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All posts for the month January, 2018

I think that Yak has my math homework (Parmegeddon, it’s starting to grate.)

Published January 16, 2018 by Lynda Christine Rodriguez

So I am currently listening to the audio book of what I am referring to as “The Emperor’s New Clothes” The rest of the world is referring to it as “Fire and Fury: Inside the Trump White House” by Michael Wolff. It’s good and it’s making the side of my head ping a little bit.

I was a trepidatious about using my Audible Credit for this book, because I knew it would just make me  mad, but considering I am usually listening while cleaning or exercising, I could just use the rage.

But the thing is, I don’t know to whom I direct my rage. I can rail and rant at the situation, but let’s be honest, I’m certain that my race, gender and age, not to mention socioeconomic status (really, don’t mention it, I’m kind of freaking out about that) puts me so far below the Trump radar I’m touching the magma filling in the hollow earth. (Earth Science +Conspiracy theory for the win!)

Let me make you a list of the things related to the current political landscape:

a) The false alarm nuclear alert in Hawaii

b) This headline from the New York Times:

Military Quietly Prepares for a Last Resort: War With North Korea

 c) The Department of Homeland Security Secretary is pretending not to know that Norway is full of Nordic types.

d) The President of the United States used language that denigrates two whole ethnic groups, and his cabinet seems to be okay with it.

In the middle of all of this I am teaching Math to Fourth Graders. I am not comfortable with Math, especially with these key concepts that lay the foundation for the rest of their educational careers.

We were working on the Order of Operations.  I was explaining that, in this case, the rules are finite and will not change. One of my cherubs likes to be the dog at the end of the towel and asked, what if does?

I assured him that the only thing that would bring about a change in the law of Mathematics is a collapse of society and if that happens I will happily rise out of the desolate wasteland and send him a note attached to a Yak stating:

” You were right. The rules did change. Please keep the Yak as recompense for your time.”

I can’t be responsible for a missing Yak.

“ipsa scientia potestas est” Parmegeddon, the cheese continues

Published January 11, 2018 by Lynda Christine Rodriguez

I have often heard that  knowledge is power, or so sayeth (probably) Francis Bacon, and who doesn’t like Bacon?

The last few days have felt off, at least from my perspective, and how else can I feel things, hmm? I do feel a bit better, now that I know that Oprah is poised to save us, or at least preovide us with a taco fiesta, and since when were things not made better with tacos?

In the years prior to MBH, I was frantic and often poised to flail. Post MBH, I am very well medicated mostly to prevent any new surprise attacks, and I haven’t spent the last fourteen years repairing brain cells (you can’t say that doesn’t happen! No one knows!) and re-routing neuro transmitters to have it all go, literally kerflooey)  One of the medications is an anti-seizure pill that was initially prescribed to because there was a lot of dried blood working its way out of my brain, but I now continue to take to prevent migraines.

My prescription expired several days ago and I just got my refill about an hour ago.  I think the brain chemistry was a bit skewed.

The last few days have felt odd. I still think we are  circling the drain of this stage of our civilization and I will quote and surmise and make fun, pithy comments, citing chapters of recently read tomes, but I need the brain juice to settle a bit.

It’s possible  my students have noticed things are a bit hinky. I have over programmed my cherubs and have been keeping a tight schedule so that there is little time for my brain to wander.

Today I had a bit of slippage.

I was going word by word through a study guide for a chapter in the seriously dry and uninteresting Social Studies book.  My objective was to demonstrate some research skills.  No one could feign interest in this madness so as their minds wandered, I loudly lamented the efforts of the Sumerians who invented the paper that the book and worksheet was printed on and the efforts of  the Mesopotamians to perfect the written word, not to mention poor old Gutenberg who invented movable type, all of these who have gone before us to make this lesson possible and eight nine year olds couldn’t be bothered to at least keep up.

It was in this moment that I realized my students would report some of this at home and  I would either come across completely insane or totally brilliant.

I can live with either

Parmegeddon (Because if it’s the end, I want cheese.) Part 1: The bearable rightness of being.

Published January 7, 2018 by Lynda Christine Rodriguez

What is it that Robert Burns says about the best laid plans of Mice and Men?

I know perfectly well what Burns said. ““The best laid schemes o’mice an’ men / Gang aft a-gley.” I even know what it means.  The very rightness of knowing things has been both a lifesaver and an anchor in many of the storms of my life (How picturesque! I’ve been teaching children to write descriptively and I may have just lost the run of myself as I am wont to do.)

There is a lot on my  mind right now. There is even more in my sinus cavity because allergy season and kids around me all day, many of them with various and sundry illnesses. Being around my cherubs reminds me of my elementary school experiences and it makes me watchful  because in the anchor and the lifesaver category (world’s worst jeopardy home game) I have a good working memory and have vivid recollections of myself at nine years old and younger. I remember being in Kindergarten and getting into a screaming argument with Sam Honea and Janea Townsend that Ma’am and Mama were two different words. This would not be the first time that I would concede to loud blondes just to keep the peace.

I mostly remember knowing I was right, and not being able to wrap my mind around the fact that these two shrill beasts couldn’t accept that.  As I grew up and my intellectual curiosity was encouraged by nuns, librarians and student teachers (Pretty awesome name for a book store/lounge.) I began to ask a lot of what if’s. I remember asking my parents, “What if someone killed an entire classroom of kids, would the kids be buried together or individually?”  This was in 1980, and, of course, my parents were shocked by my questions because things like that didn’t happen. There are a few other incidents where I just knew something was right and it was. As an adult I have joked about being the pawn between good and evil and I know I have gone on quite a bit about that. With that power seems to come a bit of Cassandra’s curse (world’s worst Lingerie store)  I won’t go into my knowledge of Greek mythology and how Agamemnon should have had more sense to return home after 10 years with another woman, especially since the woman in question spent the entire voyage home warning him that his wife, Clytemnestra probably wasn’t going to be thrilled to see him at all, let alone with a female slave, but, of course, Cassandra was right. Unfortunately, Agamemnon didn’t realize this until after he met the business end of an axe.

Cassandra didn’t get to enjoy her rightness for very long, because  Clytemnestra was only slightly more thrilled to see HER than she was her husband.  And, of course, Cassandra died.

This whole rambly tumble of words is the preface to what will be part book report, part catharsis and part display of my education. (I have an obsessive need for constant reassurance)

This all came about because I just finished reading:

The Mandibles: A family 2029-2047 by Lionel Shriver

and rereading:

The Gate to Women’s Country by Sheri S.Tepper

The Handmaid’s Tale by Margaret Atwood.

That kind of explains my mood.