Monday, October 31, 2005

Happy Halloween!

There's nothing better than a ghost story on Halloween, unless it's a REAL ghost story that happened to a good friend of yours.

First Story

This is the true tale of what a 10 year old girl saw and her seventeen year old sister heard.

My mother's house was built in 1910 on the site where the previous house that was there had caught fire. The owner of that house was a city official. He was a very big man, both height and girth. He had a wife and a servant. The wife was beautiful and tall, kind of willowy with long thick wavy blonde hair that hung down past her shoulders. His servant was very tall with grey hair, slicked back and wore a three piece morning suit. His quarters were in the front bedroom and there was a separate door leading to the front porch.

Her Second Story

The town in which I grew up was a small town of about 17-18 thousand. My parents
lived in the old part of town where the houses were all at least 100 years old or older. This is the tale of a man that I see periodically when I go home. I don't always go the way around town to see this man, but when I do 3 out of 5 times I go this way, he is there

That not enough fun for you? Try taking a personality quiz! How about "Which Horror Movie are You?" (Another fun thing I'm borrowing from my friend at Dreamer's Reality.)

How about some corny Halloween jokes? You can tell these jokes to the kids knocking at your door.

Halloween groaners...
(and moaners and wailers... it is Halloween, after all)

Why do mummies have trouble keeping friends?
They're so wrapped up in themselves...

What kind of streets do zombies like the best?
Dead ends...

What does the papa ghost say to his family when driving?
Fasten your sheet belts...

What is a vampire's favorite mode of transportation?
A blood vessel...

What is a ghost's favorite mode of transportation?
A scareplane...

What type of dog do vampire's like the best?

What is a ghoul's favorite flavor?

What does a vampire never order at a restaurant?
A stake sandwich...

What is a skeleton's favorite musical instrument?
A trombone...

What do birds give out on Halloween night?

Why do vampires need mouthwash?
They have bat breath...

What's a vampire's favorite fast food?
A guy with very high blood pressure...

Why did the Vampire subscribe to the Wall Street Journal?
He heard it had great circulation...

And last but not least, this Halloween joke sent to me by my Grandma last year...

Tonight's weather in Bryan/College Station is THUNDERSTORMS AFTER SUNSET ONLY. Oh, that'll be thrilling. You think some thunderstorms are gonna keep me from taking them out? Tonight is the night that the kids work hard so that Mom and Dad can stay up late eating their candy!


This mock letter is from the Asia Times. The author of the article, runs a satirical column called "Ask Spengler". It's old but I don't remember seeing it before.

Dear Spengler,
I have done my best to emulate Yasser Arafat, and all I get for my troubles is a lousy cave in western Pakistan. As the chief executive officer of a global conspiracy to restore the Islamic caliphate, I have had to kill a few thousand people here and there, but Arafat has killed far more people than I have. He is treated like a head of state, while I am hunted like a criminal. Where did I go wrong?
Worried In Waziristan

Dear Worried,
Your error is obvious. Arafat only kills Jews.

His other works are just as hilarious.

Dear Spengler,
Recently I became the chief executive officer of the world's largest religious denomination. Some people want me to allow women to become priests, something we have not allowed in our 2,000-year history. Should I permit this?
Ruminating in Rome

Dear Ruminating,
A priest's most important function is to forgive sins. Women never forgive anything.

But fair warning! Spengler tends to insult everybody including Christians, Muslims, Americans, pedophiles, gays, and even Dixie South. In the next sentence he'll defend that which he just put down. His full-length articles are thought provoking, hilarious, and yet down-right serious at times. They are not for the faint of heart.

Sunday, October 30, 2005

Ebay Mystery Auctions

I found two funny auctions online at Ebay. The first one is a lady who tells a horrible story about a deceitful husband and she's selling all his things. What she's done is make up mystery boxes full of stuff and is selling them without telling about the contents. She's sold 27 or so of these and so far her feedback is good.


She says she's getting rid of all the stuff he gave her and this is her revenge. But she also said that the house and all of the belongings were awarded to her in court. Therefore, why would she want to get rid of belongings that are rightfully her for cheap? She would only be hurting herself. Is she lying or not? I dunno.

And this second auctioneer needs some Dear Abby help quickly.


My 20 year old daughter is a very determined, motivated young lady. When I was divorced I tried to make sure her and her brother's college education was paid for by their wealthy father. She has completed part of her schooling and now her DEADBEAT DAD has decided to keep all his money for himself and not pay for her
college! My daughter has been accepted to the school of her dreams!! Since she was 10 years old she has wanted to go to this school. When she called her dad about paying for the tuition he informed her," I AM NOT PAYING FOR IT!!! GET A
LAWYER!!!". Her faced turned from absolute excitement to tears and disappointment. Now she feared her DREAMS of the career she has always wanted were OVER!! NOT SO!!! Since my children were little I have physically and emotionally raised both my children by myself since their DEADBEAT DAD elected not to use his visitation rights. I am a POWER SELLER here on EBAY since I cannot work outside of my home due to health issues. My daughter and son suffer from the same health issues that I do. With a 99.9% POSITIVE FEEDBACK of almost 1600 you know I mean business!! I have decided to put my INVENTORY of BRAND NEW GORGEOUS, POPULAR, and EXPENSIVE items all into one HUGE MYSTERY AUCTION!!! It is the only way I can get my daughter to her school since all I have is my inventory not any cash. SO IT ALL HAS TO GO!!! I figured the DEADBEAT DAD was legally bound to pay for her college as per our stipulation from our divorce. Now he has decided NOT TO PAY ANYWAY!!!Seems he has other plans for his money not his daughter's career.

The sad fact is that the man does not want anything to do with his ex-wife and their children. His children are now over 18 and he has fulfilled any financial role required by the state. The ex-wife can't sue for college support from this man because of that. Instead, she's trying to make her children into leechers. She makes it sound like just because he has money, he should be obligated to spend it all on what she wants. Sorry, but she lost that priviledge when she divorced him.

I'll watch the auctions and see how much they go for.

Saturday, October 29, 2005

Bad Luck for me

Just last week I stepped out of the store and took a big, deep breath of fresh air. Its the end of October and my hay fever is coming to a close. I meant it when I said October allergies. But now I've been sidelined with a terrible cough and cold. You can't substitute at schools if you've got laryngitis and can't yell at the students.

I got it from Sonia. She still is coughing, even a week after getting the bug. We made her wash her hands a thousand times and even made her wear a medical face mask. I suddenly have those in stock in my house since hubby became a dental student. Getting sick is NOT something he wants to do since it cuts directly into his class time. But he was really nice and didn't kick me out of the bedroom. He just slept at the other end of the bed.

Oh, I wish it ended there. But my life has had quite a bit of bad luck these past couple of weeks.

My van was in the shop over a month ago to get a transmission rebuilt. This repair came right on the heals of a new gasket, new starter, and a new tention pulley. All this happened within 9000 miles. It took the shop 4 tries and 13 days to get my transmission working correctly. In the mean time, the gave us a rental car and said they would pay for it.

Well I got a bill from the rental place saying that the shop had not paid the bill yet and now I was on the hook for the $500. Oh I am not going to sit back and just pay it. There's hope at least in this case.

But my other vehicle is in the shop too. Hubby took the motorcycle to a shop 100 miles away because I hate our in-town dealership so much. We just wanted to get his normal valve maintence. Hubby keeps his motorcycle in top-notch condition. The shop says that his valves are fine but he's got no compression in two cylinders. His motorcycle with only 40,000 miles has pretty much imploded and needs a $3000 overhall. And oh, this is "normal wear and tear" so it's not covered under our extended warranty. According to the shop my husband failed to ride the bike hard enough and that caused the problem.

I am not a happy camper. The problems here a pretty much summed up. I've never filed in court before but suddenly I'm sitting on two very potential problems that might need to be settled in court.

Thursday, October 27, 2005

The Big L (for Loser)

The principal of one of the local middle schools, Sam Rayburn, has decided to cancel Halloween for the school. He announced today that there will be no hair color, no costumes, and absolutely no candy. The normal dress code is in full effect. The principal said that since the student body was allowed to wear silly socks on drug-free day this week, they've already all the dress-up holidays they need.

Now, I agree that the normal dress code should be followed even on Halloween. You don't want the students trying to show up in one of the "I'm a _____ slut" costumes that have become so popular. But to completely ban costumes and fun on that day is ridiculous. When he went as far as to ban candy, I decided that the guy deserves little respect.

One of the student clubs on campus is raising money by selling "boo-grams" to be passed out at lunch. Should that be stopped too? A lot of teachers have their classroom decorated. I wonder if the Principal will wear a Halloween tie?

Sam Rayburn is a good middle school. I'm really impressed with the students that go there compared to the other two middle schools. I had thought this school was a prime candidate for my children to attend in the coming years. Though I would never base my entire decision on this strange upheavel, it does make me nervous about their other student policies.

I sure hope they don't stay so uptight. There's nothing I can't stand more than boring and controlling schools. They want to control the "fun" so they take away the normal fun and replace by their own style of fun days.

You can email the principal here:

Wednesday, October 26, 2005

New Veggie Tales!

I wonder who wants to see this more: Grandma & Grandpa or my kids?

You can view a preview for it at the Veggie Tales's Website. It sure looks good.

Lord of the Beans follows the fantastic journey of a wide-eyed Flobbit named Toto Baggypants (Junior Asparagus) who inherits a bean with amazing powers from his Uncle Billboy (Archibald Asparagus). In this moving story, young Toto learns that he has been given an extraordinary gift -- but what is it for?

Together with Randalf, fearless ranger Ear-A-Corn, sharpshooting elf Leg-O-Lamb, and surly dwarf Grumpy, Toto forms the Fellowship of the Bean and embarks on a dangerous quest to find the answer to his question.

The journey takes them across the Mountains of Much Snowia, to the Elders of the Razzberry Forest, through the Blue Gate and into the desolate Land of Woe -- in search of an answer. Lord of the Beans is a touching tale that dramatically and comically illustrates how important it is to use the gifts God has given us ... for good.

Special Bonus Silly Song!Silly Songs with Elves
Featuring Wynonna singing an original song!"It's About Love

Texas to Harness Off-Shore Wind Power

"This could be the Spindletop of this century," said General Land Office Commissioner Jerry Patterson.
Texas is leading the way by becoming the first state to allow an off-shore wind power system. The Houston Chronicle has the most comprehensive report on the subject.

Paving the way for Texas to be home to the first wind farm along the U.S. coast, the state has leased an 11,000-acre swath of the Gulf of Mexico, seven miles off Galveston Island, for gigantic wind turbines that could eventually power 40,000 homes and generate millions of dollars for state schools.

The lease, the first granted by any government agency in the nation for an offshore wind project, marks a new era of pollution-free energy production for the Gulf, which for decades has been the site of thousands of wells and platforms tapping the Earth's depths for air-polluting natural gas and oil.

It also signals the migration of Texas' wind industry which ranks second in the nation behind California in kilowatt hours produced by breezes and gusts from the Panhandle and western parts of the state to the coast, where winds are more consistent during peak daylight hours and large population centers such as Houston aren't as far away.

Though I'm thrilled with this development, my first thought was "Texas?" I was sure that another state would have jumped on this environmentally friendly energy source before the gas lovin' & guzzlin' government of Texas.

President Herman Schellstede said he chose Texas to avoid delays. Louisiana, his first choice, had no experience with transmitting and building wind infrastructure, he said, and what entity would have jurisdiction over federal waters where he wanted to build was unclear until the energy bill was passed in July, putting the Mineral Management Service in charge of offshore wind projects.

The government of Texas only meets every two years to set rules and policy. Political Science professors will claim this is an "elitist" type of government, lacking in true representation. But here were have a classic example of my government providing low-cost power for it's citizens and earning the state millions in royalty funds for education.

Texas claims jurisdiction over it's waters up to 10 miles off the coast. Other states only claim up to 3 miles off the coast and after that, federal government rules and red tape kick in. I believe this policy was set back when we were our own nation and we've refused to change it ever since.

But it's not only red tape that's hindering wind rig projects in other states. Here's a quick look at an earlier 2001 wind rig project from the Boston Globe.

Officials say the proposed $300 million project in Texas should go more smoothly than plans for a wind farm proposed off Massachusetts. That project has been delayed by local residents, including Senator Edward M. Kennedy and former CBS News anchorman Walter Cronkite.

''This is Texas. We don't have Walter Cronkite and Ted Kennedy whining about their backyards," Patterson said.

Two other offshore wind turbine farms have been proposed along the US coast, one about 4 miles off the south shore of New York's Long Island, and one in Nantucket Sound, off Cape Cod. The New York project is awaiting approval by the Army Corps of Engineers. The Nantucket project, also in federally controlled waters, faces opposition because of fears that it would ruin the ocean view from the shore.

So who's the elitist here? I know a couple of whiners with yachts that refuse to accept reality. We can see some rigs and boats from the shoreline in Galveston all the time. The only reason I know what those tiny gray dots on the horizon are is because my mother told me when I was a kid. Here's Texas' response to this devestating problem:
Jim Blackburn, an environmental attorney and longtime advocate for the Texas coast, called the destruction of views a "nonissue"

Your loss = our gain.

Saturday, October 22, 2005

Halloween Potluck

Thanks to QuintessentialMe for this stomach rolling fun. I think...Well, maybe not...

Kitty Litter Cake
Ease of Cooking: Beginner
Notes:This is another fun one for Halloween, or the kiddos.
Ingredients:1 Spice or German Chocolate Cake Mix
1 White Cake Mix
1 Pkg. White Sandwich Cookies
1 large pkg. Vanilla Instant Pudding Mix
Green food coloring
12 small Tootsie Rolls
1 *new* kitty litter box
1 *new* kitty litter box plastic liner
1 *new* pooper scooper

Click on the title of this post for the full recipe instructions.

My Pet Fish

NOVA has spun off a new program called Science Now. It's a tv magazine style science show with short segments on a variety of hot science subjects. Hubby and I were lucky enough to catch the fourth episode of this show and got quite a few laughs with it. Since PBS is public television, you can go and watch this whole program on their web site for free. Click on the title of this page to go to their main webpage. It's only 6 minutes long.

The episode that had hubby and I laughing so hard was the one about Pet Surgery. They were removing skin cancer from a pet goldfish. Yes, a goldfish. The vets had devised a way to pump water into the fish so it can breathe while the surgeons perform the operation. Thankfully, the fish was okay and will enjoy many more years swimming in circles to the enjoyment of it's owners.

There was another story about a man who raises Japanese Koi fish. When a fish of his broke her back, he paid top dollar for surgery to repair the spine. He had all the same specialists for the fish as you or I would have if we went into surgery. And this fish lives happily in the pond still with it's owner. As a parting shot, the tv showed the man in the pond "cuddling" with his fish. Yeah, you gotta see it to believe it.

I think every generation of people say, "Whoa, this obsession has gone too far" but nothing comes of it. Remember that dumb woman who spent $60,000 to clone her dead pet cat? She trying to portray herself as normal but in my mind she was just stupid. She should have just let her cat have kittens so she could have some of his look-a-like offspring. There's always one in the bunch.

But how much is a pet worth nowadays? Did you know that people sue vets and neighbors for the death of their pets now, just like they sue docs over the death of their 97 yr old relatives? Yup, frivolous lawsuits because of Fluffy and Spot are rising fast. And the amount that juries award to families is heart stopping.

Woman awarded $45,000 after dog kills cat
Canada: dog alimony arrives
Dog gets off leash, punitive damages for pet store

Thursday, October 20, 2005

Canada gets it right...sorta

When the Supreme Court of the United States ruled that child pornography was okay as long as real children weren't involved in the production, it made me sick. Thankfully, the guys extremely north of us are still fighting the battle. I wonder if the lawyer in this case will take it o the Canadian Supreme Court too.

A 26-year-old Edmonton man has been spared jail time in what is believed to be the first case of cartoon child pornography in Canada.

Gordon Chin pleaded guilty in provincial court today to importing thousands of pages of a Japanese cartoon called Anime featuring characters that look like Pokemon and Astro Boy engaging in explicit sex acts. He purchased the cartoon over the Internet.

Police seized 15 comic books in Vancouver destined for his Edmonton address.
They also seized 63 more books at his Edmonton home and four binders of the
cartoon printed off the Internet.

But the author of the article really screwed up in his background knowledge of the subject. First, he refers to the comics as Anime while they are really called Manga. The article later makes the claim that Anime is illegal in Canada but it isn't. Good try though.

Prairie View A&M Student arrested with bomb-making chemicals in his dorm room

Howdy! Let me introduce you to the dysfunctional child of the Texas A&M System. Prairie View A&M is a part of the Texas A&M system but operates completely independently of all the other Texas A&M schools. Rarely does big brother step in to fix the many educational problems with Prairie View A&M. A couple years ago it was noted that 80% of PVAM teacher candidates were failing their exams. They could also use some help with their football team. (Ten straight seasons of losing every single game.) But really, that has nothing to do with this breaking news.

Prairie View A&M Student Investigated by Secret Service and FBI

Prairie View A&M, a quiet part of the A&M University System. More than 8,000 students are enrolled at the university and now one of those students, 30-year old exchange student Okwudili Franklin Aluka, is at the center of a federal criminal investigation.

"The secret service contacted our campus police to let them know that they had allegations that one of our students had been involved with trying to pass counterfeit bills," said Tyra Metoyer, Public Relations Officer, Prairie View A&M University.

Aluka allegedly passed a counterfeit $20 bill while attempting to purchase a gun at a pawn shop in Houston. After searching his room, authorities found more than counterfeit bills. According to FBI spokesman Al Tribble, hazardous chemicals were also found.

A Houston television station reported the chemicals are ones used for bomb making. Tribble wouldn't confirm that, but he did say they were way out of the norm for any household, let alone dorm room.

"The reason the FBI is investigating it is to really found what the nature of the chemicals were and what the intent was and where they came from," said Metoyer.

Aluka was arrested at his on-campus dorm where officials found hazardous chemicals and counterfeit money. Now some students are upset because they say the university should have informed them of the potential danger.

"They should have informed the students. They should have given notice about it, I shouldn't have to find out from television what's going on at my own school," said Alicia Jennings, Prairie View A&M student.

Another student, Jonathan Miller, says he's aware of what's been going on because he worked with Aluka on campus.

"He was a bit of an oddball; I don't know that much about him. I worked with him and he was very quiet, now I know why," said Jonathan Miller, Prairie View A&M student.

Aluka is currently being held in the Waller County Jail without bond. He has attended the university for a year and a half. University officials say he's been suspended pending the outcome of the investigation.

Well, I'm certainly excited for the state of Texas. More publicity and reporters down here means more revenue for the state. Between the evil twin sisters, Katrina and Rita, we've had plenty of media money being spent here. No matter how weird criminals in other states are, Texas is sure to have one or two to match. Now we add Mr. Aluka to our pin up board of Texas weirdos, who seems to think he could single-handedly make a ton of counterfeit money, buy a gun, and build bombs to DESTROY THE WORLD!!!! (cue evil laugh)

Anyhow, did you read that whiny part? How is it that the media always finds a whiner to quote? In the middle of an article about a potential murderer, we get a girl, Miss Alicia Jennings, complaining about the way she found out about this problem. Apparently she heard it on tv - just like you and me. But no, Alicia Jennings is special and insists that all investigation and media broadcasting be postponed so that the campus can distribute flyers or personal telephone calls to each student.

"This pre-recorded voice message from the President of Prairie View A&M is to inform you that we have arrested somebody on campus. This time the culprit did more than just smuggle some beers into the dorm. In fact, what he did was so bad that I've had to talk to FBI and Secret Service. Thankfully they didn't ask about...[beep]

This student, Okwudili Franklin Aluka, had BOMB making chemicals in his room. If he had succeeded, you might be DEAD now. We have no idea where he might have struck. Maybe he would have walked into the student center and blow himself up. Maybe he planned on ending the lives of those quietly studying in the library. Mr. Aluka was known to have frequented those places. We do know that he did not plan to blow the stadium during football season, as the games are only sparsely attended.

The FBI suspects that Mr. Aluka might have been mad at his Chemistry professor who failed him last semester. By building a bomb and blowing up the professor's car, the suspect would have proven that in fact, he did study and learn the Chemistry material. "

Hope you liked my little bit of satire. :)

It's a dangerous job but somebody's gotta do it

My mother used to tell me constantly to turn my radio down. She was sure that every teenager was going to be deaf by the time they were thirty-five because of these new-fangled earphones. A career as an ear doctor was definitely the way to go.

The debilitating effects of leading a rock and roll lifestyle are well documented, but it seems that performing live can be particularly hazardous. At the tender age of 47, Prince has been told by doctors that he needs a hip replacement - the fallout from years of dancing onstage in high-heeled boots.

Following in the faltering footsteps of Eddie Van Halen and Mötley Crüe's Mick Mars, the 5ft 3in singer, who wears heels to enhance his height, has been prescribed anti-inflammatory drugs for the discomfort in his joints until he undergoes surgery.

Okay, I shouldn't be laughing at other people but hey, a couple snickers isn't that bad, right? Click on the title of this post to read the rest of the article. It's quite entertaining.

A Trip to the Grocery Store

I went to the store late at night tonight to get a couple essentials. Deodorant and Kleenex were in short supply in this house. Even though we have three bottles of mouthwash in the house, hubby was insistent that we get some more ACT. Geez, only a six-week dental student and already picky about which colored bottle I was to get. Walmart was stocking and they had boxes everywhere. That was a good change from just three weeks ago, when Katrina and Rita shortages were in effect. Having a bread and milk shortage kinda changes your view of life and things in general.

I grabbed all the stuff on my list plus a cute t-shirt, a gift bag on clearance, and two pumpkins for the school. I open my purse and sigh. The emptiness of my purse brought the sudden realization that I'd left my wallet in my lunch bag- for the second day. The cashier deferred the order and I raced home. I looked down at the gas gauge and silently asked God to make sure I could make it home and back. Hubby hadn't filled up the tank after his trip to Houston and it was on the line. Yikes!

I walk in, grab my wallet, and run back out. The Dr. Pepper I had started sipping was probably getting warm and my ice cream was melting back at Walmart. I parked, ran in, and opened my wallet to pay. Did you know that I went shopping on yesterday too? My check card was still at home!!! But I did have a Walmart shopping card from returned items with some cash on it. I thought I was going to have to start putting items back but in my only stroke of luck, it had twice the amount I thought it did. I gave her my only two cash dollars and that covered the whole bill.

I go out to the van and start to load. The last items I put in were the pumpkins but I discovered that one of them was bad. On the bottom there was this nasty scraped off part that was already showing mold. I locked the van and went inside to exchange it but they made it extremely complicated. The pumpkin bin was just ten feet away but I couldn't just grab and go. *sigh* And so at midnight, I had to stand in the only line behind the s l o w e s t group I've seen in a long time.

After more than 10 minutes, they opened a new register and she took me first. I told her I just needed a pumpkin, here was my receipt, and she called her manager over. Could I just grab one and go? The manager let me! Whoa...somebody with some sense!

I carried my new pumpkin out to the van. I had carefully locked it but ooops... It doesn't do it any good to lock the door if you don't bother to shut them.

And this is how my life tends to go at all times. My ice cream was melted but it tastes good anyway. Blue Bell mint chocolate chip. :) Yum Yum.

Thursday, October 13, 2005

Free!! I'm Free!!

Well, I finally up and quit the long-term substitute math job that I was so excited about. The stress was unbearable because there was nothing I could do about my situation. We're always taught that problems should be fixed, but I couldn't find a way to fix this problem. There were too many students that needed strong help and they wouldn't recognize me as their teacher. I was having to call security two and three times a day to remove angry, childish students that would not sit and be quiet. They would show up in my classroom the very next day and have the same tick on their shoulder.

But I hate quitting. I felt really down that there was nothing I could do. It's simply not in my nature to leave people hanging like that. I can't stand the idea that I failed at something as simple as teaching a class.

Yesterday I took a mini-vacation and spent the day with my sister. Boy, I am starting to feel human again. I got my hair cut, bought some new books, and went to the library to get more.

But now I'm back in the same situation I was before this- I need a real job!!

Saturday, October 08, 2005

Growing Up

I really wasn't prepared for the shock of seeing Little Brother with facial hair. Boy, that's the weirdest feeling. Annoying little brothers aren't supposed to have that kinda stuff.

Maybe I should send him a congratulatory card or something...

Right now I'm heading off to a cub scout family camping trip and we're sure to have a lot of fun. The weather is spectacular, with highs in the 70s and lows in the 50s. It makes it perfect weather for campfires, hot chocolate and snuggling deep in your sleeping bag. For me though, camping has developed into a new form of self-torture. I'm an avid camper but a couple years ago I developed terrible October allergies. Something brought down by the cool northern winds seems to be the mysterious culprit. I had allergy testing years ago with no conclusive results. The allergist concluded that I'm allergic to "sudden changes in weather." Yup, that was the official diagnosis.

So, I'm off to torture myself this weekend and carry a box of tissue everywhere I go. I have taken all my medicines but just having the windows open this morning has sent me into constant fits of sneezing. I like sneezing- but I don't like the sore throat and the itchy eyes that make me want to guage them out with my fingertips. This is going to be bad....

Friday, October 07, 2005

Math Joke Friday 4

The joke this week has a couple different variations so I thought I put all three for everybody to read.


There are three kinds of mathematicians: those who can count and those who can't.

There are two groups of people in the world: those who believe that the world can be divided into two groups of people and those who don't.

There are two groups of people in the world: Those who can be categorized into one of two groups of people, and those who can't.

On Your Honor

The American flag was lowered and replaced with a new flag, the flag of another country. All the people stood as the national anthem of the other country was played. But one person did not stand. That person refused to show loyalty because he was still loyal to the American flag. The people in charge take this person out of the assembly, reprimanded, and then sent to the head of the organization in charge.

What scenario am I describing? A hostile take-over? Did you expect the disident to be thrown into a furnace?

It was a High School Assembly for Mexican Independence Day involving a senior who was on track to join the US Military.

A high-school senior who stayed seated during the playing of the Mexican National Anthem at a campus ceremony fearing if he stood he might jeopardize his upcoming enlistment in the U.S. military, was reprimanded and sent to the school office.

This student doesn't seem to know that he is not supposed to stand for another country's national anthem. He's made up his own valid reason but hasn't yet said that is he not loyal to Mexico. Think of the many sporting events held around the world, including the Olympics. In no way are people of other countries forced to stand and support another's flag, anthem, or pledge. All you should do is sit quietly and politely as you would expect them to do for you. Apparently, the faculty and principal of the school don't know the basic manners of proper respect. If they don't know, then there's no way that

Thursday, October 06, 2005

A good friend

Today, a man in Italy woke up from a two-year coma and REMEMERED EVERYTHING.

CATANIA, October 6, 2005 ( - When Salvatore Crisafulli, 38, awoke Monday from a two-year long coma, his first word, according to his mother, was “Mamma.” Crisafulli was declared “nearly dead” by doctors after a serious auto accident that left him unresponsive.

His physicians, guided by modern bioethics movement that frequently rates personal autonomy above the value of life, gave up treating him and his family became his primary caregivers.

Crisafulli, a father of four, told Italian media through his brother, that he had heard and understood everything going on around him for two years and had been unable to respond. “I cried in desperation," he said.

The liberals will defend starving a person to death as the next modern thing. This is the proper direction for society to move. It's a natural evolution in our growth of mankind. Since the "rest of the world" allowed the killing of disabled people and allowed mercy killing 10 years ago, the United States is BEHIND in our civil rights agenda.

But if you stand against killing people, then you have a new ally and friend in the fight- the country of Italy. There are lots of people who are against the

Crisafulli’s case highlights a decision – made the same day Crisafulli “woke up,” – by the Italian National Bioethics Committee to recommend that the state must make it mandatory that such patients not be starved or dehydrated to death as in the US court-ordered death of Terri Schiavo earlier this year. The Italian committee holds an advisory position to government equivalent to that of the President’s Council on Bioethics in the US.

This is really great news for all pro-life people. Sometimes we lose hope when our government and media goes astray. Other people in nations around the world are continuing the same fight we lost. They haven't given up and neither will I.

The Customer is Always Right

I worked at a Blockbuster Video for 5 years and I have plenty of customer horror stories to tell. Most of them are fading off to memory now and quickly being replaced by student horror stories. At least at Blockbuster I never had anybody get up in my face and then give me the finger.

But here's a customer service story that will leave you draw- dropped. The poor CSR in this case is amazing and I couldn't help but laugh.

Readers, I give you "Vinegar Boy".

Read the whole site. Maybe I'll add some of my own stories one day.

Thanks to Phew!!!

Louisiana Problems in Texas

Some of the Louisiana students have been getting on the nerves of the Texas students. At first there was the fight at Jones High School in Houston. At another school in Houston, Westbury High School, there was an all-and-out gang fight on the front lawn of the school. Six cop cars with lights had to come and stop it. The word is that a gang from Louisiana was trying to earn some turf of its own. Now we can't figure out how a whole gang of Lousiana students were transferred to another school but they sure haven't "bonded" with their fellow gang members in Houston.

Even in my small town, "those New Orlean's students" are causing problems. More than once, I've heard some of my students complain of how pushy they are. "She thinks she can get away with pushing me around again. Well I'm not going to let her.", my student said. The next day she told us that the girl had tried to cuss her out for the third time, and she "reacted". Well, she didn't tell us exactly what she did but she was given detention for it.

And the gang members in my school aren't too happy either. "They think they can come in here and take over. What are they, stupid.? They ain't got no back-up to help them." Yup, life is hard for a lonely gang member. They've gotta fight the world because that's all they know.

Oh, and then there was the one that almost got through the safety net. The aunt tried to enroll the boy in school but she accidently let it slip that he hadn't been in class since early September. They were able to do some tracking and found that he'd been suspended for coming to school drunk in the early morning. We all agreed that the boy needed professional help. He'd probably spent the whole summer drunk and didn't know how to stop now. The school transferred him to the "needy" campus so he gets a second chance.

Bandaids for your Man

This is from OhGizmo.

You’re one tough MoFo. You ain’t got no place for no pussy Band-Aids. Hell, you get cut, you get cut. If it bleeds, it bleeds. You got nails to hammer, two by fours to cut and cement to pour. There’s just no way you’re going to be seen wearing a Band-Aid.
Unless it’s a Duct Tape Band-Aid.

Did you ever read it?

It was while I was in high School that the media blew a gasket at then Vice President Dan Quayle's Murphy Brown example of a fatherless child. I wasn't into politics then and didn't know much about it. Apparently Murphy Brown, a woman on a television show, was having a child out of wedlock. The VP used this as an example of everything that was wrong in our society and the media unrespectfully disagreed.

And for those concerned about children growing up in poverty, we should
know this: marriage is probably the best anti-poverty program of them all. Among
families headed by married couples today, there is a poverty rate of 5.7
percent. But 33.4 percent of families are headed by a single mother are in
poverty today.

I had never read the speech that Dan Quayle gave until today. I have to thank another blogger, Clayton Cramer for this now. Go read the whole thing. I don't think I'll ever be able to laugh at another Dan Quayle joke again.

I know it is not fashionable to talk about moral values, but we need to do
it. Even though our cultural leaders in Hollywood, network TV, the national
newspapers routinely jeer at them, I think that most of us in this room know
that some things are good, and other things are wrong. Now it's time to make the
discussion public.

In the end, the media and hollywood refused to let the public discussion that Dan Quayle had called for happen. There was merely a bash-fest of this very important man and all reason behind the speech thrown out. If it weren't for the blogs always looking over the shoulder of the media, this could easily happen again.

Where have I been?

I've been so stressed out that I haven't even had the energy to blog about being stressed out. I'm teaching this Geometry Class but it's a Resource class and full of kids that have no social skills. Every time I ask a student to behave, I get a huge slugfest of insults hurled at me. I regularly have security come up to the room and remove rowdy students. I am getting no where. At this rate I'll be getting my first gray hair a couple decades earlier than genetics had planned for me.

There's one student is never quiet. NEVER. He makes jokes and tries to talk to other students on the other side of the room...and they happily join him. But the kids in here are on a short string and many don't appreciate personal jokes. Instead of complaining and letting me deal with the problem, they start insulting each other, other friends come to the defense, and the problem blows up in half a moment. This happens while I'm stilling trying to get the first student to be quiet but instead he continues to throw insults and neither of them will stop.

Right now I'm so stressed out that I find myself on a short string, forgetful, and disorganized. I'm not a happy camper anymore. I don't have the strong body language to get students to be quiet. Heck, they happily IGNORE me and continue talking, even if I'm right there beside them.

STRESS!!! The classes are almost all like this. I don't know if I'm going to stay in this position. Well, if nothing improves, then I won't stay. There's no reason to torture myself in such a manner.

Monday, October 03, 2005

What I did this weekend


My mom took my family to the Texas Parks and Wildlife Expo just south of Austin this weekend. I came home hot and exhausted and totally pleased. I'll be marking this on my calendar and going again next year.

What is the Texas Parks & Wildlife Expo? It's an outdoor experience where visitors fish, shoot, kayak, rock climb, mountain bike, see and touch wildlife, learn about recreation in the Great Outdoors and see and buy the latest in outdoor gear and services. Most importantly, visitors can learn how they can help to conserve this precious resource. And it’s free!

We did a ton of the activities that are listed here. All my kids, the 9 yr old, the 7 year old, and even the 5 year old got to try archery and fly fishing. I was extremely pleased at how well my 5 year old did on all the activities. The girl's a natural outdoorsman! We didn't go shooting because they can do that at home with their dad.

I promise to add pictures this evening when I get home. I'm just blogging in between classes right now.

My day started off quite well. This was one of the rare occasions that I got up early on a Saturday morning to make it to an event. We were all ready at 7:45 except for getting the girls' hair brushed. Somehow, that took until 8:45 or later. I have no idea what we did in between that hour. Since we were supposed to leave by 8:30, I can only say that this is payback for even trying to get up early on a Saturday.

We thought we were finally ready and a pair of shoes was obtained for Whitney. She's left all her shoes at friend's houses (3 pairs at least) and has been wearing her brother's old church schools to school for the past week. It's annoying how cute they look on her. We all piled into the car. I sat down in the car and...


Dang it, something had bit me right on the back of my leg when I sat down. I jumped up out of the car in extreme pain and ran for the house. My safety-wise husband had already locked all three locks and I had to wait an eternity for him to come and unlock it all.

The next lesson I learned is that I need to re-organize my medicine cabinets so my husband can find stuff. But eventually pain relief came. So what bit me? I didn't have to wait long to find out. While looking through my pants, my husband suddenly started yelling extremely loudly! The freaking big Red Wasp was still hanging onto my pants for dear life. Next came the complicated affair of trying to get my pants off without letting them brush against my legs or let the wasp go free again.

Hubby took pity on my pants he says and let the wasp go free. I really wanted to wear those pants and squashed bug guts would have been quite the impediment to my desire. The irony of the whole mess is that at 9am on Saturday morning I was exactly where I should have been in the first place: snuggled in my blanket in bed.

Nevertheless, adventure called and we packed up and headed for the Old Spanish Trail down to Bastrop and then a quick hop over to the south of Austin. I estimate the children asked, "Are we there yet?" only about 15 times. This gives an average of one nagging wine every 6 minutes.

We took my mom's little car because it gets 30mpg. That's great gas mileage on her 200,000+ little Nissan. She has a bumper sticker on her car that states, "Don't let the car fool you. My real treasure is in heaven." Oh yeah, oh yeah. Every mile of those 200,000 shows now! So when the guy rear-ended us while waiting in line for parking at the expo, Mom took it in stride. But what she said about the idiot while inside our car was completely different what she said to his face. :) Years of customer service can make you smile through anything.

The expo was everything my Mom had hyped it to be. There were so many activities to choose from that we could barely decide. It was hard to let the kids wait in line to do the same activity three times in a row. As a parent we sometimes want to drag them along and "expose" them to everything. But it was great to them fall in love with these activities so fast. Archery was by far their favorite and we only got them away by bribing distracting them with snow cones. I enjoyed being able to use the compound bow.

Sorry to bother everybody with these wonderful pictures of my kids. However, my Grandma and Grandpa read my blog so they get to need to see them. And that super happy man is NOT Whitney's dad. That's the joy in the instructor's face as my 5 year old hit the target on only her 6th arrow. It didn't have enough power to stick but dang it, that girl's got it! The other's did impressively well too. :)

A couple of exhibits, about 10 of them, were cancelled due to Hurricane Rita.

This picture is the small "Texas Zoo" exhibit for the kids. Please notice that their zoo is made mainly of dead animals- not live ones!

I wonder how it is that the Port-o-Pot people manage to put their boxes in the full direct sun at every event. I wish I had taken a picture of them because these were first port-o-pots with American Flags on them!

Lastly, I want to mention the Birds of Prey show done by the Last Chance Forever conservation group. Their show leader could have easily passed for Buffalo Bill Cody if he had been wearing a leather jacket with fringe. He was a master falconer and let the birds fly around and dart after food. They landed right next to us! He decorated a remote control car to look like a rabbit to show us how the birds hunt and attack their prey. But he stressed that they hunted for food- not for fun- and this was not murder. To show us, he tossed a piece of food next to the "dead rabbit" and then the bird would choose the easy to get food over it's prized rabbit. The food, not the hunt, was the goal of the bird.

From most animal lover groups, you expect a heartfelt plea to stop polluting and let the animals return. This man was a master though and easily balanced the need for humanity to live with the need of the birds to live in our environment. Ignorant people shooting the birds, not hunters, is what causes most of the deaths and expensive rehabilitation that his group provides for the birds. "Don't blame this on hunters," he exclaimed as he showed us the beautiful bald eagle. The huge bird was missing half of its right wing and would never fly again.

Well, I'll be sure to go again next year, and next year... I conclude that this was worthy of getting up on Saturday morning.