Monday, August 30, 2010

Shut up, I'm sexy.

Teaching middle school in an urban school district has its moments of humor. Hard to believe as that is, I will share one or two as proof.

I have a young girl who looks, I swear I say this not to be mean, like the illegitimate child of Craig Robinson, only with purple and brown braids and weave. You may remember Craig from "the Office" or perhaps "Hot Tub Time Machine," or even "Last Comic Standing." OK, so you are imagining the right face.

So one day recently, before I knew names, the girl in question walked in the room in mid argument with someone else. She declared in the doorway, "shut up, I look sexy." Then she proceeded to suck on her index finger for the rest of class. The outburst happened the day after she got her new braids and weave. She missed school the day before to get it done, so I suppose she'd better feel good about it. Someone at home dropped a bundle for it.

Self confidence is all you need.

Sunday, August 29, 2010

Panera, working for bread

I'm sitting at Panera trying to work with the free wifi they offer. For some reason the server I am accessing remotely, my work server, is quite slow. So I have turned to people watching for a few minutes.

There are so many people who probably would behave differently if they only realized someone was paying attention to their actions, even if only for a minute. I glanced at a girl who has decided to drink her smoothie with her hands in her lap. It gives the impression that she is somehow tied up. Perhaps her hands are handcuffed under the table. She could be in transit to some security facility, and the couple with her is a pair of federal marshals entrusted with her transfer. She is quite perky for a prisoner, but who knows?

Other folks have come in only to make me wonder if they really knew they would be entering a public gathering place. Did they leave the house wearing their clothes that they wore while cleaning their bathroom? Perhaps they were sleepwalking and arrived at home only to wonder how a spinach quiche in a paper bag appeared on the kitchen table.

Beautiful people are here as well. Most people are, really, but few have learned how to manifest their beauty and pair it with inner confidence. A shame, because the endless variety of humanity is part of our innate fascination with each other.

Well, let's see if the server at work is any quicker yet.

Saturday, August 28, 2010

NOT Political, sure....

Just now I read a facebook update from someone who is a conservative Christian. She is someone who is soft-spoken, yet will evangelize without worrying about what kinds of reactions there may be. Her update was about attending the "Restoring Honor" gathering in DC. She writes in her update that it was "NOT political" and then mentions God about six times in praising fashion.

So how is it not political to hold this gathering in our nation's political capitol, at the same spot that is revered as a historic Civil Rights landmark, on the anniversary of one of the greatest Civil Rights events? I suppose it must be a grand coincidence that the conservative organizer of this gathering just happened to fall when and where it did? No, Mr. Beck actually called it divine providence.

I'm not going to write about the clear manipulative techniques Beck uses, but simply state that it is a pity that so many well-meaning Christians are being duped into adopting a decidedly non-Christian agenda, that is, unless Christians have all agreed that intolerance, hypocrisy, and hatred are now Christian virtues.

You can't have it all. Be a proud Christian, but don't practice intolerance and regurgitate ignorant sound bites with your holy hands held high.

It was NOT a political gathering. I wonder who would be shouting louder if next month a gathering of faithful Muslims were to take place in the same place in DC, simply to spread messages of faith. That, certainly, would not be a political meeting either, right?

Friday, August 27, 2010

What wreaks?!

Again I heard someone use the phrase, "wreaked havoc" and it made me think. Is anything else wreaked? Do we wreak other objects? And is havoc ever handled in any other way beyond wreaking?

Let's see what else can be wrought?

Saturday, August 21, 2010

Hosting For Family

I just drove my aunt and cousin back to Chicago's O'Hare Airport for their return trip to Germany. They were with us for four weeks. My aunt stayed with my parents mainly, and my cousin, who is sixteen, stayed with us.

Lauren is a great girl! She has many gifts and talents, but I can say she also has reminded me that we are not perfect. Using Lauren's memory to prod me along, I promise that I will never leave my clothes on the floor again, nor leave evidence of my eating habits anywhere beyond the kitchen. What a great reminder that a door to a room does not create an alternate universe, invisible to those who may happen past.

She introduced several novel concepts to my children, all under age ten. Piercings, other than the ears, smoking, and wearing very form-fitting clothes. My youngest daughter summed these odd new traits up nicely with the casual, "that's weird" comment.

I love my family, and I will do anything for them all. Living with someone for four weeks, though, can make you appreciate the farewell a bit more. I hope we all can spend time with each other again. Hopefully it will not be a matter of years.

Auf wiedersehen! Until I see you again.