Thursday, May 31, 2012

Table for 12

I became very close with the recently graduated class from the Nursing program. As I mentioned (I think), they very graciously honored me with a certificate of appreciation presented to me at their pinning ceremony. There was a student who failed out of the program last fall and her presence on campus was sorely missed this spring.

Sherry is a lively one, friend to all, a great person who just had a hard time with the program - and it's a shame because she could be a terrific nurse. As circumstance would have it, shortly after leaving the program, her 5 year old niece relapsed with Leukemia and "Aunt" Sherry has been there by her side consistently while still taking care of her husband, three kids and household.

Almost every one of the graduates at the pinning thanked Sherry as they received their pins and Sherry was a constant in all of the photos on the slide show. Today, a group of the graduates, myself, and Sherry got together for lunch. Sherry got emotional just driving up to the restaurant seeing us all there waiting for her - but we all had a wonderful time laughing, joking, telling stories and making sure that Sherry knew we are there for her.

I hope Sherry decides to give the program another chance because I think she's got a lot of great qualities that a good nurse should have.

I know that I've gotten better at my job as a result of the time I spent with many of the folks from this 2012 class, not every interaction, especially early on, was a fun one but we all grew to respect and like each other; plus, Erik is a former NY resident and a fellow Yankee fan :)

Tuesday, May 29, 2012

Solve a Dilemma for Me

In the computer lab today, a guys asks for my help. He logs in and gets this error indicating that he is on a temporary profile and no work can be saved. He mentions he had that before but didn't know what it meant, so he ignored it and then he typed a whole paper, saved it and logged off. Now he’s upset that his paper didn’t save, even though it indicated that nothing would be saved. Then, he opens a new document and starts typing again, pauses and asks if he should switch computers.
 
The dilemma - Do I cut this guy any kind of a break at all?

Monday, May 28, 2012

HoliMonday Bullets

  • I hope you'll take the time (if you hadn't already done so), to read the very short story I wrote yesterday. this is no work of genius, just an off the top of my head response to a writing prompt...I think it ended up kind of cool for something that was written in about 10 minutes.
  • I remembered to put out the trash today (I'm embarrassed to indicate how long it has been since I remembered that simple task).
  • I have this uneasy feeling that Memorial Day weekend was far more important to many students in my online class that submitting their assignments - unfortunately, no mercy or second chances, that had since the 21st to get them done.
  • There are now cities in CA that are banning plastic bags at the grocery store checkout. From the report I heard today, they will for a limited time be allowed to provide paper bags but after about 6 months, no bags at all. Folks, this isn't the type of world I want to live in - it's overkill - I don't accept this at all - it's stupid regardless of any environmental impact.
  • Mad Men really kicked major ass this week! The season on a whole has been a bit slow for the most part but the last two episodes have been stellar.
  • I've thus far gotten away without having to crank up the A/C in the house - hopefully I can pull this off a bit longer.

Sunday, May 27, 2012

Fiction Friday: Sunday Edition - "The Meeting"

I found the following writing prompt:

You’re at lunch when your smartphone buzzes with an e-mail from your boss: “Don’t forget, we have a meeting in 10 minutes.” Of course you did forget, so you rush out of the restaurant and attempt to make it before it starts. But a crazy chain of events stops you from getting back in time for the meeting.

Post your response (500 words or fewer) in the comments below.

While I used 1300 words, they are all right off the top of my head and without editing. This is a work of fiction and any similarities to people, places or things are purely coincidental.

The Meeting

I was having a long overdue lunch with a few friends at a nearby Chinese buffet when a synchronized series of chirps indicated that several of us had incoming texts. Mine was one of the phones that chirped so I took a quick peek and then uttered louder than a whisper “Oh shit!” when I read the following from my boss, “Don’t forget, we have a meeting in 10 minutes.”

My anxiety disorder kicked into overdrive in an instant as I fumbled through my pockets to find some cash and I tossed down a twenty dollar bill while apologizing to everyone for having to leave. I jet out into the parking lot in search of my car and then utter an even louder “Oh shit!” when I remember that I walked here (so much for the benefits of exercise) expecting to get a ride back from Jane. I wiped the beads of sweat off my forehead with my forearm and then headed back into the restaurant where Jane was just exiting dangling her keys in my face and said, “Let’s go silly, you’ll owe me, again, for this one.”

We pull out onto the service road then turn right onto the infamous Route 9, where less than two miles can feel like a lifetime, especially when time is not on your side. Imagine my reaction then when Jane presses the FM button on the radio which happens to be tuned to the classic rock station and guess what Rolling Stones song was playing as we pulled up behind a gridlocked nightmare?

I turned to Jane and said, “Listen, I’m sorry you had to leave early too, and I appreciate this, but I really need to get to this meeting. I can walk back faster than this so I am going to do just that. If I just sit here in traffic, it will be torture, at least if I walk, I’ll keep moving and be able to keep the stress level in check.” She said “later” and I slammed the door shut and began to jog-ish back to campus praying I can get there within fifteen or twenty minutes late.

As I make my way past the noticeably blue building that houses medical offices, I heard a very loud noise, what seemed to be an explosion then everything seemed to start going in slow motion. I came to a full stop and watched what for a minute felt like a movie in whatever technology comes after “real-3D”.

While the passage of time no longer seemed consistent with reality, I also recognized it no longer mattered the moment that the windows from the bottom few floors imploded and herds of people began exiting the building and the sound of distant sirens drew near.

There didn’t seem to be as much blood or physical injury but it was very clear that people were totally freaked out and I couldn’t help but draw on the psychological first aid training I went through a few years ago. I could walk away and get to my meeting, which no longer seems so important and in fact, all of the anxiety I had over making it in time was completely gone. There was a reason I had this training and while the simulations that earned me the certification were interesting, this was happening now and I knew I had to at least try to help.

The people were congregating at the far end of the parking lot under a large dome that protected that area from any further physical harm and I ran over to the crowd beginning to assess what I can handle. I immediately connected with a geriatric male who seemed very confused. I introduced myself and asked him if it would be okay if we could go sit on the benches at the far end so that we could talk. He agreed, I put my right arm on his back to lead and comfort him and he spoke with a scratchy baritone, “My name is Simon, what happened?” I told him that I wasn’t quite sure, that I happened to be passing by when I heard a loud noise and saw the windows cave in. I asked him a few basic questions to try to figure out if he needed more immediate care; he seemed fine when he asked if I could help him call his wife on his cell phone. As I took his phone to begin dialing he explained that he was “never quite able to figure out this outdoor phone thing.” Once Simon began talking to his wife, his color came back and he seemed genuinely okay and I told him that I was going to see if there was anyone else that needed help but that I would check back in on him soon. He smiled and waved me off.

The sirens were now visible as a convoy of police, fire trucks and paramedics were fighting their way through the traffic jam and almost on site. A young boy grabbed my attention and asked if I could help. “Come with me mister, it’s my mom!” I immediately followed and before I had the chance to ask him anything, there she was, a twenty something girl who seemed about three years pregnant and breathing very heavily. She screeched, “Finally, a doctor, they aren’t going to wait any longer – hope you’re up for a special delivery.” This is something I wasn’t prepared for. “Ma’am, I’m not a…” She cut me off and got into something of a birthing position then without any reservations, lifted her dress. I yelled for a doctor, this was a medical building after all but there was so much confusion, I may as well have been mute. I was freaking out inside but here is this twenty something girl holding her dress up for me and her way calmer than me son, who was no more than five or six, perfectly calm at his mother’s side.

I ripped off my dress shirt to lie on the ground beneath her and heard her begin to scream. I looked down and realized I was living that PBS childbirth documentary that I saw all those years ago. Only thing, this was way more insane – there was a fucking head coming out of this woman’s vagina. In the instance of a second or less, I prayed, kept myself from vomiting, screamed really loud and then just said, “FUCK!” then I immediately apologized to the kid and tried to calm down as the woman grabbed my hand and said, “relax, this is totally crazy but it’s real, I need you.” Those last three words were the ones that changed everything as some bizarre fight or flight thing kicked in long enough for me to deliver twins just as a paramedic arrived on the scene to finish things up.

I remember one baby coming out, then another. I remember lots of disgusting fluids coming from this woman’s vagina and I remember her screaming, a lot. The next thing I remembered was waking up in an ambulance just outside of the lot. The medic told me that after I delivered the twins, I passed out. He mentioned that the twins are fine as is the mom and their brother. I was sweaty and disgusting and asked if there was anyone who would be able to get me a ride back to campus.

I got in a police cruiser with officer Rohmer who thanked me for my service and dropped me off. I went upstairs to the conference room where the meeting had let out about an hour before but my boss was working on his MacBook air. He looked up and before he had the chance to ask, I said to him, “you are not going to believe what happened to me.”

Saturday, May 26, 2012

And Then, He Rested!

I vowed to have a restful day today and so, I did. After a long week of moving faster than usual with more on the schedule than usual and very little breathing room, I was sure to turn off the alarm and remain in my bed until my body told me it was okay to do so.

It was right before 10 am when the signal arrived that it was time to rise from the bed and so I began what was a solid food fast - turned out to be a very minimal solid food day; even the digestive system needs a rest on occasion. Is yogurt considered a solid food? I vote no!

I bummed around for a while, watching some TV and considered an outdoor workout today. After realizing that if I did want to get outdoors, I better do it sooner rather than later as it will only get hotter so I got on my shorts, grabbed some headphones and made my way  but not before a Greek yogurt with a few tablespoons of protein powder.

I took in about 4.3 miles about town before getting back home and consuming a very large high protein smoothie. After a shower, I pretty much did almost nothing for quite some time - other than watch TV or kick back on the recliner and nod off....and felt absolutely no guilt whatsoever!

I don't recall what time it was but in the late afternoon, just to get out of the house, I went out for a bit stopping at Jordan's furniture (to check the manufacturer of a product), Christmas Tree Shoppe (just to browse), and some pet store (just to see the kitty cats).

At around 6pm, I had some steamed veggies, the first real solid food of the day and since them, have been all fluids until about 9:30 when I had a Fiber One bar.

After typing Fiber One bar I realized just how ridiculous this post must read but I can't bring myself to edit or not post it.

I guess I'll end it here.

Friday, May 25, 2012

Enter Sandman

The only word that I can come up with right now is tired. Even as I typed that last sentence I realized I was lying since I had to go through about a dozen words just to get to tired. The point is, I am tired. This whole week has been chock full of things that prevented me from getting an ample supply of sleep and here at the tail end of the week, my body is reminding me that there is only so long it can be deprived of sleep before it starts to send signals.

Last evening, I had the privilege of participating in the 50th annual commencement exercises at the college where I work and teach. Here are a few photos from the event:

This photo is me in full regalia with putting on a jokingly prudish face alongside "Sister" Rita, whose doctoral robe I adore.


This was a randomly taken as a crowd shot. I wasn't even looking - I literally just pointed and shot. Oddly enough, it seems the camera really likes my colleague Prof. Tim Caley and nobody else.

Another crowd shot that as an insider,I find remotely entertaining - I suspect most of you will not be all that thrilled.

Finally, Again I reject my own decree of never using the front facing camera on my phone agaiin because I always come out ridiculous looking with it. Case in point, this shot of me and my pal Linda featuring me looking ridiculous.

Wednesday, May 23, 2012

A Moment Like This

Phillip Phillips was crowned American Idol - congrats to him and to the super talented runner up, Jessica. I think both of them will be very successful.

Donald Driver with his pro partner Peta Murgatroyd won DWTS. I'd have liked to see Maria Menounos/Derek Hough with Katherine Jenkins/mark Ballas as the last two teams standing. However, congrats to the winners!

Aresenio took the win on Celebrity Apprentice over Clay Aiken. Unlike the winners mentioned above, Aresenio didn't deserve this title, he didn't work nearly as hard or as well as Clay did.

Tuesday, May 22, 2012

Coming Soon!

Here an optimistic lists of topics I am likely to post about in the very near future.
  • More on my visit to NYC and especially, my High Scool Reunion.
  • Pictures from the events mentioned in bullet #1.
  • Life in the pews.
  • Reality show results.
  • Catsanity.

Congrats MassBay ADN Class of 2012

I was invited by Nursing School students to attend their pinning ceremony tonight. This particular class is one I spent a lot of time working with these past two years and while not every interaction was golden, ultimately we grew to respect and care for each other and they inspired me to become better at what I do.

During the ceremony, one of the students spoke on behalf of the class and offered thanks to a number of people and then a wonderful surprise happened when they chose to recognize me for my efforts. I was sitting all the way in the rear and was asked to come up on stage to receive a certificate - it was a heartwarming and moving moment for me that I won't soon forget.

having worked with this population for many years, I know how hard they work and the sacrafices that they and their family and friends make. I applaud this group and wish them all well.

Sunday, May 20, 2012

RIP Robin Gibb

Part of the legendary Bee Gees and an incredible vocal talent, Robin Gibb lost his battle with cancer at the age of 62.

Return to Brooklyn - Part 1: Food I Had to Have Again

When you think about a Roast Beef sandwich in Brooklyn, there are two names that come up  all the time: "Brennan and Carr " and "Roll 'n Roaster". For me, "Brennan and Carr" wins 100% of the time and after not having one of their delicious "Hot Beef's" in 17 years - Saturday afternoon I ended that dry spell.

In this first photo, the restaurant is in the background while my pal Jack humors me with a pose before lunch. Jack is 93 years old - a great guy!

From inside the dining room at Brennan and Carr, which hasn't changed at all (even the cash register is the original). Standing from let to right is John and Al. Obviously, that's Jack and I seated. Three of the four people in this photo are retired and I am not one of them.

While I didn't stop inside for a bite here, I had to do a drive by and take a snapshot. This is the pizzeria that John Travolta (as Tony Manero) ordered two slices and stacked them in Saturday Night Fever.

Lunch today was at L&B Spumoni Gardens. I hadn't been here in over 20 years!

While waiting for some friend to dine with, I had to indulge in the awesome Spumoni. However, since I had no clue just how much sugar was in there, I took two licks to satisfy the craving then tossed it (that was hard to do). So good!

"Sicilian" Pizza is pretty regional in the U.S. You don't see it everywhere and this, is the finest in all the land. This here is referred to as a 1/2 sheet - 12 glorious slices. To the untrained eye, it may appear there is no cheese but at L&B, they put the cheese under the sauce. Don't judge, go there and taste it...doesn't matter how far you travel, it'll be worth it!

Thursday, May 17, 2012

RIP Donna Summer

Donna Summer was a true force in popular music from the late 1970's through most of the 1980's. Summer's music along with a string of prominent producers helped define an entire period of pop culture.

Whether you were for disco, against it or indifferent, you couldn't deny the power of her voice and the measure of her incredible talent.

There's some kind of dance party going on somewhere right now!!!

MemeMosaic 2012

I first did this meme in 2008, you can see the results here. I was working with someone at my desk yesterday who saw that old mosaic on my wall and after talking about it, thought I would see how it would work out if I did it today, just about four years later.

The way this meme works is you answer twelve questions (which I'll include below), type the answer to each into Flickr's search and pick any one of the images from the first page of the results. Then, create the mosaic using Big Huge Lab's Mosaic Maker by copying and pasting the URL for each of the photo's you selected into the form on the mosaic maker site.

Here are the questions:

  1. What is your first name?
  2. What is your favorite food right now?
  3. What school did you go to?
  4. What is your favorite color?
  5. Who is your latest celebrity crush?
  6. What is your favorite drink?
  7. What is your dream vacation destination?
  8. What is your favorite dessert?
  9. What do you want to be when you grow up?
  10. What do you love most in life?
  11. What is one word that describes you now?
  12. What is your Flickr or Blog name?
Here's the resulting mosaic:

Tuesday, May 15, 2012

Sick Day

I took a sick day today after waking at 5am with a bit of scruff in the throat. I have a big weekend coming up and just can't be sick.

In my continued effort to divorce myself from Bank of America, I applied for an American Express Cash Rewards card today. I should be able to close out the B of A checking before the end of the month; once everything out there clears.

I'm starting to visualize a revamped kitchen, though I'm at the very early stages and it's not going to be the dream kitchen, just something nice and way better than what I have now.

I think that's it for now.

Monday, May 14, 2012

A Few Things That I Chose to Mention

  1. Plant sale fundraiser at church yesterday - I was heading to Providence after church and besides, plants die when in my care. However, I pointed to two little potted plants asked one of the fine ladies who was working the event on this mother's day which she liked better and bought it for her. "You just made my day!" Nice to know that's still possible.
  2. The President of my college is awesome!
  3. Britney Spears and Demi Lovato are signed on as judges on the X-Factor. One is a teenager and the other can't sing - time to fess up producers, it's not a about discovering/nurturing talent, it's about TV ratings (I predict failure).
  4. I thought Howard Stern on America's Got Talent was impressive.
  5. This Saturday I make my triumphant return to Brooklyn, NY.
  6. R.I.P. Donald "Duck" Dunn

Sunday, May 13, 2012

Tough Day with Good Moments

It's always hard to wrap my hands around Mother's Day because the first thing that always comes to mind is that my mother isn't alive; fifteen years in, it still hurts but I've resolved that it's always going to feel that way.

I do have the memories of Mom, all of them, and nobody can take those away so while I do feel sadness, I also have joyous memories to carry me past that pain.

The day before yesterday, I got word that an old neighbor passed away. I couldn't help but think of my friends Dawn and Rosemarie, along with their siblings and how they must feel losing their mom just a few days shy of Mother's day.

Ultimately, I chose to celebrate this day and all good mother's out there. A special salute to Tori, who is the best mother I've ever had the great pleasure of knowing.

Finally, if in some cosmic space my mother can catch wind of this post, I need to say this- we weren't the type of family who told each other how we felt, I love you Mom, and I am sorry I never told you as much as you deserved to hear it.

Friday, May 11, 2012

What's with the Flowers?

I pull into my driveway today and see there is a floral arrangement adorned with a Mylar balloon sitting on the front stairs of the house. I muster a mug of sorts and out loud to myself utter, "What's with the Flowers?" I quickly went through my mental Rolodex and couldn't think of anyone who might send me flowers, I had no idea what they were all about.

I get the car into the garage then walk around to the front to investigate and see that wile my address is on the delivery label, the name was for someone that doesn't live at my house - I know this because I am the only one who lives there full time, my daughter, part-time (and they weren't for her). Besides, the balloon said "Congratulations" - there wasn't anything in my world going on to warrant such acclaim.

I took the flowers inside and looked at the attached card for clues. The card was partly in Portuguese and partly in English - my ex-wife is Brazilian but I'd think that if someone were spending the 50-75 dollars I estimate this arrangement to cost, they would know she doesn't live there and more important, would know her name (which was not the one on the card or delivery tag).

The card attached did have a phone number for the sending florist so I thought to call them and let them know of their mess up. Three calls in a row ring for a bunch of times then go to a busy signal - odd. I let some time pass to change out of my shirt and tie for jeans and a t-shirt then kicked back on the couch for a wee bit before trying the florist again. After several failed attempts with the florist, I figured that it was at least likely the person for whom they were intended lives in the same town, so I googled the name first - not enough data. Then, I went to the white pages with no luck.

A more careful inspection of the delivery tag had me spot a phone number with the same first three numbers as mine, which indicate the same town as me so I did a reverse look up of the number and hit some gold. The number came up for the listing at house number 30 (I live at 50). In my brain, I imagines someone taking a phone order (though I wasn't sure how they managed to get through the busy signals) and whoever wrote the information down wrote a sloppy 30 that was transcribed by the person who typed it into the computer to generate the label as the number 50.

Anyway, I figured these should really get in the hands of whom they were intended, so I chose to deliver them myself; and I did.

Thursday, May 10, 2012

Wall of Fame

On the wall to the left of me, I have a myriad of things hung for many different reasons. Among my favorite items are a few drawings that my daughter did when she was about 7 years old. I get such joy from them every time I see them that I thought it would be fun to scan them and post them here for you my dear viewers.

The first 2 are of my cat Oliver right around the time we got him (he was 15 weeks old). The last one is the power puff girls.



Wednesday, May 09, 2012

Hurray Obama, Screw North Carolina

Some numb nuts in North Carolina decided to ban same sex marriages. I have a problem that we even need to distinguish them at this point, can't we just refer to marriage as marriage? We are all human, right? Well, apparently not.

I've read a few people quoted as saying that Obama has "flip-flopped" on his stance on same sex marriage. No jerkies, he didn't flip flop, he's evolved as a human. Obama an I are close enough in age so that I know how being born in the 1960's and raised through the late 60's and the 70's, times were different, societal norms were different and we were taught differently.

As we grow into our own skin and minds and become educated, we hopefully evolve and recognize not all we were taught is accurate and on top of that, the world changes. I see Obama's statement today as simply acknowledgement that he is human, and is capable of emotional and intellectual evolution - something our last president lacked sorely.

North Carolina made me embarrassed to be an American, Barack Obama made me proud to be a human.

Tuesday, May 08, 2012

Sometimes

I wonder
I hope
I'm scared
I dream
I'm lonely
I'm amazed
I'm disgusted at the human race
I'm delighted
I'm confused
All I can think about is you...

Who am I kidding?
I always think about you.

Monday, May 07, 2012

Enlightenment?

A few days ago I wrote about a student with misplaced anger. Today, I received a pleasant surprise from this student in my inbox:

Good Afternoon Professor,
I understand and take ownership that I did not take the steps announced on blackboard April 15. My misunderstanding is in the thread of emails sent back and forth on an array of topics which also included the final exam. You did not receive an email from me with Final Exam in the subject line which you had clearly requested. This truly has been a learning experience from me. Following directions precisely is not only for the sciences but also in life as we can clearly see here. I apologize for assuming that you would just remember to add me to your final exam roster because of the rapport we had March 30. I would like to appeal to your human nature by stating that I have worked hard on the Computer Applications and general computer hardware knowledge. I have integrated the concepts in my T-Ball Flyers for the parents of the preschoolers I coach. If there is any way I can take the exam this saturday, it will be grately appreciated. If there is no way I could, my question is : would I still be able to complete the Cloud Project?
Thank you in advance for your decision either way.
The Dean helped as a great mediator today, and I can see your point of view much clearer now.
Thank you.
 
It seems that learning may have actually occurred. I wrote the student back and while there was very little I could do at this point without compromising the fairness to every other student, I did inform the student that the current grade works out to a passing one and that there is great risk with very little potential for reward by taking the final and I offered some words of encouragement for moving forward.

Sunday, May 06, 2012

R.I.P. Adam Yauch

The Beasties were, are legends, they added a measure of significance to hip hop at just the right time.

Yauch's passing, aside from it's obvious sadness, is a significant reminder of human mortality and when someone who was born the same year as you passes away, it's hard not to think about that.

Rest in piece MCA.

Qwerty

Two day until the end of the semester. Grading, finals, lots of students in the lab making a last ditch effort to cram weeks of neglect.

Just two weeks until my high school reunion. Looking forward to that and a brief overnight in my hometown, done visits with friends and family, and a roast beef sandwich from Brennan & Carr.

I still can't get myself to care too much about baseball this season.

Remember like a year or two ago, when only Greeks ate Greek yogurt?

Two new excellent finds at Trader Joe's: Japanese style fried rice and mini Chicken Cilantro wontons.

Friday, May 04, 2012

Another Misplaced Disgruntled Attitude

I had an email confrontation with a student today. It started with her asking why she hadn't heard back from me regarding the possibility of taking the final exam. (This was one of my online students, who don't normally take a final but I thought about giving them the option to take one to possible improve their grade).

I sent feelers out at the end of March to see if there was enough interest to make this offer and she did reply as one of those who was interested in this possibility. Two weeks later, I had made the decision final, that I would offer students this chance and posted an announcement in our online class providing details of the offer and asking that all interested students should reply by April 23rd, using a specific subject line and that only properly sent emails sent by this date would be eligible and that I would reply with confirmations no later than April 25th.

I did as I said and sent confirmations on 4/25 and at no time, did I receive one of these emails from this student. Today , more than a week later, she sends me this inquiry wondering why she;s never received a confirmation. I tell her that she failed to reply to the announcement so I had no idea she had interest in the final and that she is no longer eligible to take the option.

The first line of her reply was the tipping point for me, "I am going to have to take this concern to the schools dean or an administration personnel because I don't understand why all this protocol is in order." When a student pulls this crap, that's the end of any possibility for me having any compassion. Here was my reply:

You’ve missed a considerable amount of work this semester, you simply neglected or chose not to submit it – this is the reason your grade may not meet your standards for “adequate”. My announcements were stated very clearly, clearly enough for every single other student in all of my sections to respond appropriately – you were the one who didn’t.

 If you wish to bring this to the dean, her name is NAME PROVIDED – I’ll save you a little time by copying her on this email. I have great respect for Dean NAME and if she hears your case and asks me to make an exception and allow you to take the final, I will. Keep in mind that I will present to her your complete history in this class and access to all of the announcements I’ve posted in Blackboard.

If you carefully read the syllabus back on day one of the class, you would recall that “all of this protocol” isn’t protocol at all, its class policy which you agreed to by remaining in the class after receiving the syllabus.

One last thing, it will be your responsibility to pursue a meeting with Dean NAME, please do not assume that this email and her inclusion implies that she will contact you.
 
 So as you can see, I chose to call her bluff. Which her reply proves that indeed, was a bluff:
 
Thank you for the information provided.
I beg to differ with many of the statements you have made in this email you kindly copied the dean. I know for a fact that the instruction have not been at all clear and that I personally had a side bar with you months prior about getting help. I was the first to reply that I would be on board with a final exam, the general message had to be for the other students because I had already stated what was going on with me.
This miscommunication is unfortunate and a waste on time that I already lack.
 
She begs to differ? I have solid evident that she failed to submit about 30% of the required assignments, I can't make that up. She did ask for help, I told her that the only "help" she needs is to actually submit the work. The work she has submitted was adequate enough to pass, it wasn't a matter of her submitting work but doing poorly on it.
 
Now, here is the real kicker with this moron. While she's a lazy student, despite her failing to submit all of her work, she is actually passing the course (albeit by as slim a margin as possible). I know for certain that there is almost know way that she could pass this final exam, no chance based on the work she's done and I would bet (and I am not a betting man) that were she to actually take the final, she would end up failing the course. She has all of this information available to her on our class site but she is so wrapped up in wanting to be right about something she is wrong about that she has no clue.
 
Sad.
 
Final Note on this: I know I occasionally write about these ridiculous encounters with ridiculous students. Please know that I do also have fabulous students - some that even I learn from.

Thursday, May 03, 2012

Irony

Walking through the parking lot at Whole Foods, a van crosses my path with a giant graphic emblazoned on it that read "Learning Center for the Deaf". There was music blasting from this van so loud that it nearly rattled my brain as it passed by me.

And so ends the irony portion of our program.

Thus far this season, I've watched less that a total of 9 innings of baseball.

It's harder to switch banks than it should be, but it is happening. F.U. B of A!

Such a busy time right now, lots of grading and finishing up semester stuff.

I know I've been light on words of late - too much work and stress. Later for now.

Wednesday, May 02, 2012

RIP Junior

Found dead, apparent self-inflicted gunshot. So sad! I've made it clear how disappointed in professional sports I am, how it has become exclusively a business and really has almost nothing to do with sports or sportsmanship.

I love Football, but I have to admit, like hockey, it is a barbaric game and I question whether or not either should continue to exist. There really needs to be a study of the damaging effects of these aggressive sports on the brain and the lifespan in general.

This is a sad loss.

Quick update on the following morning - I was half asleep when I wrote this so I didn't get as detailed as I could have and I don't know if I really got my point across as effectively as I could have. Regardless, this is a horrible thing and I hope that which Seau's and every other similar death, there is some awakening and that we can reverse this terrible trend with pro athletes.

Tuesday, May 01, 2012

May I?

Definitely feeling the effects of life's stresses but I am working through it as best I can.

I'm really grateful for the people who have had some great advice and supportive words, especially Tori and Michaela.

Of course, end of semester adds its own stresses, especially with a bigger course load than usual.

I know, these are minor problems in the grand scheme of the world but they do affect me nonetheless and being able to just breathe sometimes is kind of nice.