Saturday, October 29, 2005


I LOVE Halloween. It's my favorite holiday. I really look forward to the candy and the costumes and the feeling in the air.

I'm having a party tonight, and though I sent out an invitation, I didn't write RSVP, so no one's let me know whether or not they'll be here. Except my family, but they have to come. I asked everyone to dress up as someone/thing from an eighties movie.

My brother Brad and I talked about dressing him up as John Cusack from Better Off Dead, the part where he's about to immolate himself, wearing a sheet and a tie wrapped around his head, and carrying a mason jar full of gasoline. Got to make sure I've got batteries in my camera.

I'm going to be Veronica Sawyer from Heathers. I had most of the stuff already, so I've spent only about $20 on hair color and a skirt.

So, Happy Halloween everyone! I hope that you dance, laugh, and in general have enough candy to get a really good sugar high.

Saturday, October 22, 2005

Television Genius

I watch a lot of TV. So much so that my friends and family mock me mercilessly. Especially at the beginning of the fall season when I create my TV watching grid. It's got all the networks and all the shows and I mark the ones that I like already or are recommended by whatever critics. I am not quite as bad (or good, depending on your point of view) as Laurel.

Several new shows were recommended by TV Guide for this season, and for the most part I agree with them. I really like Prison Break. It's got a 24ish vibe, and they do the suspense and cliffhangers and violence well. I like How I Met Your Mother, if only because Neil Patrick Harris is my new hero. I like My Name is Earl. I've liked Jason Lee ever since his role as Banky in Chasing Amy. He and Joey Lauren Adams have the funniest one-upsmanship on scars that I've ever seen.

I want to like Threshold. I'm having some problems with it. If NBC hadn't cancelled Karen Sisco, I wouldn't have to worry about it, since Carla Gugino would then be on that.

Threshold's premise is that a genius, played by Carla, has come up with some contingency plans for the US government. What to do if terrorists take out the president, what to do if avian flu gets to our country, stuff like that. Threshold is the name of her plan for what to do if aliens land on our planet, which they do. She recruits some other people to help, including Data as a doctor, Peter Dinklage as a linguistics expert, Roc as her boss, some chiseled merc as muscle and the guy who played Richard on Felicity as a math genius.

But then the supposed genius, and her crack team of geniuses, keep telling their protective agents to leave them alone. And every time they do, the aliens attack. And the aliens look like humans, 'cuz they didn't come themselves they sent a signal that changes human DNA into alien DNA.

Last night, Ms. Genius took a US senator on a tour of the Threshold facility and let him steal something from the tiny vault. Then he played the alien signal to some other senators and high ranking government people, and Ms. Genius had to shoot down their plane. Then she cried.

Threshold has an interesting idea, that maybe aliens could change us without ever having to land and fight. But then it takes the dumbest geniuses on the planet and puts them in charge of our safety. I'm still watching, but not for long.

Wednesday, October 19, 2005

Feeling Less Dead

Today is the first day in about a week that I haven't felt like Green Mucus Death. I went to work today and everything was okay until the staff meeting about Sheltered Instruction Observation Protocol. Say that five times fast. That gave me a headache and it was about sixty degrees in the library.

I ended up drawing my sunglasses on the table. Lots o' learnin'.

Friday, October 14, 2005

Small Piece of Advice

If your mom ever goes into the hospital, after smoking two packs of cigarettes a day for forty years, and she tells you a story about the nurse and how the nurse used a stethoscope on her chest to listen to her lungs, DON'T ask your mother if the nurse could her the alveoli bursting. Your mom won't think that it's funny.

Thursday, October 13, 2005

Not Working

I'm not going to work again tomorrow. The guilt is NOT getting to me. I'm perfectly fine, and I won't be looking at the clock all day tomorrow trying to figure out what's happening at school.

I'm sure that I'll sleep most of tomorrow, just like I did today. That was very nice.

Wednesday, October 12, 2005

Teaching and Sickness

Any teacher will tell you that a school is basically a germ factory. Kids get sick, they pass it on. Adults get sick, they pass it on. No one wants to stay home when they're actually sick, so more people get infected.

I hate being absent. I can come up with lessons on the fly when I'll be teaching them, but I get all bogged down in details when I write lesson plans for someone else. It takes me at least three hours to write a good plan for a substitute. Then I usually have to take my chances on the substitute system lottery.

My student teacher got sick last week, and now I've got it. I almost fell asleep at school today in the conference room. I've been letting her teach all by herself and doing my e-mail and other administrative work in other rooms, and today I took two Benadryl for this cold.

I learned that I should never take two Benadryl, and that the end of student teaching, where I let her do her thing, bores me more than I thought it would.

So I'll be staying home tomorrow and popping Dayquil. And getting harassed by two increasingly active and destructive kittens. They tore up another roll of toilet paper today, and got pieces all over the bathroom. Then I accidentally left one of the upper cabinets open and they knocked a bunch of the plasticware all over the floor.

Now that I think about it, a photo of the torn up toilet paper would have been great, but I already cleaned it up.

Comment Spam

I don't know how they do it. It seems that every time I post something in the evening, I get comment spam. And now I can't even find the spam, cuz they started to put it in the archived posts. So I activated the word verification for comments. Sorry.

Thursday, October 06, 2005

Home from the Hospital

My mother's home from the hospital, yesterday at about noon. She's stated her intention to exercise, cut down on the smoking and eat better. And we're not to bug her about the not smoking, nor are we to keep any sorts of statistics should she smoke a little more on some days.

She's gone from saying she's ready to die to she doesn't want to die. I'm glad, cuz that all sucked.

Thank you for the well wishes. My mother appreciates them also.

Monday, October 03, 2005

My Mother

My mother is in the hospital. For the fourth time in the past six or eight years. The first time was a heart attack. She had angioplasty. The second time was another heart attack. She got a stent. The third time was a reaction to too much aspirin. That time she didn't even have to stay overnight.

This is the fourth time. Saturday night she couldn't breathe. She'd been unable to breathe properly for five days, but ignored it because it would go away. As those things always do, right?

My father called me on Sunday, wait, no. My father didn't call me on Sunday. I was working out and the phone rang. I couldn't get to it in time so my roommate answered. He said it was my mom, and she wanted me to call her back. I grabbed the phone and looked at the caller id, which said "Medical Center." I said "Did she leave a number?" and he said no.

I called my parents' house. My dad answered, and I said good morning and where's Mom? He told me about the shortness of breath, and that he hadn't wanted to wake us up last night. I got a bit irate at that. He said, "It's not like she had another heart attack."

I called my mom at the Medical Center. She almost started to cry when she told me how scared she was. She said that they'd told her she has fluid in her lungs, but don't know why.

We went to visit later, dad was in her room when we got there after navigating the maze. We spent a while, she ordered lunch, and we went home. I called her again and she said she felt better, but didn't like it and wanted to go home.

This morning my brother Brad and I are going to visit. She told me on the phone that the physician's assistant told her she's got congestive heart failure, and they're going to do a catheterization tomorrow. She doesn't want to call my dad because she thinks she'll start to cry, and he won't be able to do anything.

I have found out that people can live for years with congestive heart failure, if they take care of themselves. Too bad my mother won't do that.