Tuesday, March 26, 2013

I loathe parent teacher conference part 2

Part two of my hatred of parent teacher conference is definitely the parent part. Specifically when I stand there in the hallway waiting for my turn and I get the pleasure of meeting some of the other parents. oh joy of joys! There is always art hanging in the hallway outside of the door and parents looking at it proudly like their kid is some kind of prodigy and they're just now recognizing it by the way their little rascal glued the head on their paper leprechaun. "My child colored in the lines!" And I'm like "my kid used a lot of glitter. on the crotch area. in fact only on the crotch area. what the hell? I'm going to go ahead and take this down."

There is absotively nothing wrong with being proud of your kids and I have bragged about the accomplishments of my minions a time or two. But there is bragging and then there is this really weird thing some parents do that take it a step, or more like ten steps beyond pride. They call you out. They compete. They challenge you with their children's accomplishments. And I am not good at this game. I feel like I'm being forced to play dungeons and dragons. Why do I feel that way? Oh I don't know because you say things like, "my daughter scored above average in reading, she plays the flute and won the science fair" and then I get confused and yell "my daughter is half orc, half elf, with six levels of wizard and four levels of theif. And.., and.., and she can heal things"

I really shouldn't feel so befuddled during these impromptu show downs. All of my children do exceptionally well scholastically. All of them have amazing personalities and talents. Maybe I have trouble with the "who's spawn is better" face-off because I'm fully aware that while they are awesome in some ways, they are also total dumb asses. My daughter once got her foot stuck in the toilet because she wanted to see how far she could put it in there before it got stuck. $&@%#!!! Who does that?! Who is sitting around one day and decides they need to finally answer the burning question - can I get stuck in the toilet?

I don't think the parents who start these showdowns are willing to admit their kids are also idiots. All they want to vocalize is their children's accomplishments, which they take all the credit for. Taking credit for the positive is fine I guess. It's when they don't claim equal credit for the faults that annoys the shit out of me. Somehow Little Timmy's ability to spell cat is all thanks to mommy but if little Timmy is also a spoiled selfish little twat it's not because mommy is delusional its because he's been hanging around the neighbor kid............ because the neighbors are liberals of course.

Or maybe this parent jousting is just too foreign to me because I don't take credit for the good in my kids. These little squirts are pretty damn impressive despite my special brand of mothering.

Thursday, March 14, 2013

I loathe parent teacher conferences

I've never had a very good relationship with teachers. Not as a student or as an adult. I really have no legitimate reason for this it just comes naturally. I posses a bizarre instinct to mock and belittle anyone who instructs, at anytime and for any reason. Without conscience effort I am always in opposition to whomever stands in a tie surrounded by little desks. If the teacher tries hard I slack off, if the teachers slacks off I become demanding. There really is no way to win with me.

I will admit though that I have encountered a few great teachers, so before I continue this blog I will quote one of my favorite authors, John Steinbeck - "I have come to believe that a great teacher is a great artist and that there are as few as there are any other great artists. Teaching might even be the greatest of the arts since the medium is the human mind and spirit."

It's parent teacher conference time so my next three blogs will address everything I hate about this and everyone involved. Starting with teachers who are total @#$%^&*. It's because of this type of teacher that this is how I see myself every time I enter a classroom

I should probably stop addressing all teachers as Persian cowards though...

The following is correspondence between a concerned parent, the teacher, and then myself writing on behalf of the concerned/enraged parent. I have removed any identifying info. Enjoy.

The concerned parent:

I'm concerned about my daughter ******* *******. Her scores have been very low. Is she not understanding the material? Is she failing to turn in her work? Did she retake the walkway?
When I asked her she said
"I had 4 assignments I had not turned in. I have turned in two of those assignments and will turn in the other two if her class is open during pride time. I haven't retaken the walkway. I'm going to retake it tomorrow if I can get in during pride time. I think I will be able to get in but there is a small chance that it will already be full and I will have to try a different day."
Is that accurate?
Does she have a behavior problem? She told me that you have "yelled at" her. Is that something that is happening or has happened? If you are "yelling" why are you "yelling"?
She feels like she is always "in trouble". Is she "in trouble" a lot in your class?
I want her to do well in math this year and understand the material well enough to be successful in the future. I'm just trying to find out what is going on so we can find the solution.
Thank You,

The response from the teacher

******* has really slacked off this term.  I would think it is a combination of not understanding the material and not paying attention.  I would think that her lack of understanding comes from her lack of paying attention.  ******* has a tendency to be talking during class explanations and discussions.  She has not turned in the past few assignments or they have not been 90% or better.  The problem now is that those assignments are "dead".  Which means they will not receive credit.  We retook the walkaway yesterday in class, but the students were to come prepared with their review complete.  Those that had it complete were able to re-take the walkaway.  Those who were not prepared worked on the review during class and will need to retake the walkaway during pride time or after school, after Christmas break once the review has been complete.  She can always come in during Pride Time, but I am only in the math classroom every other day.  The off days I am in PE.  She can always go in and work on homework even if I am not there.  She does NOT have to be stamped and it has only been "full" once this year.
As far as "yelling" I can not say that has happened.  I have probably "raised" my voice or became a little more firm in situations after I have asked continuously for the class to work and be quiet.  If you would like to bring ******* in and she can explain to me the situation that she is talking about I will be more than happy to listen.  I don't feel that ******* is always in trouble, but I do know that I have asked her numerous times to quit talking and to get busy on her math.
If you would like to meet please let me know and we can set up a meeting after Christmas.

and now my turn to take a stab at this thing they call "communication"

Good morning 

Let me start by saying WOW and I mean all capital letters jaw dropping WOW. There are so many things I want to say after reading your email. First off, I find that I must thank you because you have answered all of my questions and I do now understand why ******* is really struggling and appears flustered whenever I mention math. If my daughter is experiencing even a fraction of the hostility that is just oozing from that email I received, then it all makes sense. I'm going to take a short break in writing this email because I'm overcome with the need to hug my daughter and reassure her that it will all be over soon. There is a light at the end of the tunnel, a light we call summer. 
I'm back.
From this email I can see you are really struggling to capture and keep the attention of your students. I received another email from you that stated none of your students were able to pass a test. If A=your students are not giving you their attention and B=your students are then exhibiting a lack of understanding of the material then A+B= teaching is just not your forte.
******* mentioned some yelling, you claim you're just raising your voice in frustration. Reminds me of that old saying tomato, to-samefrigginthing-o.
It is easy for me to read your discourteous and extraordinarily rude email and mock you. Because I am a grown man, unlike your young students I am neither intimidated or controlled by your bullying. Flippant responses aside I need you to understand you are an extremely hostile and aggressive woman. Hostility and aggression have no place in a child's classroom. I was more than prepared to sit my daughter down and let her know that her recent academic performance was unacceptable. I intended to let ******* know that she needed to increase her efforts and I was willing to accept no excuses from her. That entire speech has been thrown out the window because your email provides the best excuse ever. I honestly never want to interact with you again and can't blame your students for feeling the same way. Hulk Smash!
I would like to give you a little advice and then we should absolutely meet after Christmas Break.
1. children avoid things that make them uncomfortable. Stop making children uncomfortable and perhaps they will discontinue avoidance behavior such as not listening, not asking question, etc.
2. regardless of how frustrated you get with your students, use your inside voice. 

Thank you kindly for your time

**** " not your enemy just a concerned parent hoping to have a productive conversation and work together in the best interest of ******* " *********  

that reminds me. I should probably call and find out how that meeting went.... I bet it was awkward 

Friday, March 8, 2013

Ain't that the truth

I think it takes a charitable person to set aside the time and patience required to undertake a fairly significant job while working beside the "less-abled". I built a shed with my older brother Matt. I call him Mashu. He lost his hands in an accident in 1998.

Before you make any assumptions Mashu is the charitable one I am the lesser-abled, my disability is that I'm a Moron. Mashu was extremely patient, although several times I heard him mutter "she's a g** d*** imbecile." Have you ever heard someone in quiet anger spit out the words "Righty Tighty, Lefty Loosey"? If they are forced to remind you enough times it starts to sound threatening...
To Mashu's surprise and relief we did finally get the shed built, and before I continue I have a few words for the manufacturer. The ad mentioned words like quick and easy as it pertains to assembly. To that I say I'd like to quick and easy ram my foot up your @$$. Don't fret I will be soft and gingerly in the same manner your instructions were clear and concise.

See how I hold the camera steady while he struggles with the roof? What would he do without me. Certainly swear less....

A list of Mashu-isms shared during contruction

  • A screwdriver? Are you an idiot? Grab the drill.....the loud spinny thing
  • You weren't holding the wall up?! Then what the hell were you doing?
  • How are you off by 2 inches?
  • If the post is in why are you still hammering it? How long has the post been in?
  • You're leaning on it? I was trying to lift it
  • You threw the drill bit? I said we were done with that part of the instructions not with that part of the drill. Even then, why would you throw it?
  • Did you just kill a bee with the mallet?
  • Not moral support! actual support Stacy. Hold it up!
  • Of course the doors are necessary
  • The bee's are not attracted to my honey pants!! I'm not wearing honey pants these are work bibs. Just shut up for a minute.
It was nice spending the day with Mashu, and Gwen loves her new home.

I've been all smiles since we finished. Until G-Dilly asked if I would spend the night at her new house and I heard myself say "of course" Oh my good lord in heaven I just created a situation where I would have to spend the night on concrete. I can't do it. I'm too old and brittle. I've got to burn this mother down.......

Thursday, March 7, 2013

What if we just put all of your sh%# outside?

We're building a playhouse!!! Actually we're building a shed, but we're going to make it pretty :)

We were at the Costco and saw a shed that my daughter thought was a house. She said "I would live in that house" and I thought "Really? You will? Don't toy with me child! We could put all your crap outside and maybe my house would finally stay clean for once" then that same day a friend of mine posted this cute pic on facebook

When I saw this fairy tale oasis I realized that with this picture I could maybe talk my five year old in to moving out for the summer. Oh come on! Having a five year old is like having a hobo. She smells funny, she never bathes or changes her clothes, conversation is nothing but incoherent rambling. Her only objective in life is to get more candy. She doesn't care about food and shelter she just wants that sugar high. Plus, didn't you ever camp out in the back yard? It was good healthy fun. So I'm just asking her to camp out in the back yard..... for a fortnight.  It sounds strange but we're talking about a very eccentric child. Look at her:

Who takes an eye test in fur? And don't look at me I don't dress this child like Kid Rock, that's all her. She did fail that eye test....... I just realized she may not even know how fabulous she looks. I'll tell ya who dresses like this, the kind of kid that lives down by the river in a shed. Except there is no river and her shed is going to be shabby chic. Plus I'm letting her take all of her friends. Even that bird she named Kitty.

I'll give you  reasons G-Dilly should move out
1. Ummm, She wants to. You heard what she said in the Costco.
2. The kids really want to get a dog and this would be like practicing
3. When I saw Secret Garden as a little girl I dreamt of the day I would have my very own crazy person living in my attic/basement/backyard. In fact I was so disappointed in that movie when it turned out to be a cripple. I was really hoping for a crazy person.
4. It would be nice to have a neighbor I liked
5. If you think of the shed as our vacation home, it makes us sound really elite
6. We're gonna name it Xanadu 2 and our first Xanadu was wildly successful
7. Think of the college application "Owned my first home at 5" Hello Harvard
8. She can have me over for tea and I can scribble all over her wall. REVENGE IS MINE!!
9. The baby of the family is the most dependent and often even in adulthood never leaves the nest, having her start practicing now may break that curse.
10. This worked out really well for Snow White

There is one problem though. I'll miss waking up like this:

Tuesday, March 5, 2013

I've got this figured out

I don't want to blog about this stupid diet tonight so I thought I would talk about something else. Wait yes I do!! I hate it so much. Mostly because I have issues with authority and when I'm tempted I feel like the diet is controlling me and I'm like "F@#% You Diet! You don't own me. I'm gonna eat the S#!& out of that frozen yogurt!" and then I'm filled with regret. But I can't quit now. It would be so pathetic to quit on day one. I have to wait for like day four or five. No. I have to make it through hell week.  Hell week is seven days of strictly veggies and meat. No fruit, no sugar. If there is anyone reading this post thinking this is easy. You're on. We'll decide on a fair wager and then the first one to get through a whole week is the victor. I have a stipulation though. You can't already be on this diet, or a similar diet, and doing marvelously. So? Anyone?

Today I had a carrot and some water for breakfast. What kind of sustainable diet is that? You hope when you start a diet especially a diet like this that you are stumbling on to a new way of life. A rewarding one that will eventually become natural. As it is now right before I put something in to my mouth I have to google it to see if it's caveman approved. Look at how sad this is?

This will never become a lifestyle. I will never wake up and say "mmm I could really go for some prison food." And not just regular prison. More like I woke up chained to the wall in someones basement kind of prison food. Maybe I'm wrong though maybe I could develop stockholm syndrome for s#*! food. Would it be weird to call Patty Hearst and ask her if she still like Symbionese food? (Shut up I already know that's not a real food) Ask her if she like Ramen noodles and we'll assume that's the same thing.

I stood there and stared at this carrot wondering what those stupid cavemen were thinking. And then it dawned on me. I didn't need to wonder, I KNOW SOME CAVEMEN!!! sort of.

I see these guys at the gym all the time. In fact I'm convinced some of them never leave because no matter what time of day I go. There they are. This guy doesn't eat carrots for breakfast. This guy.....this guy eats.......someone's young. Well I'm not doing that again. BUT it gave me an idea. 

The point of this hell week is to cut out all sugar right? There is no sugar in this. I can do this. I'll start like this. I'll cut out all of the crap and substitute it with a shake. This concept made slimfast cabillions. I can do this for a week. My coffee is out but this is kind of coffee-ish. Infact I can just make it with hot water. I did, and guess what? That sh*! is disgusting hot. It's disgusting cold, with a goat, on a boat. It's gelatinous. It's not okay. I had to check the bottle and make sure it was supposed to be administered orally because it would make one hell of an enema. (Turns out that's not true either)

So I went to the store and bought me some things. I now have jerky and eggs in the house. My only cheat today was a little frozen yogurt, I dipped my carrot in salsa, and I had a ham and cheese omelette.  I should have said no cheese. But I worried that if I opened my mouth I would yell something horrid about the waiters face. That is a real concern for me sometimes. It was better for everyone that I just quietly accepted the gift of cheese.

Monday, March 4, 2013

Hell Week - Day before Day 1. Possibly day before day before Day 1. It's day negative 3 really.

So I woke up and went right to the site I mentioned in last night's post:
Hell's Gate - http://www.crossfitanaerobicinc.com/paleo-nutrition/6pack-challenge/ 

I'm drinking a delicious cup of coffee as I read all about how I can't have coffee or the scrumptious creamer I just bought, caramel macchiato. mmmm it's so good I could drink it straight. BUT NOT ANYMORE! and it gets worse.

The first problem is that most of the vegetables that I can have...... I'm not entirely sure what they are or where to get them. I do know for sure I do not have them. Beet Greens. That doesn't sound like a vegetable. That sounds like a cause for vegetables. That sounds like a video post about how celery is treated in countries that have no regulations dictating how you can treat vegetables. Actually it's the young leaves of the beet root. YUMMY. (I was going to add a photo to illustrate vegetable abuse, but strangely if you Google vegetable abuse you get porn. Thanks for being a pervert cucumber)

The protein section is pretty manageable. No bacon in week 1 but that's not really a big issue for me because I'm not much of a bacon fan. Damn it. Now I want some bacon. mmmm on a maple donut. No seriously check this out:

Just think about it. When you eat pancakes do you dip your bacon in the syrup? Yeah that's what I thought. You want one right? They have them in Utah http://www.beyondglaze.com/ I haven't tried one yet but I think about it a lot. Not as often as I day dream about dining in a restaurant with an all midget staff but more often than I wonder about what a dance named the Bob Ross would look like. I'm not the only one who thinks about that. https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=hwHhxtNPdT4

The next section of that teensy tiny "can have" list is fats. It's just a bunch of oil and nuts. (don't Google that either)

To summarize I need to go to a grocery store before I get this show started. I did really good today improvising but I did slip a few times:

Caramel Macchiato with a little coffee in it, Yogurt, Grape Juice, Candy Bar, Energy Drink, Hot Dog at Costco, Sprite, Apple, Grape Juice, Peach Juice, Pizza, wine, and then I gave up.

Sunday, March 3, 2013

Paleo. What's the deal-eo?

I'm gonna be a paleo. What the hell is thateo?

I'm done. I'm going to stop that now. deep breath.

Paleo - it's an abbreviation for paleolithic. The paleolithic period is the period when the human race began it's never ending quest for bigger and better. One of the "advances" (the one applicable to this particular blog) was food. In my little head that moment went something like this:

I don't know why neither of them have nipples. 

A paleo lifestyle is the idea that our bodies should be used and nourished according to that period of time prior to when we put cheese on everything and fried it. then laid around rubbing our giant fat belly's which we have named Karl. so that we can sob DAMN YOU KARL!! in the throws of a mystery belly ache. I'm willing to acknowledge that I might be the only one who does that.

Back to the point, there are two parts. Diet and Exercise. As well as a basic principle for both, feed your body what it was meant to digest and use your body for what it was meant to do. A horrible comparison will follow this sentence. Put gas in your car and drive it. Don't pour honey in the tank and hope it can dance.

Paleo Diet: Here I will insert a link to a website that has all the information I don't feel like typing. aforementioned link click on these magical blue words and be whisked away to a website listing all the foods you can have and all the foods you can't. I assume. I don't know for sure. I really just kind of perused the site. I don't want to go into this huge lifestyle change all knowledgeable and stuff or I'll talk myself out of it. It will be a lot more fun to discover insurmountable obstacles as I stumble my way through it.

Paleo Exercise: Here I will insert a link to a website that has all the information I don't feel like typing and as I'm sure you have caught on it is also full of information I do not know.
How the Cavemen kept so trim click on these magical blue words and BAM! Holy! Stop! I'm not even kidding you. Did you see the bold print on this site? It says week 1: Hell week. I'm totally doing this. You had me at hell website, you had me at hell.

I have no idea what hell week entails or how many weeks it entails or even if we get to light things on fire. I do know I'm in. My alarm is set for 7am. My ringtone is "screaming baby" to insure that I jump up ready to punch something. And that is when I attempt Paleo. I just realised I'm hoping for progression by using regression. I guess technically if I started walking backwards right now I would eventually be in front of myself........

Thank you The Ultimate Paleo Guide and crossfit anaerobic inc for being you.