Teacher's Ramblings

A potpourri of education, politics, family matters, and current events.

Sunday, October 10, 2004

Time to Write Something

Too many thoughts, it is a bit formidable writing in a published forum without an editor. Spent a bit of time editing/deleting some of my posts, since I want personal, but not too much.

In an effort to be more disciplined with the writings, I have decided to do a round-up of some of what has been going on and what I have been musing on. First the personal stuff, then the 'world' stuff. (Must set priorities and family is first!)

On the family front:

Things have been going very well, hmmm, maybe too well. I guess there is nothing like all the kids going off to college for them to suddenly discover they 'Like me!' They either want to come home, (send money), or have me come visit, (bring money), or if neither of those are possible, I could just send money. Perhaps I exaggerate.

I did get to visit my daughter Monday evening, for her opera recital solo. She did a 'bang up' job. It was a medley of Cole Porter and Noel Coward pieces. She solo was Porter's, "Love for Sale," which she performed brilliantly. Her first 'public' performance in eighth grade was as Mary Magdalene in Godspell. I am hoping this is not typecasting. I will not worry, she also sings a great Ave Maria!

I received an email from the youngest earlier in the week, telling me how wonderfully he is doing at mid-term. I am very proud! He went on to exclaim that he had been 'endorsed' for a resident assistant position for next year, by the interhall council. That was great news, since it covers room and board. As if all that was insufficient good news, he listed how many miles he has been running each week, his times, and how often he has been strength training. I'm sure all the parents and recent college grads know this was leading up to something.... He has $60 left in his account that is to last until mid-December and 'by the way' he would like to come home in a couple of weeks, to visit his girlfriend, 'there is a great deal on Amtrack tickets...' In the meantime, I found a daughter of a friend, at the same university, who is coming home in a couple weeks. He can ride with her. Hope his $60 last until then.

The middle child seems to be settling down, now that he is serving as the 'on campus' role model for his younger brother. It seems they are getting together for both working out and study sessions. Since he has been working on campus, he has been supplying his brother with snacks and such, while telling him that he really does not have to buy designer water all the time. Somehow I did something right, more likely, I just got lucky!

My dad is doing better than expected after his surgery for the pacemaker. It seems he is no longer at immediate risk for needing dialysis, which is a very good thing. Last week he had his second cardiologist appointment, which went fine. The coolest thing was that they gave him a purse-sized machine that has two watchband-like things connected to electrodes. In two months, he will call a phone number, put the bands on, follow instructions to 'power up', then hit 'EKG' button. The EKG will then be read at the cardiologist's office. If anything is irregular, he will go in; if not, repeat 2 months later. Is that cool or what?

On the teaching front:

I am still looking for help with lower reading World History lessons! I've searched, but not finding anything worthwhile. Geez, I may have to do this myself.

I must say, I love Christopher Columbus, regardless of revisionist history I am off tomorrow! For teachers, or anyone that just wants to remind themselves of what one of the Explorers did:

Now onto the All other fronts:

If my counting is correct, 22 days until the election. I think Bush recovered from his lackluster first debate, though the skewed 'instant polls' are mixed. Most of the 'major polls' have the election close, yet I don't get that feeling when looking at the state polls. Even here in Illinois, definite Kerry, the numbers are much closer than they should be. I'm beginning to think that the Howard victory, maybe a harbinger of our own election, as well as the polls. I do not think The Halperin Memo, via Drudge,
http://drudgereport.com/mh.htm surprises many people.

Classical Values, one of my favorite blogs, has an interesting post on how the MSM is trying to explain themselves via Ted Koppel:

"...Now one of the primary lessons here is how to read the news. John Stewart was interviewed by Ted Koppel recently and shed his familiar non-partisan comic persona. It was time for Jon Stewart to be serious, to say what needed to be said, and that was that the Swift Boat Veterans were liars and that people like Ted Koppel were in a position to do something about it..."

While waiting to figure out Trackback, I will use the link for the time being:

Blaster's Blog, http://www.overpressure.com/archives/week_2004_10_03.html#001084 has a very useful link to the Tribune Foundation's publications, http://www.rrmtf.org/mtf/pubsandprods.htm many of which are free, (and useful for social studies!)

"One of the good things about going to school is that you learn things. In a course I am taking now, we had to read the book Terrorism: Informing the Public, which is a report of a conference held by the McCormick Tribune Foundation in early 2001. You can order the book for free from the Foundation, still, I think.
Anyway, there was a passage in the book I found pretty interesting, from a chapter entitled "Terrorism in a Free Society." The speaker is Kate Martin, a civil liberties lawyer, a former ACLU lawyer. She says this in her talk":

Something I am trying to make time for is reading the Duelfer Report. It seems there is more to it than just, "No WMD's", no 'duh!
http://instapundit.com/archives/018339.php Here is a link to the report itself, http://news.findlaw.com/nytimes/docs/iraq/cia93004wmdrpt.html

In Australia, Howard wins a fourth term!
http://smh.com.au/articles/2004/10/10/1097261869591.html?oneclick=true I for one, am hoping this is the first of three leadership elections. First Howard, then Bush, then Blair. I think it very interesting that all the 'polls' showed the election 'very close' and he won by over 11%.

The Oil for Food Scandal just grows worse:
http://news.yahoo.com/news?tmpl=story&u=/ap/20041007/ap_on_re_us/oil_for_food_investigation_8 Actually, the Oil for Food is directly related to the WOT in my opinion. The briber believed the bribed would not allow the US to invade, http://thescotsman.scotsman.com/index.cfm?id=1167592004 Of course, the French try to spin, http://news.yahoo.com/news?tmpl=story&u=/ap/20041008/ap_on_re_eu/oil_for_food_world_reax_4
and the CIA want it to be the administration's fault,
http://www.signonsandiego.com/uniontrib/20041009/news_1n9sanctions.html . I am beginning to think the CIA is actively trying to undermine the administration.

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