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News from the gibberish beat

I've spent much of my journalism career befuddled by what people are saying. That's an occupational hazard of science writing in particular, because the scientists usually speak in a special tongue not easily translated into the Vulgate (much less into commonplace language spoken by ordinary people!). But writing about science is much easier than writing about engineering. The Kenner hearings, as my colleague David Hilzenrath reports today, are thick with engineer-speak:

Though the hearings are public, they aren't entirely transparent. Much of the discussion involves documents that aren't being released in real time. In addition, the proceedings are conducted largely in the language of the offshore oil industry, which to the uninitiated might as well be code.

Did the negative pressure test detect U-tubing, or was it a bladder effect? And should they have done a bottoms-up?

Where do I go to get initiated? Night school?

Let's look again at some of the 20 well "anomalies" that are of investigatory interest:

Had to pressure up on the cement shoe valves nine times to convert from "filling the
casing" to act as a check valve...

Low pump pressures. Return flow after float shear out appeared to be high

Running string for the 9-7/8 X 7 inch casing pulled wet after the seal assembly test was completed. Running string pulled three stands wet and so they slugged the wellbore with a 30 bbls - 16.3 ppg pill

That's just the first three. They're all like that.

Here are some more terms and phrases from the hearing:

"Is it industry practice to use a nonweighted viscous spacer?"

"Are you aware that API recommends circulating bottoms up?"

"Did they change out the conduit valve package?"

dead man test

shaker hand

mud loggers

cement bond log

nitrogen-based slurry

"Is it the upper annular or the lower annular that you close during the negative test?"

And so on.

But there are some things that are crystal-clear, like the line in Halliburton's April 18 "Production Casing Design Report," sent to BP's managers on the rig: "...this well is considered to have a SEVERE gas flow problem."

Two days later it blew out, and the disaster unfolded.

By Joel Achenbach  |  July 21, 2010; 1:57 PM ET
 
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Next: The ROV operators

Comments

I don't think one can get the 411 for that stuff at night school. It needs lots more.

Posted by: cmyth4u | July 21, 2010 3:13 PM | Report abuse

I don't think one can get the 411 for that stuff at night school. It needs lots more.

Posted by: cmyth4u | July 21, 2010 3:13 PM | Report abuse

Joel, it's just not science that uses special language. It's just that you don't recognize it in you're own specialty. You're not suggesting that they explain each and every term they use during these hearings, are you? Isn't that your job?

Posted by: miesen | July 21, 2010 3:21 PM | Report abuse

Actually, miesen, it's the job of the spokespeople from the various companies, agencies, etc., to be able to explain the terms for anyone, including someone as well-versed in technical topics as Joel.

Not that I know anything about such matters... :-)

Posted by: Scottynuke | July 21, 2010 3:29 PM | Report abuse

This Kit is fascinating because it contains a number of phrases and sentences originating in English of which I have no understanding. None. I know some of the words in them, but suspect that, in this language, they do not mean what I think they mean. It is so good to be reminded how narrow the limits of my understanding really are.

And yes, Scottynuke, ideally the spokesfolks could translate this into something approaching the Vulgate, if not vulgar, tongue. It is what I try to do with legal jargon for my eager throng of tens of readers.

Posted by: Ivansmom | July 21, 2010 3:38 PM | Report abuse

Years ago, someone discovered that a freshman biology course attempted to teach about as many new words as an equivalent foreign language course. At least biology didn't teach new verb conjugations.

I thought intro zoology was too many worms; somewhat later, plant morphology was too many ferns.

Posted by: DaveoftheCoonties | July 21, 2010 3:45 PM | Report abuse

Hmm. Well, the people testifying are not spokespersons, they specialists testifying (one hopes) as accurately as they are able in a field that does have a specialized vocabulary (as each one does).

The real question raised by Kit is not, to my mind) whether Joel understands that language, it is whether the panel hearing them has the expertise or expertise-on-call to come to correct judgments about what they are hearing. We can every confidence that Joel will figure it out.

Posted by: Yoki | July 21, 2010 3:46 PM | Report abuse

Ivansmom, I think I can count the readers of my science-related prose on one hand, and that includes my editor and the scientists I'm writing about. One of the things I admire about Joel's writing is how he explain all that science stuff so concisely and engagingly--which is probably not even a word, is it?

Posted by: balancingact | July 21, 2010 3:49 PM | Report abuse

SCC: all kinds of misspellings, bad punctuation, disagreeable tenses... choose your pick.

Posted by: Yoki | July 21, 2010 3:50 PM | Report abuse

From the end of the last boodle:

Confessions of a copy editor:

http://www.theawl.com/2010/07/what-its-really-like-to-be-a-copy-editor

Posted by: yellojkt | July 21, 2010 3:50 PM | Report abuse

The more specialized the field, the more arcane the terminology. SciTim likely has a grasp of terms like muon, and pion, and charm, but the rest of us, even if we read Hawking, not so much.

Posted by: ebtnut | July 21, 2010 3:52 PM | Report abuse

Obfuscate - to make unclear; to be evasive
---------
My new word -
Obpuscate - to make unclear because it smells to high heaven; to be evasive because my butt is in a sling

(if herself can switch a 'p' and an 'f", so can I)

Posted by: talitha1 | July 21, 2010 3:53 PM | Report abuse

I'm an engineer and I don't understand a word of this. Joel might as well be quoting from Jabberwocky.

Posted by: yellojkt | July 21, 2010 3:58 PM | Report abuse

Hee,hee.

The interesting thing about the impenetrable jargon quoted in the Kit is its internal clarity. As Yoki says, these witnesses are testifying as precisely as they can. This special language is not intended to obscure its meaning and processes for the ordinary listener; it has no interest in that person. It has been developed to refer to and explain concepts and actions in a very specialized field. When used among its native speakers, this language quickly and concisely conveys meaning. This is great stuff.

Posted by: Ivansmom | July 21, 2010 4:04 PM | Report abuse

But what about the witnesses who didn't show or the ones hiding behind their lawyers? (from Hilzenrath's piece) They ain't sayin' nuttin', jargon, gibberish or plain English reconfigured.

Posted by: talitha1 | July 21, 2010 4:13 PM | Report abuse

My contribution:

House of ill-refute - (colloq.) Any partisan organization devoted primarily to the critique of opposing positions or persons.

Posted by: engelmann | July 21, 2010 4:16 PM | Report abuse

Yes, it is, Yoki, and I'm glad we have Joel to translate for us.

Loved the story, Yello, thanks for the link.

Geekdottir is packing to go back to Bama tomorrow. *sigh* I'll have to adjust to a new normal without her.

Posted by: slyness | July 21, 2010 4:16 PM | Report abuse

More sloppy photoshoppery from BP:

http://gizmodo.com/5592975/bp-photoshops-another-official-image-again-terribly

This one is a little more intentionally deceitful. And it is still on the official BP website:

http://www.bp.com/liveassets/bp_internet/globalbp/globalbp_uk_english/incident_response/STAGING/local_assets/images/View_of_the_MC_252.jpg

Posted by: yellojkt | July 21, 2010 4:18 PM | Report abuse

Yello, there's a difference between Honors and GT (gifted and talented program) at your son's school? I don't remember any honors programs at the Fairfax COunty School systems.

I wanted to express my sentiment that socially, I don't think elite academic education is as harmful as segregating students by ability all day (i.e. honors programs where students only take honors classes separately from regular students, perhaps), or allowing students not labelled as "superior" to take classes that fit their particular cores of interest, but I was mudged.

Anyhoo, I've been in a honors program where some classes were offered for honors students only-- Honors English being the major entry point, but other liberal arts ed courses came in honors, and regular classes could be taken with a honors option-- an extra paper, for instance. There was otherwise no special treatment in those regular classes.

I went to another university where the honors program was different-- oriented towards an interdisciplinary focus. I could see no Honors English courses, just courses that replaced required classes in favor for niche courses. One enrolled in the program, rather than just qualified for it and took the honors courses or not at will.

At that university, the honors students were more isolated and "elite" in their mind, and there wasn't as much overlap.

Result: no trickle-down effect from elite to general ed as Yello mentioned.

I got better grades at that university as I wasn't being taught by professors used to riding herd on honors students.

What did happen was that for some of my courses, graduate students would sit with undergraduates and take graduate options such as an extra paper, presentations, maybe preparing a lecture.

In short,what they called graduate work similar to what I had done as a honors option at my old university. No wonder a couple of professors commented that I was "doing graduate level work." That was what I had learned to do, only it was called honors.

I also heard about (honors/"brilliant") students cutting classes and acting entitled like they just had to do the work and not show up to learn at all.

To me, I think the two programs had very different results in how well the students were actually prepared and pressured to develop their ability with hard work even on the fundamentals, and in how willing the faculty was to push the most gifted students to be sure they learned they couldn't coast for life.

Posted by: Wilbrod_Gnome | July 21, 2010 4:20 PM | Report abuse

I think "slugged the wellbore with a 30 bbls - 16.3 ppg pill" means "slugged the wellbore with a 4775 liters of 1.95 g/ml pill"

That's all I got.

Posted by: shrieking_denizen | July 21, 2010 4:35 PM | Report abuse

Oh!!!

"Had to pressure up on the cement shoe valves nine times to convert from "filling the casing" to act as a check valve..."

Translation:

"I had to strongarm our paid killers to stop them killin' enough people to fill a cemetary and just like, focus on the actual hit ordered for once, man."

Posted by: Wilbrod_Gnome | July 21, 2010 4:45 PM | Report abuse

There are for levels of English in HoCo. G/T was Gifted and Talented and higher than Honors. Then there was 'plain' (no modifier). And below that was Review, the PC term for 'remedial'. AP was added to the course title only if the course involved the AP test. Ninth, tenth and eleventh grade English were G/T, but twelfth was AP-G/T.

There was a separate Gifted and Talented program which involved independent research projects for course credit.

The full county course catalog is here:

http://www.hcpss.org/academics/hscatalog1011.pdf

Not all courses are offered at each high school.

Posted by: yellojkt | July 21, 2010 4:45 PM | Report abuse

I get only some of it. I've heard every term but the terse examples on their own don't lend to much following. And I confess I know little of various integrity tests. I did mud pressure calculations, reservoir pressures by extrapolations, gas detection and chromatography, the grind of presenting rate-of-penetration charts as drilling progressed. In my life as a wireline tech we lowered various tools on extremely long cables, sometimes through clever pressure-holding configurations, and by counting casing collars magnetically as we passed them, could locate each tool within a half-foot accuracy easy. Then the tools' functions would be activated. One for example was the sonic cement bond log, which detected echoes of generated sound waves reflecting from the cement=pipe-rock interfaces. Good bond meant little reflection of sound waves; poor bond reflected just like any discontinuity would.

Posted by: Jumper1 | July 21, 2010 4:52 PM | Report abuse

Too many levels of education-- and jargon.

Posted by: Wilbrod_Gnome | July 21, 2010 4:56 PM | Report abuse

You mean there are no actual contract killers in offseas oil rig drilling, Jumper?

I mean...

"Is it industry practice to use a nonweighted viscous spacer?" (in turning a fella into nitrogen-based slurry, maybe)

Re the dead man test (done after slugging the wellbore):

"Are you aware that API recommends circulating bottoms up?"

This jargon is not making me any more comfortable with this industry.

Posted by: Wilbrod_Gnome | July 21, 2010 5:00 PM | Report abuse

I'm a product of HoCo public schools, and I can attest that there is a huge difference in honors vs GT class levels there. I'm a lazy student and was bounced down to honors once, where I thought the class would be easier. It was, but I was very bored there and asked my mother to override the previous year's teacher recommendation and put me back in GT. She did, and I actually completed the assignments and participated in the class more than the previous year. My sister bounced between regular and honors and experienced the same gap. The distinctions are there for a reason.

I routinely took AP courses (like 6 of them or so), but never took any of the tests. I don't really regret that decision. Even at the community college, I got a lot more out of the college courses than the AP "equivalents." I never noticed that those equivalents had a workload significantly different from my GT courses, just that they were optional and open to any student without teacher recommendation. They also felt terribly rushed, like the teachers were cramming information into us for the test without going for the greater understanding of how it went together.

Posted by: MoftheMountain | July 21, 2010 5:25 PM | Report abuse

I thought GT was the gin-and-tonic track. I was a little surprised to find it in a high school, but then it is a pretty upscale county.

I don't think there is any comparison between the regular and advanced programs available in high school and those in a university. College is a different animal.

Posted by: Ivansmom | July 21, 2010 5:26 PM | Report abuse

Dunno, I'mom. I would agree with you about higher level college courses where you have real interaction with professors, but most freshman level classes can and should be avoided if you can.

One of the advantages of AP is to skip the boring intro classes designed to do nothing but acclimate you to college and get you right into real courses. After seeing all my dormmates sweat out their freshman comp class all year, I have no regrets in not taking it. It was a lot of work and a major distraction for many of them. I passed the state essay test first try with no prep, so I saved myself a lot of unnecessary classroom essay writing.

Same for Chemistry. I had no need for chemistry in my track, so nothing in that course was needed later. Physics had plenty of lab writing, etc. to cover that skill.

My son chose to retake Chemistry and Calc 2 since they were integral to his major. The AP courses had prepared him very well and he breezed through them. It was his second semester when he faced new material that he learned he might have to study someday.

Posted by: yellojkt | July 21, 2010 5:38 PM | Report abuse

Ah yes, yellojkt, the dreaded realization that yes, even I must study, which comes to all of us sometime. I tell the Boy he was lucky that some of his middle school classes were challenging enough for him to make that discovery early. The later you find out, the worse a shock it is.

Posted by: Ivansmom | July 21, 2010 5:53 PM | Report abuse

Upon rereading my earlier comment, it sounds as though I'm saying that all people not in GT are lazy, which wasn't at all what I meant. I just wanted to clarify that. I was a bad student who refused to do work that bored me (college and real life has corrected most of that ridiculous attitude), so I wasn't living up to the level I tested into. I've always liked learning, I just hated what I saw as busy work.

I tested out of Comp I, but I took additional English credits on the back end to graduate with my AA instead of getting them from the AP test. If I'd taken the AP, I'd never have taken that great World Lit course, one of the few English classes I remember fondly. That's what I mean by no regrets. Same thing with Calculus I. I never would've taken Linear Algebra if I'd had AP credits. I'm sure my parents' pocketbook has lots of regrets when you consider the cost of the AP vs a college course, though.

Posted by: MoftheMountain | July 21, 2010 6:04 PM | Report abuse

And the harder it is to buckle down and discipline oneself to do the work.

For me, it was my high school sophomore English class. The teacher was one tough lady, but boy, did she ground us well.

I placed out of freshman comp I because of my h.s. grades and out of comp II because of my AP English score. They didn't tell me that, though, so I took the course. The prof and I didn't mesh well and I got the only B I ever received in a college English class. Oh well.

Posted by: slyness | July 21, 2010 6:07 PM | Report abuse

The discussions on the various levels of courses has me almost as befuddled as the terms in Joel's kit.

MoftheMountain, I didn't get that you thought those not in GT lazy, although to be honest the term GT I find a little elitist, a little overkill - doesn't gifted alone cover it?

Eldest surprised me this year with her desire to switch up to the harder math, she made the decision herself, realized by taken the lower math she got caught up on some fundamentals she missed while not really paying attention in grade school, she had learned how to work, her chosen path will ensure she will have to work hard, seek help when needed and she knows that - those lessons alone may help her as much or more than the additional math skills she is learning, from a future history/english lit/arts major I think she made some great choices at an early age (14).

She also learned what a big difference there is between the two levels, much more than we anticipated or was explained to us. If they had a gifted program for EQ students she would be there.

Posted by: dmd3 | July 21, 2010 6:15 PM | Report abuse

lol, I-mom. Yeah, hit me when I finally encountered real engineering courses instead of background info courses like chemistry and physics that were extensions of my high school classes. I suddenly had to do homework and *gulp* even extra studying if I wanted to pass. Dropped one and failed another before I got the memo. Seriously wish I'd learned it earlier.

Posted by: MoftheMountain | July 21, 2010 6:16 PM | Report abuse

Once one of my cohorts compared our oilfield technology as the equal of the space program. Even working in my milieu, my immediate thought was rejection. No, I thought, we are just doing smart engineering. Then I had a second thought.

Posted by: Jumper1 | July 21, 2010 6:16 PM | Report abuse

http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=oOdLQp0JWQ0
Hump day

Posted by: Jumper1 | July 21, 2010 6:21 PM | Report abuse

dmd, I thought that too, but they call it that from 1st grade on up. *shrug*

In elementary school they would pull us out of some other class and we would do other activities, like research topics that we picked out or logic puzzles. You tested into the math GT program for 4th and 5th, and from 6th on it was like I described above with a level for each class. If you really excelled in math in high school and there were enough students, they offered a Differential Equations class, but I think it was multiple schools together and offsite/after-school. One of my friends did that.

Posted by: MoftheMountain | July 21, 2010 6:32 PM | Report abuse

Don't remember getting the studying bug myself. Studying=reading for most classes, and I coasted on my reading ability, except for math, and I never did quite learn how to study math hard enough to get the grades I should have.

I DID do the work-- papers, lab reports, tests, showing up at classes. I was paying for college out of my savings, and that made a difference to me.

Posted by: Wilbrod_Gnome | July 21, 2010 6:35 PM | Report abuse

OK, I'm out. Now I need to decide on dinner, since the hubby is working late again. Have a nice rest of day, all!

Posted by: MoftheMountain | July 21, 2010 6:39 PM | Report abuse

Similar here Gifted program starts around 4 or 5 grade and children can go to the designated school for the program or some, as our friends child did stay where they are and merely participate in extra activities, outings etc with the children from the gifted program.

There is a gifted program in high school as well but think just for select courses - not sure.

Posted by: dmd3 | July 21, 2010 6:40 PM | Report abuse

In the towns I grew up in, the schools were tiny. 20 or so pupils in each grade tiny. The GT program was you took half a day of classes with the grade ahead of you.

At some point, the students that did that (and there were few) ran out of classes to take and did independent study. There were no real college prep classes, as so few students went on to 4-year schools.

You could petition to go to the next town over and take college prep courses. The district would have to pay for that, though. It was rare.

Posted by: baldinho | July 21, 2010 6:49 PM | Report abuse

MotM,

I think that HoCo DiffEq class is apocryphal except at maybe Centennial or River Hill.

My son was in the super-secret HoCo middle school program where they cover Algebra I, Geometry, and Algebra II in two years. This put him so far ahead in math that he had taken both levels of Calc by his senior year.

When he learned that DiffEq would NOT be offered at his school, a girl (really her dad) talked him into taking it at HCC, for which HCPSS would not pay since he could have taken it at another school only that would have completely screwed with his APL internship.

Since he still needed one more math credit to graduate, he took Probability and Stats AP where he was not challenged. This caused some problems we don't discuss publicly. Let's just say it was a lesson better learned in high school than elsewhere.

Posted by: yellojkt | July 21, 2010 6:50 PM | Report abuse

Tropical depression brewing in the eastern Caribbean threatening Gulf by the weekend. Work on Macondo stopped.

http://www.washingtonpost.com/wp-dyn/content/article/2010/07/21/AR2010072100532.html?hpid=topnews

Posted by: talitha1 | July 21, 2010 6:58 PM | Report abuse

I really like Gifted and Talented, simply because here those two words mean two different things. The "gifted" have, on some test or another, as well as their past record, been awarded a "really really smart" IQ ranking. The "talented" might not test so high on intelligence, but might be off-the-scale artistic or have some other outstanding strength.

We seemed to have our own household GT stream :) though neither child was ever tested, because they were excellent at finding teacher/mentors. #1 was playing woodwinds in the community and then the semi-pro orchestra before she hit finished high-school (band geek!!!), did two years of math for every year in school until she ran out of curriculum, did some pretty good work in AP English and biology, etc.; #2 had a similar trajectory but in different, artistic-leaning disciplines. And each of them has really, really spectacular, not weaknesses or deficits, exactly, but areas-of-much-lesser strength, hee hee. As do we all, as do we all.

Posted by: Yoki | July 21, 2010 7:10 PM | Report abuse

And Strasburg takes the mound against the hot-hitting Reds...

I did the elementary school version of GT in 5th grade and really enjoyed it. The middle school lacked such a program, and boy was I bored by the difference.

Posted by: Scottynuke | July 21, 2010 7:14 PM | Report abuse

One aspect of Joel's life that I have always envied is the opportunity to always be learning. Sure, continual learning is something any motivated person can get, but Joel get's paid cash money to do it. And, he does it really well.

Posted by: RD_Padouk | July 21, 2010 7:17 PM | Report abuse

I just think gifted applies to those who excel at anything math, english, music, dance, art. You can be a talented artiist for an example yet not be gifted.

As you know I am just not a believer in anything that creates and elite group, spent to much of my early life trying to dispell the notion that I was different. But we all not I am somewhat off :-).

Posted by: dmd3 | July 21, 2010 7:20 PM | Report abuse

Cabrera just collapsed out of the way of what ended up being an 83-mph curve... *L*

And another great Strasburg curve puts away All-Star Votto for a quick 1st inning.

The game's on ESPN for those outside DC, BTW...

Posted by: Scottynuke | July 21, 2010 7:23 PM | Report abuse

yello, we were at Howard. He and like 4-5 other students really had to fight for it, if I remember. The fact that we were on semesters and could take two maths a year might've been the tipping point.

Sound like he might've had the outcome I prevented by insisting on going back into English GT. Boring is worse than too hard, IMO.

OK, dinner for realz now. :)

Posted by: MoftheMountain | July 21, 2010 7:24 PM | Report abuse

Exactly, dmd. That's why I liked that both girls were always in the mainstream of the public schools, but made their own opportunities for enrichment at school. Himself and I were responsible for enrichment outside that environment.

Posted by: Yoki | July 21, 2010 7:28 PM | Report abuse

Oh, and of course the corollary is that I also embrace inclusion of special needs kids; not good for any of the constituencies/stakeholders to be segregated or isolated.

Posted by: Yoki | July 21, 2010 7:30 PM | Report abuse

That's a good point, Yoki, that there are many different ways for a kid to be "GT."

When I was in school there wasn't a GT program. Teachers would sometimes take a kid aside and give him and her special guidance, but it was still within the constraints of a regular classroom.

When it once again became relevant to my life I resisted the GT concept for a while because I thought it actually discouraged innovative thinking. And I still think that there is something about promoting a love of learning outside of the classroom.

But I also understand that a bored bright kid doesn't do anyone any good.

Posted by: RD_Padouk | July 21, 2010 7:31 PM | Report abuse

Strasburg's closing in on 100 with his fastball...

But just issued a walk.

And then gets his third K to end the second inning. :-)

Posted by: Scottynuke | July 21, 2010 7:40 PM | Report abuse

RD, I think that's what I meant by enrichment outside school; providing both the model of life-long learning (me and Himself and the grandmother) and the opportunities to engage in all different kinds of learning for the kid; travel, sports, dance, storytelling, improv, music, independent projects just 'cause they're interesting, producing a family/community newletter, playing Mad-Libs, volunteering in the community (well, you know, depending on the kid's interests, the possibilities are truly nearly endless.

Posted by: Yoki | July 21, 2010 7:42 PM | Report abuse

In fifth grade I was in some GT program where I did cool stuff like dissect a frog, but it was just me and another kid a couple of afternoons a week with the teacher that also did the learning disabled kids.

In high school my mother became a helicopter parent and forced the school to get me into the GT program, whatever that was. Then she got very upset that the specialist gave me the 'wrong' IQ test.

I made the program but swore my mother to an oath to never tell me the test results. I never, ever did anything in the program which seemed to be just odd internship opportunities. I did top out all my school's math and science by junior year and took it easy as a senior. Mostly helping my future wife run the Social Studies (Model United Nations) Club, so there was that.

Posted by: yellojkt | July 21, 2010 7:45 PM | Report abuse

Yep. You are absolutely right Yoki. That is the best GT program.

Posted by: RD_Padouk | July 21, 2010 7:45 PM | Report abuse

I think so too. And the great thing is, it isn't dependent on some privileged socio-economic status. Just look at Cassandra's after-school program, taking the g-girl to the march, and her own love of reading and learning. Those grandkids are enriched up to their eyeballs!

Posted by: Yoki | July 21, 2010 7:51 PM | Report abuse

Shout out to Yoki and RD on "GT outside of school". And every minute you spend providing those experiences for the children, from travel to art classes to backgammon, enriches you as a parent as well.

Posted by: talitha1 | July 21, 2010 7:52 PM | Report abuse

Can I count forcing NukeSpawn to put up with me as an "enrichment" experience? :-)

Strasburg puts Arroyo down for K #4, but more importantly he's getting through the innings with far fewer pitches than his last couple of starts...

Posted by: Scottynuke | July 21, 2010 7:56 PM | Report abuse

Shout-out to Talitha for 'enriches you as a parent, too!" Absolutely. Even family supper and a laugh. I sure do like my young ladies

Posted by: Yoki | July 21, 2010 7:58 PM | Report abuse

And of course I jinx him with that comment... Deep-center triple, and then Cabrera gets even with a bloop single. Reds up 1-0, but a quick third out to limit the damage.

Posted by: Scottynuke | July 21, 2010 8:01 PM | Report abuse

Not only that, you can insist on it, S'nuke. She'll thank you for it. Or, you know, tolerate you for it. It is sometimes hard to tell.

Posted by: Yoki | July 21, 2010 8:02 PM | Report abuse

Yoki that is the reasons my friends kept there son out of the gifted program in grade school, their homelife is full of enrichment and opportunities, what he needed at the time was extra work on the socialization aspects. He mastered that and is thriving at high school, challenged by University Math contests etc and is just a special guy, I think what works best depends on each child.

I had one neice that changed schools because of the social stigma of being labeled gifted, unable to endure the teasing she choose to go to a private girls school that suited her personality and particular interests, graduated top of her class is off to university next year.

I have mentioned I missed out on the family smart gene right?

Posted by: dmd3 | July 21, 2010 8:04 PM | Report abuse

It may change someday, heck it may change next inning. But I've found that (as a Nats fan) I don't worry all that much about "hot hitting" by the opposing team when Strasburg is on the mound.

The Nats defense and batting, on the other hand... [Shivers. Cold chills.]

Posted by: Bob-S | July 21, 2010 8:04 PM | Report abuse

Well, Zim's doing his part, Bob! Double, driving Dunn to third! :-)

Posted by: Scottynuke | July 21, 2010 8:07 PM | Report abuse

This is a very good idea.

http://www.msnbc.msn.com/id/38348752/ns/disaster_in_the_gulf/

Posted by: RD_Padouk | July 21, 2010 8:11 PM | Report abuse

Bernadina drives Dunn home with a sac fly! Woohoo!! :-)

Posted by: Scottynuke | July 21, 2010 8:12 PM | Report abuse

It's a good start, RD_P... :-)

Posted by: Scottynuke | July 21, 2010 8:14 PM | Report abuse

I didn't like the circumstances that put me in a GT classroom after 3rd grade, nor the loss of my old friends that entailed, but I truly enjoyed my teacher and new classmates. One upside was being introduced to Shel Silverstein, acrostics, and haikus.

What I remember was how diverse the gifts we had. One was a math whiz, another an electronics whiz, and so on.

My other distinction was being the kid who had a reading group of one, as I was reading many grade levels above my classmates already.

One huge drawback for me other than losing my friends was the disappointment that GT apparently didn't mean art.

We had almost no visual art instruction compared to my old class. Projects combining art with other subjects (history, science, etc.) weren't the same as regular art classes.

I changed schools in part because I was pretty unhappy. My new school gave me much more arts instruction which was good. I also took community center art courses, too.


Posted by: Wilbrod_Gnome | July 21, 2010 8:15 PM | Report abuse

One sure way to make a kid feel different is to keep him where he IS different.

Posted by: -TBG- | July 21, 2010 8:18 PM | Report abuse

Hah! Everyone who's ever met you, dmd, comes away shaking his or her head in that self-deprecating way, saying, "Oh, man, is that dmd ever intelligent!"

Posted by: Yoki | July 21, 2010 8:19 PM | Report abuse

TBG, what if there's no place where the kid isn't different? I went through 4 different elementary school programs.

I felt most different in the smaller programs where the kids were supposed to be the most like me, so I personally am not a fan of microtracking elite kids.

Posted by: Wilbrod_Gnome | July 21, 2010 8:26 PM | Report abuse

Moving around as a youth (the two years & three months that I attended the Atlanta-area school from which I graduated HS was the longest I ever attended any school, my three years in Okinawa was the longest I ever attended any school system) gave me lots of helpful social and cultural perspective, but it didn't do much to teach any skills related to stick-to-itiveness or aggressive problem-solving.

If I wasn't fond of a situation, I always knew that another situation was just down the road. I just had to creatively ignore and/or avoid the current one for a while.

Posted by: Bob-S | July 21, 2010 8:32 PM | Report abuse

One thing being a parent has forcibly borne in upon me is that my experience informs my life and development, not anyone else's. I may draw from my experience in advising my son, but I assume at my peril that his experience, even in similar circumstances, will be the same. He finds the idea highly risible. This has made me somewhat more humble in giving advice or expressing broad-based policy opinions.

That said, I follow my mother's lead and have not discussed actual IQ scores with the Boy, his or his parents'. We discuss relative intelligence in general terms. As far as numbers go, I tell him what she told me, that IQ is a measure of intelligence but not the only one, and is no measure of success. My hope is that when he finds out his IQ it won't be the most important thing to him.

Posted by: Ivansmom | July 21, 2010 8:34 PM | Report abuse

Hoo, hoo! Strasburg advances a runner, Guzman smacks a two-run homer. Nat bats, oh my.

Posted by: Bob-S | July 21, 2010 8:42 PM | Report abuse

What Ivansmom said.

Posted by: RD_Padouk | July 21, 2010 8:42 PM | Report abuse

If his IQ score is the most important thing to him, then it is because he has an empty life-- which I highly doubt he ever will, Ivansmom.

Posted by: Wilbrod_Gnome | July 21, 2010 8:44 PM | Report abuse

Wilbrod... not to sound harsh, but the bulk of your differentness was not in academics. Clearly, you stood out (and still do) in that area, but really, now. Come on.

Your parents and teachers tried to do the right thing by moving you to the GT center. For some kids it doesn't work, but for the majority, it's where they learn how they aren't that different after all IN THE WAYS THEY THOUGHT THEY WERE. Like you said, the kids in the centers excel at all kinds of things and in all kinds of ways.

Kids have always been tracked into classes; all of us were, whether we realized it or not.

Son of G needed to learn that to be a geek was nothing to be ashamed of--or get bullied for. Daughter, on the other hand, had learned how to blend in perfectly well--to her own detriment.

They both needed to be in a setting where they could be who they actually were. For them, the GT center was perfect. And the program they were in was perfect for them.

The GT center-based program in Fairfax is 3rd-6th grade GT classes inside regular elementary schools; just not all of the regular schools, hence the name "center." They take art (yes! lots of it), music, band, strings, PE etc with all of the other kids in the school. They have lunch and recess with the other kids. They play sports with the other kids.

These are not elite schools or elite classes. There are also learning disabled kids (even in the GT classes--I know because one of my kids was a GT/LD kid).

I'm not going to generalize based on my own experiences, but for my kids, it was a godsend and one reason we live where we do. Because all of this is available in a public school system that provides "differentiated services" to all kinds of populations.

Posted by: -TBG- | July 21, 2010 8:47 PM | Report abuse

More hot-Great-Lake-spawned weather crisscrossing New England tonight. Severe thunderstorms and chance for tornados for central NH.

If I sent you folks near the lakes a couple dollars, could you buy a bag of ice and throw it in Lake Huron?

Posted by: baldinho | July 21, 2010 8:54 PM | Report abuse

I don't even know my kids' IQs.

Posted by: -TBG- | July 21, 2010 8:55 PM | Report abuse

Shel Silverstein is a hero to me, it was his poems that first captivated my daughter, along with Kate DiMillo (sp) and the Narnia series they started her love of books. Her major expenditure every month happens at the big box of books across the street.

Posted by: dmd3 | July 21, 2010 8:56 PM | Report abuse

I don't even know my IQ :-). It that something regularly tested in school or just for gifted?

Posted by: dmd3 | July 21, 2010 8:58 PM | Report abuse

They don't use IQ to test for GT here, dmd. They give a couple of standardized tests to every 2nd grader and use those scores, plus teacher evaluations, plus parent input.

You have have your kid IQ tested on your own (at your own cost) if you don't agree with the school system's analysis of your child, but you'd better be ready to accept the answer if it's not going to back you up.

They used to go strictly by IQ score, but stopped that before Son of G got to 2nd grade.

Posted by: -TBG- | July 21, 2010 9:04 PM | Report abuse

IQ is a very crude screening test for a certain type of cognitive acuity. As such, it can alert educators to a possible problem or unrecognized potential. That's about it.

In other words, IQ is to "intelligence" kind of what BMI is to "health." Something to be aware of, but nothing approaching the complete picture.

Posted by: RD_Padouk | July 21, 2010 9:18 PM | Report abuse

Backboodling and looking at Yello's pictures, I barely recognized Dresden. I was there in 1990, and then the city was a mixture of GDR shabbiness and somewhat dilapidated baroque glamour, now it is all spruced up and gorgeous. The cathedral Frauenkirche was a pile of rubble in the middle of the city and served as a memorial to the fire bombing in 1945.The reconstruction of this church is almost disneyesque. Great photos, thank you again.

Posted by: gmbka | July 21, 2010 9:20 PM | Report abuse

TBG, I went to that same GT program in FCPS-- probably the same school you're thinking of, but much earlier than your kids. I actually didn't feel too different in that GT program at all-- 20 kids plus, you know.

My only disappointment was in the art part.

I'm talking about smaller programs where you're tracked with 2-3 other kids most of the day, and they're older and snobs and bullies (also, they are "like you" in that they're deaf.)

And you find you love best the more normal classes that are bigger and include all students of all abilities, even if you're doing math next to somebody four years older than you and who challenged you to a fight one day because she thought you didn't like her or something and she's like a foot taller.

But even that class is good because you get less contact with THESE "elite" kids, especially the assault type of contact, and the teacher keeps good control and everybody busy.

I'm just saying that sometimes feeling different isn't about actually being different, but about being bullied.

Posted by: Wilbrod_Gnome | July 21, 2010 9:22 PM | Report abuse

I have never done an IQ test. I can see it if/when you are trying to get young people into the right groups in school. Once you reach adulthood, it wouldn't seem as necessary.... other than as a talking point.

With whom I have no idea.

Posted by: baldinho | July 21, 2010 9:25 PM | Report abuse

My IQ was tested in fourth grade as part of a program for GT (Gifted or Troubled) kids!

When it was tested again about twenty years later as part of a friend's college work, it came out about the same, so the measurements are apparently fairly reproducible.

So, I think the answer is that IQ tests per se aren't given to most kids. But the sorts of things that IQ tests measure correlate pretty well with other widely-administered tools. SAT scores and the Armed Services aptitude test scores, for example, have a pretty high correlation to measured IQ scores.

This assumes, of course, that various factors (dyslexia, hearing/vision problems, attention disorders, any number of things) aren't skewing the test scores. A bunch of awfully bright people don't test well for various reasons.

As RD points out, the predictive value (if any) of the measurements is a bit more problematic, so they're mostly useful only as data points that make up a part of a broader picture.


Posted by: Bob-S | July 21, 2010 9:27 PM | Report abuse

Different school, Wilbrod. And a world of difference, at least nowadays. I'm familiar with the school you went to and wouldn't probably have sent my kids there.

There can be big differences within the same school system.

Posted by: -TBG- | July 21, 2010 9:27 PM | Report abuse

I'm not a big fan of formal G/T programs because of the elitist trappings and the gamesmanship to get into them. But I see them as a necessary evil and a bit of a counterweight to all the legally mandated programs for other students on the edges of the bell curve.

Perhaps what we need is a program where kids are labeled PERFECTLY NORMAL - PAY EXTRA ATTENTION. Then everybody would be clamoring to make sure everybody knew their kid was normal. Not that any are.

Posted by: yellojkt | July 21, 2010 9:34 PM | Report abuse

Yello, I agree we will have to struggle to get help for our younger child, who is currently on the lower end for her grade, but not low enough for the school to test her (which would take 2 years anyways). In the meantime we have hired private tutoring and will have to seek private testing to determine if there is a learning issue - if there is they we ask the school to provide extra assistance.

How sad that she has to fail quite spectacularly in order to get help. They did give her initial testing but she was above the threshold so no further testing was recommended by the school. Thankfully her teacher thought different and has worked with us and the tutors.

One of our MP's, and a former hockey hero wrote a book about helping those kids in the middle.

Posted by: dmd3 | July 21, 2010 9:45 PM | Report abuse

Joel, how about a report on what the ocean looks like these days? Not that I'm not glad to know that many very sciency words are being exchanged...that is good...but...we need a vision.

Posted by: Windy3 | July 21, 2010 9:49 PM | Report abuse

I've often found it helpful to bear in mind that if I go to a big NASCAR race or a Redskins game, there will be at least a couple of thousand people (maybe many more) with higher IQ's than mine in attendance. And there will most assuredly be many thousands of people wiser than me. Helps keep things in perspective.

If I need to find somebody smarter than me, I don't usually have to look very far. I'm great at taking in, processing, and analogizing information in many ways. I can even give other people pretty good advice based on that information, if I properly understand their needs. Turning that ability into anything resembling a useful plan for myself? Hopeless.

Posted by: Bob-S | July 21, 2010 9:49 PM | Report abuse

I've often found it helpful to bear in mind that if I go to a big NASCAR race or a Redskins game, there will be at least a couple of thousand people (maybe many more) with higher IQ's than mine in attendance. And there will most assuredly be many thousands of people wiser than me. Helps keep things in perspective.

If I need to find somebody smarter than me, I don't usually have to look very far. I'm great at taking in, processing, and analogizing information in many ways. I can even give other people pretty good advice based on that information, if I properly understand their needs. Turning that ability into anything resembling a useful plan for myself? Hopeless.

Posted by: Bob-S | July 21, 2010 9:50 PM | Report abuse

gmbka,

Perhaps the most frustrating words from tour guides on our trip were "reconstructed after the war". It seemed odd knowing that all these gothic and baroque objects were sometimes less than 60 years old. But there clearly was so much ruin, there was no choice.

Dresden still has long roadside mounds of rubble from destroyed buildings lining some of the roads.

An interesting feature of the reconstructed Dresden buildings is that the local sandstone has such a high metal content the stones get a very dark moldy/mildewed/soot-covered patina to them. This makes it very easy to identify which stones were original and which are replacements.

At the Frauenkirche, they have left a huge chunk of the original dome in the courtyard as a monument. This picture is of me leaning against it:

http://www.flickr.com/photos/yellojkt/4806900503/in/set-72157624408209437/

On the reverse side there is a small plaque showing where it originally fit into the dome.

Posted by: yellojkt | July 21, 2010 9:55 PM | Report abuse

dmd, I'm glad that you are pursuing help for your daughter at a young age. A friend's daughter was in high school before they realized and diagnosed her learning problems. It was shocking because the town they lived in was quite wealthy and had an 'exceptional' school system - supposedly.

Posted by: badsneakers | July 21, 2010 9:58 PM | Report abuse

Gee. That remark was meant to be a bit of lighthearted windbaggery. I certainly didn't think it bore repeating.

Posted by: Bob-S | July 21, 2010 9:58 PM | Report abuse

Yes, Bob-S. That's exactly right. You get in a big enough crowd and there will be lots of people who are very smart and skilled in things you've never heard of, whether they took 12 years of college or none. So many new ideas.

This is one reason why I don't like extremely tiny programs, despite the attention they can provide-- too easy to be pressured into conformity.

Posted by: Wilbrod_Gnome | July 21, 2010 9:59 PM | Report abuse

yellojkt - I've always found it interesting how we fetishize old stuff, and are disappointed when we find out something is recreated.

For instance, I'll never forget the sadness I felt when I learned that Ozzy Osbourne had only pissed on a monument across the street from the Alamo, rather than on the historic dilapidated structure itself. Kinda took the thrill of indignation out of the whole thing for me.

Posted by: Bob-S | July 21, 2010 10:09 PM | Report abuse

dmd,
Your situation is all too common. All kids should be treated as if they were special.

Posted by: yellojkt | July 21, 2010 10:10 PM | Report abuse

I agree yello, and we are fortunate that we are in a position to be able to pay for the private help/testing. While frustrated at watching my child struggle and the low esteem is causes, she is a great kid, funny and energetic, creative and loving.

Posted by: dmd3 | July 21, 2010 10:21 PM | Report abuse

Good evening, all--
Balancingboy #2, who has several physical/cognitive issues, had his IQ tested at Kennedy Krieger when he was five. The tester gave me a range of 67 to 143, which was not much help at all.
It's still not clear what his final abilities and disabililties will be. But as long as he gets John Cleese and the need for a left-of-center perspective I figure it will all work out.

Posted by: balancingact | July 21, 2010 10:28 PM | Report abuse

I went in for the scheduled teacher/parent conferences once during my son's middle school years and the art teacher said this to me: "Your son has too many ideas of his own to be in my art class." (He was and is an excellent graphic sketch and computer artist.)

After I wrapped my brain around that I made sure she knew that I ran a small art gallery and had a quilt about to be hung in a juried exhibit at the Air and Space Museum.

Too many of his own ideas in art class? !!!

Posted by: talitha1 | July 21, 2010 10:31 PM | Report abuse

talitha - Wow! I think that sorta says it all, about a lot of things.

We do love our intellectual/social/racial/sexual/cultural/... boxes, don't we?

Posted by: Bob-S | July 21, 2010 10:37 PM | Report abuse

talitha, I thought I had already heard the most outlandish things a teacher can ever say. But I was wrong.
(And I say that with everlasting gratitude for all the wonderful teachers who have made such a difference in the lives of BalancingBoy #! and #2).

Posted by: balancingact | July 21, 2010 10:37 PM | Report abuse

Maybe that sounds as if the teacher was imparting profound classical technique to her students. The truth was more of the tempura art on butcher paper or handcoiled clay fired in the sun variety. Ack. Telepathy must be rampant because said son just called, is on the line and bids the boodle hello.

(dna_girl, a song for leatherthumb?)

Posted by: talitha1 | July 21, 2010 10:41 PM | Report abuse

Actually, I disagree, all kids should be valued and loved as though they were special, but treated as though they were average.

Posted by: Yoki | July 21, 2010 10:42 PM | Report abuse

balancingact, I'm glad you found your way here. You just fit in really easily!

Long meetings tomorrow. Friday night through Saturday late-morning downtime. I'm not as smart as I always thought.

When I was in silversmith classes, my favorite prof encouraged us to audit if we didn't want to do her specific assignments. Worked for me, worked for her.

Posted by: -dbG- | July 21, 2010 10:43 PM | Report abuse

Talitha, teenagers are supposed to have ideas of their own. Did he miss that memo?

The value of his teaching may well sink home years later. I found that to be true of my art teacher's advice in HS, when I looked at my old work years later and admitted to myself she had a point on things that I simply didn't see back then.

Posted by: Wilbrod_Gnome | July 21, 2010 10:46 PM | Report abuse

Teachers are not always the best judge of a child's abilities. When my youngest daughter was in 4th grade, her teacher told me, in somber tones, that my child was behind and would never catch up.

My daughter grew up and graduated from Vanderbilt Law School.

Posted by: Manon1 | July 21, 2010 10:49 PM | Report abuse

Exactly, balancingact! The reason I never had my kids tested is that I couldn't figure out what I would do differently if I had that information. They're my kids, they have to do their best in school and be a contributing member of the family and community. I'm not going to treat them differently than they've already earned, and the expectations will be the same.

The trick is that the expectations are tailored to each of them, what they can reach and where they can excel.

Posted by: Yoki | July 21, 2010 10:50 PM | Report abuse

Thanks, dbG. It's nice to be here.
Yoki, I agree--I love the balancingboys to pieces, but need to periodically remind them that they aren't the center of the universe. Which is very odd, because when I was 16 -18 years old, I distinctly remember being the center of the universe.

Posted by: balancingact | July 21, 2010 10:52 PM | Report abuse

Thanks, Scottynuke, for the espn heads-up. Beatrice and I watched from the 7th inning and got to see the Nats almost snatch defeat from the jaws of victory. For a lagomorph she seemed very interested in the game.

Posted by: Ivansmom | July 21, 2010 10:57 PM | Report abuse

Yoki, I never thought I was smart until a teacher told me in 6th grade. To me smart meant getting top grades and I didn't do that. In my family, I'm definitely average.

So, yes, not making a big fuss about learning and such works for me, too.

On the other hand, it can be important for kids to know they ARE good at some things, in case they don't know already.

Some kids only hear all the things they do wrong and so fail to recognize their strengths.

Posted by: Wilbrod_Gnome | July 21, 2010 10:58 PM | Report abuse

You'll love this, balancingact!

A child philosopher taught me one important thing about adolescence, long before the young ladies reached it.

"An adolescent spends so much time being self-conscious, she is certain everyone else is spending that much time being conscious of him."

So true, and excruciating to remember of myself.

My late lamented mother-in-law cured me on my wedding day when I fretted that my shoes were not 'right.' "Don't worry, Y, nobody is looking at you anyway! They're thinking about themselves and whether they're overdressed."

I loved that woman.

Posted by: Yoki | July 21, 2010 11:02 PM | Report abuse

Wilbrod, my son didn't miss one memo. Not one. He knew himself from the moment he was born. His teachers? We took them all with grains of salt.

Posted by: talitha1 | July 21, 2010 11:03 PM | Report abuse

Like the story Talitha, we also had some art issues this year, the assignment was to fill a large piece of paper with circles, the page was to be filled completely with circles of different sizes and coloured as the children saw fit. This project became a nightmare and caused my daughter no end of grief. We were puzzled as to why, teacher was upset that her circles were widely spaced, after the testing that was initially done on my daughter on of the results was an assignment like that one was particularly difficult for her and simply overwhelmed her.

She loves to draw, but on her own way, she gets in trouble for not colouring in the lines or carefully - a lot.

Posted by: dmd3 | July 21, 2010 11:03 PM | Report abuse

Yoki, we seem to be in that awkward cross-posting phase.
Must get up early to take the car to the Zen garage (no Wi-fi in the waiting room, no free coffee, but incredibly intuitive and cheap mechanics) but before I say goodnight I just want to second the notion that Joel should a) write a book about the BP/Gulf debacle and b) get a Pulitzer for what he's already written.

Posted by: balancingact | July 21, 2010 11:03 PM | Report abuse

Anthem for Leatherthumb and everyone else who colours outside the lines.

http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=8bbTtPL1jRs&feature=avmsc2

Posted by: Yoki | July 21, 2010 11:08 PM | Report abuse

Ok, two more thoughts--
Yoki, so true. I wouldn't be an adolescent again for anything.
Dmd3--getting in trouble for not coloring in the lines? I'm sorry, my typing can't keep up with my indignation. I hope your lovely daughter continues to color outside the lines whenever she thinks the lines are irrelevant.

Posted by: balancingact | July 21, 2010 11:10 PM | Report abuse

She will her subversive mother says it is OK :-)

Posted by: dmd3 | July 21, 2010 11:14 PM | Report abuse

I think it is so telling that three of us, while composing our comments, used the same image. "Colouring outside the lines."

Even though they were posted at different times, but within a 10-minute window.

Posted by: Yoki | July 21, 2010 11:16 PM | Report abuse

I bet we all would use the big box of crayons to colour outside the lines too.

Off to bed have a great night everyone.

Posted by: dmd3 | July 21, 2010 11:25 PM | Report abuse

Our own rickoshea told me of the time her daughter's teacher declared that ROS's daughter must not be very smart because she asked a lot of questions.

Can you imagine?

I am officially adopting Yoki's statement that all kids should be valued and loved as though they are special, but treated as though they are average.

I mean, this belongs on a Tweet or something.

Posted by: -TBG- | July 21, 2010 11:26 PM | Report abuse

One of the best things a teacher told me about my kid when he was in his high school underachieving phase was "he's different" - and she thought that was a good thing, in that he had a good sense of self and was an independent thinker. He was in a gifted program in middle school, but he didn't do well with it - many years later he told me it was too much pressure, which was not my intention, at all. He's one of those kids who scores high on standardized tests, but has low grades - just what college admissions do not want to see. Ah, well - he's doing ok despite his parents' mistakes.

Posted by: seasea1 | July 21, 2010 11:30 PM | Report abuse

Tweet! Tweet it, TBG! Just credit me (since I have no idea how the heck to use that darn thing -- gosh, I'm old).

But it is sort of funny that our own darling elegant beautiful ROS appears rather like ROUS. Just sayin'

Posted by: Yoki | July 21, 2010 11:35 PM | Report abuse

LOL, Talitha. Great kid to have. I meant the teacher, of course.

Great Mother in law to have, too, Yoki.

Aw, Dmd. Hug your daughter for me... that assignment would drive any kid her age crazy, too, that's a lot of work.

Tell her next time-- cheat by reading the instructions very carefully and figuring out any loopholes that could make it easier for her to do.

Get a big can that nearly covers the paper and draw a circle around it, repeatedly. look around the can for any leftover space in the corners. Slam her pencil eraser in some paint and make some little circles.

Then take the can off, and make circles inside the circles if she wants. It may not be pretty or perfect, but she did it.

Lesson number one of school survival while being different:

There will be assignments that are boring, silly, and insanely difficult to do. Read the instructions carefully and see if you can figure out a way to make it easier (if not exactly what the teacher meant).

Be prepared to ask for extra time or just do a poor job of it and hand it in for minimal points. If you panic, talk to somebody about it.

I do wish I had that "attitude manual" when I was assigned a sonnet to write in 10th grade.

If I remember right, I sweated over it for two weeks, poring through a dictionary for each word for the freakin' syllable count and stress, crying to my mom over how hard it was, and finished it-- too late, hated it and threw it out before I was told I could still hand it in for partial credit.

I wouldn't have cared so much if our assignments weren't going to be posted for everybody to read.

I still remember how impossible that task felt, and how in the end, I just refused to hand it in.

Now decades later, I can write a sonnet.

Some teachers will never realize how humilating their assignments can feel to kids who will never quite have all the foundation skills expected for that task.


Posted by: Wilbrod_Gnome | July 21, 2010 11:36 PM | Report abuse

You guys make me laugh, but I must go. See you on the other side.

Posted by: russianthistle | July 21, 2010 11:41 PM | Report abuse

btw, this page is brought to you by ... phoenix university.

Posted by: russianthistle | July 21, 2010 11:43 PM | Report abuse

I've tried so hard to not engage in this subject, but TBG's comments cause me to jump in. Education today is led, to a great degree, by men and women who were not great students themselves, had lower SAT scores, and majored in education instead of a subject matter like history or English literature or math, and thus don't have a deep understanding of subject matter. Parents in the main don't have any measure of teacher effectiveness and creativity, and so, they gauge learning by test scores.

The outlier students are defined as weird, eccentric, or defective in some way and are often shunned by classmates and teachers alike.

Teachers are not especially able to provide differentiated instruction because they haven't been taught to provide individual or small group instruction and guidance.

Teacher training classes are theoretical and not grounded in the reality of the classroom, and most teachers take four or five years to become effective in classroom management and quality instruction.

The best teacher training involves a year or more as an apprentice under a master teacher and school systems cannot afford to do that.

As for the terms 'gifted and talented,' the addition of the word 'talented' is used to include lower economic status children who don't necessarily test high, but the teacher knows that the child has the ability to excel in school or in a specific area.

Under the present school situation, the miracle is that so many children do well. Under 'ideal' schooling, there's no way to know how many kids would do even better.

Posted by: rickoshea11 | July 21, 2010 11:44 PM | Report abuse

Seasea, mistakes happen. Maybe the GT program would have been right at another age if/when he had a chance to decide that.

Posted by: Wilbrod_Gnome | July 21, 2010 11:46 PM | Report abuse

Oh, I forgot... I am running a weekly pickle challenge. 1 quart of your favorite NY Dills or Half Sours to the person who predicts the weekly new claims for unemployment stats that will be announced at about 8 am tomorrow.

Pickles are available for winner's pickup in Bethesda at the extremely great farmer's market in Bethesda on Sunday of that week.

The bet is within so many claims and being over does not affect the calculation. It is whomever is closest. your estimates must be posted here on the blog with a reference to Russianthistle. That will do.

Let's see who the biggest Econ junkie is!!!!

Posted by: russianthistle | July 21, 2010 11:49 PM | Report abuse

It's late, and I'm tired, so if I've offended anyone, you have to wait until tomorrow to spar with me.

Good night all.

Posted by: rickoshea11 | July 21, 2010 11:49 PM | Report abuse

I have a great choking, blocking, painful sob in my chest at this:

Under the present school situation, the miracle is that so many children do well. Under 'ideal' schooling, there's no way to know how many kids would do even better.

Posted by: rickoshea11 | July 21, 2010 11:44 PM

Posted by: Yoki | July 21, 2010 11:50 PM | Report abuse

No offense, Maggie O'D. Have a good night.

Posted by: Wilbrod_Gnome | July 21, 2010 11:51 PM | Report abuse

I'm sure I'll regret commenting without thoroughly backboodling, but I am eternally grateful there was no such thing as a GT program in any of the many schools I attended. Spending another moment in high school, no matter how the courses were structured, would have been the end of my formal education. Starting college at 16 saved my sanity. It wasn't school I disliked, it was the kids! (not bullied, picked on or otherwise wounded-just always preferred spending my time with grown ups. My fellow college students were at least a reasonable facsimile) So, with a sample size of 1, I have determined that we should not be so quick to insist that young people remain with their same age peers and invent programs to stretch them or allow them to live up to their potential. They have a whole lifetime ahead of them to learn that the primary reward for competence and hard work is more work.

Posted by: frostbitten1 | July 22, 2010 12:00 AM | Report abuse

Hmm, since you can't ship the pickles to me anyway, I'm gonna say,

National unemployment will have fallen to 9.3% when the numbers are released tomorrow morning (long before I get up in my time-zone), but this doesn't count the number of people (citizens) who have given up looking for work as it is hopeless.

So, something like 2,874,000, rounded up?

Posted by: Yoki | July 22, 2010 12:07 AM | Report abuse

SCC missed my last sentence

So why not just allow them to move up and out of k-12 education, and at least feel like they are getting out of a lot of loathsome work?

Posted by: frostbitten1 | July 22, 2010 12:07 AM | Report abuse

You do have a point, Frostbitten, but I bet even with the GT stuff you'd have gotten out early. I did.

Posted by: Wilbrod_Gnome | July 22, 2010 12:09 AM | Report abuse

I've been hoarding those big ole' boxes of Crayolas (64s with the sharpener built in) for ages! And newsprint. That's all you need to let loose a coloring-out-of-the-lines revolution on an unsuspecting world.

It's been some hard news I heard from my sonchild tonight, but not insurmountable. Thanks to all boodlers, Yoki for the song, balancingact for joining the troupe, and everyone else for just being here.

http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=uQYDvQ1HH-E&feature=related

Posted by: talitha1 | July 22, 2010 12:27 AM | Report abuse

The weekly new unemployment claims never make sense to me - but I'll say 400,000. Which seems optimistic to me...but I know people who have gotten jobs, including badsneakers.

I'm waiting till tomorrow to say woo hoo, but this is good news:
http://www.washingtonpost.com/wp-dyn/content/article/2010/07/21/AR2010072105650.html?hpid=topnews

Posted by: seasea1 | July 22, 2010 12:39 AM | Report abuse

Love Cocker singing the Beatles. Well, just love the Beatles. As does #2. We're what, 40 years into the future?

Talitha? Hard news?

Posted by: Yoki | July 22, 2010 12:40 AM | Report abuse

It'll be okay, Yoki. He's been through a rough year with a long romance that hasn't worked out yet. *relating* Relocating alone is taking a toll. I sent your song on to him, Yoki to leatherthumb. He understands the boodle and thanks you.

Posted by: talitha1 | July 22, 2010 12:53 AM | Report abuse

http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=k5llyCW1tTI

Posted by: -jack- | July 22, 2010 12:53 AM | Report abuse

good thoughts, talitha. the link is for another cover. ymmv. consider the source.

Posted by: -jack- | July 22, 2010 12:56 AM | Report abuse

Wee story, #2 and I sang this together in the kitchen of the big house one day; she went and got her acoustic guitar, I whipped up a sabayon whilst she made the chords, and both of us knew every word near perfect.

Himself videotaped it. And then, at my insistence, destroyed the tape.

http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=nucSvl7VXVM

Posted by: Yoki | July 22, 2010 1:03 AM | Report abuse

Bad love = good growing.

Posted by: Yoki | July 22, 2010 1:04 AM | Report abuse

Ack! Not that vid! No no no. I only listened to the Beatles. I didn't know it was horrid little baby-stuff.

Posted by: Yoki | July 22, 2010 1:06 AM | Report abuse

This one.

http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=wNRH7_Kd5Yc

Posted by: Yoki | July 22, 2010 1:08 AM | Report abuse

*L* whenever i wield a guitar, there is much eye rolling, and inaudible why-does-he-always-do-this...it's worse when i plug in my electric. i play a lot when noone is around. then i'm *really* big. it's so cool. the harmonics of the house are such that i'm relatively sure that it carries at least a half block.

Posted by: -jack- | July 22, 2010 1:10 AM | Report abuse

Imagine me rocking my arms back and forth, jack, just going in your groove in the pit. So rockin'!

Posted by: Yoki | July 22, 2010 1:15 AM | Report abuse

Also, don't forget that my dear father-in-law used to play his trumpet out the window on summer afternoon, feeling like a big-band mouth.

(He wasn't)

Posted by: Yoki | July 22, 2010 1:17 AM | Report abuse

Jack tried to teach #1 this: http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=bY2B4h_lNgU

Posted by: Yoki | July 22, 2010 1:20 AM | Report abuse

this is one that i hack through. lots. 'cause i can.
http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=K8B_YY327Pk

Posted by: -jack- | July 22, 2010 1:23 AM | Report abuse

try to coerce # 1 to give this one a whirl:

http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=hRGFqSkNjHk&feature=related

Posted by: -jack- | July 22, 2010 1:30 AM | Report abuse

Oh, jack!

Catching up and found your blackbird waiting.
Just the release I needed. *major smile at you*

Posted by: talitha1 | July 22, 2010 1:34 AM | Report abuse

And Yoki ----- Rocky Raccoon!

Life is rich with wonder!

Posted by: talitha1 | July 22, 2010 1:39 AM | Report abuse

been playing longer than i care to admit, and still lack the finger picking skill to do that one. relegated forever to rhythm, excepting the times when the lead is quite deliberate.

Posted by: -jack- | July 22, 2010 1:40 AM | Report abuse

#2 could handle that. #1 is the clarinetist, #2 the guitarist. I'll play if for her.

Posted by: Yoki | July 22, 2010 1:40 AM | Report abuse

Oh! #1 has already played this from the original score. So jazzy, so nightclubby!

Posted by: Yoki | July 22, 2010 1:42 AM | Report abuse

whipped up some 99ers in the bunker. help yerselves.

Posted by: -jack- | July 22, 2010 1:42 AM | Report abuse

all part of life's rich pageant, talitha!

Posted by: Yoki | July 22, 2010 1:45 AM | Report abuse

http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=9C1vJ2Z8aI0

Posted by: talitha1 | July 22, 2010 1:47 AM | Report abuse

I don't know what that is. 99ers?

Posted by: Yoki | July 22, 2010 1:47 AM | Report abuse

cool stuff. dad gave me a limited edition rca volume of glenn miller. 12 sides of vinyl. most of it is unscathed. with a picture book. makes up for all of the albums i unloaded for an airfare to st louis many years ago. well worth it, though, attended my best friend's wedding. had a choice seat, to boot.

Posted by: -jack- | July 22, 2010 1:48 AM | Report abuse

Andy Williams dubbed Bacall's voice for that movie. They didn't trust her. HAH!

Posted by: talitha1 | July 22, 2010 1:52 AM | Report abuse

long story short: eggs, toast, potatoes, and a bottomless cup of proper coffee. a speciality in a diner long ago and far away on erie blvd. one of those bar closing gigs. usually after an evening at the firebarn tavern.

Posted by: -jack- | July 22, 2010 1:54 AM | Report abuse

Decipher this jargon:

Depress 2 4 16 18
Throw shift
Unspool
Sleigh back tie
Place marker for off end

Up press 4 5 9 7
Shift throw back
Catch mark adjust

Shift 1 12
Double paddle mark blossom
Shift 2 11
Mark blossom

etc........
------------------
All jobs got swing when teams work together. Until they come under scrutiny for holes in the job nobody questions the lingo.

Posted by: talitha1 | July 22, 2010 2:16 AM | Report abuse

It sounds sort of loom-ish; a weaving pattern?

Posted by: Yoki | July 22, 2010 2:18 AM | Report abuse

night, boodle

http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=VaulJFDgDVk

Posted by: talitha1 | July 22, 2010 2:22 AM | Report abuse

*smile* Yoki

Posted by: talitha1 | July 22, 2010 2:24 AM | Report abuse

The other day, I was in a Chinese restaurant ordering take away. While waiting for my food, a chalk board with about 7 dishes that were not in the menu written in Chinese caught my attention. First I read it horizontally, left to right. It made no sense. Then I tried reading left to right, top down. Still made no sense. I tried reading right to left, horizontally. Nope. Then I tried top down, right to left. It made some sense so I think that’s how it should be read. When a word written in the traditional, it’s 12 strokes. The simplified version would reduce it to 6 strokes. And I’m like, what the devil is that. I’m not good with the traditional. With simplified, it’s Greek to me.

As for the dishes on the chalk board, if it is changed and is written by another person the next day, he might decide to write it left to right, horizontally. There is no right way. Just how the writer feels like writing it.

Posted by: rainforest1 | July 22, 2010 3:42 AM | Report abuse

Sounds (hee hee) like Kanji.

Posted by: Yoki | July 22, 2010 3:45 AM | Report abuse

Hey, baldino! In reference to your earlier posts, I've never had an IQ test performed either. Like you, I also attended small schools. Though somewhat larger than yours (maybe 125 per grade level) the other factor was that we had all been together since first grade. That's a graduation that means something! You either went away to college or, in too many cases, lived your life forever in the same community your great-greats founded. (nothing wrong with that - I have two sibs who moved back after living elsewhere, but ....)

Back to IQ tests. When someone decided to run an IQ on my son they told me later, "don't worry, he's way up there" I let it be.

Posted by: talitha1 | July 22, 2010 4:06 AM | Report abuse

There is no right way. Just how the writer feels like writing it. - rainforest

-=yes

Posted by: talitha1 | July 22, 2010 4:29 AM | Report abuse

Morning, talitha. The small towns I grew up in were a lot of the same. You went to school the whole time with the same kids. Most stayed in the area to continue the work of their parents, as the communities were so small there was little growth in jobs.

A few went on to college. Some of those came back. There are lots of really good people in those towns.

The towns I grew up in are slowly dying out, though. Population is dropping. The mills and factories that propped them up are closed or closing. There are a lot of people that have to leave to survive.

It is very sad.

Posted by: baldinho | July 22, 2010 6:19 AM | Report abuse

ros,
You're 11:44 is truer than you know.

Posted by: yellojkt | July 22, 2010 6:19 AM | Report abuse

God loves us so much more than we can imagine through Him that died for all, Jesus Christ.

Good morning, friends. The weather person is promising heat, and more heat today. It should be 80 degrees by nine o'clock this morning, so one can basically take it from there--hot, hot, hot.

We took the kids to the library yesterday for a water splash event. It was so much fun for them. My hearing-aid got wet which meant it knocked off, but that's was ok too, just loved seeing them enjoy the event. They used the sprinkler system for the water, which was a little thin, but still wet.

Have a wonderful day, folks, and try to keep cool. Love to all.

Slyness, I know it's going to be hot where you are, so keep cool, and perhaps avoid the outside, if that's possible. Sounds like you're going to miss your daughter terribly.

Posted by: cmyth4u | July 22, 2010 6:31 AM | Report abuse

I'm SO with frosti on having preferred to be around adults as opposed to "kids my own age."

Kinda explains my Boodling, come to think of it. :-)

*Kinda-blue-after-having-safely-seen-NukeSpouse-to-the-airport-so-she-can-enjoy-her-H.S.-reunion-and-now-wondering-how-I'll-survive-the-weekend Grover waves* :-)

Posted by: Scottynuke | July 22, 2010 6:49 AM | Report abuse

russianthistle:
450,000
You had me at NY Dills.

Posted by: yellojkt | July 22, 2010 6:57 AM | Report abuse

Cassandra!! *cool HUGSSSSSSSSS* :-)

Posted by: Scottynuke | July 22, 2010 7:02 AM | Report abuse

// They have a whole lifetime ahead of them to learn that the primary reward for competence and hard work is more work.//
wow, frosti, is that ever true (and very funny)

wilbrod, perhaps dmd's child is different in a different way than you're different. :)

735 and haven't been called yet. The lines are down or this is a good sign.

Have a good day, all.

Posted by: -dbG- | July 22, 2010 7:38 AM | Report abuse

I get the impression that simplified Chinese characters vs. traditional (China vs. Hong Kong, Taiwan, Singapore, etc.) causes significant problems for readers.

A Chinese crossword puzzle sounds possible, but difficult. Sentences or phrases rather than words.

Posted by: DaveoftheCoonties | July 22, 2010 7:44 AM | Report abuse

Good morning all, hi Cassandra! Yup, another scorcher and tomorrow the prediction is for a high of 99. We're headed to the hills for the weekend.

I hope the hearing aid will be okay when it dries out, Cassandra!

IQ tests, meh. I qualified for Mensa on one of the two they give for entrance to the organization, but not the other. I didn't qualify based on my SAT scores but did on the Miller Analogies I had to take to enter grad school. They are a complete waste of time and money.

Frosti, I'm another who preferred to be in the company of adults. Dunno, never found my peers to be all that interesting. Thank heavens everybody grew up so I could have friends my own age. ;-)

Gotta see the Geekdottir off and then make a hospital visit, to the dear soul whose deacon I am.

Posted by: slyness | July 22, 2010 7:47 AM | Report abuse

I was IQ tested (sneakily, without being told what the questioning was about) several years ago. It turned out that the results were fine, but low-normal short-term memory and high distractibility were more important.

Posted by: DaveoftheCoonties | July 22, 2010 7:57 AM | Report abuse

For leatherthumb
http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=zyubXkT55HQ
http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=e6A9PaWNSec

Posted by: DNA_Girl | July 22, 2010 8:21 AM | Report abuse

Dotc, from the very beginning, overseas Chinese read traditional characters. Then China comes along and started shortening the characters until they were not recognizable. When the newspapers and magazines in Singapore and Malaysia adopted the simplified version, the readers were up in arms saying what the heck was that. For a long time readers were complaining up and down so newspapers and magazines ease up a little. Taiwan so far has resisted the change.

There are advantages and disadvantages for the change. The advantage is you don’t have to remember so much. In the traditional, sometimes you remember the box but you don’t remember what’s inside the box, or you don’t remember whether there should be 2 dashes or 3 dashes. The disadvantage is the word looses its meaning since Chinese characters are hieroglyphics.

Posted by: rainforest1 | July 22, 2010 8:53 AM | Report abuse

Gut morninkzz Boodlies!

At dawn the Andean peaks displayed golden auras of blowing snow. Ice ahd hoar frost made for a slippery commute in Santiago. The south looks like chez Frostbitten in winter.

A few days ago, Chilean Patagonia received three feet of snow overnight, isolating the region.

Now, the polar air mass has extended to Argentina, Bolivia, Paraguay and southern Brazil, causing over a hundred deaths.

Porching at the Bar Union is done with overcoats on.

Brag of the Frozen South.

Posted by: Braguine | July 22, 2010 9:08 AM | Report abuse

Hi Brag. Sounds like winter down there ;-)
I know it's been terribly hot this summer but I still prefer it to the cold, snow and ice.

Of course it's easy to say that today as the humidity is much lower and it's clear and beautiful this morning.

Posted by: badsneakers | July 22, 2010 9:22 AM | Report abuse

I suspect electronic media might mediate: should be fairly simple to offer the content in simplified/traditional versions.

I'm reminded that in Europe (and even in Pennsylvania), there was long a typographic split between the sort of lettering we use routinely and the blackletter that today is used only for the names of newspapers, or perhaps in vampire movies.

Posted by: DaveoftheCoonties | July 22, 2010 9:23 AM | Report abuse

Dotc, from the very beginning, overseas Chinese read traditional characters. Then China comes along and started shortening the characters until they were not recognizable. When the newspapers and magazines in Singapore and Malaysia adopted the simplified version, the readers were up in arms saying what the heck was that. For a long time readers were complaining up and down so newspapers and magazines ease up a little. Taiwan so far has resisted the change.

There are advantages and disadvantages for the change. The advantage is you don’t have to remember so much. In the traditional, sometimes you remember the box but you don’t remember what’s inside the box, or you don’t remember whether there should be 2 dashes or 3 dashes. The disadvantage is the word looses its meaning since Chinese characters are hieroglyphics.

Posted by: rainforest1 | July 22, 2010 9:30 AM | Report abuse

Sorry about the double post. I'm having connection problems. I think my service provider is trying to make me sign up a more expensive package.

Posted by: rainforest1 | July 22, 2010 9:35 AM | Report abuse

Sneaks, I'll take the cold and snow any day over this hellish weather we're having now. Brag, fax me some of that white stuff, eh?

Posted by: ftb3 | July 22, 2010 10:30 AM | Report abuse

I was tested for IQ a few times in the school systems I went through. Also some other skill tests. In high school I scored highest in school in class; my siblings the same for their classes. But one test, given at the same time, I ranked in lowest 40 percentile: "clerical speed and accuracy." I can't sort worth a damn. Give me a pile of papers to alphabetize and you'd think from my slowness I was a very dim bulb. Learning of this Achilles heel was probably good for my humility. My parents once volunteered for Puerto Rico hurricane rebuilding and my mother said she thought the same about my father who was assigned to re-file some documents blown about in a medical office somewhere. I pointed out it might run in the genes.

Posted by: Jumper1 | July 22, 2010 10:31 AM | Report abuse

Faxing emergency South Polar high pressure package to ftb3.

Jumper1,
Some of us consider paper as a mortal enemy.

Interesting US Congress expenditures breakdown on AOL news today. They have really improved their news service since going independent from Time Warner.

Brag :)

Posted by: Braguine | July 22, 2010 10:45 AM | Report abuse

*brrrrrr-ing with delight* Thanks, Brag.

Posted by: ftb3 | July 22, 2010 10:48 AM | Report abuse

I wonder if bc's checking the news whilst on vacation:

http://www.nytimes.com/2010/07/22/technology/22compute.html

:-)

Posted by: Scottynuke | July 22, 2010 10:59 AM | Report abuse

I love what Rickoshea had to say about our schools and I've always been bothered by the education of educators, rather than subject-matter teachers.

It's pretty sad that if Dr G wanted to teach his subject in our local public high school, he'd have to go back to school, despite having two Masters degrees, a PhD and 26 years of experience teaching at the college level (not to mention his professional experience as well).

Posted by: -TBG- | July 22, 2010 11:02 AM | Report abuse

Once again, I'm presented with a rare opportunity to boodle.

I saw a post from talitha last night at 10:31 that indicates that she is a quilter. Doing a bit of deductive reasoning, I suspect that she belongs to a guild called Quilters Unlimited. Wonder if she knows my wife, also an avid quilter, who has been in years gone by, president of MAQ, and Friendship Star. A small-world, the boodle.

Posted by: Don_from_I-270 | July 22, 2010 11:13 AM | Report abuse

On the one hand, *I* wouldn't want to teach without a solid grounding in methodology. Subject matter I got.

On the other hand, G.B. Shaw's aphorism seems apt: He who can, does. He who can't, teaches.

This is simplistic, of course. There are many gifted teachers out there, and excellent teaching is a gift - one I don't have. Thirddottir does and is a natural for second grade. Thank heavens for her and her peers who do yeomen's work in our schools.

Posted by: slyness | July 22, 2010 11:15 AM | Report abuse

Amen, slyness. I owe a lot to the wonderful people who have taught my kids. I know I certainly couldn't do it.

I am now friends with a woman who taught both of my kids in elementary school. It's funny to think that she knows more about my kids than I do in some ways.

Posted by: -TBG- | July 22, 2010 11:23 AM | Report abuse

Quick note to Don_from_I-270 while he's around. Don, I'm not a member of that guild but have seen the excellent work of members. I learned traditional quilting from my grandmothers but tend to use the techniques in combination with others (weaving, knitting, sewing, etc.) in my work.

My quilts aren't at all traditional; the one that I spoke of last evening was a quadrapartite (four panels) wall quilt made from silk strips depicting a view of earth from space. It was made for a juried exhibition at Air and Space in conjunction with an exhibit of astronauts photography. (mid-80s) There were 100 artists exhibiting work in all media (one of the first times textile artists - three of us - had been considered alongside painters, sculptors, etc.) and the show hung for a year.

While I'm here - Good morning, y'all!

Many thanks to Yoki and DNA_Girl for the music for leatherthumb. Rough time for the guy but he'll make it.

Brag, fax me some of that polar air, too. I don't do hot well a'tall. Sometimes I wonder why I left the Rockies.

A good Thursday to all.

Posted by: talitha1 | July 22, 2010 11:50 AM | Report abuse

You left the Rockies, talitha, but you landed in heaven. Too bad it's hot as he11 right now, though. :-)

Posted by: -TBG- | July 22, 2010 11:53 AM | Report abuse

An addition to our discussion on teaching, Cassandra is on to something important about reading:

http://voices.washingtonpost.com/class-struggle/2010/07/power_of_books_my_wife_grew_up.html?hpid=sec-education

Posted by: slyness | July 22, 2010 12:06 PM | Report abuse

Slyness, I know a few teachers and professors that hold that G.B. Shaw quote with the same regard that lawyers feels for Dick the butcher's "The first thing we do, let’s kill all the lawyers" in Henry VI. Perhaps they're too tetchy.

My feeling is that those who have skills they WANT to teach, whose skills have been vetted, should be hired to instruct alongside accredited (unionized?) teachers in the classroom. Everyone wins, especially the students.

When I worked as a teacher's aide in Balt.Co. (hired to do one-on-one assistance with high-function autistic, hearing/sight/physical impaired students in an inclusion school) the art teachers soon learned that I had much to contribute. We planned whole units around needlepoint, weaving, etc. and the kids loved it. So did I!

Posted by: talitha1 | July 22, 2010 12:21 PM | Report abuse

TBG, I'm meeellllting!

Posted by: talitha1 | July 22, 2010 12:24 PM | Report abuse

Slyness... great link to the Jay Matthews piece on books.

"Children who have 500 or more books in the home get, on average, 3.2 years more schooling than children in bookless homes."

I wonder what happens to kids when they grow up in a home where you have to move books just to find a place to sit?

Posted by: -TBG- | July 22, 2010 12:53 PM | Report abuse

I kilt the boodle. Must have been the flying monkeys.

Posted by: talitha1 | July 22, 2010 12:53 PM | Report abuse

Whew!not dead. That's my house, TBG. Books make great benches if you arrange them properly.

Posted by: talitha1 | July 22, 2010 12:56 PM | Report abuse

How many years extra of school happens if the child is the one who keeps buying all those books, TBG?

Talitha, "Depress 2 4 16 18, Throw shift...".. sounded like a rhyme for a combo game of advanced jump rope and pattycake at the same time (you whirl for "unspool" and pat palms for "mark blossom").

Obviously, it's a good thing I'm not an professional code-cracker.

Posted by: Wilbrod_Gnome | July 22, 2010 1:15 PM | Report abuse

It's so my house too! The problem is that I keep adding to the collection. I've discarded a few, but not nearly enough to make a difference. My kids will just have to deal with it.

Latest collection: the oeuvre of Jane Austen in the Everyman Library collection. A beautiful edition, and now I've got all of them! Don't know what the Geekdottir will find to give me for Christmas now...

Posted by: slyness | July 22, 2010 1:24 PM | Report abuse

How interested are you in Jane Eyre or Thackeray's "Vanity Fair", Slyness?

Posted by: Wilbrod_Gnome | July 22, 2010 1:29 PM | Report abuse

The elementary schools in my small-ish town each sent a couple kids from my year for an afternoon a week for a pilot "advanced" class. We did some extra reading, some Spanish (our teacher was from the U.S.), and some projects. It was very stimulating and everyone was keen enough that they didn't fall behind in their own classes.

Around that time I was also offered to join a pilot project for a French immersion class, but turned it down to my later regret.

Posted by: engelmann | July 22, 2010 1:37 PM | Report abuse

What were they going to immerse the French pilots in, engelmann? :-)

Posted by: Scottynuke | July 22, 2010 1:43 PM | Report abuse

French immersion classes are dangerous.
You could wind up drowning in French.

Je tombe, je me noie, je meurs..


Posted by: Wilbrod_Gnome | July 22, 2010 1:51 PM | Report abuse

S'nuke... in the ocean is my guess.

Je meurs dans la mar..


Posted by: Wilbrod_Gnome | July 22, 2010 1:55 PM | Report abuse

Haven't read Jane Eyre in hears, Wilbrod, never have read Vanity Fair. I should do that.

Since I went to Oxford in June, I think I'll pull out Gaudy Night and reread that.

Posted by: slyness | July 22, 2010 1:58 PM | Report abuse

Vin, bien sûr.

Posted by: dmd3 | July 22, 2010 1:58 PM | Report abuse

I thought perhaps creme fraiche, dmd... :-)

Posted by: Scottynuke | July 22, 2010 2:03 PM | Report abuse

Vanity Fair is 800 pages long. I read it last summer, and found it truly fascinating, even though as he writes, it's a book without a true heroine.

It'd keep you busy for a while.

Charlotte Bronte was provoked to write Jane Eyre in homage and in response to Thackeray, and with that book fresh in my head, I could see why as I read.

Posted by: Wilbrod_Gnome | July 22, 2010 2:04 PM | Report abuse

Read somewhere recently that most US teachers graduate in the bottom third of their classes, and they don't usually go to very selective colleges in the first place. There are many excellent teachers doing darn near heroic work, but I am sad to say from personal observation in states from VA to HI that they are very much in the minority. The problem with teacher certification/preparation is that it never gets to the core of what makes a good teacher, and it's neither love of kids nor subject matter expertise. Love of kids is not necessary, subject matter knowledge is required but not sufficient. The core, according to frostbitten, is the ability to 1. treat kids and their families with unconditional positive regard (something Dr. G would know a thing or two about) and 2. triage learning situations quickly and adjust treatment accordingly. Being an expert at #2 requires knowing both subject matter and kids well. This is best evaluated through demonstration, not a credit counting paperwork drill. It also doesn't happen overnight. A first year teacher is no (or very little) good to anyone, and that was as true of my first year as anyone's, even if I wasn't a bottom third dweller whose first name was Coach.

Posted by: frostbitten1 | July 22, 2010 2:18 PM | Report abuse

I believe bottomthirddweller us available as a boodle handle.

Posted by: -dbG- | July 22, 2010 2:22 PM | Report abuse

Your 1 and 2 are on the mark in my opinion, frosti.

The art teacher at my kids' school impressed me one day when I was helping with an all-school assembly that featured a huge, room-sized Calder mobile being "unfurled" bit by bit as a story was unfolding as well.

She came in and watched for a minute and then turned to me smiling and said, "Oooohhhh... looks like I'm going to change my lesson plan for today! We're going to make mobiles!"

Posted by: -TBG- | July 22, 2010 2:40 PM | Report abuse

Ah, but "Coach" teachers can leave indelible memories. Mine did.

I saw a study a while ago that showed that chinese math teachers did well despite most not graduating from HS because they got specific training on how to teach math, drills, and they were given more time to prepare for class and they ONLY taught math. The pay was also good by China standards.

NCLB wants all teachers to know everything. That's not quite as realistic, especially for the pay, because sadly, the system is still run by educator-politican-idiots.

Posted by: Wilbrod_Gnome | July 22, 2010 3:05 PM | Report abuse

As a parent the best teachers have been the ones who will actively engage you in meaningful dialog. Both my wife and I hold teachers in very high regard, and will not contact them unless there is a serious issue that needs to be dealt with. Having such communications ignored makes us cranky.

I also used to be rather fond of one of my daughter's speech therapists. I could sit and listen to her talk about fricatives for hours.

Posted by: RD_Padouk | July 22, 2010 3:13 PM | Report abuse

Let me guess. A redhead?

Posted by: -dbG- | July 22, 2010 3:25 PM | Report abuse

I got royally spoiled in high school with a crop of great teachers. College and grad school had some good ones, too, but as a group, high school was the pinnacle for me.

Niece3 has a summer job at a bakery, which she loves. It does require the occasional early bird shift, which she takes in stride even though she is a total night owl. Yesterday she showed up promptly at the crack of dawn to discover her supervisor had neglected to tell her of a last-minute change in her start time to 9am.

She was given permission to throw flour in his face.

Posted by: MsJS | July 22, 2010 3:35 PM | Report abuse

Another positive factor, of course, is parent involvement in the school itself. IF IT IS POSSIBLE, spend some time in the school volunteering. It doesn't necessarily have to be with the students; there are plenty of chances to help out behind the scenes.

It's amazing how much easier it is to discuss academics with teachers and administrators when you're not meeting face-to-face for the first time.

This is much easier in the elementary school years, of course, but can still happen in high school. In fact, more of the volunteer opportunities in high school are after school hours when parents are more likely to be available anyway. And kids are less horrified to see you at school.

Posted by: -TBG- | July 22, 2010 3:35 PM | Report abuse

I don't know, Scotty, but due to the Geneva Conventions the pilots are no longer able to be immersed until fully conjugated.

Posted by: engelmann | July 22, 2010 3:36 PM | Report abuse

Perhaps she just had the voice of a redhead, dBG.

Posted by: Wilbrod_Gnome | July 22, 2010 3:37 PM | Report abuse

Perhaps she just had the voice of a redhead, dBG.

Posted by: Wilbrod_Gnome | July 22, 2010 3:37 PM | Report abuse

TBG wrote-"Another positive factor, of course, is parent involvement in the school itself. IF IT IS POSSIBLE,..." So true, but educators often make the assumption that the only thing keeping parents out of schools is the parent. They couldn't be more wrong. You'd be amazed how many schools don't even have a designated place for volunteers to put their coats or other belongings while in the building and no orientation to where the big people bathroom is (or no permission to use it). Many teachers harbor the assumption that the only things a parent volunteer is capable of is making copies and cutting out stencils. Beware the teacher who is reluctant to have lots of other adults in the classroom. These types generally thrive on being masters of all they survey once the classroom door is closed and your child who comes up with offbeat solutions, has unusual interests, or a clever sense of humor will suffer.

Boy, I really am down on teachers today. Must be the third of kids in our robotics camp this week who are medicated. Parents and kids (all boys) report agony in school and much trepidation about this very cerebral activity. In my next life I'm going to run a "dangerous camp for boys" and add blowing stuff up and jumping off things to the robotics missions. Alas, that would probably mean even stronger drugs to be able to endure regular school.

Posted by: frostbitten1 | July 22, 2010 3:58 PM | Report abuse

Does anyone watch the new show with Louis CK called "Louie"? It's pretty funny, although a bit raw and deserving of its late-night time slot.

Last week he was at his first PTA meeting and after hearing all the talk and arguing over how to make school better, he finally stood up and said, ""Righhht but this is school and school sucks and is always going to suck" and was greeted with dead silence from the other parents.

Posted by: -TBG- | July 22, 2010 4:13 PM | Report abuse

Unless you go get a job and learn that work sucks even worse. Then school doesn't suck so bad anymore.

Posted by: Wilbrod_Gnome | July 22, 2010 4:20 PM | Report abuse

OK, not education-related, but carrying forth Scotty's string, the Nats win another this afternoon, 7-1. Watched the game last night 'till the end. Don't know what's happend to Tyler Clippard, but he just hasn't had it in recent games. No lead is safe. I see they put Atilano on the D/L, which is also a good thing - bad elbow.

OK, back to the better schools discussion. Gotta go buy water and pasta at Whole Foods on the way home.

Posted by: ebtnut | July 22, 2010 4:29 PM | Report abuse

A sheepish moment during the Tour de France (video)

http://sports.yahoo.com/blogs/post/Video-Sheep-interrupt-riders-during-Tour-de-Fra?urn=top-257600

Posted by: Wilbrod_Gnome | July 22, 2010 4:42 PM | Report abuse

Man vs. Food just featured lutefisk. Not making me want to try it. If Adam can't eat it, how can I?

Posted by: yellojkt | July 22, 2010 4:49 PM | Report abuse

Lutefisk will be 80% of the menu at the dangerous camp for boys.

Posted by: engelmann | July 22, 2010 4:58 PM | Report abuse

Hoo-hah, MsJS! So did she? Throw flour in his face, I mean.

I find this teacher thread that has developed fascinating, and don't we all have stories to tell. Being a student, being a parent of a student, being a teacher . . . no small wonder that the floodgates open.

My best teacher - Home economics, four years of highschool. Myrtle Campbell, mean as a snake and soft as chiffon. She made me rip out hours of top-stitching because it "waggled". She was right. She's also responsible for the recommendation that made a difference in my acceptance into the design school of my choice.

Second best - 10th grade Lit teacher who taught us to keep a journal (a lifelong habit now) and had us read On the Beach. Her husband was a Green Beret serving in Vietnam at the time.

Worst teacher - The coach/biology guy who, on the day the announcement came over the intercom that JFK had been assassinated, uttered the words, "Good, somebody got the son-of-a-b---h".

Posted by: talitha1 | July 22, 2010 4:59 PM | Report abuse

More fun with Amazon reviews. After enjoying this product, make sure you check out the Customers Who Viewed This Item Also Viewed section...

http://amzn.to/c0kNMG

Posted by: -TBG- | July 22, 2010 5:01 PM | Report abuse

I've had some pretty sucky jobs in my life--many years of sucky jobs. But none has ever sucked for me like school did.

Love learning; hate school.

Posted by: -TBG- | July 22, 2010 5:11 PM | Report abuse

OMG, TBG! mister is a milk hog. Quoth the milk-widow, ever MORE. Too f'ng funny!

Posted by: talitha1 | July 22, 2010 5:18 PM | Report abuse

TBG, the "Whole Rabbit" item is a hoot as well. It makes me hungry though.

Posted by: shrieking_denizen | July 22, 2010 5:20 PM | Report abuse

==========================
BULLETIN!! ATTENTION!!

Be on the lookout for the guy with the milk mustache, mullet wig, t-shirt and baggy american flag workout pants. May be carrying a dressed rabbit in a cremation urn, wearing handerpants, and glowing in the dark.

==========================

And, TBG, hear, hear. Learning is fun, forced structured learning, horrible. I dread having to get my masters in the next few years, but at least I'll get to pick the general subject.

Posted by: MoftheMountain | July 22, 2010 5:23 PM | Report abuse

http://blog.al.com/live/2010/07/bp_buys_up_gulf_scientists_for.html

Here's a summary provided in today's Policy Alert from the American Association for the Advancement of Science:

"BP Accused of Seeking to Limit Gulf Scientists' Publications. The Mobile (AL) Press-Register reports that BP is offering lucrative contracts to marine scientists from the Gulf Coast region to conduct research on the oil spill -- but with strings attached. According to the report, at least one contract "prohibits the scientists from publishing their research, sharing it with other scientists or speaking about the data that they collect for at least the next three years." Academic researchers under contract to BP would also be unable to accept support from federal agencies for work related to the spill."

Posted by: DaveoftheCoonties | July 22, 2010 5:40 PM | Report abuse

DotC - that takes us back to square 1, right?

Posted by: talitha1 | July 22, 2010 5:46 PM | Report abuse

Google tells me there are no corn-powered Harleys, but I found a charcoal-powered motorcycle.
http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=t93QlgBu4Is

Posted by: Jumper1 | July 22, 2010 5:46 PM | Report abuse

Schools are soul sucking places but if you learn the ropes easily the damage doesn't have to be permanent. My biggest gripe has always been that they interfere with my reading. Reading happens to be how I learn best-don't tell me, don't show me, give me the book and I'll figure it out for myself. Besides, when I'm reading I can't hear a thing you say anyway. (Makes playing the piano a challenge since I can't hear when I read music either.)

Posted by: frostbitten1 | July 22, 2010 5:47 PM | Report abuse

When I first returned to school as an adult I saw something I never saw before - the huge attitude difference between those who wanted to be there versus those who felt they "had to be there." Some grumbly adults were there because their jobs demanded they take some programming courses. I of course had decided to take them because I wanted to. Most of the young 'uns felt they "had" to be there. An unhappy lot.

Posted by: Jumper1 | July 22, 2010 6:06 PM | Report abuse

Jumper, Harley-Davidson is HQ'ed in Wisconsin. And while I can attest corn is grown there, the state is better known for two other staples.

I wonder if they make any cheese-powered or beer-powered bikes.

talitha, of course she did.

TBG, I understand, I think. I managed OK, but so many of my friends wanted so badly to learn their way it was painful to watch sometimes.

Posted by: MsJS | July 22, 2010 6:10 PM | Report abuse

TBG, will second you on K-12 education, but college can be good-- after all, it's only a few hours in class every week.

But yes, the system is somewhat artifical.

Posted by: Wilbrod_Gnome | July 22, 2010 6:37 PM | Report abuse

Lutefisk, eh? Melts in your mouth, yanno. It's served in Sweden (where it's "lutfisk") with ubiquitous white sauce and black pepper. Me, I'd rather take it (if indeed it were required) with hot sauce. Even so, I never thought it was so awfully bad, really. Just boring as all get out.

Went to the Minute Clinic at a local CVS with my houseguest, who has a lovely ripe case of tonsilitis, caught from his son who had it last week. I must say I was pretty impressed by the whole operation. We got him some penicillin, which he took in the car (dry - yuck. I sure couldn't do that), and he's taking a short nap before I nuke something for supper. Tomorrow will be much better for both of us, I suspect. And he'll be right as rain in time for the BPH on Wednesday next week.

Toodley boodley until the morrow.

Posted by: ftb3 | July 22, 2010 6:45 PM | Report abuse

Jumper, that is exactly why I delayed graduate school until I felt I WANTED it.

It still seems an expensive indulgence, and one in which I pay strangers to help form my opinions about things, which I really don't need help on as a matter of course, but on the upside I will be completely pursuing what I want to do.

How decadent. I feel like a libertine.

Posted by: Wilbrod_Gnome | July 22, 2010 6:50 PM | Report abuse

Vanity Fair is like watching the legislative channel. It is all about finding a way to be and more importantly stay, powerful. Or something like that.

Posted by: --dr-- | July 22, 2010 7:20 PM | Report abuse

I stayed in Oshkosh once. I liked the people there. Only recently did I learn of the origins of Oshkosh.

Posted by: Jumper1 | July 22, 2010 7:23 PM | Report abuse

Regarding nothing, a great quote from this week's show "Louie," that I just watched. Said to a woman trying to do something that defies logic...

"Look at it with your eyes. Look at it with your real eyes, not the crazy eyes."

That can be said so many places, can't it?

Posted by: -TBG- | July 22, 2010 7:25 PM | Report abuse

Kind of. It's a cynical look at love when women, by economic necessity, are dependent on obtaining men's wealth.

Two extremes in love are presented: the ever-faithful, and the faithless.

Posted by: Wilbrod_Gnome | July 22, 2010 7:25 PM | Report abuse

Of course when I summarize it thus, I'm skipping over a lot of Thackeray's wit and character portraits. It's a really good read.

Posted by: Wilbrod_Gnome | July 22, 2010 7:52 PM | Report abuse

I never let school interfere with my reading. That is a reason why they make paperbacks smaller than textbooks.

When I went to college I learned that the professor at the front of a large lecture hall can't tell who is reading the newspaper. That gave me an extra half hour of sleep every morning.

Posted by: yellojkt | July 22, 2010 8:04 PM | Report abuse

I need to find me a way to obtain some man's wealth.

Posted by: Bob-S | July 22, 2010 8:07 PM | Report abuse

Yes indeed, Bob-S. Or a woman's wealth (a subject also addressed.)

Posted by: Wilbrod_Gnome | July 22, 2010 8:12 PM | Report abuse

One of my favorite bumper stickers:

Eschew Obfuscation

Posted by: -pj- | July 22, 2010 9:05 PM | Report abuse

Tropical Storm Bonnie would seem more ominous to me if I knew she was going to be followed soon after by Hurricane Clyde.

Posted by: baldinho | July 22, 2010 9:26 PM | Report abuse

baldinho, it would be wonderful if the NHC could make that happen.
TS "Alex" was a bit problematic because someone in my immediate household is named Alex Every time the news anchor would say, in very ominous news anchor tones, "What sort of destruction will Alex bring to the Gulf Coast?" or "Everyone along the Gulf Coast is getting ready for Alex," we'd have to ask him just what he had on his agenda.

Posted by: balancingact | July 22, 2010 9:38 PM | Report abuse

A double bonus would be if the hurricane threatened the US mainland, but veered into the Atlantic as it approached.

Right turn, Clyde.

Posted by: baldinho | July 22, 2010 9:42 PM | Report abuse

Hurricane Obfuscation hit the Gulf a while back.
We're waiting for Bonnie
Colin
Danielle
Earl
Fiona
Gaston
Hermine
Igor
Julia
Karl
Lisa
Matthew
Nicole
O, we will see.
Otto
Paula
Richard
Shary
Tomas
Virginie
Walter

Hurricane Walter? Let's hope it doesn't come to that.

Posted by: talitha1 | July 22, 2010 10:21 PM | Report abuse

"Hermine", eh? Well, I'll take a "Hermione" every time. Although I go back & forth over whether my favorite is Hermione Baddeley or Hermione Gingold.

As much as I likes my "Gigi", I'm an absolute freak for "Mary Poppins", so I gotta go with Baddeley.

Posted by: Bob-S | July 22, 2010 11:00 PM | Report abuse

And, of course, I loved Hermione Baddeley as Mrs. Naugatuck on "Maude".

Posted by: Bob-S | July 22, 2010 11:07 PM | Report abuse

Cut/pasted the list straight off the National Hurricane Center site. Spell them as you prefer. 8-}

Posted by: talitha1 | July 22, 2010 11:07 PM | Report abuse

Except for "O, we will see" for Obfuscation.

Posted by: talitha1 | July 22, 2010 11:10 PM | Report abuse

Speaking of Mary Poppins, my late father-in-law once had a date with Glynis Johns when he was posted overseas during the war. It was some "date a gallant pilot" program for which many prominent women signed-up. He said they had a nice dinner and went dancing. She was pretty. He had a good time.

Posted by: Yoki | July 22, 2010 11:16 PM | Report abuse

I've always had a very soft spot in my heart for Glynis Johns. I recently watched "No Highway in the Sky" with her, James Stewart, & Marlene Dietrich. Fun little flick. She's very, very sweet in her role as the flight attendant who falls for Jimmy Stewart. Marlene Dietrich is also rather sweet as the famous movie star who also falls for Jimmy Stewart. He's about the same as always, quite endearing as the engineer who's trying to tell people something they don't want to hear.

I rather liked Glynis in "While You Were Sleeping", also.

Posted by: Bob-S | July 22, 2010 11:35 PM | Report abuse

Talitha, I hope you didn't think I was criticizing the spelling, and certainly wasn't criticizing your reportage of the spelling. I'm purt' near fifty years old, and have long since accepted that names have many, many spellings. I was merely using that as an entry point to wave my "Mary Poppins" flag.

Why, I can remember back when most people of my acquaintance only knew one way to spell "Alicia". But that was provincial ignorance on their/my part, and it's been kind of fun to see the explosion of variations on the theme over the past thirty years or so.

Just don't ask Alice.

Posted by: Bob-S | July 22, 2010 11:46 PM | Report abuse

http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=UnB3CHwPipU
20 years of teaching could compel one to sing the refrain

Posted by: -jack- | July 23, 2010 12:07 AM | Report abuse

In honor of Hurricane Gaston:

No one fights like Gaston
Douses lights like Gaston

In a wrestling match nobody bites like Gaston!

For there's no one as burly and brawny

As you see I've got biceps to spare

Not a bit of him's scraggly or scrawny

That's right!
And ev'ry last inch of me's covered with hair

No one hits like Gaston
Matches wits like Gaston

In a spitting match nobody spits like Gaston

Posted by: baldinho | July 23, 2010 4:41 AM | Report abuse

Hold the phone...THERE'S MORE THAN ONE WAY TO SPELL ALICIA?

;)

Posted by: --dr-- | July 23, 2010 5:52 AM | Report abuse

That's EYE-gor!

Now where did I leave Abby's brain?

Posted by: yellojkt | July 23, 2010 6:09 AM | Report abuse

And why does Otto Pilot have that smirk on his face?

Posted by: yellojkt | July 23, 2010 6:11 AM | Report abuse

It has been a long busy work week. I am behind and have been struggling to catch up.

No matter how bedraggled I feel, if I catch a good tune on the radio on the way in to the office, I will be in a good mood all day.

Today at 4:45 it was "Stray Cat Strut" by the Stray Cats. I have been singing it for an hour and a half as I work, and it is chicken soup for my soul.

Good morning all. Let's all hope Bonnie is weak.

Posted by: baldinho | July 23, 2010 6:14 AM | Report abuse

Sorry, there is only one way to spell Sherrie which is the way Steve Perry sang it:

http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=1oN80al-7BI

Posted by: yellojkt | July 23, 2010 6:19 AM | Report abuse

If that was the actual Sherrie in the video, yello, it's no surprise Perry was singing to her... :-)

Well, NukeSpouse is safely arrived at her H.S. reunion. The question is -- Will I be able to survive the weekend? The NukeFelines are already eyeing me funny...

And since everyone needs a good laugh on a TFSMIF:

http://voices.washingtonpost.com/tvblog/2010/07/kate-plus-8-plus-sarah.html

I'm reminded of "Abbot & Costello Meet Frankenstein," frankly.

*trying-to-find-yello's-number-to-get-an-extra-shot-of-CFC-friendly-refrigerant-in-the-office-coolers-for-today's-scorcher Grover waves* :-)

Posted by: Scottynuke | July 23, 2010 7:51 AM | Report abuse

People are actually reading that kate plus 8 plus Sarah story? Who knew?

Morning, all, happy Friday. Hi Cassandra, hope you can stay cool today.

Already have had a busy day and it's not gonna slow down till we get up the mountain late this afternoon. So I'd better keep at it!

Posted by: slyness | July 23, 2010 8:53 AM | Report abuse

Are Kate and Sarah fans the same people? I don't really care about an answer to this.

Went out to dinner last night and stopped to see the granddogs. #1 is recovering well from his encounter with a car bumper. He was back to his old self (he always 'smiles' when he sees me).

I'm taking advantage of the cooler weather this morning do some cooking (potato salad and stuffed zucchini). Any body want some green beans?

Posted by: badsneakers | July 23, 2010 9:09 AM | Report abuse

Yello and where is "Fraltz Bueller" Cue the horses.......

I went fishing last night,probably the last time as a wv homeowner,I settle on the house next week.I ran out of worms the fish were biting so good and had to leave the kayak and go get more,also picked up a bottle of wine in the process.First cast back and I hit a very nice bass,I guess he was waiting for my return.Also,2 large turkeys flew right in front of me across the river,it was awesome......

Posted by: greenwithenvy | July 23, 2010 10:10 AM | Report abuse

Гуд морнинг, Будел!
Good morning, Boodle!

Finally, got my computer back to speed and capable of dealing with various languages at the click of a button.

We are still polarized here. Sending surplus cold air to all boodling locations in the Northern Hemisphere.

Brag :)

Posted by: Braguine | July 23, 2010 10:12 AM | Report abuse

I am green with envy over greenwithenvy´s evening.

Congratz, sounds perfect.

Brag

Posted by: Braguine | July 23, 2010 10:37 AM | Report abuse

New Kit!! :-)

Posted by: Scottynuke | July 23, 2010 10:52 AM | Report abuse

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