ongoing necro-bestial love triangle made Breaking Dawn more than a couple bucks this weekend. And unlike the haters of the world that sneer at your devotion to Teams Edward or Jacob - I can't make fun of you. 

You see, I too was part of an all consuming cross media juggernaut. I read the books. I saw the movies. I too got sucked into the merchandising machine. I played the board games, collected the tiny plastic totems and adorned my walls with images of my favorite muscle-bound heroes. 

Last Friday night, as you piled into the multiplexes to worship at your fan alter, I went to The Royale and relived my obsession with the Teenage Mutant Ninja Turtles. And with my fellow TMNT enthusiasts, I compiled a short list of essential life lessons gathered from my favorite franchise. (I promise you're not going to pick these up in that vampire saga anytime soon...)

3. A Basic introduction to Japanese

By the time TMNT was first introduced in the late '80s, kids everywhere had a strong start on a Japanese vocabulary - that is, if the entire language was based in exotic-sounding names from Nintendo game boxes or entire cut scenes from Ninja Gaiden. 

Under Master Splinter, turtle fans learned to deliver those words with purpose and reverence. With the right presentation - sort of a whispered urging -- that Duct tape sword was a katana. You can apply the same tone to most consumer electronic devices and major car models to evoke a similar amount of mystique in your daily life. 

2. Journalism Ethics
I'll come right out and say it. Everyone at ASU's Walter Cronkite School of Journalism and Mass Communication should aspire to be a little bit like April O'Neil. 

 Only by being totally committed to searching out a story can you excel in your career. 

Sure you might get kidnapped by a power-mad supervillian every week, or at the very least be forced to relocate your residence every time a sudden ninjitsu battle causes irreparable property damage, but it's the trade-off for plying your trade in a major market. 

 Side note - a good reporter never reveals his or her sources - whether said source is a cartel informant or four humanoid amphibians.

1. Advanced Quantum Physics 
Certainly, the whole idea of multiple universes is vexing. How do you wrap your head around concepts like Schrodinger's Cat and black hole thermodynamics without some type of practical application? 

Michio Kaku talks about 11 dimensions, but all you need to know about is one. Dimension X. It's a place ravaged by freak mutations, living rock soldiers and brilliant scientist's disembodied talking brain. 

TMNT relied on the parallel universe plot device so much that an entire generation believes in string theory. Besides, in M-Theory it is at least possible that the Technodrome actually does exist and maybe could pop through one of the vortexes in Sedona. I, for one, am not betting against it.

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Bob Beard