Saturday, November 14, 2009


I walked into my classroom this morning and get about the business of the day. Health issues have kept me home for two days, and I am in a quandary to remember what I am doing. I look around and see what kind of mess has been made of my diminutive dominion. Normally, papers are scattered about, my chair is sitting on the other side of the room, and the trash can has been positioned latitudinally and longitudinally absent of scope, and utilitarian function. Not being disappointed in my expectation, I also discover the secretary’s chair is sitting under my desk. This accommodating piece of office furniture is significantly inferior and less substantial than the seat of authority (HA!) I normally position my egotistically asinine distinctiveness. In other words, my big ‘ol butt won’t fit in it.

I sail it out to the area in front of my faithful aide’s (and really sweet and smart lady) desk. I roll my throne back to its rightful place and gently seat myself. I sit gently due to the broken wheel that first came into disrepair as a result of abuse from, sadly, my big ‘ol butt.

I set about the morning ritual. Turn on the computer, get out the banana I usually eat for breakfast, and wait for one of my colleagues to enter my realm and share some wisdom with me about her students, or ask me for assistance with the online grade book we use. This morning she simply smiled at me, handed me a gathering of papers that I hoped was not her resignation, and walked away. I am particularly grateful for this lady. She teaches the elementary kids, and I do not know if I am capable of teaching those grades. The man I work for seems to think I can teach anything and has displayed this conviction by transferring me wherever he needs someone to teach without complaint. I have never told him about this blog, and do not intend to. Some things are better left to ignorance. Additionally, he really does not need to know the extent to which I am capable of whining and foot stomping.
I drop it on my keyboard, peeled my banana, and set about perusing the papers, only to discover that the first page had a decidedly nonacademic deportment to it. It was a certificate for “Outstand Achievement in Community Service.” Underneath lay a coloring book that she had her class put together. The theme of this book was the extolling of the fact that, during a portion of my misspent youth…I had the great honor and privilege to serve my country as a soldier in the United States Army. On the last page was the signature of all the students and staff of my campus. All I could do was weep. As I write, all I can do is weep. In the thirty four years, seven months, and ten days since I was released from duty no one has ever thanked me for being a soldier.

Yesterday, I received an e-mail from President Barack Obama thanking me for my service. In that same thirty four years, seven months, and ten days no politician has ever made me feel grateful for the opportunity to serve the United States of America…until yesterday.

Think what you may. Feel what you want. Say what you please. This is the greatest country in all of time. God Bless America

Tuesday, November 10, 2009

Do Not Go Gentle????

Dylan Thomas be damned, I feel like crap. I am home from work today feeling unwell due to my blood sugar coming to a decision that it would act in an unmanageable fashion. I have written of my issue with the advancement of age, and the irritating assortment of ailments that has near bested the quietude I pursue and fervently desire to realize in the fullness of time which is my life. I do not like getting old.

As chronicled previously, I sought advice from the realm of Hippocrates a few years ago with disquieting result. The healer at the time informed me of a variety of afflictions that have power in my life. One being diabetes mellitus which holds innumerable ways and means with which to curtail, impede, and otherwise piss me off as I circumnavigate that which we call life. I treat this malady with medication that, for the most part, is sufficient to beat back the beast. As a disease it is most insidious in that it can and will control your life. I have to transport two types of medication wherever I go in contemplation of eating meals. Given my girth, and acute sense of taste, I eat out socially quite often, and must maintain my health.

The problematic part of carrying medication comes in the amount and variety of pills that I must take. I would offer this forewarning to those reaching the age equal to one half century that if you go to the doctor, said oath taker (Hippocrates, remember?) will most definitely send you packing with a prescription for some sort of remedy guaranteed to bring back the ecstasy and angst of earlier time. I have seven such panacea’s in my catholiconian war chest.

A few mornings ago, I found it necessary to restock the portable container I keep with me at all times, and replenished it with the wrong pills. I went about my business of educating the poor waif’s of society and thought all to be splendid and pleasing. As I went about the business of plying my trade, I noticed that something seemed…well…off. Helping students with grammar exercise proved futile in that I had apparently forgotten the difference between a noun, proper or common and a pronoun. The distinction concerning simple predicates and complex predicates proved a mystery. It proved frustrating with the result, in the end, of searching for the end of the period, and lunch/conference period.

Waking this morn with a ravaging hoard of Visigoths in my cranium, I discovered that my blood sugar was three times what it should be, and that I must see to this predicament.

I lay in bed until it proved tortuous, I wandered about the house aimlessly (well not very much wandering given the size of my apartment), I sough relief in Jeopardy to no avail (teen tournament and I lost miserably), a call to my sweet Deifiúr, and finally to the keyboard. If I could find no respite from my own idiocy (filling the bottle with the wrong pills) I could at least not have to endure this malevolence unaccompanied, hence the email reminding you that I have once more made an entry into your life through this blog.

I, ostensibly, have found words again as useful tools in the healing of the soul. I have shared my wonder with humankind, and my blood sugar has reduced to a manageable level. I feel competency returning, and a reinvigoration over the next hill in this journey. Then again, it’s only 2:30 PM and there is a pork chop and gravy banquet looming in the next few hours. Hopefully, with the proper medication, and a little more effective attention to what I take prior to this feast, I will return to the fiefdom of academia upon the rising of the Sun.


P.S. Now I do not need, nor will accept portentous dialogue informing of the fact that I may be killing myself so, please refrain from issuing redundancies which I have already suffered from the Realm of Hippocrates. I love you too.

Sunday, November 8, 2009

Remonstration and Protestation

I woke this morning with the intention of reproducing a piece I began Thursday about the NY Yankees winning, again, the World Series. I worked on it during my lunch period and felt relatively virtuous in the words I chose to regale the world with my fanaticism over this sports franchise. The first obstacle came when I attempted to carry it over into my conference period. I am required to work on class material during this time slot, but taking into consideration that I had accomplished everything I could in this academic area of interest, I thought to spend the time enthralling the community on the World Wide Web with my proficiency at the written word. It did not work as a student came in and wanted to know why he was failing my stupid class.

I then saved the essay to a flash drive and thought to spend my Saturday morning finishing this piece of written wit. Once more the cosmos prevented this from happening due to a computer glitch. By glitch, I mean that my home computer did not allow me to open the file and saw fit to only allow me to cruise Facebook, and write on the current novel I am sure will gain me the fame and fortune I deserve (?) or think I deserve.

My next attempt occurred about an hour ago when I hit the proverbial third strike. I received yet another e-mail commanding me to view pictures of our troops in the Middle East, and pass them on. This particular set of images were of a positive demeanor showing the kindness and affection U.S. Service people have towards the children in the land where they are fighting. I thought to simply view them and go on about my day. Until, that is, the last image. This picture portrayed a soldier hugging an injured or dead child to his chest. This hero stood in obvious emotional distress. The last thing I wished to do this glorious morning was weep for any reason, let alone the devastation of the war plaguing my serenity on a beautiful morning.

I did not get irate or disconcerted. I did not curse the screen or the person that sent it to me. I just cried. After the tears subsided to a manageable level, I decided to take action. This piece is certainly the culmination of that action, but not all. The overwhelming message in the images glaringly spoke of the men and women fighting for our rights and privileges as citizens of the United States. I am not exactly sure how their actions are connected to my rights given the nonsense that is, in general, all wars. I have not had to defend my apartment from invaders…ever. I have not personally experienced violence directed at me by a foreign adversary from the Middle East. The sum of my knowledge comes from the handshakes I receive when I thank a soldier for his service to our country. I have a colleague at work that fought over there. He never speaks of his experience and often plays down his role as minor when engaged in conversation. He sometimes wears one of his fatigue jackets to work, and the patches on that jacket speak to a much deeper involvement then this gentleman will admit to. He is most definitely a hero, and I am blessed to know him.

The quietness of my colleague and his peers who allow me the honor of shaking their hands tells me that my rights are well protected…even the right to protest this war. There are a group of men in my home town who I have written of in a prior post. They stand on the courthouse square and wave banners protesting for peace and requesting travelers to honk to bring home the troops. I honk, and have stood for a time on that corner. Nobody has ever complained about my feeling about this war. Nobody has tried to stop those brave men out on the corner from exercising their right to free speech. And nobody will as long as I ingest oxygen without a loud reply to any such nonsense.

I took action this morning by writing this piece. However, before I did set to the composition you read here, I e-mailed the President to ask for the return of the troops. I sent the link to this site, not to promote my own hopeful agenda, but so that if by some miracle he gets to read this, he will know that our troops are in fact protecting my rights and privileges as a United States citizen. God Bless America!