Friday, November 28, 2008

An alternate Thanksgiving story

A few years ago, Ray and I attended a birthday party. At this party we met a guy, Mark, and his wife. Our introduction went something like this:

Me: "Hi, nice to meet you."

Mark: "You too. I understand you're getting married, is that right?"

Me: "Yeah, we're getting married in a few months."

Mark: "Congratulations. Are you Christians?"

Me: "No, I wouldn't really say that."

Mark: "Oh that's too bad, since only through Christ can you have a successful marriage..."

I'm not kidding. He actually said this. Ray and I have been talking/laughing about this for years.

Flash forward to yesterday...Thanksgiving. This same Mark person came to our family dinner. As soon as we saw him we both thought, "Oh, THAT guy."

When out of earshot, I asked about him, "We met Mark a few years ago...I've forgotten his wife's name."

The response: "Oh, they're not married anymore..."


Wednesday, November 19, 2008

Today's rant

Argh. I've had enough of "problem-based learning." It's become my new pet peeve, right up there with tail-gating (the driving too close variety, not the pre-game party), peas, and grumpy workers at the fabric store.

In the past couple months, I've attended several school-based conferences, most of them on teaching. For the umpteenth time today, I went into a class looking forward to understanding the concept further and getting some tools I can put to use. And, for the umpteenth time, we were treated to break-out brainstorming groups where we were suppose to generate our own answers. I had to ask (by then only 20 minutes left of class) if the instructor was ever going to cover the primary elements of the concept. She referring for 3 minutes to a handout. So I know no more now about the topic than I did before walking into class. I would've learned more by surfing the web than I would in an hour long class that should've covered the subject matter handily.

Don't get me wrong, I think student participation is important. But for pete's sake, please teach your own class, don't have the student's make up a bunch of stuff and believe that suffices for actual instruction.

Tuesday, November 11, 2008

Term paper day

Since today is a holiday and there's no school, I decided to designate the day for writing. I've got a term paper due at the end of the quarter on auditory processing disorder, and I've had (and will have) very little time to work on it. So why not try and get a draft written right now.

It's a good plan, but already I've been procrastinating. I've already checked both emails twice, Facebook, Twitter, and looked up an album on Amazon. I've made my breakfast smoothie, shared some popcorn with Sammy, and now I'm making tea. P-r-o-c-r-a-s-t-i-n-a-t-i-o-n.

So maybe if I "liveblog" my day, I'll be motivated to get more done. Nothing begets writing like a little writing. Right?

9:35 am Finish making tea, back to paper. So far 2 sentences written: "In their 2006 study, Sanches and Carvallo examined contralateral suppression of transient evoked otoacoustic emissions (TEOAE) in 51 children, some of whom had been diagnosed with APD. Their research question: Could noise suppression be absent or minimized in the auditory processing systems of children with APD?"

10:05 You know, I like listening to semi-cheesy massage music while I write. No words, simple themes, easy to ignore. (Half-page written.)

10:40 Crap. I need to upload the next lecture for my class. We'll be talking about dipthongs. That's right...DIPTHONGS. It's really fun to say.

11:22 Just hammered a nail into the wall in August's room so we can hang her "art" projects from daycare. And I'm getting close to being done with Sanches & Carvallo.

11:58 Done with Sanches & Carvallo. Break time! Heading to store to pick up a few things, and then to the car wash. Been meaning to wash and vacuum my car for a couple months. Just so long as I get through two more articles in my paper this afternoon.

1:20 pm Oh crap. How did an hour and 20 go by? I haven't even eaten lunch, and I've got only 2.5 hours to write before I go get August. At least my car's all sqeaky clean.

1:31 Now that I've picked the peas out of my microwave chicken tikka masala, I'm ready to get back to work.

2:38 Well, after writing several paragraphs, a short nap seemed in order. Now I'm back to it and determined to get through at least the Elliott et al article. At least.

3:36 Woohoo! Done with Elliott et al and 20 minutes to spare. You can see how I've lowered my expectations of the day. Last night: "I'm going to write a draft of my paper." This morning: "I'm going to write a draft of the three primary research studies." This afternoon: "I've successfully finished 2 of 3 research studies." Oh well. Maybe I'll pick this up again tonight.

Sunday, November 9, 2008

Tiny post

Me, last night, to Ray:

"When I was a kid, I hated using toothpaste. The foaminess made me gag, so I'd brush my teeth without it. But my mom kept telling me I needed the fluoride. So eventually I started using toothpaste, but just a little bit, and without wetting the brush first. That's how I brush to this day...

...And now you know everything about me."


Me, this morning, to appliance saleswoman:

"Is it true that it's annoying to stir pots on a smoothtop range? Don't they slip around?"

"Oh I wouldn't say that. I've never had that experience and I make gravy all the time."

"(Of course you do.)"


Me, yesterday, to my brother:

"Ray couldn't come with us since he's putting together a lecture for next week."

"Oh, I bet Ray's a good lecturer."

"He really is! When I first met him he was putting together a lecture with a slide featuring Wonder Woman in her invisible jet."

"Really? What was he talking about?"

"I don't know."