Archive for the ‘bloggers unite’ Category

Get Ready

3.March.2009

Somewhere in between “Hmm, I’d like to spiff up my blog” and “This is a cute look,” I ended up with a new web address.

Please don’t ask me how it happened because I’ve been up half the night cursing the internet, falling into one irreversible decision after another, and meandering my way into a sleep-inducing fuzz – yet have been mysteriously unable to close my laptop and finish later.

I’m not about to figure out how to redirect this bitch, so please – I beg of you – just update your bookmarks. Yes?

http://www.irisindependent.com

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Hola

14.February.2009

Special shout-out to my DC iFriends ’cause I’m coming to you live from your very own town this weekend!

That sounded creepy.

Annnnyway. Thanks for the support re: the last entry. He’s out of the hospital as of yesterday and is taking it day by day. Which – honestly – is possibly the way we should all be taking it. Yes?

Despite a random post-parent-conference break-down with my assistant principal, I’m also doing fine. I thought I was dealing with it wonderfully until – surprise! – I wasn’t.

So. We move on.

Anyway. I’m about to go do some museum-ing.

Have a great Saturday/Valentine’s Day.

I’ll Stop Being Such a Re-poster Right After This

22.January.2009

Some Recently-Discovered Pics from Yes We Can (hold babies)

picture-13

Tears

picture-2picture-3Giggles and Tears

Currently

22.January.2009

Loving: My new and completely unnecessary Blackberry. It just feels so natural in my loving palm.

Consuming: Yogi Tea in Immune Protection “Flavor” – Yogi Wisdom in this cup: Your heartbeat is the rhythm of your soul.

Craving: New York City

Hoping: For “easy” to come strolling by and sit down to stay awhile.

Netflixing: Sex and the City: Season 3, Disc 3 (hence the NYC lust). Fav ep: “Hot Child in the City”

Listening to: “Birds Fly Away” by Theresa Andersson

Reading: Things Fall Apart by Chinua Achebe

Wanting: a clean and organized desk

Looking Forward to: President Obama’s leadership and innovative ideas. PRESIDENT Obama. Loving it.

My Proustian Interview

10.January.2009

I’m copying a friend. Thank you, friend.

If I were on Inside the Actor’s Studio with Mr. Lipton…

The Venerable James Lipton

The Venerable James Lipton

What is your favorite word? besos. As in “besosbesosbesooossss” with a swirling hand motion. Try it.
What is your least favorite word? calm down
What turns you on creatively, spiritually, emotionally? new music (creatively), church music (spiritually – nothing gets me like a good “On Eagle’s Wings”), and Tori Amos/Regina Spektor music (emotionally)
What turns you off? formatting on Microsoft Word
What sound do you love? the sound of TBWSRN’s ring on my cellphone
What sound do you hate? Sarah Palin’s voice
What is your favorite curse word? god-DAMMIT-all-to-hell
What profession other than yours would you like to attempt? fancy editor working out of my fancy loft in fancy New York City
What profession would you not like to do? special education teacher
If heaven exists, what would you like to hear God say when you arrive at the pearly gates?
I’d like him to give me the choice to stay or go.

Betsy and Kari’ should start a blog.

4.January.2009

Am I right or amIright?

A ’50s Housewife I Would Not Make: Looking for Appetizer Suggestions

2.December.2008

I am playing hostess on Saturday night as I’m having a few of my college friends over for our annual Baby Jesus is Born in Bethlehem party.

I enjoy “parties” and “socializing” in general, but typically I have two problems: A) once people get here, I don’t know what to do with them and B) the obligatory cooking that accompanies such a gathering. For this particular party, I don’t have to pre-plan anything that is supposed to look natural and spontaneous because – come on – they’re my COLLEGE friends. It was a semi all-female Catholic school! You know how those Catholic girls are. They’ve seen me at my worst and I have nothing to hide. In fact, I wager I could simply grunt and point to the pitcher of peppermint schnapps egg nog* on the table – while lying spread eagle on the couch in sweatpants- and everyone would still have a great time. In fact, they might even have a BETTER time…

The problem, which I trust you have already figured out from your keen deducing skills, is Worry B: the cooking. I’m not one of those people who TRIES really hard to make something fabulous and then ends up with a disappointing, inedible result. What I do cook ends up tasting at least average – it IS hard to screw up tacos, after all. It’s just that I’m REALLY BAD at “handling” the process part of cooking. “Hurry up and be done, stupid food” is in the running for my unofficial motto. In job interview terms: I’m just not detail-oriented enough in the kitchen. “Eh, close enough” is oft-heard, occasionally followed by the irritating shrill of the smoke alarm.

Now, we ARE just having appetizers -and don’t worry, I require an app for entry – but what about MY appetizers? I want them to be really, REALLY tasty, yet easy to create and not requiring more than a cooking pot or frying pan because that’s all I have. Oh, I have a cupcake tin too.

housewife-making-cake

Fair readers, can you help? I am looking for recipe suggestions. Now, when I demanded that the recipes be of a certain difficulty-level, I want you to throw that EVOO-lovin’ Rachael Ray out of your mind. I’m looking for an end product that requires 2-5 steps and ingredients that I’ve heard of. Is that even possible? Remember, I am the girl who, in spite of gentle mocking from coworkers, brought a bowl of oatmeal for lunch everyday for a year. Well, nearly everyday.

I am currently accepting submissions.

*How DO you serve egg nog anyway? Pitcher? Punch bowl? Jug?

DC Teacher Chic

15.November.2008

Since my close encounter with moving to DC – when I was scrambling for any morsel of what my future life/job/universe might be like – I’ve been reading several blogs from writers in the area. On the outside looking in, if you will. The public schools had been of particular interest to me -obvs- and I’ve been following a teacher in Southeast DC who regularly divulged the dirty details – the reality – of her job as a 5th grade teacher.  DC Teacher Chic.

The teacher recently made an admittedly surprising move and left her position mid-year. She’s been very candid about the reasons; in fact, she takes the risk of sharing her identity and that of her school by sharing said details with DC Wire.

From a teacher’s perspective, the “Comments” sections (in both the DC Wire article and DC Teacher Chic’s blog) are where you’ll find yourself shaking your head and holding yourself back from calling out 80% of the commenters as stupid idiots without a clue who cannot spell or write properly! (Whew, feels good.) It’s easy to see which commenters are the teachers, which are the posers, and which are the ignorant, unappreciative teacher-haters.

Listen, when teachers talk about how stressful the job can be, it isn’t just mindless complaining. If most teachers have the same complaints about their job, shouldn’t we come to the conclusion that the LARGE number of people who make up this demographic are NOT just a bunch of whiners but that there is a real need for change? (Am I channeling Barack Obama here?) What affects the teachers eventually affects the students. Better education starts here.

This is why I can’t blame DC Teacher Chic for leaving her position. Though I don’t take abandoning a responsibility lightly (Did I mention I am a Catholic? GUILT!) if the school environment/the administration/the student are placing the amount of mental duress on you that results in regularly vomiting before you go off to work, it is time to leave. Not only for the teacher, but for the students. I think that’s the part many of the commenters are missing: You have to be healthy and well in order to teach. You can’t do your students justice if you are under intense, unforgiving stress every day.

That being said, I’m a teacher in a suburban district and therefore don’t know or truly understand the problems of urban districts. We just don’t face the same problems of attrition that the latter does. There are also some things this teacher had mentioned that do give me misgivings (i.e. “Can I see a show of hands of teachers who have been asked for a bite of food? I get this question all the time.” I am going to hope I’m missing something here and that she isn’t truly eating in front of her likely-hungry students.) The point is that if this example of the urban teacher exodus isn’t a legit one, there are multitudes of examples of that are.

What will it take to turn urban districts and schools around? So that teachers don’t get to the point that DC Teacher Chic did? If education is the foundation for everything else, when we can’t figure out how to effectively educate ALL our country’s children well, we can’t expect to have a productive society in the future.

*PS: If you go back to earlier posts on this blog, DC Teacher Chic discusses Michelle Rhee’s (district superintendant) contract proposals – some of which feature the phasing out of tenure. An interesting conversation in itself, this part is worth reading as well. Remember, DC is often the petri dish for initiatives that go nationwide.

*PPS: See, not a re-post! Happy face!