Friday, July 17, 2009

I was back, but now I'm gone again

Hey! I've moved to wordpress, come find me!

Thursday, July 16, 2009


Maybe it was three weeks in paradise, or the sleep deprivation, or the overpriced bottle of inflight red wine I'd guzzled, or perhaps it was the sleeping man in the seat next to me, wearing my ring...whatever the cause, miles above the Pacific, I was in the perfect place to absolutely love Happy-Go-Lucky. And I did.

I'll be many people, this will be one of those movies where “nothing happens” - and sometimes that can be really annoying, at least for me. I hate it when a film is trying to make some statement about how shitty life is and that flowers wilt and you turn 40 and realize you hate yourself...and so forth. So, in Happy-Go-Lucky there is no strict adherence to screenplay formulas and yet there is a lovely little plot with a beginning and an end and the promise that the lives of these characters goes on in the same subtle magical way.

Poppy, the impossibly optimistic and delightful central character, lives on the fringes of being too nice, too outgoing, too happy. And I began to see her a philosophical character – hey, if I was still in film school I'd call her a Christ figure and just maybe that oft-sought approving nod from Prof. Begley. No matter how irritating you may find such a bubbly happy person in real life, in this film world you cannot help but being moved by her adherence to the simple belief that putting goodness out in the world will make it better.

Sometime I can be like Poppy, joyous and eager to spread my goodwill to all. I love those times. I feel like the public education system is often conspiring against this, seeking to beat me into bitter submission and then I, likewise, beat my hundred-some pupils into similar meekness. Let's me honest, we teachers; we can complain.

Complaining can be so delightfully cathartic...and it is sometimes unquestionably necessary for one's sanity. But, looking on the brighter side of life, believing that one can change the world simply through kindness is, gosh, so empowering. Who among us doesn't harbor secret (or not so secret) aspirations to do just that...move the world towards a better place?

Oh, and by the way...I love you.

Sunday, November 02, 2008

New Kind of Tired

It is 2:26 (even though the clock says 1:26). I am at the Campaign for Change office. I feel like I am asleep, but I'm working sometimes with my eyes closed.

Friday, October 10, 2008

Letter to the Editor

It's 5:23 am and I am preparing for another long day. I get to school by 6:00 to gear up to teach 7th grade social studies, stay for after school tutoring, then rush to my second job as canvass manager for the Campaign for Change.

I see these two positions as absolutely linked, especially in light of the tone and character of vice presidential nominee, Sarah Palin's latest rally, where supporters were worked up into a racially charged frenzy climaxing with a reveler's call to kill Senator Obama; a suggestion that was not condemned by Gov. Palin. The fact that the McCain campaign is stooping this low, playing on the ugliest of human tendencies, shows their desperation and intentions for this country. At a time when the entire country is suffering in so many ways, they attempt distract and divide us with racist innuendo. So that fear of the other rather than hope for the future will inform our decision on November 4th.

I am choosing to believe that we have come farther than that. That the unchecked sentiment chanted at that rally represents a minority of the country. I have to. I teach 100 middle school students who had a very difficult time wrapping their head around racial segregation, perplexed by the idea that there would ever be a time that their co-existence in the classroom would not be possible. This innocence is the future. And it is for them that I am working these long, taxing days – to lose this election is to embrace the ugliness, the hatred and fear that has separated us. It would take us a thousand steps back from the distance this nation has come in dissolving the racial divisions that have plagued our history. We cannot afford that.


Sunday, September 28, 2008

Weekend Wrap Up

Friday: Doctor's appt, gym, grocery store. Home for ravioli and the Office with Matt. Off to my aunt's house to watch the debate and drink wine.

Saturday: Up early - hung around house for a few hours then took my car to the shop to repair damage from hit and run. Headed downtown to stand in line for three hours:

Then in the rain for three more:
To see Barack Obama and Joe Biden:

The last time I was on that field, I heard Newt Gingrich speak (it was my grad school graduation). We left the field soaked to the bone and completely exhausted and came home to eat cheap pizza and watch Flight of the Conchords in our bathrobes.

Sunday: Up at 7 to write lesson plans and do laundry. Volunteered at Obama headquarters for several hours (I've been drafted as a volunteer recruiter/organizer), then jetted to the gym. Came home to make potato leek soup and hang out with Matt. More planning, then drove around to find copies of today's local paper.

Wednesday, September 17, 2008


I apparently have the gassy kids this year.

Yesterday, one was covering his nose in the cafeteria. When I asked him what was wrong and he told me someone had farted; I offered him the kind of wisdom only a public school teacher can impart: whoever smelt it, dealt it.

Monday, September 15, 2008

GOP Fan Club President

Today we started our elections unit. I told each class how I volunteered this weekend for one of the candidates, but I refused to reveal who. In my last class of the day the consensus was that I had volunteered and was planning to vote for McCain.

Their suspicious, they claimed, were confirmed when I allegedly "blushed" every time John McCain's name was mentioned.

I offered that I was either utterly embarrassed that they would assume I was a Republican or totally in love with John McCain. YOU BE THE JUDGE.