Archive for the 'I’m Just Saying' Category

A Rant Awakens Me

I realize I have been gone from the blog in a very long time.  And I realize that I had resolved to do better at that.  I had actually written a long post about how desperate I am for “me time”.  It took me three weeks to write it.  And in the end I decided it was far more whiny than I want to be, so abandoned the post.

And also I’ve been sick for four hundred years.  Give or take a day or two.

But the other day I was awakened from my blog stupor by a rant-worthy homework assignment of Dolittle’s.  The assignment – a social studies project – covered collecting a wide variety of information on culture in response to about 9-10 questions.  Things like how things have changed on the Island in 20 years, finding news articles related to culture, etc.  And it also included finding out the jobs your family members have held for as far back as you could go.

While I applaud an assignment which hones researching skills on a multitude of levels (on-line searching, personal interviews, etc.), and provides a creative forum for the presentation of findings, I am boggled at how tracing geneology is a fair question in a world where it is just as likely that you are someone with a non-traditional or largely non-existent family, as it is to be someone with a fairly solid and traditional family tree.  What if I am a child who does not know their father?  What if I have a family that has been broken so many times that the family tree is mere kindling?  What if I have no relative I can go to that can relate the work history of generations?  Would it be acceptable for a child to hand in something that said, “I am Little Johnny, and my family tree starts here.  I will accomplish great things one day”?  And how will Little Johnny’s presentation compare to those of his peers?

As clarification, we are not in the Little Johnny boat.  Dolittle was able to collect information on her family work history back to her great grandparents, learned some fascinating little tidbits of family history, and got to see pictures of two ancestors that share her name.  All in all the assignment was great for her, and I’m glad she got to do it.  But somewhere in my heart I still feel for Little Johnny, and how it must feel to be assigned something which would not only be personally impossible, but be compared with peers on at least some level.

I remain baffled by the thinking behind the project…  Why would the assignment not have been “research 6 of these 10 things” (or something like that)?  Wouldn’t that have fostered 21st-century learning just as well without putting anyone’s self esteem at issue?

So, I am sending virtual hugs to all the Little Johnnys of the world.  Because I really do believe your family tree can begin with you.  And if you believe you can accomplish great things, then I believe you can too.

Dear Candidate in the Municipal Election:

The fact that you left a “Sorry I missed you” note ON MY UNLOCKED GATE, rather than actually walking to my door to see if I might actually be home, did not convince me you’d actually do any work if you had in fact been elected.  Just sayin’.

Regards,

Sockie

A Few Things I Don’t Hear Nearly Enough (or Possibly Ever) From My Kids

sock-bullet“Just relax, and let me do that for you!”

sock-bullet“I’ll just get that with my own money!”

sock-bullet“These vegetables are just what I was craving!”

sock-bullet“I think I’d like to study now.”

sock-bullet“Would you like to use your computer now?”

sock-bullet“I’m not at all bored.”

sock-bullet“There is absolutely nothing I need that I don’t already have.”

sock-bullet“I love what you’re wearing, Mom!”

The Olympic Message

I may have found an Olympic torch.  Or maybe I just got my kid an autographed picture of the gymnast in Kensington.  At this point things are a tad confused.  Stay tuned.

But I do have some thoughts on the Olympics that perhaps it may be timely to share…

Someone recently told me that they could not stand the Olympics and had a myriad of reasons for this, but among them was the suggestion that the message they give is to “win at any cost.”  Is that what you take away from the games?  That winning is paramount?  Or do you walk away with feeling that the underlying message to take away is that if you want something, if you believe, if you work for it and train for it, possibility exists?

Perhaps it is because I work very hard to focus on the positive possibilities in life, but my take on the matter is definitely “possibility exists.”  Those “Do You Believe?” television ads that aired in Canada for what felt like eons before the Olympics… I love them.  Because to me, the message is more than believing your athlete can win a piece of hardware for your country… it’s that some kid can see an athlete go for their dream.  That they can see sportsmanship and error.  That they can see where commitment can take them.  (Yes, they can also apparently see gold medalists drink straight out of a pitcher of beer, but we’ll just let that slide for the moment, ok).

Go for it.  Work for it.  Believe it.  And it can be whatever positive thing you want it to be.

Something You Probably Don’t Know About Me #6

Today is my birthday.

And if I think about it long enough, it probably should be depressing… as now my current age rounds to a fairly significant number.  It is also an age where I am likely to jump to another demographic category in a random telephone survey.

Fortunately for me, I neither round birthdays, take surveys, or count birthdays anymore. 

I can, however, eat my own weight in cake, so the day is not completely without merit.  I’m just sayin’.

Something You Don’t Know About Me #4

I am married to someone hopelessly addicted to waxing machinery.  It is not at all uncommon for someone from the ‘hood to say, “Oh… you live where the guy is always waxing the car.”  It doesn’t end at the car, people.  The man waxes the lawn mower.  Seriously.

Now this, in itself, is probably not necessarily a bad thing.  I mean, we probably have the most protected machinery paint in the province.  Easily.  Unless of course you fear aliens.  Which is an entire other matter…

Because I’ve only just discovered if you type our address into Google maps and zoom in as close as you can, the shiniest freaking thing in the entire satellite picture is sitting in my driveway.  Behold…

beacon1

Now, I ask you… if you were an alien just cruising around the atmosphere, wouldn’t you head for the shiniest thing out there?  His car is a freaking beacon to extraterrestrials!  I want to go out there and throw a tarp over it!  Maybe with some subtle writing on it like “Nothing is glowing here! Keep flying, big fella!”  Crop circles probably started with a big shiney tractor and a farmer with an addiction to waxing, you know.  I’m just saying.

Anticipated Book

Harry Potter novels were the first series of books that I followed… and by “followed” I mean anxiously awaited the next installment.  From the get-go you knew there were seven books.  Each one was anxiously awaited and duly devoured.

So some years ago when I started hearing buzz about Eragon, I became interested in checking out that fantasy series as well.  Dragons, elves and ogres were just my cup of tea.  While admittedly slow to warm up to, once I was into the book, it too got devoured.  The “Inheritance Trilogy” became anticipated reading as well as the years ticked off between books.

Now here is where I admit I am a book peeker.  I peek ahead to make sure I’m going to like where things are going to end up.  I really don’t want to invest so much time and emotion in a book if I’m not going to like where it’s going.  I’m also curious about what the last word in a book is, though I have no idea why that is.  Someday I’d like to write a story that ends in a cool word like “sassafras” or “fandango” or something like that.

So this past September 20th brought the release of the third book in the “Inheritance Trilogy,” Brisingr.  And while I haven’t had a chance to give the book the time I really want to spend, imagine my surprise when I peek ahead in the book to see the last word, and I also see this:

HERE ENDS THE THIRD BOOK
OF THE INHERITANCE CYCLE.
THE STORY WILL CONTINUE AND CONCLUDE
IN BOOK FOUR.

What. The. Heck. ?!?

Somewhere between book two and book three, someone added a fourth book to the trilogy making it a “cycle” instead?  I mean, on one hand I think it’s great there will be more, but on the other hand I had really built up excitement in my head about finally finding out how this tale would end only to discover it would not be a couple of years probably before that happens.  I mean, imagine if you went into a bank and said, “I’ve decided not to pay my loan in three years so you’ll have to wait longer for your money.”  Or to your boss, “You know that report you were really hoping for your next meeting… check back with me in a year or so and I’ll see what I can do for you.”

I get that there may have been more to the story than three books could accommodate, and I’m sure in a couple of years I’ll be absolutely delighted to have another book release to look forward to, but I kind of wish I had just known about it in advance of purchasing book three.  Like if book two had ended with “Dang, this thing is getting long” so I wouldn’t have been so suprised.

Of course, it will be all be worth it and forgotten if the fourth book does end in “fandango”.  I’m just sayin’.


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