Friday, July 27, 2012
"it sucks being a teenager"
Well, at least it's true.
(Other weird search terms: "yolo exceptions", "am i pretty enough to act", "do college age kids still give hickies in 2012", "lemonade out of lemons". WTF?)
OK folks, I'm taking a week off. I go back to work on Thursday and I'm going to take my last bit of vacation to relax, recharge, and attempt to be ready for the madness that will take over my life once again,. And obviously to finish watching Doctor Who.
As always, thanks for reading and being on this ridiculous journey with me. I appreciate you more than you know.
Thursday, July 26, 2012
On the other hand, one of my former students posted on Facebook the other day that he had proposed to his boyfriend and they were engaged, and it made me really happy. Maybe because he's a bit older (25), and because he seems really happy. I stopped by his work to say congratulations and I really meant it.
(To be fair, one of my former students got married last weekend and her wedding looked beautiful and simple and totally her. I wish her lots of happiness as well. I don't only wish happiness for my gay former students. It just so happens that my gay former students are way more awesome than the straight ones.)
Wednesday, July 25, 2012
The other day I had breakfast with someone I've known since we were kids. We went through elementary, middle, and high school together, and even attended the same university, although I saw her around maybe once there. We were friends on and off while growing up. In high school we ran with different crowds, she was involved in theater and I was busy with student council. We had classes together and spoke on occasion. We've been friends on Facebook for a while now and recently she reached out and asked if I wanted to get together.
I was nervous, but we had a lovely breakfast. She brought her one year old with her, who is the cutest kid ever. We recounted our lives over the past decade, shared what we knew about our former classmates, and reflected on how being grown ups had turned us into new people.
When we sat down to breakfast one of the first things I told her was, "If someone had told 15 year old me that 31 year old me would be having breakfast with you, I never would have believed them." She laughed and agreed. Neither of us could remember why we stopped being friends, but we both acknowledged our mutual ridiculousness throughout the years.
I guess all of this is just to say that people change, and that's good. One of my favorite posts I've written talked about who I was in high school. In that post I wrote something that has become my mantra, "You're under no obligation to be the person you were in high school for the rest of your life." I think this breakfast proved my point. You can be a different person. You can reconnect, if that's what you want. You can be better, funnier, more ridiculous in every good way possible. What you did or said all those years ago probably doesn't matter, and you think it does, you're probably wrong. Being a high school teacher I'm always questioning my younger self and wondering what I could have changed and how that would make my life different now. Honestly, I wouldn't change anything. All of those really stupid choices made me the person I am today.
I am a better person than I was 16 years ago, and that's what counts.
Tuesday, July 24, 2012
Biography: Walt Whitman
Monday, July 23, 2012
On Jane Austen (all from the same essay):
Opening line: "As history as progressed womens roles in the family and society has changed large amounts molding the right they now have today. Jane Austen was one of the first women righters and unknowingly one of the biggest influencial models of womens history."
Concluding line: "She believed in women having bigger roles and was one of the first big women writers in american history. She will always be remember as a women in the fight for love over money and for daring to be more and strive higher then the world thinks is the limit. She is a big activist and proves it that you can shoot higher then what people think you can do. Dream big."
A few weeks ago Lawson wrote this article, "Lesson 37: An Open Letter to Teenagers Wanting Babies", which I thought was hilarious and spot on. Go read it yourself!
Since you're already on the internet, you should pop on over to Amazon.com and buy a copy of her book, because it's one the funniest things I've read in a very long time.
Saturday, July 21, 2012
1. Jason Mraz, "I Won't Give Up"
Jazon Mraz is kind of hit or miss with me, but I love this song. I might sing it very loudly, and very badly, in my car on a regular basis. Also, Jason Mraz wants to make sure you conserve toilet paper. One of my friends and I reference this all the time and still, three years later, think it is hilarious.
2. Ann Patchett, State of Wonder
If you haven't read anything by Ann Patchett, you need to take yourself to a bookstore, or the nearest library, and read Bel Canto immediately. Now. I'll wait. OK, I won't actually wait, that's crazy. But you should still read her books. I just started State of Wonder and I'm already hooked. Patchett's writing is incredibly beautiful and addictive.
3. A Quick Succession of Busy Nothings (http://www.melbourneonmymind.com)
I found Kirsti through Twitter when a friend mentioned to me that she was doing a live-tweet of Doctor Who episodes. Of course I needed to read that. So I followed her, found her blog, and never looked back. She's funny and insightful and very supportive of my Doctor Who love. Go check out her blog!
Friday, July 20, 2012
Me: So you'll be choosing a character from the book and you're going to write five poems from their perspective.
Kid #1: FIVE POEMS?!
Me: Yes. Whine and I'll make it 20.
Kid #2: Can we choose more than one character?
Me: No. One character. All poems from their perspective.
Kid #3: Can the character be from any book we've read this summer?
Me: What?! No! From the book we're reading right now. You know, that green one on your desk.
Thursday, July 19, 2012
Wednesday, July 18, 2012
I thought about it for a minute, and it's true. When I find something amusing I smile, or scrunch up my nose, or giggle. I save big laughs for thing that are truly funny. But when I hear those things, I'm not afraid to let go and laugh my ass off. I've been shushed in the English office many times for this.
Humor is the most important quality for anyone who plans on being in my life. I love to love, but I don't just laugh for anyone. I'm not a laughing slut, I guess. I'm not sure what any of this says about me, but I'm not going to read into it.
Tuesday, July 17, 2012
I'm very happy to say I have one of those friends.
I started a new label today for the random stuff I talk about. If you're ever bored, go to "just me talking about stuff" and enjoy my ridiculousness.
Monday, July 16, 2012
A few years ago I reconnected with an old high school friend via Facebook. I found out she has two great blogs and I've been glued to them ever since. When I joined Twitter (which I did at the demand of B, because apparently he runs my life sometimes (at least he used to, sad face), and vice versa), she was one of the first people I followed. Through her Twitter, I met another girl, with whom, I later discovered, I went to high school with. I don't remember this girl, although her face looked vaguely familiar. It turned out we live pretty close to each other now, so I friended her on FB (which, btw, I never friend people I don't know, and you shouldn't either, it makes me so mad when my students friend people they don't know, um, hello, that's how you end up in the back of a windowless van, kiddos). She also has a blog, which I commented on at one point. I wanted to let her know that "M" is me, so I sent her a FB message telling her so (I reveal myself from time to time to people who are completely out of the world of education and aren't likely to use the information to ruin my life). I was so not prepared for her response. Apparently she's been reading my blog for a while and even mentioned that she misses Caliban and Feste (as do I, ALL THE TIME). It totally blew her mind that it was me writing this, like I'm some sort of an internet celebrity. (Which I totes am, obvi.)
(This post has more parentheses than most and I don't know what that's all about. I'd apologize, but I don't think one ever has to apologize for using parentheses. It's like how love means never having to say you're sorry. Something like that. I need to stop this parentheses now because it's getting ridiculous.)
We had coffee shortly thereafter and it was super fun. One of the first things she said to me was, "So am I supposed to call you M, or...?" I laughed and said she could call me by my real name and then I explained where the pseudonym came from, which, sorry dear readers, this is closest you're ever going to get to an explanation on that one. We had a nice afternoon and I think I have a new friend, which is cool because making friends as adult is hard, especially when you're super awkward and think that talking to people is the worst ever.
I guess all this is to reinforce a lesson I learned from a Starbucks cup a long time ago...
Friday, July 13, 2012
Come join me in a discussion about my strange love of Logan Lerman, the real original Manic Pixie Dream Girl, and why you should NEVER watch "We Need to Talk about Kevin".
Looking Forward To...The Perks of Being a Wallflower
Thursday, July 12, 2012
Tuesday, July 10, 2012
"My eleventh grade English teacher was a guy named Paul MacAdam. I got a D in the class, and I only got the D because I wrote a paper about Toni Morrison’s The Bluest Eye over the summer. I was a crap student: I didn’t read; I didn’t participate; I didn’t turn in papers, or when I did, it was embarrassingly obvious I hadn’t read the books. I also skipped class a lot. It was in the morning, and I didn’t think very highly of morning classes.
I actually said that to him once. He took me aside after the bell rang one day and said you’ve been missing a lot of class, and I was like, “Yeah, I don’t think too highly of morning classes.” I was a real peach.
But when I did go to class, I was usually the last person to file into the room. One thing I remember about that class: Mr. MacAdam always held the door open for us until the bell rang. We’d walk in, and he’d greet each of us. He always held the door open until the bell started ringing, and I’d come in last, three seconds before the bell rang, staring at my untied sneakers, stinking of cigarette smoke, and he’d say, “Mr. Green, always a pleasure,” and then he and the class would talk about the book. Say it was Slaughterhouse Five. I hadn’t read it, of course, but they would talk about it, and MacAdam would get to talking about war and the nonlinear nature of time and how Vonnegut had stripped down the language to tell the nakedest of truths.
But the discussion was always so interesting—these big, hot, fun ideas seemed to matter so much. So I read the books. I never read them when I was supposed to read them; I’d read them a week later, after I’d already gotten an F on my reaction paper. But I’d read them. In essence, I was reading great books for fun. MacAdam didn’t know it, of course. He probably still doesn’t know it. But it didn’t matter whether I was worthy of his faith; he kept it. He still held the door open every day for me. He still treated me like I was the smartest kid in the class, still took me seriously on those rare occasions when I’d raise my hand, still listened thoughtfully to me when I’d give him my reading of a passage I could comment upon only because he’d just read it out loud. He believed I was real, that I mattered. I wasn’t yet able to understand that he mattered, but he was okay with that. He just kept holding the door open for me."
Monday, July 9, 2012
1. The aforementioned hair thing. I spent most of my time watched the animated of Merida's hair. It was awesome.
2. I love pretty much all things Scottish, especially Scottish accents. Fun fact: whenever I watch a movie or tv show in another accent, I talk to myself in my head in that accent for the rest of the day. I've been speaking to myself in a Scottish accent all day. Yeah, I'm weird. Shut up. Have you seen this interview from 2007 where Craig Ferguson talks with James McAvoy? It's maybe the cutest thing in the world. I've watched it approximately 207 times since it aired five years ago. That's commitment. Work Spouse refers to James McAvoy as "Your Boyfriend James McAvoy". (This is also the case with "Your Boyfriend Timothy Olyphant" and "Your Boyfriend Ryan Reynolds". I have varied taste in men.)
3. Speaking of Craig Ferguson...I love that every movie with a need for a Scottish dude always has Craig Ferguson. I adore him. I saw his stand-up show like five years ago and he was hilarious.
4. I love love love Kelly Macdonald, despite her terrible Irish accent on Boardwalk Empire.
5. I love that there's a Disney princess whose end goal isn't marriage. Now, does that means she's gay? Who the hell cares? I don't understand how that's the logical interpretation of a girl who would rather live her life than focus on getting a husband. And if she is gay, what of it? Some people are gay, and that's OK. I think we've had this talk recently. Shut up, media.
Go see it. It's cute and heart warming and exactly what my summer needed. Tomorrow I'm going to see Savages, which will be a completely different movie experience, I'm sure. (One full of sexy sexy Taylor Kitsch.)
Saturday, July 7, 2012
I'm not fashionable and I've never been so. I've always been a t-shirt and jeans kind of girl, and my regular uniform for work is a twirly skirt of some sort (pockets are a bonus!) and a plain shirt. I wear flip flops every chance I get. All that being said, I can recognize terrible fashion when I see it. I've been overwhelmed by the awful fashion in summer school.
-A girl in six inch heels.
-Tube tops over bras (regular or sports bras). Uh what?
-A see through shirt over just a regular bra or a bandeau bra. This was something we started seeing at the end of the year and it's awful.
-A girl in knee high boots. Note: It's a billion degrees outside.
I guess I shouldn't be surprised when this is the kind of shit my former students pin on their "fashion" Pinterest boards:
Spoiler alert: This is NOT OMGSOCUUUUUUUTE. This is NOT an outfit. This is a bra and tiny shorts that will show off your lady parts and I DO NOT WANT TO SEE YOUR LADY PARTS. I have lady parts of my own and I cover them up, because I'm a motherfucking lady. You should NOT wear this in public. If you do, I reserve the right to judge you and very likely call you slutty. Deal with it.
Friday, July 6, 2012
-John Green, from his novel Paper Towns-
Thursday, July 5, 2012
The other day B and I were at school working on some stuff for our (now my...) extra-curricular. Here are some conversations we had:
Me, looking to see if his power strip was still under his desk: Hey, did you leave your thing... [a beat while I realize what I said] DO NOT EVEN START WITH ME.
Me: So is this the way I should do it?
B: That's what she said.
B, laughing: You're going to need to call me every once in a while and say inappropriate things.
Me: OK, but you didn't answer my question.
B: What was your question again?
Me: Should I do it--
Me: Oh my god. I've decided I'm not going to miss you after all.
Me: So why did she go down?
B: HAHAHAHA GO DOWN! I bet she went down!
Me: In her salary! Why did her salary go down?! You're IMPOSSIBLE.
Weirdly enough, these are the things I'm going to miss.
Tuesday, July 3, 2012
But this is my blog and here's why I'm not going to stop talking about civil rights...
Because it's bullshit. Inequality is bullshit. I don't mean to offend anyone's delicate sensibilities, but it's bullshit.
Earlier this year I had to defend two of my gay students. I really wanted to talk about it when it happened, but I'm not going to get into specifics because I don't think it's a good idea. What I will tell you is that it was bad, it made me angry, and I cried a lot. I was told by someone that I should be careful because people might get the wrong idea about me. Uh, what? You mean that I love my students, all my students, equally, and with that love comes a mother bear inclination to defend them? I would rather someone think I'm gay (which, incidentally, I'm not, but if I was that would be fine because being gay isn't a bad thing) than think I don't care about my students. Even when I don't like them very much (ahem, pretty much this whole year), I still love and support them. One day, when the two students graduate, I'm going to tell them the whole story of what happened, and remind them that they are wonderful and beautiful and deserving of love and happiness.
So I'm going to continue to be pissed at Chick-Fil-A and at people who want to boycott Oreo. I'm going to heatedly argue with my mom about gay marriage during classy Mother's Day breakfast (you have to admit, Mom, that was a good discussion). I'm going to support people who say smart things that support kids or who make videos that support equal rights. I'm going to tell my students to love and support each other.
And if any of that offends you, I'm not sorry, because we all need all the love we can get.
Monday, July 2, 2012
Her: How's it going today?
Me: You know those days when you just want to punch a kid in the face? It's one of those.
Her: Well...that sounds a little...intense.
Me: This girl's stupidity is intense.
Her: Oh, haha... [backs away]
If I was back at my school this is how that conversation would have gone:
Coworker: How's it going today?
Me: You know those days when you just want to punch a kid in the face? It's one of those.
Coworker: Oh god, right? I swear if we could just punch, things would be better.
Me: I KNOW! Like, why can't you just pay attention?!
Coworker: Because kids are the worst and we love but hate them.
EXACTLY. And there would be a smattering of swearing in there too. And that's why my coworkers are awesome.