Saturday, July 11, 2009

Welcome to My Nightmare

It's going to be a bad year. I can tell because it's July 11th an I've just had my first nightmare of the school year.

It used to be pleasant. New backpack, new pencils, new teacher, new classroom. Hah! I think they put elementary school there to lull you into a false sense of security. They don't let on that by the time they've finished 5th grade they've decided that lessons learned have an expiration date. Who knew that you only need to remember the spelling words until the test is over. Sort of like a magic erase board in the mind.

Middle school is the start of free thinking. I'm all for having them think for themselves. Unfortunately, in our house that meant "I don't like reading and writing so therefore I think I don't need to do it." It's been a real joy ever since.

Now it's time to start senior year. I've bought three books to cover the required one for summer reading. Actually, I bought two, In the Presence of the Enemy and High Fidelity, which meant he really wanted to read Triple. The biggest mystery will be if he reads anything. They included a book, Acceptance, just for fun, a little senior humor. Right! It's supposed to be a humorous take on the process of getting into college. I bought it for me. It may be the only chuckle I get. As a person who actually likes books I don't know where this kid comes from. Who stole that sweet little kid who had me read The Cat in the Hat so many times I had it memorized? I think he was kidnapped by Thing 1 and Thing 2.

So I woke up this morning with my blood pressure spiking. I don't remember exactly what the dream was but I remember the gist. It had to do with school, project, not done, failing, the usual. It's July 11th for God's sake. Can't I have two months of peace? Can't this wait until September? How did I wind up with a kid who is so oblivious to how this works? You go to school, you get good grades, you go to college, you get a job. You do this and I go to Florida and stay warm and out of your hair. I think that's pretty simple so what is it he doesn't get?

And why does this thing tell me that doesn't is spelled wrong? Maybe I should change it to duzzint. How's that? "Best guess" spelling as they used to say at Wayne Elementary. Why would you tell kids it's okay to spell words wrong and then change your mind a couple of years later? Why not just correct them the first time and get it right from there? I think we should have "best guess" math and I can't wait till we get to "best guess" chemistry. That ought to be a blast. Literally. How come this thing duzzint tell me that literally isn't a sentence? I'm sorry, make that izzint.

Wednesday, April 29, 2009

Important Information

If we could bottle whatever it is that teenage boys have we could rule the world. The strongest men would cry uncle. Talk about weapons of mass destruction.

Sunday, March 8, 2009

Let's Get It Started

Okay, think Black Eyed Peas. Now, everybody sing. Now fade.

I feel the need to blog. Everybody blogs. If they don't blog, they journal. I've never been good at that either. I buy a nice journal and get out a pen and can't think of a thing to write about. Maybe sitting in front a screen with a keyboard with produce better results.

The hardest thing so far has been picking a name. Most of what I could think of have been used. Used with hyphens, underscores, words reversed, spelled creatively, whatever, it's been done. So I end up with Laughing Flamingo. What does it mean? I haven't the vaguest idea. After trying to come up with a name that would suggest random thoughts it was getting too painful and I just had to give up. George Carlin started it with "Brain Droppings" but after going through things that had already been taken, things were starting to get nasty. I decided to do something with flamingos since I seem to have started a collection (flock?) of them. And it embarrasses Travers no end that I would stick a flamingo out in the yard or anywhere else for that matter. The laughing part? Hey, what the hell, it's better than crying.

It would also probably be easier to title if there was one great passion in my life. I read a few knitting blogs but I'm just no that into it. I like to see what other people are doing since I'll probably never do the things they do. I look at it and think someday but I'm sure that particular someday won't come. I don't think I could sustain the enthusiasm for a sweater. I like little things where I can see the end from the beginning. My favorite so far has been a felted hat. It didn't take long, looks good and is actually something I can wear. I've done regular knitted hats but then I remember that I hate knitted hats. I just can't stand having them hugging my head. They make me itch. Make 'em, don't wear 'em, that's dumb. But my felted hat is just right.

So knitting is something to do but not something I live to do. I like to do a lot of things. I don't want to do them all the time. I tend to do handmade things for Christmas gifts. Someone will tell me I should make more of whatever it was this year and sell it. That makes it not fun, but work. Making the same thing over and over is not enjoyable. The suggestion that kills me is making gift baskets. This year I made spa baskets with some things I made and some things I bought. I put everything in a basket, wrapped it in cellophane and slapped a bow on it. I salvage baskets from everywhere or buy them on sale. When baskets come in to work I salvage the excelsior or paper crinkles. I buy the huge roll of cellophane which lasts for ages. I buy ribbon on sale and make the bows myself. I can't imagine why anyone would buy a basket that someone else made.

I like to write but the same as with knitting and crafty things and such a little bit is how I like it. I always thought I'd like to write the Great American Novel but learned early on that I'd never be able to sustain one thought for that long. I'm much more of a short story kind of writer. Essayist is even better. Now I can be a blogger. Blogs can be whatever. Two sentences if you want. Although I will say that I have a tendency to embrace the run on sentence. I could do a two sentence entry that would take twenty minutes to read. Who invented blogs? Who cares? I'm going to give this a try. It doesn't have that same tactile gratification of having a snazzy book and a great pen but I realize there are kids today that have never known the joy of going to the five and ten and buying a bottle of peacock blue ink and a fountain pen to put it in and taking it home and just writing. I used to love peacock blue ink. I bet they don't even make it anymore. They don't even make fountain pens. They make cartridge pens and call them fountain pens. God knows people wouldn't want to actually have to fill a pen. They might get ink on their hands.

So this will be the start and we'll just see if I can keep it up. This could be interesting.