Saturday, March 31, 2012

The St. Louis Cardinals

Last year I got into the Cardinals because of Goodwoman.  She loves them a ton so I hopped on board.  It paid off big time because as you probably know, they won the whole World Series.  Carlos Beltran is my favorite Cardinal.  He used to be a Met.  He was born in Puerto Rico.  Not sure if I want Puerto Rico to become a state or not.  50's such a nice round #, but Puerto Rico seems like it's been a pretty good territory up to now and maybe we should just let them in.

Thursday, March 29, 2012

The Arizona Diamondbacks

Listen up, peeps, this is interesting.  There's a guy named Gerardo Parra on this team and he's won the Golden Glove award a bunch of times.  When he practices, he uses a small almost toy sized red glove. “If you can make a tough catch with that little thing,” Williams (3rd base coach) said, “imagine how much confidence you have when you put your full-sized regular glove on and go track down a ball.”  Parra was nice enough to buy some of these little red gloves (at about 70$ a pop) for some of his teammates and they didn't even try them.  Parra's a Golden Glove award winner and they don't even TRY to use his generous gift?  Let's face it.  There are some fools on this team.  I don't predict they'll go far.

On a somewhat connected note, I took the day off today to have fun with 20 something daughter.  At breakfast she asked if we could swing by Artful School to see some of the kids.  "I'd really like to get a visual on that little red head," she told me.  So of course we trekked over there and she read with Little Red Head and Cute Trouble during Daily 5.  Little Red Head was very content to read to 20 Something, but Cute Trouble was having none of it.  "Dr. H. is NOT your mom! She's OUR worker," she told 20 something defiantly.   We booked out of there pretty quickly, went shopping for some spring blouses, and then caught the Perle Fine exhibit at the Art Museum.  Pleasant.  I wish I could do it all again tomorrow. 

Tuesday, March 27, 2012

The Seattle Mariners

Oh my goodness, oh my dear, sassafras and ginger beer.
Why the exuberance you ask?  Blogger let me post a picture, no questions asked.  Maybe someone down there at Blogger realized that I'm a good person with potential.

Mariners.  Yes, yes, we all know I go to Seattle annually to visit kin.  And we all know I love that town. But did you know that I used to be a scout for the Mariners when I was just out of college?  I traveled the Pacific Northwest, looking for talent.  Because of me, they have Ichiro on their team.  So that's pretty big stuff.

And other big stuff....I've worked with teachers for the past 2 days and with our coolio Artful consultants on some artful unit revision.  I'm tired out, but I do find I like this kind of work.  It's fun and interesting, thinking about art and inquiry.  And even more big stuff, most of you know this, but some of you may not. Our #1 son got his official acceptance letter into IU Jacobs School of Music.  He's going to be staying IN TOWN.  Celebrate good times come on, Let's celebrate!

Monday, March 26, 2012

The Minnesota Twins

Good Pal Menosky's uncle (btw I love GPM) used to play for the Washington Senators, a team that later became the Minnesota Twins (btw, I love Minnesota). He also played for the Philadelphia Rebels and the Boston Red Sox. He played 9 years in the majors, starting in 1914. He was known as Leaping Mike Menosky for his high, fence crashing catches (btw I love those kinds of catches).  He had 38 triples (btw I love triples) in his career and batted 278.  BTW, I love this story about him:

After his retirement from baseball, he became a probation officer. His baseball career came of use in a case where the defendant was charged with throwing a rock through a Detroit terminal caboose window. The judge doubted he could throw a rock 250 feet, and when Menosky tried to throw a rock 250 feet and was unable to do so, the judge dismissed the case, stating that the average man would not have a chance if Menosky could not do it.[5]

Friday, March 23, 2012

The Oakland Athletics

Well, all good things must come to an end.  Blogger won't let me post my photos any more. Blogger asserts that I've exceeded my photo limit.  LIES.  Had to upload this little # from a picasa album.  I'm irked.  Darned annoyed.  Not sure how to proceed. On a good note, 20 something's coming home tomorrow.  Yeeha.

As for the A's, they're a good team.  When I lived in San Francisco after college, we used to go to some A's games with 2 pals, Chad and David.  Chad and David went to a LOT of A's games.  They always sat in the bleachers in the outfield.  They knew everything about the A's.  They never seemed to get that excited when the A's were doing well, which always surprised me. I remember they had a collection of baseball cards they called "the All Ugly League," which I did not think was very nice. I've found David again on Facebook, but where the heck is Chad?  I haven't seen hide nor hair of him for many a long day.  I wonder if they still know about the A's.  The A's are going to rebuild this year.  I'm going to keep a close eye on them.

I'm about 31 minutes away from the IU Sweet Sixteen game.  I have been nervous all day about this game.  I long and pine for an IU victory.

Go IU.  Fight, fight, fight.

Thursday, March 22, 2012

The New York Yankees

We hate the Yankees in our house, because Husbandman hates the Yankees and we love Husbandman.  That's just how it works.  And speaking of hating, the firsties wrote about a time that made them angry.  I loved this text a lot, written by one of the rascalliest firsties we have:

My dog peed on the rug.
That made me mad.
My dog is not potty trained.
I had to clean it up.
I hate my dog.
My dog needs to go to the shelter.

Tuesday, March 20, 2012

The Tampa Bay Rays

This is interesting.  The owner of the Rays has the same last name as husbandman.  The owner is named Stuart Sternberg.  He's from Canarsie and he's a retired businessman.  From what I've read for 6 minutes on wikipedia, it would appear that the guy does not care for the Rays.  The fans aren't supporting the team, and Sternberg's just about had it.  He even hinted last year that he may want to buy the Mets. Sternberg needs to learn how to support, not thwart, with his public statements about the team.

On Tuesdays I join the kinders for some writer's workshop.  Today I realized I didn't have a plan, so I ran and grabbed some library books.  I ended up reading to the kids about stars and constellations.  Taught them how to draw The Big Dipper.  It was pretty hectic.  We were all sitting on the floor writing and talking.  Little Red Head was crying because I didn't use one of the crayons he offered me, but he got over it pretty quickly.  At the end, we all made a circle and everyone shared a page from their books. This is big.  We've tried to do a sharing several times before, but cool Kinder teacher and I have not been able to get the kids to participate very meaningfully.  Today they were into it.  It rocked.  At the end, Little Red Head screeched, "And now we should all sing a song!"  So we sang Twinkle Twinkle Little Star and followed that up with a rousing Mary Had a Little Lamb.  

Monday, March 19, 2012

The Los Angeles Angels

Los Angeles.  Do you know that song by X?  I really love that song a lot.  I know nothing about the Angels.  I don't think they're a good team because wouldn't I have heard more about them from time to time?  I do miss LA tho.  We used to go there frequently to visit Husbandman's parents.  Now we don't visit LA, but maybe some time we will again.

A posse of sixers came to see me today with balloons, chips, pop, and a cookie cake.  I completely forgot that I told them I would help them surprise their teacher with a little party today.  I asked them before spring break why they wanted to throw a party for their teacher and they talked about how much she had done for them. One little sixer said, "She cares about us."  So I said I would help and I really didn't have to do much.  A little bait and switch action.  Party went off without a hitch.

Today the kinders had a pancake party.  They had a banjo player and a fiddler in to play for them, and they ate pancakes with maple syrup.  I arrived late and everyone was leaving.  I grabbed a pancake and a kid in line said, "You should put maple syrup on that."
"I don't like maple syrup, pal."
"Dr. H., do you know that maple syrup is just the same as syrup?"
I assured the kid that I did know that.  I grabbed a cloth and started cleaning up the tables.

A pleasant day back from spring break, everyone talking about their adventures. A little preschooler called out to me from his van today, "Mrs. Dr. H., I had a great spring break!"
"What'd you do buddy?" I called back.
"Played video games all day long!"
His dad looked really embarrassed, but I reached in and gave him a high five, "That's what it's all about, man!"  I said, with a sort of hip swagger.  The dad laughed and the situation was no longer awkward.

Back in gear with the one of a kind Artful School Angels.  No place I'd rather be.

Sunday, March 18, 2012

The Kansas City Royals

 I love the internets so much, but I fear I may love them too much.  I may actually have a very slight internet addiction.  Case in point.  About an hour ago, I decided to clean my house, but then I thought I would check my email and then I thought I should blog.  So I started reading about the Kansas City Royals.  Then I started reading more about Gaylord Perry.  I read about Gaylord Perry for about 30 or 40 minutes.  So much out there to learn about and think about.  The other night, #1 Son tweeted that he saw Tom Morello at SXSW.  So that got me reading about Tom Morello the next morning.  Come to find out, I had never heard of him.  He's an interesting guy and he played with Springsteen at SXSW.  So did a lot of people.  A search for Tom Morello ended up in me spending a ton of time reading and watching videos about SXSW, Bruce Springsteen, and Tom Morello.  It's nice to have all the time in the world for this kind of thing, but at what point do I say it's too much?  We may never know.

Saturday, March 17, 2012

The Baltimore Orioles

Buck Showalter's their new manager.  Adam Jones is one of their best players.  He's young and someone to watch.  Teagarden has some back problems.  That's Baltimore.  But seriously, the oriole is a great looking bird and I personally believe that all baseball teams should be named after birds. It would make for a great collection of hats and shirts.  One time I was in Baltimore and I bought an Orioles shirt for Nephew Eli.  A few years later, Eli was visiting and we were playing a board game and he was wearing the shirt.  "Did I get you that?" I asked him.
"Yes, it's my favorite shirt."
His mom said, "I have to wash it constantly."

Getting someone a gift they like a lot is one of the best feelings in the world.  It's not that easy to do.  So, thank you BALTIMORE!

Plus, Baltimorian Anne Tyler's new book comes out next month.  And I've read all her books so I feel a special kinship with Baltimore.

Friday, March 16, 2012

The Chicago White Sox

We're back from our good trip to Chicago. We drove by where the White Sox play on our way out of town.  Used to be called Comiskey, but now it's called US Cellular Field.  Fans call it The Cell.  I'm a bit  irked that some cities have 2 teams when my entire STATE doesn't even have a team. It's annoying as all get out.   Chicago has a lot going for it.  Beautiful architecture, history every where you look, fun restaurants, fascinating museums, two baseball teams. If I could live in Chicago, I would.

Right now I'm watching Ides of March. Not great, but if you want to see it, go ahead.  George Clooney got arrested today, protesting human rights abuses in Sudan.  He got arrested with his dad. Way to go, George.

Anyway, Chicago was awesome.  We had the most wonderful trip.

Tuesday, March 13, 2012

The Texas Rangers

#1 Son is heading on a road trip to Texas tomorrow.  His band is playing in the Spicy Evolution Music Festival. It's not as big as South By Southwest, but it's an up and coming music festival I'm sure.

I'm nervous about his trip, but happy for him too.  We took him to Target to buy some road trip supplies.  I suggested that he bring along some "wet ones," and he said he knew he wouldn't use them.  "What do you mean?  You'll be eating snacks in the car and you'll probably want to wipe off your hands every once in awhile."
"No, I won't."
I bought them anyway, because he could change his mind before tomorrow.  And I can always use an extra pack of wet ones.  To my way of thinking, everyone could.  We also bought him some cheezits, fruit gushers, and some ho hos.  He's going to share with his friends.  He's going to drive carefully, and he's going to have the time of his life.

Monday, March 12, 2012

The Miami Marlins

Back when I lived in Miami, (ages 4 to 14), there was no professional baseball.  Sure we had the Dolphins (football), but no baseball.  I am not that in to the new teams.  I hope no new teams get created ever again.  30 teams, no more no less.  Today we are having a little bit of a boring spring break day, reading books and sitting around.  We turned on the tv to see the Marlins lose to the Red Sox in extra innings.  So I have a feeling that the Marlins aren't going to be too good this year.  Their play seemed lackluster.

Sunday, March 11, 2012

The Boston Red Sox

I was born in Boston.  So were my parents and their parents. I moved out of Boston when I was 4, but I used to go back frequently when I was a kid to visit.  Never went to Fenway though, but I did ride a swan boat in Boston Commons.  In some ways, I felt bad when the Mets beat the Red Sox in 1986, but mostly I was overjoyed.  I know it was hard on some of my kin, but at that point, I was solidly in Mets Mania.  More on that later.  I'm glad Boston has beaten the curse of the Bambino twice now.  They seem like a good team with spirit and verve.  I felt sad for Buckner when the ball went through his legs.  He's still a good guy.  Even if he had fielded cleanly, they would have tied the game, and the Mets would probably have won anyway.  (Husbandman asked that I include that last bit, since we've always had sympathy for Bill.  And Husbandman liked him when he was a Dodger).  So, Boston's my home town and it's a good place.

Friday, March 09, 2012

The Washington Nationals

Tonight I was going to post about the Expos, in order to get the Canadian teams out of the way.  And come to find out, they stopped being the Expos quite a few years ago.  They're the Nationals now.  I felt kind of out of the loop when I heard that.  Anyway, this morning I went to do car duty and there was a cameraman out there and an interviewwoman interviewing.  Our assistant principal was with them.  They asked me if I would answer some questions about testing.  I answered the questions and told them that I felt the direction the state is going with the new IRead test is a bad direction.  I felt it went fine and then I went back to greeting peeps as they popped out of cars.  The filmers interviewed a couple of parents and then moved on.  Later, several people expressed their shock that I had answered questions on camera.  One person suggested that I would get my hand slapped soon for talking to the media about testing.  This bugged me.  Teachers, we don't sign away our first amendment rights when we sign up for teaching gigs.  We can write letters to the editor, or our congresspeople, join anti-testing groups on social media, talk to tv interviewers, stand on streetcorners, walk, mix and mingle. It's all part of being a citizen of this great land.  In a way, we're all Washington Nationals.  Not sure what I mean by that last line, but it seems like a way to tie up this post.
On another good note, our spring break started a few hours ago.  Huzzah!

Thursday, March 08, 2012

The Cleveland Indians

This is what I don't get.  Why do the Cleveland Indians still have that stupid Chief Wahoo graphic on their hats?  Please, Cleveland, stop this.  It's ugly and rude.  I've read a few articles tonight about the controversy around Cleveland's Chief Wahoo.  Here's another thing about Cleveland that's good though.  The Cleveland Clinic.  People sometimes don't realize that we have some great health care facilities out here in the heartland.  Well guess what, we do.  We had to consult with a doctor at the Cleveland Clinic once, and the guy was pretty darned amazing.  So, in short.  Dump the mascot.  Support the clinic.  In a word. Cleveland.

Tuesday, March 06, 2012

The Detroit Tigers

I was invited to Good Pal Menosky's house tonight, so of course I'm going to write about the Detroit Tigers.  When I told Husbandman I was going to write from the Tigers subject heading, he volunteered to "dictate" a blog entry to me.  Here goes:

I find myself full of nostalgia tonight for the '68 Tigers.  Who can forget their remarkable comeback from a 3-1 deficit against Bob Gibson's Cardinals?  From lead off man Dick McAuliffe on to the big hitters Kaline, Horton and Cash, this was a team that was destined to win.  The grittiest effort came from left hander Mickey Lolich who won games 2 and 5 and then on only a few days' rest beat Gibson in a classic game 7.  Okay, that's it.

So you see, it's going to be a TEAM EFFORT this month on this blogging challenge!  We've got a lot of  material here.  This is what I like about Detroit.  Greektown.  We went there to eat with Husbandman's Detroit family members once.  It was awesome.  And GoodPal Menosky always gives us cool Detroit products.  And David Bowie sings that cool Panic in Detroit song.  "He'd left me an autograph."
So there you go.

Monday, March 05, 2012

Toronto Blue Jays

I don't like to put people down, but I'm not a huge Blue Jays fan.  I used to have this feeling that we shouldn't let Canadian teams play with our American teams.  I'm not proud of admitting that, but there you are.  I used to feel that way and it took me awhile to accept that the Canadian teams weren't going anywhere.  Even though I love Canada, I just wondered why they couldn't get their own baseball thing going up there. It kind of still gets on my nerves, to tell you the truth. I'm getting over it though.  But I still don't like the Blue Jays. 

Sunday, March 04, 2012

The IREAD Rant

Huddle up peeps.  If you don't know about this, you need to.  On Wednesday, all of our 3rd graders across the district will take a test called IREAD.  The test will take about 70 minutes to administer.  If the kiddos fail this ONE SINGLE test, they will get a chance to go to summer school and take the test again in the summer.  If they fail that time, they will spend another year in 3rd grade.  Other states have laws like this one, and now Indiana does too.  Every time I look at a 3rd grader at Artful School, I think, "Dumb luck that you're the first group of peeps who are going to be hurt by this idiotic and barbaric law." We've worked really hard this year, helping the third graders get ready for this test.  They've read, and read and read some more. Kids with special needs may qualify for a "good cause exemption" for retention.  Thanks, State of Indiana!  Thanks for the caring!  If you want to read about some studies that show retention doesn't help kids catch up with peers, check this out.  The article's not that great, but it does share some studies.  Everyone wants studies these days.  Scientific studies.  It's just common sense that retention is a moronic plan for any child.
Send good thoughts a third grader's way on Wednesday morning.  They're great kids who don't deserve what they're being dished up.  And if you ever want to send an email to a legislator about this unfair law, go for it.  So far, the emails haven't worked, but who knows?  Maybe some Congressperson will have a third grader in a public school (right!) who will figure out that a big mistake has been made when their kid's future is dashed because of unfair retention.

Saturday, March 03, 2012

The Hyperbole

I feel like I have good ideas and that these ideas are frequently rejected by Husbandman.  Last week I suggested we see War Horse, because it was nominated for an Oscar.  "The only way you'll get me to War Horse is inside a coffin," replied Husbandman.  Today I suggested we head over to see the Quilt Show.  "Sounds great.  Maybe on the way we can get root canals too," replied Husbandman.

We're going to have to review the whole "support, don't thwart," mantra over here on High Street.

Thursday, March 01, 2012

The Horror

Testing all week.  If it's not one test, it's another test.  Then after that, guess what?  It's another test.  In the midst of this nightmare of a week, I did get to hold this leopard gecko called Cheetoh.  And I had some good conversations with some kiddos.  After I hear kids read certain books, I'm supposed to ask literal, inferential, critical and creative questions.  I can make these up myself, thanks be to GOD!  After the Meet My Family book, I asked a sweet boy if he thought it was important for families to spend time together.  He said, "Yes, because it's how you get more loving.  You see each other and you share your love and your loving gets bigger and bigger."  Full points for that answer, obviously.  I asked another kiddo the same question.  This kiddo is a handful and he spends much of every day doing exactly the opposite of what we ask him to do.  He replied, "Yes, but my family just yells at me.  That's all that happens every day.  They yell and they yell and they yell.  Everyone yells at me.  They don't know that I'm trying to put together some good days here!'  As yet, I've seen no real evidence that the kid is trying to put together anything that comes close to goodness, but maybe he's just doing his best, and his best kind of sucks, in general terms. Obviously the kid deserves full points for that answer as well.

 Thanks to standardized testing, I was able to feel renewed empathy for this little kiddo. (HOORAH FOR STANDARDIZED TESTING!)   6 more school days til spring break.  Not sure I'm going to make it, my friends.  Teetering on the edge.  Light a candle for me, if you do that kind of thing.  

The Astronauts

 From a Lynda Barry book, I've used the idea to have the Thirdlanders draw self portraits on occasion.  Draw yourself as Batman, a monst...