Monday, April 30, 2007

Dear Internets...

Please give me the sense of perspective and sense of humor to do the last two weeks of class.

I need to understand that they are as fried as I am, and that we should all give one another a break.

I need to remember that there is a reason they are at BNCC, and for many of the students in BNCC's wealthy suburb, the reason isn't financial. That means their reasons are academic and thus they don't have the academic skills they should have when they come to college. As a result, I must be both kind and firm. Kind to the people who make honest mistakes and firm with those who are screwing up college in the same way they probably screwed up high school.

Finally, please remind me why I love teaching and how much fun it is to see the good and/or hardworking students "get it".

and -- make my summer teachiing and the bonus paycheck that comes with it come sooner rather than later,


Sunday, April 29, 2007

one more goodbye...

Tomorrow hubby leaves to do finals week at Red State school.

His last goodbye for the year.

Last fall I had no idea it would seem like so long and so short at the same time. It will be good to have him home, bringing his mess and spunky self into what has turned into a pretty quiet household.

This summer we'll see a couple of excellent large cities, probably camp a couple of times and move into a new place. We'll also write our little brains out and hopefully be a couple of steps closer to being Dr & Dr.

Next fall he'll go back to Red State, taking New Kitty with him. I'll stay here and not coach debate, but be department chair...

How things have changed....

Saturday, April 28, 2007

no shock here...

Your Ideal Pet is a Cat

You're both aloof, introverted, and moody.
And your friends secretly wish that you were declawed!

"Marsha, Marsha, Marsha"

You Are Jan Brady

Brainy and a little introverted, you tend to think life is a lot worse than it actually is.
And while you may think you're a little goofy looking, most people consider you to be a major babe.

ummm... duh

You Are 100% Feminist

You are a total feminist. This doesn't mean you're a man hater (in fact, you may be a man).
You just think that men and women should be treated equally. It's a simple idea but somehow complicated for the world to put into action.

Academic traumas?

This time of year always makes me think about the worst academic trauma I had...

I was a freshman at BN state University. I was doing well in an American lit course. Nobody told me about the published finals schedule, but every instructor told me when the final was. One day I was about 5 minutes late to American Lit. On the board was "Final Exam, Wednesday, 1:00"... I wrote it down and listened to the lecture.

Fast forward to finals week. I show up on Wednesday at 1:00 -- but, it isn't my class taking the final.

I freak out... I went to the office of the American Lit prof, who at first didn't believe me. When I showed him my notes with the date, he agreed to a make-up exam, I did it and then he never recorded it.

When I got my grade, which was much lower than it should have been I called him. He denied ever making such a deal and refused to change my grade. He didn't believe me and couldn't remember talking with me 3 weeks prior...

Sadly, I also didn't know about grade challenge procedures, student advocates or anything else...

In retrospect, I'm sure the lazy-ass American Lit guy simply failed to erase the board from the class before him.

The grade remains on my transcript to this day and is the reason that I'm very clear about when the final exam is.

care to share your academic traumas?

Friday, April 27, 2007

Friday cat blogging...

Since I don't want to give the impression that New Kitty is just a statue, posing and being beautiful, I decided to include a photo of her trying to explore every part of our apartment.

She has also taken to sitting by the door and meowing at me, frustrated that she can't get out that one last door... she's been in every other cupboard, closet and room in the place -- the magical room behind the front door is the only bit of mystery in her life, poor thing...

And, I finally caught them snuggling --If you look close, you can see why I call him 'extra-toes'.

Thursday, April 26, 2007

the Rockin the Suburbs objection...

How cool would it be if I could work a Ben Folds song into an objection to my feminist epistemology paper...

The objection is (to use a debater's term) a speaking for others kritik... Standpoint Epistemology contends that those who are marginalized have an understanding of both themselves and the dominant group. My objection is that the marginilized can, like everyone else, only understand their own position -- or, maybe that they understand themselves best and others in the same way that others understand them.... either way, Ben Folds expresses the current frustrations of male, middle class white folks...

let me tell ya'll what it's like
being male, middle class and white
it's a bitch, if you don't believe
listen up to my new cd
sham on

i got shit running through my brain
so intense that i can't explain
all alone in my white boy pain
shake your booty while the band complains

i'm rocking the suburbs
just like michael jackson did
i'm rocking the suburbs
except that he was talented
i'm rocking the suburbs
i take the checks and face the facts
that some producer with computers
fixes all my shitty tracks

i'm pissed off but i'm too polite
when people break in the mcdonalds line
mom and dad you made me so uptight
i'm gonna cuss on the mic tonight
i don't know how much i can take
girl give me something i can break

i'm rocking the suburbs
just like quiet riot did
i'm rocking the suburbs
except that they were talented
i'm rocking the suburbs
i take the checks and face the facts
that some producer with computers
fixes all my shitty tracks

in a haze these days
i pull up to the stoplight
i can feel that something's not right
i can feel that someone's blasting me
with hate and bass
sending dirty vibes my way
cause my great great great great grandad
made someone's great great great great grandaddy slaves
it wasn't my idea
it wasn't my idea
it never was my idea
i just drove to the store
for some preparation h

ya'll don't know what it's like
being male, middle class and white
it gets me real pissed off and it makes me wanna say

just like jon bon jovi did
i'm rocking the suburbs
except that he was talented
i'm rocking the suburbs
i take the checks and face the facts
that some producer with computers
fixes all my shitty tracks these days
i'm rocking the suburbs
you'd better look out because i'm gonna say fuck

Dear logic students

Sometimes when I'm teaching, I have odd thoughts...

What if the two boys in the back (who don't get the material) hooked up with the two girls in the front -- who also doin't get it? Their children would be doomed -- they couldn't reason their way out of a game of "Duck, Duck, Grey Duck" --

Why would you take the class, be worried about your grade and not keep track of it yourself? Asking me the day before the last day to withdraw means that you don't pay attention until the end of the class... hmmm.

If your prof says, "if you don't understand the material, i.e. if you can't do all the problems in the chapter, you need to come to the optional class". IF YOU DON'T GET IT, THE DAY ISN'T OPTIONAL FOR YOU!!!!! After the first time, it should be clear enough to you that when we get the class back together, we'll be doing new stuff and you'll be screwed.

If you and your friend don't understand what is going on, why in the world would you spend most of the classtime giggling together? Perhaps it would be a good idea to pay attention, ask questions and not be a complete dork.

Also, fyi, when you lie to me and tell me you understand, I can tell. In fact, in my head I predict your next quiz score. You usually fail and last time your actual quiz score was a more spectacular failure than I'd predicted.

Finally, although a doctor's appointment may have excused you from high school, this IS NOT high school. I schedule things around teaching classes, you can schedule stuff around a class you are dooing poorly in. Getting a ride from your ding-bat friend hurts you both... you're and adult. I'll see you when you have to re-take this class. The couple off people who are re-taking the class this semester are doing well, they learned the lessons that you are learning this semester.

Wednesday, April 25, 2007

What I do for love...

Right now my TIVO is recording a new Jehrico.

I'm dying to watch it, but I promised hubby I wouldn't.

Friday we'll watch this one and several that are in the TIVO already.

I can't wait!

Monday, April 23, 2007

It's confirmed...

Men (except hubby and the good ones) are pigs.

A good friend just found out her not so long-gone ex is engaged. She found out via facebook and he confirmed it on the phone tonight.

She's way too smart, talented and ambitious to have been happy with him... but, it still hurts.

If you've ever been in a similar situation, think good thoughts for my friend. You and I know she'll get over it, but right now she doesn't think so.

Living on the set of Cats gone Wild...

New kitty is really skinny... This morning I found her between the sliding glass door and the screen door. You know those Flat Stanley dolls kids do projects with... she looked like a Flat Tera....

New Kitty is also part Mountain Goat -- and all of our tall bookcases are her hiking trails.

Extra-toes just licked the top corner of my laptop case/screen.

They are nuts.

Fieldtrip/class overlap...

I'm becoming a bit irritated with another faculty member.

That faculty member has scheduled fieldtrips -- four of them -- that cause students to miss one of my classes on Wednesdays....

The justification for this is that the facilities they are going to aren't open for fieldtrips at the time of the class.

I think it is unreasonable to require students to miss four class sessions -- the equivalent of two weeks of class.

He says there is an alternative assignment, which is watching a video of the fieldtrip --- i.e. not really an alternative.

I'm SURE he would pitch a fit if I had required fieldtrips that pulled those same students out of his class.

The way I see it, you have a set time with your students. He has both class time and lab time -- so he has even more than most of us. If you can't teach the course materials during that time, you shouldn't have scheduled the classes at those times.

Expecting students to miss the equivalent of 2 weeks out of a 16 week semester is unreasonable and unfair, right?

Sunday, April 22, 2007

notes from the road...

Dear Truckers...

Stay in your own f-ing lane -- really. This cutting me off and then swerving is really silly.

Dear Corn State...

Please put up more notices about where your rest areas are. I always stop at a crappy little Kum-n-go, buy some stuff because it is rude to pee and not buy, get back on the road and 2 miles later pass a rest area where I can pee for free. I do this several times per semester and it is getting annoying. A sign before the rest area would be helpful.

General hints for drivers...
1) "We gotta get out of this place" is THE BEST song to start a driving playlist with... the best song ever.
2) "Omaha", "my little town" "Rockin the Suburbs" and "Big Country" need to be on any Red State to BN state playlist.
3) Open bags of beef-jerky before you start to drive in the wind.
4) Make sure you go before you leave (see above...).

Friday, April 20, 2007

Random facts about me, I

1) I have always lived inside the Louisianna purchase... and have lived on both the far eastern side of it and the far western side.
2) Since I was about 12, I've lived with at least two cats.
3) I am allergic to dogs, but not allergic to cats.
4) Unless it is a rare day that I'm forced to wear tennis shoes, I always wear Birkenstocks.
5) 2 of my cats are named after movies or movie characters, one is named after a TV character.

Thursday, April 19, 2007

The llama farm...

I've found where I want to live, forever...

It is within sight of a llama farm in the southern part of BN State.

As I drove by, the baby llamas were cavorting with their pals as the mamma llamas watched.

I was cursing the fact that I had no camera.

Guess who is going to Red State next year....

The homeowners have OK'd hubby to have a cat next year. The plan is for her to go down to Red State in October. She'll come home on weekends and over breaks with hubby.

I need an extension for this post...

Dear Blogosphere,

I really need an extension on writing a good, thoughtful post.

It has been a hard week.

My hubby is teaching in Red State and I have to go visit him today -- and that entails packing up the laundry, driving in really boring places and ending up in a decent mid-sized city... and doing it all again on Sunday

We have a new cat in the household who won't let me type without sitting between me and the keyboard.

I have a feminist epistemology paper to work on and an appointment with someone at grad school on Friday to work it out.

I have syllabi to write for Summer --which comes way, way, way too close to the end of finals week for me... I hope you'll support my plea to administration for an extension on starting the summer session... without a corresponding delay in my summer pay.

I have final exams to write for logic and Intro to Philosophy.

I have to do logic homework for my classes next week, as they are getting to the hard problems and I want to make sure that if they can't do them, I can...

It is finally SPRING here, and as such my allergies are making me silly.

So, as you can see I'm in no mood to write a thoughtful post on and or all of the following: hiring, being an adjunct, my fears about being department chair next year, how nice it is to work with wonderful people like I do, why my super-dean may need an alter-ego to get everything done, how it feels good to make progress on my own work, how I'm exited that hubby only has a couple of weeks before he comes home for the summer or even just a list of all the odd places New Kitty has deicided MUST be explored, now!!

Thank you for the extension.

Wednesday, April 18, 2007

my favorite classroom

Virginia Tech must have reached deep into my psyche.

I woke up this morning and realized that my favorite classroom has a heavy wooden door that locks from the inside and concrete-block walls between my classroom and the hall. The same is true of my office.

It is sad that this makes me feel safter, but it does.

I'll admit it, I'm no hero who would sacrifice herself to save her students and I don't want hubby to be one either.

Today I'm glad BNCC is built kind of like a prison.

Tuesday, April 17, 2007

getting used to the Long Distance Relationship

When I told a faculty friend about hubby and I converting to a long-distance relationship, she said, "you've been married for 16 years, you'll looove it!".

I can't say she was right.

I can say that I'm finally used to it. It officially happened yesterday. Hubby left and I didn't feel like I was about to cry. I take that as a sign of adjustment.

I also find that I'm much more comfortable home alone. I find that I like my non-teaching Tuesdays and can easily spend quite a while without seeing another person... perhaps that is my closet-introvert coming out? I've also found that I enjoy going to movies by myself -- and I go to movies he'd never agree to see.

On the other hand, perhaps the reason I end up staying at school late on Monday nights is that I don't want to go home to a freshly quiet apartment. I also don't find myself eating foods he doesn't like.

Of course, just when I'm getting used to living partially alone, his semester is almost over and he'll be home for the summer in a couple of weeks. Isn't that just my luck. I'll get used to living with him over the summer only to have him go back to Red State next year for another year.

Semester numbers

3.5 more teaching weeks for me.
7 more teaching days for me.

1 more weekend hubby will be in Red State.
1 more weekend I'll go to Red State.

2 more weeks for hubby to teach this year.
4 more teaching days for hubby.

1 long-distance year nearly over... at least one more to go.

1 set of logic quizzes to write and grade.
1 logic final exam to write and grade.
5 sets of reading summaries to grade.
1 Intro to Philosophy final exam to write and grade.

1 weekend trip to take with hubby to big/fun city and family city.

2 summer syllabi to write and copy.

Monday, April 16, 2007

Family and Fun City... all in one trip

In the middle of next month, whille some of you will be at Kazoo with one member of my family, the rest of us will be gathering at Great Aunt's house in the Cheese State.

This gathering happens every year about this time -- it started because the family member would be at Kazoo and his wife thought it would be a good thing to bring the kids to see Great Aunt, and then it got out of hand... like things often do with my family.

Not being a Midevalist, hubby generally gets (has to) come with me... but, poor hubby generally dislikes these gatherings. There is little action and quite a bit of talk about things that are interesting only to us... There is also generally a bit of dithering and indecisive behavior. I love it, because I grew up with it -- but I can understand how it isn't so much fun for hubby.

So, this year we have some time before the family event and I made him a deal. Before we do the family thing, we'll have some fun in Big City.

Tonight I made the reservations for this little trip... and got an amazing deal on PriceLine... for $20.00 per night more than our Best Western in Cheese State, Hubby and I will be at a 4-star place in downtown Big City.

I'm proud of my travel-ninja skills...

A sad day elsewhere, a good day around home..

Today was the day of the Virginia Tech shootings. When things like this happen, I think about how connected to colleges I've been over the last 20 years. For 17 if tge 20, my daily or weekly routine involves at least one campus. Hubby and I both teach on college campuses and the thought of someone shooting one up hits way too close to home. My heart and prayers go out to the Virginia Tech community.


I came up with a new solution for a nagging problem in my logic class. Every semester, the first really hard quiz is either super easy for them, or they get a D or F. My problem then becomes how to get the 35% of the class that fails the first quiz caught up without holding back the other 65% that has the idea down. In the past, I would strongly urge the students who didn't do well to come to me or to go to the peer tutor. This year I gave them the opportunity to do some make-up work on the quiz, if they make appointments with the logic tutor and get the quiz signed by him. I did this because I have seen that students who work with tutors do better in class, even when they start out behind. Of course, there is some corellation/causality effect going on, but -- if going to the tutor just makes them do their homework, it works to increase their ability to do proofs, and that is all I really want...

I'm caught up on grading!!! YEA! About 35 logic quizzes, 40ish Intro to Philosophy essays, 40ish Intro to Philosophy blue-books. DONE!!

I had a nice chat with Wise Woman and Family Friend -- both are the sorts of people I'd like to do more with.

I came home and walked in to New Kitty looking down from the top of a 6 ft. tall bookcase. I haven't had an adventure kitty before... this could be very interesting, as it seems like there is no place for us to stash stuff that is outside of her reach /ambition.

I also had quite a few people congratulate me on being department chair, which was nice.

Tomorrow, it is all about me and my own brain... not their's. I'm going to the library to work on my own papers -- and I'm looking forward to it!

Sunday, April 15, 2007

New Kitty update...

They seem to be settling in very well these days.

It has been a week since New Kitty arrived. Yesterday I caught extra-toes grooming her. I also caught her being very considerate of Blind Kitty.

New Kitty and Extra-toes will continue to have turf wars for a while, but all is going well in the house of cats...

Friday, April 13, 2007

Spring Cleaning at mom's...

My mom has a habit of taking in stray people -- one of those people was living with my parents until he got into legal trouble and failed a drug test. This caused my mom to pack his stuff and put it into his car so that when he gets out of jail, she can give him the keys and tell him to go away.

I helped her do the end of that cleaning today.

It felt good.

It is good to be home.

Thursday, April 12, 2007

still snowing

In case you are keeping track... it looks like it is still snowing. Yes, it is April 12 and it looks like November.

I really don't remember BN state being like this in April.

I'm going north today--- up to see mom and be a good daughter. Going up there is a lot like going back to 1985... in that she only has dial-up and no working computer. I'll bring the camera and take some fun photos of the Best Lake...

Hubby is also heading north today, although I suspect it is more to see Tera than to see me tomorrow night.

Shear Genius... I'm hooked

After many years in the hair industry, I'm finding the new reality TV show about hair stylists to be entertaining.

If you watch the show, imagine managing the contestents, sending them to Iowa to do classes, getting them to do expense reports, taking their orders on the phone and dealing with them when they flake out.... once you do all of that, you'll understand why I'm now an academic.

It is much more fun to watch them on TV than it is to work with them...

Wednesday, April 11, 2007


It seems that New Kitty has settled in... There was no hissing or spitting.

good news..

It seems that I'll be the next chair of my department/division next year.

This is probably a good thing, but it could be a nightmare.

Wish me luck.

The Rodent was Wrong!

The Groundhog f-d up...

He predicted winter would be over 6 weeks after February 2. That would put it about the middle of March. It is nearly the middle of April, and it is snowing. Hard.... Sure, it is that kind of snow that melts pretty quickly and only sticks on the grass.

But the logic is really easy --

If it is snowing, then it is winter.
It is snowing.
Therefore, it is winter.

Modus Ponens... my logic students already know it...

Tuesday, April 10, 2007

New cat photos...

Say hello to Terabithia .. or Tera....

She's been to the vet, had all the tests and everything is fine.

She's also been meeting extra-toes and blind kitty without much hissing or spitting. If you don't count resentful looks and plant eating, everything is peachy here.

Monday, April 09, 2007

busy, busy, busy...

1 Intro to Philosophy exam (20 points objective, 30 points essay, epistemology)
1 logic quiz (proofs)
1 letter of recommendation for Sunshine

1 logic class (proofs)
1 Intro Class (Kant -- the Cliff Notes version of Transcendental Idealism)

1 appointemnt for new kitty's vet check
Spring 08 for Dog Dad, with a generous compromise from Wise Woman
Interactions between New Kitty and Extra-Toes -- and New Kitty and Blind Kitty with a minimal amount of hissing and growling.

Many phone calls from hubby on the way back to Red State
My car's liscense plate tags in the mail
The bill for the cleaning service

1 vet appointment
1 Passport application (needed for Canada, sigh...)
The cleaning lady comes, thus I must clean for her...
All afternoon -- living in my head -- finally!

Saturday, April 07, 2007

New kitty...

So, I thought we'd settled on the idea of only having two cats. Extra-toes and Blind-kitty seem to be getting along great -- but, hubby and I kept thinking and talking about a new cat.

We decided to go look at them, to see if any of the shelter cats really called to us.

you guessed it, it only took TWO cats for us to fall in love.

We figured that taking our new cat from the Humane Society allows us to bring them back as necessary, and they wouldn't be any worse off than if we'd never taken them home....

The second cat we took into the 'get acquanted room' (i.e. the be alone with the cat so the cat can sort out whether or not you are woth going home with...) became our new cat. She's about 2 years old and what they called a 'tabico', which means she's like a calico whose colored parts are tabby. Her tabby parts are mostly orange with some brown. Her tail has the typical tabby stripes.

We've named her Terabithia... so far -- with Tera as her working name.

When we brought her home, both boy cats were friendly --- she hissed. We'll have to see how she acts when she isn't stressed and freaked out. She seems to love hubby and me.

For now she'll mostly stay in the DC, the boys will stay out of the DC. As I write, she's taken up residence in a paper bag from Target. I don't think she's figured out exactly how lucky she's become....

Thursday, April 05, 2007

BN day...

Every year BNCC cancels class and the whole lot of us do some kind of faculty development thing...

This year the theme was, in essence, awareness of other cultures.

BNCC did a survey of cultural awareness a while back and we had a person come in to interpret the survey for us.

While I was taking the survey, I had problems with many of the questions -- especially the questions that ask for level of agree ment with statements like, 'deep down, people are all the same'. That is a pretty difficult question for a philosopher to answer... when we are talking about cultural values, isn't it the case that across cultures people love their families and find religious faith to be important in their lives? I can't think of one culture that doesn't support/protect children and somehow encourage some version of family life. I also can't think of one culture in which religion doesn't play an important role -- even when Communism attempted to make religion unimportant, people still held religious beliefs OR they held the values of Communisim as others held diety-centered beliefs...

Of course, if I answered 'people are all the same', their interpretation of my answer is that I am in denial of cultural differences.... which is not at all the case. I can easily think that people hold similar values ACROSS cultures, and in that way people are more alike than they are different. Of course, those values may be expressed in very different ways from one culture to another and THAT is different -- duh... but, the level of the question assumes a superficial view of the world and other people and I simply don't take that view.

I guess why this makes me so angry is that a core concept in philosophy is looking for the similarities in people across cultures. As Kant theorized, these similiarites are what make us human -- if a behavior or value is held by one group and not another, the thing is a cultural artifact and not a necessarily human artifact. According to the survey, Kant would have been in denial or something... which may have been true, but not because of the answers he would have given to the survey.

When I teach either Intro to Philosophy or Ethics, we discuss the characteristics of human beings. We look for the ways people are similar with the hope of understanding one another better. I suppose I should be proud to say that my students would be equally troubled by the questions asked. I know that they (and I) am not someone who denies the existence of other cultures, or who even minimizes cultural differences. Of coure they are there, the world is a complex place and people have found a wide variety of ways to live their lives -- duh. But, also isn't it the case that people are people deep down and that under the skin that is culture, we have the same basic concerns, values, challenges and triumphs?

Another example comes to mind -- a friend of mine is working to save the world. She's a law student at a very prestigious law school and she's recently been involved in immigration law issues. It seems to me that she identifies with her clients. All they want to do is to be able to live a good life supporting their families. She understands these desires because she has them as well. She was born and raised in the US -- as far as I know she's never had a loved-one deported, she's never been incarcerated for an immigration violation and I don't think she's worked manual labor to send money home to a developing country. She still shares the same basic value of loving her family and is motivated by that basic value to fight for people from cultures very different from her own. When you get down to the core of what a person is, she is like her clients. If she put this down on the survey we took, she'd be classified as in denial of cultural differences.... which she really, really isn't.

Finally, their definition of 'culture' was quite vague. It seems to me that everyone lives in at least one, and probably several cultural groups. They had a long list of kinds of cultures including gender, regional, age, profession etc... IF that is the case, then wouldn't we ALL be experts at intercultural communication? According to their interpretation of their poor survey questions, we are not. Something's wrong here...

Heck, according to part of the talk today, I am bi-cultural because I live in BN state and Red State. Leaving aside the fact that there are two different sets of customs in those states, the overall cultural influences are more or less the same.

I'm sure the stuff I missed when I left early would have adjusted my mood... it was programming presented by BNCC instead of a consultant, and I find that usually the college does better programming for itself than it can pay for.

Also, to add to the day -- my nemisis from about a year ago plopped herself down at my table. She's the one who posted the controversial muslim cartoons prompting a public debate on the topic -- and who accidentally CCd me on an e-mail in which she called me a coward for not allowing her to present them during the debate. What really made me cringe was that she and I agreed on the program...

Wednesday, April 04, 2007

The Red State to BN state playlist...

We Gotta Get Out Of This Place -- Animals [because getting out of Red State is an imperative}
Counting Crows- Omaha -- Counting Crows [a perfect description of Omaha]
My Little Town -- Meredith Brooks [how Omaha feels -- to me]
dean-iowa [as he hits the Red State border... a scream is warranted]
Objects In The Rear View Mirror May Appear Closer Than They Are -- Meat Loaf
Where The Streets Have No Name -- U2
Young, Dumb & Ugly -- Wierd Al Yankovic [kind of a comment on Iowa..]
Turn the Page Bob Segar [for the lyric, "on a long lonseome highway, East of Omaha"]
Danger Zone -- Kenny Loggins [because Iowa is dangerous, you know]
It's The End of the World As We Know It (and I feel fine) -- REM
Don't Fear the Reaper -- Blue Öyster Cult [this song was used in "The Stand"]
Come To My Window -- Melissa Etheridge
i want to come over -- melissa etheridge
Crazy For You -- Madonna [one of the sexiest songs... I think]
Have I Told You Lately -- Rod Stewart
Still Crazy After All These Years -- Paul Simon
Stuck With You -- Huey Lewis and the News [one of our travel theme songs from way back...]
I Can't Dance -- Genesis
I Just Can't Wait To Be King -- Elton John
The Girl From Yesterday -- Eagles [hubby says it reminds him of me]
Affirmation -- Savage Garden Affirmation
The Big Fellah -- Black 47
Most Precarious -- Blues Traveler
Get Over It -- Eagles
Battle of Who Could Care Less -- Ben Folds Five
Bitch -- Meredith Brooks
The Freshmen -- The Verve Pipe [good to sing along to]
Uncle Fucka -- South Park
Sunday Bloody Sunday -- U2
Say What You Want -- Texas
Blame Canada -- South Park
It's Easy, MmmKay --South Park
Jessie's Girl -- Rick Springfield
Shit Towne -- Live [about the time you get to Des Moines]
Rockin' the Suburbs -- Ben Folds [Des Moines is a suburban wasteland...]
Bohemian Rhapsody -- Queen
Prince - Let_s Go Crazy -- Prince [about on the turn north... YEA]
Walking on Sunshine -- Katrina and The Waves
Electric Blue -- Icehouse [an old love song for us...]
Jesus He Knows Me -- Genesis
What I Am -- Edie Brickell & New Bohemians
Livin' On A Prayer -- Bon Jovi [about at Ames -- for the lyric "hold on, you're half-way there"
If I Could Turn Back Time -- Cher
We Didn't Start the Fire -- Billy Joel [great to sing along to... and you need it about this time in the trip...]
The Downeaster "Alexa" -- Billy Joel [strangely, it fits this part of Iowa]
Philosophy -- Ben Folds Five [one of my songs... ]
You May Be Right -- Billy Joel [an old song of ours, from before we were married]
In A Big Country -- Big Country [Iowa is a Big Country]
Complicated -- Avril Lavgine
Barbie Girl -- Aqua Aqua Electronic
Across the Miles -- Survivor
Make Me Lose Control -- Eric Carmen
On A Bus To St. Cloud -- Trisha Yearwood [a love song set in Minnesota... a natural]
3 AM -- Matchbox Twenty
Land Of Confusion -- Genesis [because you are still in Iowa, a land of confusion...]
Crash And Burn -- Savage Garden Affirmation
My Hometown -- Bruce Springsteen
American Pie -- Don McLean [by this time, you are in the area near where Buddy Holly died]
A Thousand Miles -- Vanessa Carlton [because it seems like a thousand, it is only about 800 round trip... ]
Stray Cat Strut - -The Stray Cats
Wanted Dead Or Alive -- Bon Jovi
1985 -- Bowling for Soup
If I Had $1,000,000 -- Barenaked Ladies
Skater Boy -- Avril Lavigne
Find Me -- Laura Branigan Branigan
God Bless the USA -- Lee Greenwood [for the lyric, "from the lakes of Minnesota"]
Big Machine -- The Goo Goo Dolls [how hubby sees the big U]
Because You Loved Me -- Celine Dion
Take My Breath Away -- Berlin
Faithfully -- Journey [our first love song...]
Year of the Cat -- Al Stewart [because the cats demanded the song be included]
Crazy -- Icehouse [an old love song for us..]
I Knew I Loved You -- Savage Garden
Never Say Goodbye -- Bon Jovi [the ultimate prom song]
Right Here Waiting -- Richard Marx [because I am waiting for him... ]

Tuesday, April 03, 2007

following directions

First scenario: I don't follow the directions ---
I have to admit -- I'm sometimes not so good at following directions. Like, recently I decided I'd like to be considered for department chair. Since there were 4 of us, the procedure was to be that each candidate should write a short statement as to why they'd like the position and what they'd do if they became department chair.

The deadline was reasonable, right before debate nationals, and I just forgot to write one. I figured I'd get exactly what I deserve--- 3rd place in the (now) 3 person run-off. By contract, the top two candidates names are given to the administration and the final decision was theirs. Of course -- I didn't take 3rd, I got 2nd -- and was only a few votes from 1st. My chances are pretty good, as the other candidate going up with me has been turned down twice -- in favor of a candidate who said they didn't want to do the job...

So -- I didn't follow directions and I'll probably end up getting what I wanted in the first place. Go figure.

Second scenario: Others don't follow the directions....
I'm doing a minor service thing. It isn't a big deal, but it involves others compiling information for me and the wonder-Dean to evaluate. Nearly half of the people will be rejected because their information doesn't show they are qualified. Really, it makes it much easier for the others, nearly all of whom will be considered.

Moral of the story -- if you really want something, follow directions....

Monday, April 02, 2007

We've decided to take our summer vacation...

to Toronto and Niagara Falls...

We tossed around the idea of going to Hawaii, New York City and the Outer Banks of North Carolina...

The Hawaii deals seemed kind of sketchy, NYC sounded hot and expensive and hubby isn't much for looking at the ocean for a week.... plus, I've been to Hawaii --

I remembered that I'd seen lots of "hot deals" going to Toronto last summer... as in, great airfares, nice hotels etc... Since we've never been to Toronto or Niagara Falls, and it isn't likely to be uber-hot there -- we had a deal.

Any suggestions as to good times to go during the month of July (I'm teaching first summer session-- then school starts in, July is our only real option)...

Any suggestions as to places to stay, other things to do etc?

Should we plan the Falls as a day trip from Toronto, or do we need to stay out there to get the full effect of the place?

I know we'll need passports, we're going to get them started on Friday this week.... with my love of all things Canadian, it was inevitible.

and -- the best part is that I get to go back to Canada for vacation -- I'm sooooo excited.

I hope I run into the snotty bitch from APSA who said to me in the most nasty way possible, "I'm from Toronto, that's in Canada". I'll remember her and spit in her face, "bitch -- I knew where Toronto was before you told me -- have you seen the rest of your country -- because I have.... and now I know exactly where Toronto is... do you know where BN state city is... huh, do you -- have you been there, because I'm here in Toronto.... and everyone else is much nicer and smarter than you...?" (umm, can you tell I've been saving that response for over two years -- yea, it shows, huh??).

I love spending Canadian dollars, because my conversion math isn't great and I can convince myself that it is better than I thought...

I really love making up new words to "Oh Canada".

I'm really good at the proper use and inflection for 'eh'.

yea -- I'm all set!

taking a sick day...

I think not sleeping for the coughing and then having a coughing jag turn into more nastyness, plus the full sinuses and sligh fever equals a sick day.

This is silly.

Germs suck.

I'm going back to bed.

Sunday, April 01, 2007


I'm home and feeling much better than I did yesterday...

Poor hubby, I come down to see him -- immediately get a nasty combination of SARS and ebola, forcing him to bring me tissues and juice all weekend -- and then, when it is time for me to go back... I feel better.

I didn't get to play with our new basketball hoop or do any of the other fun Red State activities that I usually enjoy... sigh.

I did get a fun idea on the drive back -- since we make the same drive over and over again, I figured it needed a soundtrack... So, on the highway outside of Red State City we'd have a song about that city by the Counting Crows, and one that references that highway by Bob Seeger -- as we are in the only metro area between the two, you'd hear "Shit Town", -- at the half-way point, Bon Jovi's "Living on a Prayer" --(because of the lyric -- hold on, you're half-way there... ohhhh, living on a prayer" etc... Maybe American Pie for when we are in the northern part of the corn state -- because that is where Buddy Holly died....

So, I'm taking suggestions - We need a bit over 5 hours of music -- do you have any ideas for me?