So long, farewell, auf Wiedersehen, goodbye

Well, I will act in faith (that John will be released from airport heck) and say my goodbyes. It’s been fun — I hope I haven’t driven off too many of John’s loyal readers. If I decide to continue this business elsewhere, I’ll send a link to John, and the interested can follow it (any encouragement or discouragement on this front?).
Thanks for everything!

His first pet

OK, so the little guy has a pet. He saves up his money from the recycling, and then, when he reaches a set amount, divides it into three piles: money to give, money to save, and money to spend. The most recent $10 went to buy a (drumroll please) fern. That’s right, the little guy’s first pet is a fern. He sat with it on his lap during TV time this evening, checking it over for brown bits. He watered it, very seriously. He feels a little awkward about talking to it, but is willing to breathe on it — he is quite pleased by the oxygen/carbon dioxide exchange. Symmetry of all types pleases him.
Eccentric but endearing — a fine combination in my mind.

You may already know

All you Methodist types may already know about Vanderbilt’s lovely online lectionary, but if you don’t, here it is: Spend the week planning confounding questions for your clergyfolks.

Summer changes everything

So, today I was on campus, working on syllabi. At one point I walked to the records office, passing a group of Asian kids playing baseball, an African American woman going to the library, and a group of Latinas singing together in Spanish. Now, this may sound like normal college life, but our student body is really, really white. I saw more diversity on campus today than I see during a week of classes. They rent out the dorms and classrooms to various groups during the summer for various programs, and those are the kids I saw.
It was nice, though.

something to look forward to…

We love the Orange County fair. I work across the street from the fairgrounds, which were originally part of the Santa Ana Air Force Base during World War II. There are still a few buildings from the base on the fairgrounds (and on our campus). My grandfather was stationed there during the war — he was a smart guy, who managed to discharge his patriotic duty without facing too much direct peril — he was a drill sargeant. Keep that in mind, all you potential draftees.
This year there is special excitement: a cattle drive through town ( Now, Costa Mesa isn’t rural anymore, but there is a large undeveloped park, where the cattle will lodge for several days before strolling through town. Too much crazy fun.

ain’t I nice…

So today the baby and I walked the little guy to church for VBS, then we came home for a nap. The baby didn’t sleep, but I catnapped — literally. The cat meowed in my face until I arranged my arms according to his liking, then he curled up and purred in my face, which is much more pleasant. Then we went to pick up the little guy from VBS, and stopped by the library to sign up for the summer reading program. Then we picknicked in the park and came home. The baby napped for real, while the little guy and I curled up and read together. Then we had swimming lessons, and took the recycling in. That’s the little guy’s job — he sorts it and keeps the money. After the little people went to bed, I knit a little, and after I fold the laundry, I’m going to sew some pajama shorts out of old receiving blankets. The fabric is perfect, a nice light flannel.
Haven’t we had a wholesome day? And you were all so worried about me after that museum trip…

just in case you were wondering…

“The Flight of the Conchords” is awesome, the same kind of eccentric, goofy cool we know and love from They Might Be Giants. You can check them out at if you don’t have HBO. I know I’m going to miss them when they cut off our bargain HBO after 3 months.

the Talk

You know, it’s never too early to have the Talk with your kids. One shouldn’t press it upon them, of course, or rush the conversation, but it’s important to answer questions honestly. I just didn’t think it would come before the little guy started Kindergarten. So, yesterday, the little guy and I had the Talk — the Grad School Talk.
It started when he asked me what I do, and explained that I was a teacher at a college, and what college was. We’ve been over this before, but he asked new questions: “What comes after college?” So I explained about grad school, and why I went to grad school and what I studied there.
So, be prepared. It can happen to you.

catching up on my reading

So, I finally got around to reading the Washington Post series on Dick Cheney ( I’d heard a great deal about it, of course, between John Stewart and Stephen Colbert (I tend to prefer to gather my news in ways that don’t depress me to the point of insomnia). What’s fascinating about the piece is its literary quality. I’m not speaking of the writing, although that is well-done — what is impressive is how they take a complicated and potentially confusing and dull set of events and link them in an interesting narrative. The story — the politicking, scheming, maneuvering, and conniving — is like something out of Sophocles, or Shakespeare. Practically Nixonian in its operatic potential.