Sunday, August 27, 2006

Friday, August 25, 2006

Sleep Tite

Ah, the week before school starts. How nice of them to give us two days to prepare. How considerate of everyone else to think "Hey! We have all this extra time to work this week - let's schedule a meeting!" I spent all day Wednesday in meetings, then Back to School night, then meetings half the day Thursday, then 7th grade orientation today, topped off with another meeting.

I'm not quite ready yet, but I'm giving myself permission to not have things perfect. Let's just say that my TAs will have their work cut out for them, at least for the first few weeks.

Anatomy lesson of the week:
Monday I developed a horrific toothache. It was so bad, it included a throbbing toothache. As soon as I could get away from our faculty meeting at Snowbird, I made an emergency dental appointment. They looked me over, took x-rays, tapped my teeth, then (and this is my favorite part) described my teeth as "virginal". In other words, there was nothing wrong with them (thanks again to my parents for raising me outside of fluoride-fearing Utah!). After some questions, the dentist explained that it was caused by something like a pinched nerve. I'm getting over a cold, and the sinus congestion combined with my drive up to Snowbird that morning increased the pressure right over a nerve that produced a sensation like a toothache. It has gotten better as my cold is diminishing. Strange, though.

Here's a strand for you to contribute to on the comments: I'm so tired that...

Mine? I'm so tired that I've been taking cold showers all week because I forgot that I turned down the water heater before I left for Mass. Yup. Just figured it out yesterday when I finally had time to call my super. Whoo.

Monday, August 21, 2006

Take a Look, Lee

Some things of interest:

Click here to hear John Hodgman (of the Apple commercials and such) read his list of 700 Hobo names.

Click here to see a trailer for a movie I am curious about.

Click here to visit a new website. It looks at airfare rates between cities over a period of time to advise you whether you should buy tickets now or wait for a lower fare. Could be useful!

Friday, August 18, 2006


My dear friends!

I am so sorry I've abandoned you. Believe me, it was not by choice. Well, the first week of non-posting was. I was overwhelmed by the emotions of letting my dear institute go, let alone the mounting exhaustion of a non-stop summer. Speaking of which, my second week of non-posting was caused by my attending an institute on using film in the classroom (as in student-created movies). The institute was marvelous, held up at Snowbird Resort. The downside was that the hotel there wanted $10/day for internet access. Consequently, no internet for Manda this week. This I have not enjoyed.

Now that I am home, possibly for two whole weeks (!), I am frantically catching up on emails, blogs, and giving my cat attention. I hope to post more about the past two weeks soon, but I want to sleep soon, since the cold that has been looming for a while finally struck me a few days ago.

Anyway, thanks for not giving up on me. I'll post again soon. For now, enjoy the lovely pictures of Snowbird and the fantastic company who sponsored this week's training.

Thursday, August 03, 2006

Camp Shakespeare: Week the 4th

I am so sorry I've been neglecting you all!

Those of you here at the institute probably know quite well why I haven't been posting. The very fact that it is 12:35 (am) and this is the first chance I"ve had is indicative of this week. So, here is a run-down of excuses (which conveniently double as a summary of major events):

We've been working on classroom applications - unit plans, specifically, so all of my spare computer time has gone into typing lesson plans. Stephanie and I presented today, so I'm feeling much less stress now.

Bats have taken over the 2nd floor of our dorm. Our precautions consist primarily of a pink Post-It note that Stephanie thoughtfully put on the bathroom door reading "Bat in the Bathroom."

It's freaking hot! I know I complained a lot about the temperatures the first week here (and every week since), but seriously, what is with the hot weather? Yesterday's forecast was 103. 103! What the crap!?

Tomorrow is the last official day of the institute. We are having a celebration in the evening, and apparently we the participants are supposed to supply the entertainment. Being good teachers, we naturally formed a committee to handle such matters. I now have the "hello muddah" camp song stuck in my head, after writing 9 verses of the thing.

I've been in denial about this institute ending. I really, really, would like to stay in the green world, despite all my excitement for trying out these ideas with my students next year.

Meg, Christine, Stephanie, and I went to Mass Moca on Wednesday to try to escape the heat. It was a weird museum. I'm not sure which was freakier - the slow-moving, full-scale carnival rides in a dark room; the giant wooden spine with real creepy-crawly creatures in a cabinet underneath it; the iron turds; or the room with a caged lightbulb and tarantula. I did enjoy the "please organize" exhibit with jars of personal belongings, though.

Had a fantastic clowning workshop with Kevin. He told me I "had a very sweet clown" and that I am "Auguste. Definitely Auguste". I need to do more research on Auguste, now.

I was awed and frightened by John Epstein and his lecture on sonnets. I learned a lot, and others there loved the fact that I was picked to read the sonnet that was all about sex. Oral sex, none the less. But, as Johnny said, "Practice safe sonnets."

There's been a lot more, but it's so late and I'm fairly certain there will be no sleep tomorrow. So adieu, my friends, and I'll see you in my dreams.