Tuesday, September 30, 2008

Stuff I didn't know

Preface-This post (while they may not read it) is dedicated to my straight female friends and all the straight girl stuff they inadvertently reveal to me in ordinary conversations.

Ever have those moments where you realize you didn't know something?  But more importantly you didn't know you didn't know until you knew?  [ponder that for a moment]  Anyway, now that you are done pondering, here is something that I found out I didn't know I didn't know up until about a year ago.  I was hanging out with a bunch of my straight friends having a movie night, and since we vote on movies, I was far out-voted into watching some random (yet exactly the same) chick flick.  (I'm much more an action/comedy/drama/suspense kind of movie person...but I'll succumb to the occasional chick flicks for the sake of my friendships.)  We were talking about movies, and somehow got on tho the topic of our favorite childhood Disney movies.  One girl made the comment that she use to pretend she was Jasmine in the movie.  Here is the gist of what followed, I don't remember which person was talking so we will just call them F for friend. (Anyone else just have a Sesame Street flash back?  You know...F is for friend, it's good enough for me.  Oh, F is for friend, it's good enough for me.  Friend, friend, friend starts with F!  Sorry, back on track)

F-I used to pretend I was Jasmine.
Me-You mean Aladdin.
F-Yes, Princess Jasmine from the movie Aladdin.
Me-No...wait, explain that again?
F-When I was a little girl I would pretend I was Jasmine and that Aladdin would come and take me on adventures.

At this point other people started talking about which Disney characters they would pretend to be in different movies.  I however, sat quietly taking it all in.  Here's what I learned I didn't know I didn't know...straight girls wanted to be the princess who was rescued by the prince....they didn't want to be the prince who rescued the princess.  Who knew????? I mean clearly not me or else I would not be writing this post.  Apparently, the same holds true today.  When we are watching a chick flick they superimpose themselves on the female lead (get your dirty minds out of the gutter) I however superimpose myself onto the male lead who rescues the girl. 

Um, this is helpful information people.  Someone could have clued me in to this useful little tidbit.  Maybe then it wouldn't have taken me so long to realize that I'm a big mo and would have saved me years of uncomfortable relationships with men, therapy, self-esteem issues, and a confused sense of self.  I mean, how was I to know that not everyone thinks like me, it's not like I can read minds here.  When I realized this was how straight girls think it was as if a giant light bulb went off and it made so much sense why they like chick flicks so much, and why I like action/suspense.  

So my question to you faithful (or first time) readers: What is something you didn't know you didn't know until you knew?  

Monday, September 29, 2008

Best. Movie. Ever.

Okay, after I wrote  about how I like to watch arm wresting on ESPN 2 (see comment section on Just Decided post) I started thinking about one of the best movies ever.  Yes, I said it and yes, you can quote me.  Over The Top is one of the best movies EVER.  Ever people, E-ver.  Watch the trailer and remember...this movie is about arm wresting...arm wrestling people.  Arm. Wresting.  The premise and the entire movie is hilarious, although I don't think it is intended to be a comedy, which makes it all the better.  I mean there is a scene (unfortunately not in the trailer) where he is "training" while driving the truck...it's pee in your pants funny.  If you have never watched it, you can try the local video store to rent it, but don't be surprised if they don't carry it.  While it is awesome, it's not exactly hailed as a cinematic jewel by critics...but they are critics...they are supposed to be critical.  Buy it blindly...trust me, it's worth the money.  One thing the trailer doesn't draw enough attention to....it's about arm wrestling people.  Arm. Wrestling.

Sunday, September 28, 2008

Simple Pleasures

One of the simple pleasures in life are sing-along movies.  Now, not every movie is designed to be a sing-along, but does that stop me?  Not a chance!  If it's a musical, I'm watching it in sing-along version a.k.a. closed captioning.  It's all the things you loved about sing-along movies as a kid without the distracting ADD bouncing ball.  Personal favorites--Newsies (how can you not love this movie!), Mary Poppins (Michael Banks is a total stoner...don't believe me?  Watch the movie again and pay attention to him...total stoner) and The Muppets Take Manhattan (but you already knew that one would be on the list).  It's a simple pleasure for my friends and I, and after a couple of drinks we NEED the words, despite how many times we've watched these movies.  Just a simple pleasure for you to enjoy from my crew to yours.

P.S.-Does anyone else have the time you post things way off?  Mine always says it's posting like 4 hours earlier than it actually is here.  Right now it's around 2:15...yet that is not what it says.  Just wondering if it was my computer or a general Blogger thing.

Saturday, September 27, 2008

NC Pride 2008

The day started like this when I woke up....


but thankfully a few hours later it was....


and my first Pride was on.  Let me just start by saying, Pride is AWESOME.  Yeah, that about sums it up...it's awesome.  Now, there was a low point which I will share because I think it's a milestone every gay person must share when they experience it, but other than that, it was more awesome than I expected it to be.

Here's a recap of the day, specifically the funny/memorable stuff.  We'll start with the one low point and end with the positives.

So I park my car out in east bumble because I missed the exit and had to take some ass backwards way to get to Duke's campus (where Pride was held).  I finally found a parking spot (a.k.a. a spot where I could park) and was praying that a) I wouldn't get a ticket and b) I wouldn't get towed because I-along with many others-had invented parking spots in places where there were no actual lines or parking, but I digress.  While I am walking from my car up to where the parade was I realized I was passing some people who were there...but not there because they are out and proud.  They would be the crazy fundamentalist right there to picket and protest.  Now, I am a Bible-believing, God fearing, Jesus is my homeboy and savior kind of Christian...but I have little patience and no grace for fundamentalist bigots because they represent everything that Jesus opposed and yet are the picture people have in their mind that makes them think all Christians are narrow-minded and crazy-sorry, that's one of my hot button soapboxes I'll climb down now.  Anyway, here's the scene of this dude who gets right up in my face as we are both walking the same way toward the parade.

Bigot Fundamentalist-"You need to turn from your sins.  God loves you, repent and you will be saved!"  

Me-"I know God loves me, I am saved, and homosexuality isn't condemned in the Bible...go to seminary and learn some historical context before you come out here making my savior look like a narrow-minded asshole."  (Ok, probably not the best response, but again, I have little patience and things pop out before I can stop them.)  

Bigot Fundamentalist-"God hates queers!  You will burn in hell for your sins Faggot!"  

Seriously, his rage and anger knocked the wind out of me.  I have been very lucky and have never had any opposition to being gay until today, at least not to my face.  I was hurt, offended, angry and saddened all at the same time.  At this point I quickly got on the other side of the street because I could feel the tears in my eyes-and you KNOW I was not going to let this asshole know that he got to me.  Now, I know that story was a downer, but as I said earlier, it's a milestone that every gay person experiences at one time or another, I just didn't expect it to happen at Pride.

Now on to the highlights.....

1) Clap it up for the Durham Police Department Y'all!  The parade route where I was at was lined on two sides.....one side was the gays.....the other was the picketers with megaphones, posters, and giant crosses...because nothing says God is love like hating people.  In between floats and people marching the motorcycle cops rode around in circles blasting their sirens to drown out the bigots and their megaphones.  They didn't have to, they chose to....so again, clap it up for the Durham Police Department!

2) I was on the phone with my friend S while we were trying to find one another.  Here's the scene-

S-Where are you?
Me-Walking by the railroad tracks.
S-What do you see?
Me-A lot of gay people.

(I mean really, how could l resist that one?  She kicked the door wide open!)

There were a lot more people there than I expected, which was AWESOME.  For such a conservative state, everyone was out and themselves, with no fear/reservation as to who they were and/or who they loved.  There were traditional drag queens, drag queens with beards and goatees, effeminate men sashaying around the grounds, butch women, gender-queer people, femme women, and families there with their kids.  It was a little overwhelming, in a good way.

3) Free stuff!  Who doesn't love free stuff? If you just raised your hand, put it down we all know you are lying.  I jumped on the free stuff bandwagon...pride stickers, HRC stickers, balloons, bags, etc.  And all of it was super-gay.  Funny scene of S and I (once we found each other) walking around booths.

Me-Where did you get the sticker (white background with a squiggly rainbow)
S-Over here, want me to grab you one?
Me-Uh, yeah...it's free gay stuff.  Ironically here is the one place where I wouldn't need a sticker for people to know I'm gay.
S-Uh...you should probably put on the sticker...

Even at Pride I still look like the straight friend who came along to be supportive...wtf...you'd think my lumberjack gait would be a dead clue.

4) No parking ticket, no rain, and my car wasn't towed!  Guess who's psyched for Pride 2009 and has two thumbs?  This guy (cue thumbs pointing to chest). [Triple points if you know the TV reference!]

Friday, September 26, 2008

Just Decided

I was walking in the hall today going to pick up my kids from computer class when I decided...I walk like a lumberjack.  Now, I have never actually met a lumberjack (but I would LOVE to because as a kid I thought it would be an AWESOME career choice), nor have I ever really watched lumberjacks walk.  Nevertheless, I've decided that my gait would look completely natural if I was schleping down the hall with an ax thrown over my shoulder....just a personal observation I thought I would share.

Thursday, September 25, 2008

The pictures says it all...

I'm not sure how this will be interpreted, but such is the story of my life.  My dad called the other day and guess what...the rents are coming to visit next month!  (Cue heartburn and me opening a new container of Tums.)  Now don't misnterpret, I love my parents deeply...see posts My Dad is Awesome, Cookbooks and Dirty Jokes, and Party Hardy to understand more about the relationship I have with them.  Now, that being said, it's always stressful when they come to visit.  I mean, I can't be the only one who contemplates buying stock in Tums when family is coming to visit, right?  Even though I know they love me unconditionally, there is still that "need to please" and the worst thing I could ever do (in my mind) is disappoint the 'rents, thus my major (but totally unnecessary) meltdown when I came out to them, but that's another story for another day.  While I am excited to see them (I won't see them again until Christmas because driving 9 hours on Thanksgiving weekend is just insane) it is nerve wracking as well.  The need to have the house clean, have my life (somewhat) together, make sure the lawn is mowed (or leaves raked depending on the season), etc.  Originally they were going to come this weekend, but I'm going to NC Pride for the first time (I'm fully confident that I will have something to post about after, don't you worry your gay little heads!) and while they don't care about me being gay, in a lot of ways it is still "in theory" to them.  By this I mean I've never brought anyone home for them to meet, I don't really talk about going out to gay bars or differentiate in conversation between my gay/straight friends, etc.  I mean I very well could have told them I was going to NC Pride, but instead I just said, "I have plans with friends in Durham this weekend."  On a positive note I have a month to fester, I mean prepare, before they come!

P.S.-Sorry for major abuse of parenthesis in this post, not sure what that's about (maybe because I did a lesson on them today) ;-) [sorry I couldn't resist]

Tuesday, September 23, 2008

A little diddy (not about Jack and Diane)

Nothing very exciting happened at work (or life in general) today so here is a little diddy (not about Jack and Diane...unless Jack is short for Jacquline, but I digress) that I've been saving for a day like this when I had nothing else to write.

A couple of months ago I was out to lunch with my friend J when we somehow got onto the topic of another friend of ours, L, who had just started dating someone new.  

[here's the scene of us sitting at Panera chowing down]

J-It cracks me up, I mean L is just so butch.
Me-Really, L is butch?  Isn't that the homo calling the dyke gay.
J-(choking on her sweet tea) What the? Homo calling the dyke gay...wow.  Honestly, do you come up with this stuff out of nowhere, or do you have to think of them in advance?
Me-Normally, I come up with them on the spot and they pop out before I can stop them, but that little diddy I've been saving in my aresenal for a while.  
J-(hesitating) Do you mind if I steal it?
Me-Nope, have at it...but don't use it flippantly...I mean I saved that for a good moment....don't go wasting the good moment for a mediocre one (side note: anyone else just hear, "We wasted the good surprise on you!" in their head?  Extra points if you can reference the movie!)
J-Cool, thanks...no pressure or anything....
Me-Nope no pressure...just don't screw it up...and give credit where credit is due

Monday, September 22, 2008

Not all grapes are created equal

So my roommate and I went to our friendly neighborhood Harris Teeter yesterday, only one of our favorite places to roam.  I mean you can't make two people who love all things food much happier than to wander around an awesome grocery store.  While in the produce department, which P.S. I love since they label where everything comes from-we try to buy local (and at the farmer's market) as much as possible.  Back on track--well as we are wandering we stumbled upon scuppernong grapes.  Now, we love wine, specifically scuppernong wine is our favorite local sweet wine. 

Here is the scene that followed.

Roommate-Hey check these out.
Me-Interesting, I've not seen these here before.  Have you?
Roommate-No.  Here, smell them.  They smell a lot like the wine, that has to be a good sign.  Want to try them?
Me-Sure, I mean, they're scuppernong grapes.  We like grapes, we like scuppernong wine, this seems like something we have to try.

[end scene]

We pick back up at home after we put away all of the other groceries.

Me-Want to try the grapes?
(as we are each trying one)
Roommate-(Hesitating) Um, interesting texture.
Me-Interesting is definately a correct choice of words....oh.....oh god.....oh god....I can't...I can't-I can't....oh god!
Roommate-Are you ok?
Me-No.       No.       No-no-no...it's like escargot just blew a snot rocket in my mouth....oh god...I can't.....just can't.
Roommate-(busting out laughing)-an escargot snot rocket, really?
Me-(scraping my tongue with a paper towel) Dude, do I look like I'm kidding?
Roommate-Wow, I mean I knew you were going to have a comparison, but I was not ready for that.
Me-How can a wine that is so awesome, have a grape that is so terrible?  Maybe we can find a recipe to cook them in, because seriously that is just wrong.

[end scene]

So in conclusion, not all grapes are created equal.

Sunday, September 21, 2008

Party Hardy

What did you do on your Saturday night?  I stayed home, did 6 loads of laundry, ironed forEVER, and watched Big Daddy-it's my all time favorite movie (don't judge, I could lie and say some profound, life changing movie was my favorite, but really?).   Now I was thoroughly enjoying my evening until my mom called around 9:30 and when I giddily gave her the run-down of what I was doing her response was, "Easy does it there kid, you don't want to party too hard tonight.  I mean, pace yourself with ironing those shirts."  I (of course) had a snide comment that I don't remember, and went on with the conversation scrutinizing her plans and arguing over who was leading a more exciting life.  Now true, her evening was better-she and my dad went out riding on their motorcycles, but all-in-all I still think mine rocked because a) I got all my laundry done b) I love to iron (yes, you read correctly, and it's okay to insert your laughter here) c) I watched my favorite movie and d) I found that mixing vanilla rum and coke zero was just as awesome as I thought it would be.  Side note: My mom and I have a twisted relationship (see Cookbooks and Dirty Jokes post if you don't believe me).  Additional case and point on this-I called her on my way home from work the other day, first thing out of her mouth when she answers, "OOO, my phone was on vibrate, thanks for the cheep thrill."  REALLY?  This is why I often call her by her first name, because seriously, how else can you respond to your mom when they answer the phone like that?  So in conclusion, I had a very quiet (but awesome) Saturday night and my mom confirmed yet again that we have a twisted relationship.  Can anyone beat that for a Saturday night?

Saturday, September 20, 2008

Hot Dog Y'all!

I feel like I shouldn't be as excited as I am about this...but I'll take what I can get.  

[Side note: two other things to add to the list of things I say at work all the time are "Hot dog y'all!"as in-Hot dog y'all I found the masking tape! and "crazy town" as in-They are all crazy town today.]

Anyway, back on track--So every time I go out, I tell myself, "I'm not going to stay out late tonight...but what happens every time?  I'm there until the bar closes.  I know, I know, I don't know what happens, I get there, start talking, and the next thing I hear, "last call for alcohol", then (I swear instantly) I hear, "time to go ladies, we're locking up."  And, it's not even like I'm plastered-I have two drinks, play pool (retract that-I stand there looking cute holding a cue stick while whoever I'm partnered with keeps us from getting our asses handed to us-no worries, I know my role in the game I'm just there as eye candy and entertainment), chat, and catch up on the weekly dyke gossip/drama (you know you can't resist it when it doesn't actually involve you).  But last night....drumroll please....I left at midnight!  So, hot dog y'all I can do it! Anyone else just hear, "You can do it" in their heads? You know, Waterboy?  Anyone? Bueller?  

Thursday, September 18, 2008

Can't keep my big mouth shut

I can't keep my big mouth shut.  Don't even front like you are surprised, I know you're not.  So, you would think that I would have learned this lesson by now...um no, I never get the lesson, I just keep on talking, digging the hole deeper and deeper dealing with the consequences later.  I met with my new assistant principal to talk about a math program that I am "allegedly piloting" I say allegedly and put it into quotes because it's very hard to pilot a program when you haven't been trained and are missing half of the materials, but that is a rant for another day...back on track...so we started talking "off the record" about assessments, expectations, and policy.  Me and my big mouth (which have I mentioned I can't keep shut?) volunteer that I don't follow "the rules" because I am against following something simply because it's based on the current book that our curriculum person is infatuated with and quotes as the end-all-be-all since I know she will find some other book next year, contradict herself from this year, and speak to us about it as if she has agreed all along and we are the ones who don't know what is best for our students.  (I know-smooth move slick, way to dog the curriculum person at our school and make yourself look like an ass to the new guy)  He looked at me curiously when I told him I don't follow "the rules" to which I added (stupidly) "and I don't plan on starting now.  I do what works for me and my kids.  Don't worry, I'll get the results the school wants, I just have to do it my way.  You can look at my record...all of my kids from last year, with the exception of four-one who has an IQ in the 70s, two I tried to hold back, and the fourth only missed it by a few points-scored 3s and 4s on the pretest this year...rules are meant to be broken when they don't work."  The ENTIRE TIME I was talking out loud I could hear the internal conversation with myself going, "shut-up-shut-up-shut-up-shut-up-shut-up-shut-up-shut-up-shut-up" but we all know at this point that I can't keep my big mouth shut and I don't listen to my own sound advice.  So hopefully I didn't just put a huge bulls-eye on my back to be watched to see if my kids this year succeed (which they will) while I'm not following "the rules" which side note: are actually not supposed to be rules but are supposed to be used as suggestions, but again that's another embittered teacher rant for another day...one day I'll learn to keep my big mouth shut...actually let's not lie, I probably won't...

Wednesday, September 17, 2008

Being a child's advocate

So, here is the post I was originally going to do the other day when I was pleasantly distracted by having my first follower...

Let me just start by saying I can't be the only one who talks to themselves in their heads giving sound advice, yet can't take it...I just can't be.  All of us are listed on invisible sign-up sheets.  You know those things that we stand up for, voluntarily voice our opinions about, will be a spokesperson for, have people ask us what we think, and represent the opinions of all other people who are on the sign-up sheet with us.  That being said, I am an avid advocate for children...maybe it goes back to my special education roots, but I will fight day and night for their rights, their equality and I will never apologize for it, it's simply who I am.  That is one invisible sign-up sheet that I did register on of my own free will and volition (side note: I love that word, it's all fancy-pants) yet I have been added to other invisible sign-up sheets that I never voluntarily wrote my name on.   I'm talking mainly the forced assumption that I have to be an advocate and spokesperson for all gay people everywhere.  Sorry, that's just not me...I can't represent all gay people or take up every cause just because I'm gay, that's like asking someone with red hair to represent and speak for all redheads everywhere.  It's just silliness.  Anyway, back to my point, so I was at school the other day (duh, I'm a teacher, where the hell else would I be???) and my class was having lunch when a table of little boys called me over.  Now, this is not strange they call me over for all sorts of things-Can you help me open my applesauce?, Who is your favorite super hero?, What time is it?, Can I go to the bathroom? etc.-or to tell me a random story, usually about a video game.  However, as mentally prepared as I was, I was not ready for what these little seven-year-olds came out with.  Here's the scene as I came to a lunch table of 4 boys.

A-Hey Miss ___, guess what?

Me-What? (I've learned it's best to not actually guess)

A-M likes J! (You all remember J, he's the little boy who made my emotional brick wall nearly crumble with his statement that he loves me and class.)

B-Yeah!  He told us in the lunch line (nodding emphatically, as if since they never believe me I obviously won't believe them).

Me-Really? (Internal conversation with myself, "Let-it-go-let-it-go-let-it-go" "No, it's too important"  "Let-it-go-let-it-go-let-it-go, this is so not a good idea!")

A-Yeah!  But as a FRIEND. (friend said in a sing-song voice)

At this point I look over at M, who is also sitting at the table turning eighteen shades of red, and J (sitting across from him) who is squirming in his seat something fierce.  Against my better judgement I had to sit down and address it, because I can't just let it go, it's too important.

Me-Well, if I was J, I'd feel really special.  I mean, I know M, and I know that he is a really coo kid who has parents who love him and teach him right from wrong.  M shows great character, and has a lot of friends.  If he likes someone (glancing over at him as he is trying to become invisible), or just likes them as a friend, they must be pretty special.

A-Oh, okay.

B-I'm his friend, and I think he's a good friend to have.

Looking back over at M who is no longer turning eighteen shades of red or trying to make himself invisible, and J who is no longer squirming but smiling, I know I made the right choice.  For me, the choice was made immediately for me when I saw how uncomfortable M was.  I can't have a child feeling bad about themselves, that they have anything to hide or fear in my class, or developing a complex that there is something "wrong" about them at the young age of seven, they already have enough of that thrown at them from the media and in some cases their homes.  I had a bad feeling that this conversation was coming after M had told me in private the other week that he liked J.  Let me just clarify-the bad feeling I had was that I didn't want to address this topic, I'm not out at work and I don't want to do anything that would raise any suspicion with staff or parents.  While I am very good at my job, I am all too aware that it can be quickly taken away at a moments notice simply because people know (or think) I'm gay.   That being said- I love the fact that he feels comfortable and safe talking to me, but I hate the fact that he is going to grow up in a very conservative homophobic area.  As a class we have talked at nauseam about how it's okay to be ourselves, anyone can be friends with anyone, and that no one is allowed to make fun of other people for any reason-having freckles, wearing glasses, types of clothes, grades, etc., but it still made me nervous having this conversation.  (Side note: it's adorable watching him get all flustered around J, he starts stuttering and looking down at the floor scuffing his shoes on the ground, it's so cute it's hard not to laugh.)  

So for me, I have to be an advocate for all children in my class, if it's in the best interest of my career or not, because if I won't, who will?

Monday, September 15, 2008

Who'da thunk it?

So I started this wee little (wee little...seriously...it's no where's near St. Patrick's Day, where the heck did that come from??? ANYWAY) blog back in the beginning of July, just as a way for me to get my thoughts out and ramble about my life.  I may be a teacher by trade, but I have to write to feel like myself.  This little rambling blog was really intended for no one but me.  I mean other people were welcome to read it, but honestly why would they?  I don't think my life is necessarily all that interesting-although sometimes it is a bit funny, and always random-but not necessarily interesting.  Anyway, enough self-deprecation and back to the point of this post.  So I logged on about an hour ago because I was going to write about something random that happened at work today, but when I did I decided to completely forgo that post and replace it with one more relevant.  What would make me completely change my post when I logged on you ask...drumroll please...I discovered that I have my first follower to my blog!  Now, others have posted comments, which is awesome because not only did you read it, but you had something to add, but a follower...that just makes me feel all warm and fuzzy inside.  Who would have thought that someone would want to follow what I have to say, certainly not me...but now a weird complex has arisen.  Now I feel that I have to say something of value, of substance, something worth reading, but alas, that is not my style.  My style (as you know if you've been reading) is to ramble, often about nothing, often off topic, and often on a soapbox.  In conclusion: Who'da thunk it?  Certainly not me.

Sunday, September 14, 2008

Where has this been all my life?

So, my roommate and I have lived together for almost 6 years now (yes I know, slightly co-dependent, we are aware of this) and in order for us to remain friends we have figured out that we need scheduled "Friend Time" every week.  Otherwise, we quickly turn into people who just reside at the same home, but don't ever hang out.  Now normally "Friend Time" is on Sunday evenings, but our best friend G was coming into town on Saturday, so we hung out with her for about three hours and then had "Friend Time" on Saturday night instead.  Our original plan was to rent Baby Mama from the Redbox, but alas, it was sold out...I mean how dare they go and jack-up our plans???  Instead we rented Blades of Glory, which ALLEGEDLY I have seen in the theater, have the ticket stub to prove it and everything...but that is a very long story for another day.  Anyway, after we went to get the movie and dinner (a.k.a. junk food) we headed over to the ABC store because we were almost out of vodka and rum, which clearly would not do.  Here's the scene and events that unfolded as we were walking through the ABC store:

Roommate-Oh, let's get Vanilla Rum instead, I had this great drink last week at L's house that I know you will love.
Me-Ok, what's in it?
Roommate-Vanilla Rum and Sunkist, it tastes like a Creamsicle.
Me-[stopping dead in my tracks] Excuse me?  Come again?
Roommate-Trust me, it totally tastes like a creamsicle.
Me-I'm hurt.  You've know about this for a whole week and are just telling me now?  Seriously, have you just met me?
Roommate-I know, I know, but trust me, your dramatic hurt will turn into drunken forgiveness and excitement.

Later that night, after eating our weight in junk food (candy corn, snickers bites, salt and vinegar chips, cheetos), I mean dinner, the scene picks back up:

Me-Ok, all is forgiven.  The drink and the movie were amazing.  (Again, ALLEGEDLY I saw it in the theater with her, her boyfriend and my mom.)
Roommate-Told you.
Me-Next time, Baby Mama?
Roommate--For sure, with more of these, because I mean everything is better with vanilla rum.

Wednesday, September 10, 2008

Anyone else have little parrots?

Ok, this post is directed to all teachers (and parents too, I guess) who have children parrot them during the day.  It cracks me up when they say my "catch phrases" that I didn't even realize I say ALL the stinkin' time until I hear it from them.  Case and point:  Today in math I was calling on all different kids to create a story problem based on how many objects were on the overhead.  Well, in a hurry to wrap up the lesson and actually get us to lunch on time I forgot to say what I apparently must say a lot after kids try something new, "Clap it up for (insert name here)!"  because the last little boy who shared his story indignantly quipped to his classmates, "What?  Aren't y'all going to clap it up for me?"  Later at the end of the day another child was sharing objects from their schema box and when he finished, before I could say anything, a little girl in class called out, "Come on y'all, clap it up for him!"  The best part--I have NO IDEA when the "clap it up" thing started but I dig it and am going to keep rolling with it.  Which got me thinking about all of the random things I say...

Things I apparently say a lot at work:

-#1-"You need to get your body back under control."--Hands down, number one, most often said thing by me (and parroted by children) on a daily basis.  Last year I had a parent cracking up retelling the story of how her 7 year old daughter came home and said this to her younger sister while she was rolling around on the floor.  Her mom's comment to me, "I knew that must be a Miss _____ phrase."

-#2-"Tears don't work on Miss ______.  If all four legs were on the floor this wouldn't have happened, pick up your chair."--When they rock and fall off their chair I don't even flinch, you rock, you fall, you learn about gravity.  Children every year have started saying this to one another so I don't even address it after the first grading period.  My mom was visiting a couple of years ago when an precocious little 7 year old put on her "teacher voice" and said this to a kid about 4 1/2 inches taller than her.  I kept on teaching while my mom busted out of the room to go compose herself in the hallway.

-#3-"Seriously."--Why they always think I am always lying to them I'm not quite sure...

-#4-"Yup, true story."--Again with the disbelief...

-#5-"For realz?"--I'm just waiting for this grammatical gem of mine to find its way to one of their writing tests.

-#6-"Clap it up for (insert name here)!"--This one just started...I'm still not sure how or why...

Any other teachers out there realize they say something all the stinkin time courtesy of little children parroting you?  I'd love to know what they are and know that I'm not the only one!

Monday, September 8, 2008

I heart my job!

It's that time of year...meeting are in full swing, assessments are all due WAY TOO SOON, there doesn't seem to be enough time to get everything (or anything) done, and everyone's stress level is through the roof.  Somehow I had avoided this feeling...that is until a meeting today where it hit me in the chest like a ton of erasers when I found out that dates of when things are due was moved up, as well as more paperwork that needs to be done.  I finally felt the pressure and about cracked when I got home (I refuse to ever show stress, fear, anxiety or tears at work), until I was retelling a story from this morning about a kid in my class to my roommate.  Here's a little background on this kid...hand picked for my class because of, quote, "his issues", sent to the office for struggling to stay in his own personal space (a.k.a. jumping on other kids, pulling on their clothes and limbs, roughhousing on the playground and in the gym, etc.), he's been suspended from the bus for hitting, and generally has had some problems in the past.  None of these things have been issues this year, although he did get suspended from the bus last week for biting...yes biting...another student. In class he is as good as gold-eager to please, participates, helpful, tries his best so on and so on.  I mean, I can't ask for much more than that.  So, to the story that started it all-here's the scene: as he is walking back to his seat from throwing trash away, he stops, wraps his little arms around my waist and leans his head on my back while I am putting away papers in a folder...
J-"I love you Miss ____., I'm really glad I'm in your class."  
Me-"Why's that?"  
J-"Cause you make me feel special.  I feel really good about myself when I'm in here...like I'm smart and stuff." 
Me-(cue tear ducts about to overflow) "Aww, thank you honey, you are special, and you should feel good about yourself, you're a really good kid." 
J-"Thanks Miss _____, I'm going to go read now." 
Then as if this was nothing out of the ordinary he skipped back to his seat, took out a book and started to read, while I'm standing there trying to keep myself composed and not loose it in front of 20+ children.  As stressful as the next couple of weeks are going to be, that right there is why I do what I do and why I put up with all of the paperwork, bureaucracy, and unreasonable expectations.  If one kid, who is counted as a "problem" or "troublemaker" gets a second chance to feel good about themselves, like they are someone important who is loved and wanted by their teacher, then I have done my job well and count the year a success.  Thank you J, for reminding me of the true assessments that matter this year and for helping me to put everything back in perspective.  Now I'm off to grade some paperwork...

Friday, September 5, 2008

Tropical Storm Hanna and the Weather Channel can suck it

I know....the title is a little abrasive, but hear (well read...but that just sounds dumb) me out first.  
At my core I am a homebody through and through.  I love being home, watching movies, making dinner, and lounging around.  However that being said, I don't like not having other options.  Last week/weekend I was home sick with Bronchitis and unable to do anything but lay on the couch and feel like someone had kicked me in the kidneys while pouring broken glass down my throat every time I coughed.  Seriously, the first weekend after school starting up and I slept through it, how much does that suck?  My weekend was a total bust and I felt cheated.  Cheated I tell you, cheated!  Now Tropical Storm Hanna is trying to ruin this weekend, but I refuse to let that happen.
Which leads me to my second issue... The Weather Channel.  I've just decided that they need to have a special "Weekend Edition" on Friday and Saturday nights.  The forecast on the TV: "Tonight-rain with slight NNE winds. Saturday-rain and windy conditions."  That is SOOOOO not helpful.  Who cares what this evening and tomorrow during the day will be like?  Here's what I need the Weather Channel to tell me with their Local on the 8s: What will it be like at 2:30-3am when I'm driving home?  Because honestly, that's what the people care about (my people, I don't know about your people).  This version of Local on the 8s is only necessary on the weekend, because at 2:30-3am on the weekdays you should be sleeping...I'm not judging, I'm just saying.  This is the kind of TV forecast would actually be helpful and not make you feel like you just wasted 4 1/2 minutes of your life waiting for the Local on the 8s to come back, afraid to change the channel because you don't want to miss the first half of it.  Side note-when did the Weather Channel go from being a channel that told you the weather to a full on TV channel with shows about extreme weather and amazing weather stories with forecasts thrown in at inconvenient intervals?  Not a fan people, Not A Fan.  Anyway, back on track.  For me the question I ask myself is not, "Is the weather going to be bad when I'm going out?" but rather, "Will I be screwed when I'm trying to get home?"  That being said, YAY for their website weather.com where they graciously do an hour-by-hour breakdown which let me know that I can go out tonight because the rain won't be coming to my area until around 3am.
I may have been cheated last weekend, but I shall not be cheated tonight!

Wednesday, September 3, 2008

My Gay Posse

Don't get my wrong, I love my straight friends.  They have been with me for a long time and through the good, the bad, the ugly, and the things I wish they would let me forget but never will.  However, that being said, I love my gay posse.  

#1-Types--We all have different types of women we are attracted to which eliminates that weird/awkward moment of "I saw them first, let's turn this into a competition" thing.

#2-Ages--We have about a 20 year age span from the youngest to the oldest in my posse.  How awesome is that!!!  Seriously...I love my peer group but DAMN we can create some D.R.A.M.A.  It is AWESOME to have such a variety of ages/life stages because there is just not the drama that you get with 8-10 people in their mid-twenties.

#3-Open--These are some of the most open, welcoming people I have ever met.  If someone is new to the area, just out, etc. they make you feel welcomed and as if you have been a part of the group all along, given that you have a sense of humor, are sarcastic, and are being yourselves.

#4-Fun--While we have our serious sides, I can always count on having a good time when I am out with them.  We don't stir up the drama at the bars/clubs, but you can be absolutely certain that we will sit in the parking lot, drink Tequila and watch you make an ass of yourself while you are fighting with your girlfriend at 3am.

#5-Caring--I've been sick with Bronchitis for about a week, another girl has a virus, one has a cold, another has some breathing problems, yet people call each other to find out how everyone is feeling.  That just gives me the warm fuzzies inside--not only do we have a good time out at the bars/clubs but we genuinely care about one another.

Don't you just love them too now that you read this?

Monday, September 1, 2008

Barreling out of the closet

I was talking with one of my close friends a couple of weeks ago and I've realized that when I came out to everyone that mattered I didn't just come out of the closet-I came barreling out.  I started going to gay bars, found a "gay posse"  to join, began dressing a little differently (what feels right to me and not like I'm playing dress-up everyday), and while my life is very much the same as it was before I was out, it's very different too.  I didn't mean to change my life, make new friends, alter my dress, etc. but it all seems natural...and I'm a lot happier. I was so tired of lying and pretending and ignoring, that when I stopped I completely stopped and began living my life authentically and for me.  I missed that whole "finding myself" time in college and now that I'm in my mid-twenties I finally know who I am and what I want.  Don't get me wrong, it's created a lot of great changes in my life, but there is a part of my that wants to step back because it is a lot of change I was just curious if anyone else found that this happened to them as well.  Let me know if you've gone through this in your own life, felt backlash from friends who don't care that you're gay but are afraid of loosing you, etc.