Monday, August 07, 2006

Okay, I am so not a this from Peri's blog

You Are a Dragon

You are very charismatic and incredibly popular.
People are drawn to your energy, but you are a very difficult person to get to know.
You are very active - you are usually hard at work or play.
You enjoy drama, and you enjoy anything unusual or eccentric.

Why this year is different

(Read the next one - Rambling... - first)

New district, new administrators, new ideas.

And yes, new policies just like always - but new policies that might actually work, since they are really new ideas. Most ideas in education are just the same old thing, recycled. Not in Melissa, Texas. Creative teachers who are encouraged to be so. Innovative administrators who are not afraid to work - not just to stay busy, but to actually WORK on what matters. Amazing - I have never even heard of anything like this, much less seen it in action.

So yes, I am sitting through meetings and looking forward to the times when I can work in my room (and, by the way, we DO get paid for that here), but I AM EXCITED! This is what I got into this business for - it ain't the big money, or the fame, it is the chance to really make a difference.

I knew when I saw the mission statement that this was a special place - Melissa ISD is the district that all others in Texas and beyond will emulate.

Wow. And they we mean it.

Rambling on school starting...

School starts next week.

I am not supposed to dread this, since I graduated a long time ago. But I usually regard the start of school with a mixture of dread and excitement - much as I did when I was a student.

It is not the return to the classroom that bothers me. It is the "in-service" days just before school starts.

If you are not a teacher, you might have always wondered exactly what teachers do on those days - or, if you are somewhat brighter than that, it never occurred to you. The fact is, we don't know either. We hope for the days when we get to work at actually getting ready to teach, but those are few, and usually unpaid.

No, usually we get to sit through interminable meetings at which we are told the new policies, which have just about as much chance of working as the old policies, and to hear about this year's fashionable program (and now it is not fashionable to call them programs, so the hyper-intelligent administrators go out of their way to explain that "this is not a program," though they never explain the difference). We just grin and bear it - it will all go away as soon as it doesn't work, which is usually pretty quickly.

But those are not the worst.

The worst are the motivational speakers.

Is anyone really motivated by finding out what color and geometrical shape they are? I do not know that it made me a better or more motivated teacher to learn that I am a blue squiggle. I was once, also, brown; because, apparently, I like to fade into the background. Incredible - if you know me, well, you get the idea (I was wearing a camo t-shirt that day). Once, we heard a recycled speech all about how gen-x'ers had no organizational skills and it was up to us to save them from themselves. I pointed out afterward that many of us in the audience actually were gen-x'ers; albeit, founding members of the order. A note to any principals who might be reading this (yeah, right) - spend the money on copy paper, it is much more useful.

But, this year is different. See next post.

Tuesday, August 01, 2006

My newest tattoo

I know, it is kind of campy to go with something like this right after Pirates II came out, but I have been using it as a logo for my karaoke company for almost a year now, so I'll justify it at that.

And no, I harbor no illusions of being a pirate any more than I think I am Superman (see the link at right for other tattoos), but there is a personal story behind each and every one of them, and that is all that matters to me. None of them are straight from the book, though a couple of them are close, and each has some symbolism, either hidden or obvious or both.

I think that the star in the eyepatch brings me to 28 stars. No goals there, and no significance to the number - but hey, I like stars.

Saturday, July 22, 2006

Dave and his penises

On July 17th, Dave Barry and Ridley Pearson came a-strumpeting to NY City. Who did they find there but their favorite Texas country boy (see the RBR link at right for the story of the first time we met) and a load of other bloglits? I will post a link to the other pictures as well.
Following a great speech (there aren't as many children here as usual, so that leads us to believe one of two things - either there are no children in New York, or everyone in New York is childish) and a costumed reading from Peter and the Shadow Thieves, they signed a lot of books and then were greeted by a throng of bloglits, inluding Blue the Meanie, Jeff and Jackie, Lairbo, sthnbelle, Cheryl, Mew, KDF and myself. Lairbo managed to procure (after much discussion of what to present to Dave) a box of oosiks. Dave seemed relieved to find that he no longer had to be compared to Walter. Ridley still seemed intimidated.
After, most of the bloglits, unfortunately sans Dave and Ridley, found a wonderful (read as "empty enough to seat us at once") Greek restaurant and a great time was had by all. And, to everyone's apparent surprise, Blue and I never insulted each other!

Wednesday, July 12, 2006

Temporary playground

If this works - so that I don't have to okay every comment - then we can play here until the blog is working again.

I sent e-mails to the group (from yahoo - at least I think I did), and from me - but I only had a few addresses. Invite as you want.

Wednesday, July 05, 2006

Just wondering, as we are packing to head out on vacation...

Why is there a Sea World in San Antonio? I mean, San Diego makes sense, but the only thing they have in common is the San. And San Antonio is Sans a sea. Which just kinda makes it seem out of place.

I mean, I like it, but it just seems odd.

Told you I wasn't good at this

And I was right - I don't have enough thoughts to fill a blog. Or the time, it seems, to try. But just so that I don't forget: upcoming topics - DB Bloglit Meet, thoughts on finding a new dog, on being a Texas Rangers fan (and why it is crucial to have a backup favorite team).

Thursday, June 15, 2006

Down at halftime...again

Okay, I've seen a lot of games this year, and a ten point deficit at halftime is less worrisome than a ten point lead at halftime. But why do the Mavs have to get embarrassed before they start playing fundamental basketball?


Why is that so hard to understand? Okay, Miami is good, and Wade is great, but why do we trade layups for long jumpers? I am not a basketball expert - just a common fan - but even I can see the problems here. And it looks like we start the second half doing the same thing.

7 games anyone?

Tuesday, June 13, 2006

I guess we are just too inexperienced...

or maybe I don't read the papers enough. It just seems to me that, no matter what local team we have in the playoffs (and there haven't been many lately), that the other cities' columnists decide it is time to trash Dallas. I just don't see that happening in our local papers, until it is a response.

Hence, the overwhelmingly stupid overreaction from Dallasites (or, as I suspect, just some idiots claiming to be Dallasites) to a humorous jab from Dave Barry last week, prior to the start if what should soon be the Mavs sweep of the Tepids. C'mon Dallas - I know we are tired of the insults, but let's prove that we can at least take a joke!

It was not, imho, as good as Dave's usual stuff, but hey, he's out of practice! But it was still obviously funny - or intended to be - and did not warrant the classless response that it received. I did like the response from DMN's Steve Blow - and, if you take the time to check, you'll see that the responses back from the Miami crowd were much more reasonable than they got from here.

C'mon Dallas - we have the class of the NBA, lets show some in other ways, huh?

Don't crowd me

I can't stand crowds. I don't know why. There has to be some overwhelming reason for me to go someplace with that many people. Aerosmith concert? Cool, I can handle it. Football game? No way - not even the Super Bowl, nobody's wardrobe malfunction is worth that. Rangers' games aren't bad, cause nobody goes. Can even handle amusement parks, most of the time. But the absolute worst ever is the public swimming pool.

Now ya know I got these rugrats here that think the pool is the best place in the world. In my mind, I'm thinking, its crowded, its noisy, its hot, its full of other people's kids - not to mention a literal ton of people who should be wearing a lot more than they are, and there is just no way that the filters are that good.
And yet, where do I spend many summer afternoons? You got it.

I used to be nice and vague, but now I am a parent.