Category Archives: Uncategorized
Ten random things.
1. I ran into my old boss at the hair salon today. I was NOT expecting to see her again – ever, really; she moved out of state a while ago – and so was unprepared to be face-to-face with her like that. I’m shocked and disturbed by how much the encounter shook me; I really thought I was over all the trauma and pain of that part of my life, but even though I was pleasant and polite, seeing her again dredged all of the painful and ugly right back up. Blah.
2. I went to Central City to pick up Father Chili’s ashes this afternoon. His memorial service is this Saturday.
3. Because of #2, the entirety of the Chili family is descending over the next few days. Half of the California Sister’s family arrives tonight; my British sister-in-law and younger nephew arrive tomorrow, and Bruder comes on Thursday. Nephew and Bruder are staying at our house, and I’ve got things pretty much settled for their arrival; I only have a few fussy, last-minute things to do between now and when they get here.
4. Mr. Chili is in Texas (or, as we say in this house, Tex-ASS) until Thursday (in fact, he may arrive home in time to pick Bruder up from the bus station; we’ll see how that goes). Here’s the thing; I am NOT a clingy wife. I don’t call my husband 8 times a day or text him every hour or stalk him on Linkdin. In fact, there are times when we go all workday without ever speaking at all. I’m keenly aware, however, of when he’s not in his office at L.U. right down the street; whenever he’s away, I’m uncomfortably conscious that he’s gone. It’s weird and I don’t like it, but I have no idea what to do about it.
5. Did I tell you that I’ve been getting my cat stoned every night for a week or so now? About a year ago, Toeses developed a nasty habit of walking around at all hours, talking loudly. Poor old chap is deaf as a post, so he can’t hear himself and, as a consequence, has gotten louder as he’s aged. We put up with it for as long as we could, but we started feeling like the parents of newborns again; he’d wake us every hour or so all night long. I finally took him to the vet, where he was diagnosed with a thyroid condition (which we’re treating with food) and a touch of dementia (which we’re treating with sedatives). Half a pill right before bedtime, and the beastie sleeps straight through to 5:30. It’s bliss.
6. I’ve begun work on my independent study project for my CAGS. I’m putting together a proposal for a model school, and I have some good sources to work on. I’ll likely post my work to the teacher blog when I’ve got enough to make posting worthwhile. Watch that space.
7. It feels very much like this. The 10-day forecast doesn’t have us getting much about 35°. I’m so done.
8. I brought my girls to a Ready for Hilary event at a friend’s house this evening. We realized, on the way over, that Punk is going to be able to vote in the 2016 presidential elections (she’ll miss these mid-terms, and she’s pissed about that). I was pleased that both girls wanted to go, and I’m eager to see what happens going forward.
9. I’m watching Dexter while I’m on the elliptical. Wow, but that’s a good show. The ending of Season 2 had me guessing to the very end; it was all I could do to keep my promise to myself to ONLY watch while exercising (so I went to the gym twice yesterday to get another episode in!).
10. On the other side of all that exercise, I discovered Trader Joe’s peanut butter cups. Uh, huh; they’re trouble, all right…
Happy Tuesday, Everyone!
Are you more worried about doing things right, or doing the right things?
My first answer is, of course, I’m worried about doing the right things. The more I think about it, though, the more I realize that I rarely worry about doing the right things; I always seem to have a really good feel for what the right things are, so I don’t tend to spend a lot of energy agonizing over my choices.
There are, however, a lot of things I worry about doing right; I think that people who really care about the work they do should worry about whether they’re doing it right. I worry about my parenting all the time. I worry about my classes and whether or not they’re sufficient (sufficiently challenging, sufficiently rigorous, sufficiently paced). I worry about my friendships; am I spending enough time/paying enough attention? I tend to not “worry” about my marriage, though that is something that I nurture literally every day.
So, on balance, I guess I do worry more about doing things right than about doing the right things. What about you?
My baby turns 15 today.
My Bean is a giant bright spot in my life, and I regularly stand back and marvel at the wonder of her. She is astonishingly smart, wildly compassionate, deeply thoughtful, and just all around awesome.
I am so proud to be her mom, and I’m grateful, every single day, for the really close relationship we share.
Happy birthday, Baby. I love you, love you.
Successful shopping for memorial service clothes. Mr. Chili found a nice suit.
So, I’m trying – with precious little luck – to engage a friend of a friend on facebook in a conversation about the appropriate size and role of government.
My friend started it with this post:
Whether Repub or Dem, we both agree that we want what’s best for our future. I don’t agree with big business holding the cards.
One of her friends – let’s call him Jim – responded with Nor big government, to which my friend countered that it was late and she didn’t want to get into it right now.
I chimed in by saying, I’ll get into it; what does “big government” mean, exactly, Jim; let’s define our terms before we try to have a conversation. (And Aimee, I’m not sure that both R and D DO agree that we want what’s best for our future for a couple of reasons; first there is no one “our future;” everyone wants/needs different things, and there are a lot of people out there who aren’t willing to make the concessions needed to insure that everyone gets at least some of what they need. Second, I see a lot – and I mean A LOT – of people who favor policies that we can accurately predict are only beneficial to a few and in the short term, but that doesn’t matter to them; they want to be happy/rich/comfortable NOW, and damn the consequences.)
That got me this: I don’t agree with the Big Government holding all the power and control. It’s supposed to be the government working for us, not the other way around. And a most of the people running the government are rich and getting richer at out expense.
To which I replied: You’ll get no argument from me on your last point, but can you clarify your first point? What power and control does the government now have that you think it shouldn’t?
And then the talking points came out. Observe:
Jim: Too many regulations (that change on a whim), restrictions (that change on a whim), never ending spending with no say from us, ever increasing taxes, fees, and fines, targeting of groups because of their political beliefs, and forget having privacy anymore. It’s not the governments job to lead us around by our noses. They work for US not the other way around. Our founding fathers never wanted a government with this much power.
Me: Jim, can you be more specific? What regulations do you object to? Which taxes, fees, and fines? Which groups are being targeted? Where do you feel your privacy has been violated? I’m not being antagonistic; I genuinely want to know what SPECIFIC things you’re objecting to. I’ve heard these complaints in generalities, but generalities are almost impossible to talk about in any meaningful way, and I want to talk in a meaningful way.
There have been crickets since then. I can’t say I’m surprised, but I AM disappointed; I’m always disappointed when I ask a respectful, pointed question that my counterpart can’t – or won’t – answer. How are we supposed to learn anything if we’re not willing to talk to each other?
Edited to include that Jim, after four days, finally got back to me. Here’s his predictable reply: LOL…Be more Specific? No offense but have you been paying attention to the events of the last six years? I answered your question what I didn’t agree with…I know where this is going. Your questions have already given me good idea what to expect. I’ll save us some time. Lets see how these “Complaints in generalities” pan out this upcoming election. I believe the critical thinkers have all the evidence they need.
Who’s surprised? Anyone? Anyone…?
I’m sick, unto death, of this crappy weather. The prognosticators are saying that, while there may not be much snow in the forecast, it’s going to be stupid cold for the foreseeable future.
School was on a 2-hour delay and my first class was cancelled at the college. It’s been a long winter, you guys; I’m done.
Ten things I think are lovely.
1. My family. I adore these people (even when they drive me nuts). I happiest when I’m with them, and I love spotting any of them in a crowd.
2. Blue water, so much the better if it’s bordered with pink sand.. I miss Bermuda.
image credit; me! I took this picture when we were in Bermuda for our anniversary a few years back.
3. Big cats. I think that tigers and leopards, in particular, are beautiful.
4. Yoga. The human body is miraculous, and some yoga poses are really pretty.
5. Irises. Really, I love flowers in general, but I particularly like Japanese irises. I only wish that they had a scent that was as pretty as they look.
6. A clean house. As we prepare for my father-in-law’s memorial service, I’m expecting family to be in my space starting in the middle of next week. I’m working on making my way through the house room by room in an effort to clean and reset ahead of their arrival.
7. Sparkly things. I will admit to a weakness for pretty jewelry. I’m not so much of a snob that the gemstones have to be genuine, though; anything that sparkles makes me happy.
8. Dragonflies. I think they’re graceful and elegant, and I like sharing my space with them.
9. A free afternoon, preferably on my back porch in the summertime with a good book and a tall glass of iced tea.
10. My bed. I love everything about it; my room, the sheets and feather comforter, the way my pillows smell. I love sinking into my bed at the end of the day, and I often loathe having to leave it.
From here, again.
If you just won a million dollars, would you quit your job?
In fact, if I won a million dollars, I’d get right to work.
My husband and I buy Powerball tickets. I know, I know; the odds of winning are slightly worse than the odds of our being killed by terrorists while being struck by lightning, but we do it, anyway. I think that the dreams are worth the $2 a week we spring for the chance.
Anyway, one of the things that we say we’ll do with some of the money when we win is that I’ll open a school; a rigorous, intellectual, progressive, comprehensive high school – probably an extended-day, five-year model with a strong focus in the arts, the trades, critical thinking, and community service and involvement.
In fact, my independent study project is putting together a plan for this very school. I’m a little hung up right now on the physical plant and everything that needs to go in it; lockers, or not? Should there be a gym and, if so, should the gym have weight or other exercise equipment and/or showers? Can we manage a community garden on the grounds? How much parking does the building need to have? The questions are nearly endless, and are difficult to answer in the abstract. Once I get a handle on that, I’m going to dig into questions about curriculum and pacing, though it occurs to me that I’ll have to get the business model under control, as well.
When it all comes down to it, the biggest concern is, sadly, money. No money, no school. Since the states are doing a universally shitty job of funding education and the economy is such that parents don’t have a lot of money to spare for private education, I’ve been trying to figure out how to pay for my hypothetical, desperately necessary school. I’ve considered private sponsorship (the idea of corporate sponsorship just feels wrong to me), and I’ve also thought about making fundraising a part of the curriculum, but winning the lottery would really solve a lot of the foundational problems that this whole dream faces.