flightless hag

A chronicle of the adventures of birdwoman: a lonely, talentless freak who wanders the internet in search of entertainment.

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Location: Philly

I'm a 40-something married white female, survivor of weight watchers, avid reader of pulp. Dogs (not cats), extreme right (handed, not politics), ENTJ, alto, wanna-be knitter.

January 31, 2009

Sunday Funnies

So the paper comes early in our parts. Most of the Sunday paper comes on Saturday, including my favorite part, the funnies.

This week, the funnies were in a different section, though.

In the category of "OK, so I can't carry a 100lb backpack up Everest anymore. That doesn't mean my service is done!", I present:

Sherpa lined? Excuse me, but EEEEWWWWWW! 

And in the category of "That heinous beyotch finally got someone who can appreciate her culinary talents":

I have always hated Rachel Ray since the $40 a day show. She just gives me the heebie jeebies. She smiles too much, and behind that smile lies a hatchet-wielding kind of madness. I swear it.

Besides, I could cook the crap she comes up with. I thought, though, that I was alone in this hatred. Apparently not. She has detractors all the way up to foodie Anthony Bourdain. Nice to know I'm in good company. 

And no, Titus will not be eating Nutrish. What a stupid name. Nutrish. OK, stopping rant here.


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January 17, 2009


Look around, Leaves are brown, there's a patch of snow on the ground.

Well, not really, but it is cold as a witch's nose (which witch? Well, stinky has been playing the homophone game for weeks now since he learned that word. They're fun when they like to learn!). 

It's not as cold here, however, as it is at my sister's house. 30 below where she hails. Sounds lovely. My mom said talking to Kathy made her feel like going outside in a bathing suit because it's positively temperate here in comparison.

Yep, my mother is braving the house of Rogers again. We've no laundry to do, my house is clean and neat, and when Moth was sick this week, she stayed with him.

Speaking of moth, check this out. Kid psychology. Please look at numbers 6 and 7. Snert. He's my kid, for sure!

Besides Tim puking his guts up for the last 3 days (!), we've been well. I have some school stories to write that are kind of fun, but mostly, I'm just keeping up these days. I haven't run regularly in weeks and the less I run the more tired I get. Stupid, stupid, stupid!

John and I went out last night to a restaurant whose name we thought at first was Mala. I thought, who would name their restaurant "bad"? Well, we braved it anyway. I ate something called "Viking Village Scallops." Why do they have to name things like that? They were quite yummy, and if it hadn't been a whopping 8 degrees last night, I might've even gone raping and pillaging afterwards. Unfortunately, I was just too cold. Not a viking after all, I suppose.

I also recorded a BBC miniseries this week called "Lost in Austen". As I am an Austen fanfic... errr... fan, and a fan of the lead actress (she was in a great miniseries called Hex), I gave it a whirl. It was OK, really just a mary sue, but the thing that got me was another major character was a lead character from Hex also. Is Britain really that small?

Well, I'm off to write up my school stories. They are fun in a "please pummel me about the head with a blunt instrument" kind of way. Stay tuned... But for your fun first, while I write these up, please watch my favorite Kingston Trio song. 

Completely round is the perfect pearl the oyster manufactures.
Completely round is the steering wheel that leads to compound fractures
Completely round is the golden fruit that hangs from the o-o-orange tree
Yes the circle shape is quite renown
But sad to say it can be found
In the lowdown, dirty run-around
That my true love gave to me
That my true love gave to me

Completely square is the little box he said my ring would be in
Completely square is the envelope he said good-bye to me in
Completely square is the handkerchief I flourish constantly
As I dry my eyes of the tears I've shed,
And blow my nose which turns bright red
For a perfect square is my true love's head
He will not marry me, no
He will not marry me

Rectangular is the hotel door my true love tried to sneak through
Rectangular is the transom hole by which I had to peek through,
Rectangular is the hotel room I entered angrily, and
Rectangular is the wooden box
Where lies my love neath the golden phlox
They say he died of the chicken pox
In part I must agree
One chick too many had he

Triangular is the piece of pie I eat to ease my sorrow
Triangular is the hatchet blade I plan to hide tomorrow
Triangular the relationship which now has ceased to be
And triangular is the garment thin
That fastens on with a safety pin
To a prize I had no wish to win
It's a lasting memory
That my true love gave to me


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January 16, 2009

Bureaucratic Nightmares!

(date changed to make it a lower post.)

OK, so as most of you know, I attempt to teach science to a hoard of kids in an inner-city school. Because most of our schools are a little bit challenged in keeping up to what the kids need to know (you know, no child left behind and all that), we have very specific and detailed instruction on what we must be teaching and when. This exists for most major courses.

Well, this year we have a new overlord of the schools and she has been informed (? does she have snitches?) that many? some? of the math and english teachers aren't sticking to the program. So now they all have to give a quiz EVERY FRIDAY (which takes a good portion of the period) to see if the teachers are far behind... so they're losing one in five (on a good week) days of instruction because they're not going fast enough... does anyone else see that this might be a dog-chases-tail kind of problem?

But we science teachers are not immune. Beyond our bi-monthly "are you teaching the right stuff" test, the state administered a standardized science test last year. Every district (in the state?) apparently scored below proficient. Much of the test, wisely, as it is governed by politicians, is geared toward environmental science. Which is not a course required in most schools. Also, there was a great deal tested on the life-cycle of stars which is taught in 7th grade. The test is administered in 11th grade. Yes, this all makes a great deal of sense.

So, the knee-jerk reaction is to "teach to the test". I now have a lesson I have to teach every week to help my students prepare for the PSSA.
Problem 1: most of the stuff in the review is biology/environmental. I last had biology in 1985. I do not remember it, and I do not care to.
Problem 2: I have 150 students. 10 of them are juniors. The other 140 are not required to take the PSSA until next year.
Problem 3: I have my own schedule that I must follow. I am just a little bit behind now, but stealing a day a week? Please see the second paragraph of this post.


Speaking of teaching outside my "expertise," in celebration of the coronation on Tuesday, the school is doing a whole host of presidency-related stuff. I have to teach about the Gettysburg Address, I have to teach about the I Have A Dream speech, I have to teach about the Declaration and the Constitution and all this civics history and other schtuff. And I have absolutely no clue. So I got out Schoolhouse Rock. Isn't that the best way to learn it? Heck, I can still sing the preamble.

All of this makes me very confused. But hey, keeps me on my toes!


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