Wednesday, April 05, 2006

On Teaching Pilots

We are watching Seabiscuit in my literature class (Books, out! Movies, in! Reading requires work! Also, thought. Final exam: Themes and Symbolism Found In the Films of Lindsay Lohan! Yay!) A scene began which took place at a racetrack in heavy fog, and one of the students said, "Look, they're racing IFR!"

I ran out of the classroom and took a few victory laps in the hall for realizing why this was funny, a place where I was not a year ago. Then I went to the faculty meeting, and then I remembered why 67% of all teachers describe our job as "extremely stressful."

It was a lecture about using technology in the classroom, which... did I not just broaden the children's horizons by showing them a DVD? What else did they want of me?

The technology people put up a PowerPoint slide announcing that the results of a recent student survey yielded such comments as:

"No more PowerPoint!"

"I hate it when my professors use PowerPoint."

"PowerPoint is boring."

"I used to not want to kill myself, but then all my classes started integrating PowerPoint, and now I'm writing this comment in my very own blood."

The answer to this? More PowerPoint! We are all invited to next month's workshop, featuring PowerPoint, which will be all about creating mega super-wonderful PowerPoint presentations that our students will love.

I am not paid enough.

I'm really not at:

Tuesday, April 04, 2006

Unpopinions, Volume II

-Sometimes I listen to the Spanish radio station, because it is fun to pretend that everyone is singing about delicious ham.

-I have no burning desire to visit Hawaii.

-The Ten Commandments is an absolute Hollywood triumph.

-Ace on American Idol? Not attractive. Largely because he goes by "Ace."

-Ain't no shame to be eight months away from thirty and still sleeping with stuffed animals.

-It is a complete and utter waste of time to attempt to force high school and college students to learn a foreign language.

-The Buffett version of "Brown-Eyed Girl" outstrips the Van Morrison version.

-The closer he edges to puberty, the more I want to send Jim The Small Child Nephew out into the world only after enclosure in a person-sized gerbil ball.

-Cowgirl boots with a dress? Totally okay.

-I have yet to see Titanic, and plan to keep it that way.

-There is nothing wrong with eating an entire pizza by yourself.


-If you don't eat the crust.


somebody please make me feel better about this at:

Monday, April 03, 2006

Date of Birth

Jim The Baby Nephew turns two today, which makes him no longer Jim The Baby Nephew. He's in a big-boy chair at the table now, and says "Thank you!", and can renegotiate his parents' property tax. He is now, therefore, Jim The Small Child Nephew.

During his birth, we passed the time by packing into the maternity ward waiting room, not eating meat, for Julie The NephewMama went into labor on the last Friday of Lent. I still have the receipt for the calzone and cheese pizzas, not to mention the barfy feeling that comes with overexcitement combined with a calzone and cheese pizza. Jim's paternal grandmother and I kept sneaking outside the labor room to hear what was happeneing, and what has happening was my sister was exhaling very loudly while her husband said, "Push!" I ran away, because it sounded like uncomfortable things were happening in there, and even though the door was mostly closed I think I was afraid the placenta would come sailing into the hallway or something, because... physics is physics, you know?

When I saw my nephew at last, his father was holding him and discussing which round he would go in for the 2025 NHL draft, and when his mother held him she swayed with him, not back and forth in her arms like they do in Disney cartoons, but with her whole body. He has progressed from his two settings of Sleeping and Very Angry since I placed a palm branch as long as he was in his basinette, which I suppose is the natural order of things, but in a way I miss when The Prince would stay put, and not run about shrieking when Aunt Beth needs a hug.

Then again, he and I had a deeply bonding conversation today, nearly fifteen percent of which I actually understood. There is a reason why at times his father will respond to his incomprehensible pronouncements with, "James... I don't believe you. You're making that up."

He burst into tears at his own party when everyone sang "Happy Birthday," which really shouldn't be happening for at least 38 more years, but then he was always ahead of expectations. I sent him a huge inflatable ball with which to bounce and make noise and destroy things. I'm his godmother. That's my job.

I also sent him a card approximately as big as he is, because I couldn't afford to fly home for his party and thus have aunt guilt at:

Alma Mater

Ah, Home of the Womb.

I'm so proud.

I'd also like the matching microwave/iPod at:

Previous Tastings