I come from a family of teachers. My mother, both sisters, ex-brother-in-law,
and a niece are or were teachers. I myself spent three years in front
of students, teaching or being the technology person helping teachers
in the computer lab.
My younger sister and my niece are both teaching in public schools in
the US. Everyone else taught in private Catholic schools. I also taught
adult education classes and my older sister also taught both undergrad
and grad level classes (teaching people how to be teachers).
We have a variety of experiences about educational systems in my family.
I have heard the story from a reliable source concerning a student who
actually brought poison to school and put it in the teacher’s coffee
cup. The other kids in the room saw this and although threatened by
the little miscreant, they were crying and kept the teacher from drinking
the poison. The perpetrator was in the fourth grade or ten years old.
According to turnto23.com,
teachers in Bakersfield, California are having problems maintaining
a safe environment. They claim bullying is out of control. Not student-on-student
bullying, but student against teacher bullying.
>From the article: "We’ve had teachers assaulted, shoved around,
eggs thrown at them," said Bakersfield Elementary Teachers Association
president Brad Barnes. "Last week, there was a homemade bomb that
went off in the boys bathroom," said teacher Katie Irwin.
Bakersfield has a population of about 347,500 in the city itself with
a metro population of 827,000. I don’t know if this problem involves
only the city itself or the metro region. There are only three schools
listed in the source article as the basis of most of the problems. Amazingly
they are two middle schools and an elementary school. One would assume
the real trouble makers are dropouts by high school age. Or in juvenile
The teachers are claiming there is a lack of discipline enforcement
in the district. They say the students are not being suspended after
displaying behaviors that call for suspension. The reason for this is
that the schools are only paid when students attend school.
The district has lost about $675,000 per year due to suspending students.
Therefore, to preserve funding, they have cut suspensions by 40%.
Teachers are claiming students are bringing drugs, alcohol, and weapons
to school. When asked how many of the teachers were afraid for their
safety at a meeting last week, every person in a room of about 25 teachers
raised a hand in agreement.
At the meeting held this week, the superintendent said the problem would
be handled and the board suggested a task force be created to look into
the problem. The teachers asked for immediate action.
Authorities visited the three listed schools to see firsthand what conditions
were like. They also sent a letter to every principal in the district
explaining the discipline code and asking that it be explained to staff
I found this article listed on Fark.com and the comments
were mostly in sympathy with the teachers, although some did blame both
the teachers and administration for the problem.
Do you have any answers for this mess? What do we do to make schools
a place where learning can take place? If the teachers are afraid, how
are the students doing? How much teaching or learning is taking place?
What are our goals as a society? Educate everyone? Remove the disturbances?
To where and what to do with them when removed?
How do you discipline children who are so out of control? Should funding
be lost when an out-of-control student is suspended? Is this a race
issue or a poverty issue or an individual student issue? What role do
parents play? How do we solve it? How do other countries handle this
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would like to help by finding and captioning the photos and/or formatting
the comments please let me know. email@example.com
On This Article
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“In our age there is no such thing as ‘keeping out of politics.’ All
issues are political issues, and politics itself is a mass of lies,
evasions, folly, hatred and schizophrenia.” - George Orwell
“It is the tragedy of the world that no one knows what they don’t know;
and the less a person knows, the more sure they are that they know everything.”
- Joyce Cary
A tough looking gang
of bikers were out riding when they spotted an attractive young lady
about to jump off a bridge - so they stopped. The gang leader, a big
burly guy, gets off his bike and says, “What are you doing?” “I’m going
to commit suicide,” she says.
While he did not want to appear insensitive, he didn’t want to miss
an opportunity either, so he asked, “Well, before you jump, why don’t
you give me a kiss?” So, she did, and it was a long, lingering, passionate
kiss. After she finished, the biker said, “Wow! That was the hottest
kiss I have ever had. That’s a real talent you’ll be wasting. Why are
you committing suicide?”
“My parents don’t like me dressing up like a girl……”
“As we advance in life it becomes more and more difficult, but in fighting
the difficulties the inmost strength of the heart is developed.”
“For my part I know nothing with any certainty, but the sight of the
stars makes me dream.”
“Conscience is a man’s compass.” - All by Dutch painter Vincent van
Gogh born on this day in 1853
Most Embarrassing Moment
My Scariest Moment
Speak right up!
Back in the good old days (I never thought I’d be saying that, but I
now know why older people used to), people would buy something, then
see to keeping it running, operating, or whatever, by either fixing
it themselves or taking it to someone who could.
The corner auto repair shop was a prime example. Everybody knew
"Slim", the 300 pound car mechanic that could listen to your
car and know what needed to be done. In a couple hours, your prize
possession was again purring like a kitten and you were back on the
road again. (OK, now help me get that tune out of my mind!)
Farmers would maintain their own equipment back then. Most farmers
still do to a great extent. They almost have to do so for the
economic benefit. But the equipment they use has become a lot more complicated.
As the complexity of the equipment increases, the ability to maintain
it decreases. So they seek out professionals to keep it running,
much like "Slim", but not as personable, and things break
more often now.
Consumers have learned a new term. "Planned obsolescence"
had been coined many years ago to describe how manufactured goods had
a limited lifespan and it was expected the buyer would replace it within
that time frame. That term morphed into "disposable"
as it was becoming cheaper to make a new product from scratch that it
was to fix one that went bad. This has filled up our landfills
with a lot more "trash" as we toss out those disposable things.
Technology has advanced so fast, newer and better products replace the
old so fast, they don’t have time to need maintenance. Some people
hang onto the older technology as it is comfortable for them.
Eventually they break. Nothing lasts forever. The issue
is that replacement parts are no longer available. These people
want an exact replacement because that is what they are comfortable
with. It is hard to explain to an older person that rotary dial
phones just are not easily obtained any more, and the ones that are
aren’t the same as what they had.
One thing I like about geocaching is that the owner has to maintain
their cache. I’ve had to do that on several of my caches.
Nature tries to subdue the cache by putting water into a seemingly waterproof
container. Winds blow them out of their hiding spots. Animals
think the hiding spot is just dandy as a new den. Animals get
curious about the contents and strew them all around. Kids and
unwitting adults take them thinking it is ok to do so. There are
a lot of reasons for maintenance. It’s good that good cache owners
will maintain them and keep the cache available for others to find.
However, some cache owners are of the opinion they will simply do away
with it once it disappears. That’s sad since it isn’t there for
others to find any more.
Here’s your quiz:
Are you caught up in the "disposable" mindset of manufacturing?
Do you try to repair something that goes bad, or do you replace it?
What kinds of things do you make sure to repair , and why?
Maintenance - Got To Keep It Going, And Going, And Going, And….
Cliff (the High-Tech Redneck who doesn’t rate a fancy ’signature pic’)
on this article
Hello, everyone. I’m sorry that I’ve had to take some time off from
writing. I have been having very serious problems at work. Why? It
is because I have been suffering with major depression that has become
more pronounced during the past year-and-a-half. I have a very technical
job as a computer programmer, which requires razor-edge focus on detail
Let me give you some background. I started my career in IT about 20
years ago as a computer operator. I quickly moved up to become a computer
programmer. After about 10 years, I was assigned to implement and
support a computer program that our top managers wanted to cajole
all of our hospital medical staff in the nation to use. I was assigned
to do everything necessary to resolve all problems with this software
within our facility. That project was so important that they made
it my only duty.
After a few years, everyone at our facility was happily using the
computer program, and had actually become dependent upon it. The project
was running so smoothly that I had nothing left to do. I needed something
to do, so I requested permission to be the webmaster for our facility.
After a couple of years trying to convince management that the Webmaster
position would be very important within our facility, I was finally
allowed to be webmaster for our site.
After about one-and-a-half years of doing that, my supervisor reassigned
my duties to a newer employee that he liked, and told me to go back
to writing code (programming). I told him that it had been so many
years since I had written code that I would need a refresher course
to meet the expected standards of my position. I was told that I was
"supposed to be an expert, so just do it." I don’t know
how a person can be an expert at an IT function that they have not
participated in for almost ten years, but that was the task I was
Unfortunately, some very disturbing and significant experiences happened
around that same time in my personal life. I have always experienced
depression – sometimes serious, sometimes not so much. No one
knows the cause for sure. I know the cause, but I have never admitted
it to anyone – not even my therapist. It’s too painful on a
very basic level. I work with it and have learned to handle it, I
think. But this double whammy of being told to do something at work
that I knew I could not do and dealing with seriously damaging situations
in my personal life put me over the edge and resulted in major depression.
My ability to focus sharply and concentrate in order to hone in on
the minute details I need to apply to my job has dwindled significantly
because of this illness.
I work for the federal government and they are trying to terminate
me after 30 years of good service because of this problem.
I have been a programmer for about 20 years of my 30-year service
time. I have written software that has been used nationally, so I
have never been a slouch. I started this job at the bottom of the
basement and rose to the top based on my ability.
I began seeing a psychologist. After a couple of months, she told
me to take time off work to focus on resolving anxiety and depression
issues without the additional stress of being consistently punished
for being unable to function at my previous level of performance.
My psychologist sent me to a psychiatrist for evaluation and I was
given medication. My medication is still being adjusted.
Do you know how it feels to have to admit that you cannot not do a
job that you used to be able to do in an exemplary manner — receiving
awards and commendations? For a very independent person like me, it
has been shameful and devastating.
I told my bosses what was happening, thinking that they might understand.
Ha! I would be in a better situation now if I had told them I was
dying from cancer in six months. I provided statements on letter head
from my psychologist and psychiatrist, but it seems that people do
not understand or care when you are experiencing something that they
cannot physically see, and is therefore, intangible to them.
Our union and our EEO staff has told me that in preparation for my
case, I need to document every tiny thing that has happened during
this time and write rebuttals to every single thing that my supervisor
has accused. The documentation I have to respond to is 6 inches thick,
so I am very busy writing to fight this fight.
I think maybe I would benefit from writing about this as it progresses.
Maybe someone else can avoid going through this if I relate what has
I will try to write this. No promises. This is a painful, bitter experience
for me and I am already writing my butt off about it. I just wanted
to explain my situation to everyone.
Thanks. I am hoping to be back soon.
On This Article
March 30 is the 89th day of the year in the Gregorian calendar. There
are 276 days remaining until the end of the year.
Holidays and observances
- Festival of Salus
- Land Day commemoration
(Palestine / Israel)
- National Doctors’
Day (United States)
- Spiritual Baptist/Shouter
Liberation Day (Trinidad and Tobago)
Events on this date
- 1296 –
Edward I sacks Berwick-upon-Tweed, during armed conflict between Scotland
- 1814 –
Napoleonic Wars: Sixth Coalition forces march into Paris.
- 1842 –
Anesthesia is used for the first time, in an operation by Dr. Crawford
- 1867 –
Alaska is purchased from Russia for $7.2 million, about 2 cent/acre
($4.19/km²), by United States Secretary of State William H. Seward.
The media call this Seward’s Folly.
- 1909 –
The Queensboro Bridge opens, linking Manhattan and Queens.
- 1912 –
Sultan Abdelhafid signs the Treaty of Fez, making Morocco a French
- 1939 –
The Heinkel He 100 fighter sets a world airspeed record of 463 mph.
- 1945 –
World War II: Soviet Union forces invade Austria and take Vienna;
Polish and Soviet forces liberate Gdansk.
- 1954 –
The Yonge Street subway line opens in Toronto. It is the first subway
- 1961 –
The Single Convention on Narcotic Drugs is signed in New York City.
- 1972 –
Vietnam War: The Easter Offensive begins after North Vietnamese forces
cross into the Demilitarized Zone (DMZ) of South Vietnam.
- 1981 –
President Ronald Reagan is shot in the chest outside a Washington,
D.C., hotel by John Hinckley, Jr.
- 2006 –
The United Kingdom Terrorism Act 2006 becomes a law.
Born on this date
- 1326 –
Ivan II of Russia, Grand Duke of Muscovy
- 1432 –
Mehmed II, Ottoman Sultan
- 1640 –
John Trenchard, English politician
- 1746 –
Francisco Goya, Spanish painter
- 1811 –
Robert Bunsen, German chemist
- 1853 –
Vincent van Gogh, Dutch painter
- 1905 –
Albert Pierrepoint, English executioner
- 1913 –
Frankie Laine, American singer
- 1926 –
Peter Marshall, American game show host
- 1937 –
Warren Beatty, American actor and director
- 1945 –
Eric Clapton, British guitarist
- 1956 –
Shahla Sherkat, Iranian feminist journalist
- 1965 –
Piers Morgan, British journalist
- 1976 –
Mark McClelland, Northern Irish musician (Degrassi)
- 1983 –
Scott Moffatt, Canadian singer and songwriter
column, you may think this lady has it easy. All that happened to her
is that she found a frog in her baked beans. She, however, didn’t see
the humor in the situation.
If it had happened to me, I wouldn’t have gotten a giggle out of it either.
In my case, you have to realize that I would have cooked the beans, and
eaten g-d knows how many before I discovered Kermit sharing my meal. Then,
I assure you, all of the air in a 100 mile radius from my house would
have turned a bright blue. I would have added to the color scheme by turning
a sickly green. Kermit would only have enhanced the effect if I hadn’t
swallowed him first.
Fortunately, I haven’t found anything foreign in my food, except for a
few stray stems and seeds.
But, can you imagine how the lady must have felt?
"Honey, you can put the beans on now. The burgers are almost done."
"Well, Dear, the menu has changed. Now we’re having frog legs with
Of course, the store was deeply embarrassed by the whole incident. They
offered to replace the can with a new one. The lady didn’t see the humor
in that, either. It should have occurred to their PR people that a frog
in the beans doesn’t exactly put you in the mood for more of the same.
Sometimes, I worry about what I’m eating. As I observed earlier, I might
not have as much warning as the average bear. In some cases, that could
be a blessing. You might remember the horror story about finding a human
finger in the chili, or a mouse in the Coca-Cola. Having a friendly sighted
person tell me "you might not want to finish that" might be
more pleasant than finding out what didn’t belong on my plate the old
fashioned way. Of course, my thoughts on that subject might be a little
less sanguine if I was eating alone.
When I was in college, there was a poster in the book store that said,
"Eat a frog for breakfast, and nothing worse will happen to you all
day." I don’t know if that’s true, but now there is a lady in Ohio
who has the information. I just wonder if her lawyer told her not to discuss
it with anyone until the jury renders its verdict.
On This Article
Not too many for that line. Better luck
with this one.
Next opening line…
I chased her behind the hay stack…
Here’s a great new rhyming/composition tool. http://www.writerhymes.com/
There’s also a great rhyming dictionary at http://www.rhymezone.com/
Limerick rules. http://freespace.virgin.net/merrick.sheldon/limerickrules.htm
once was a man from New York
Who couldn’t eat with a fork
He ate with his hands
Foods of all types and all brands
But his favorite of all was pulled pork. - Bonnie
once was a man from New York
who liked to eat lots of roast pork
but he had bad manners,
he wasn’t a planner
and therefore did not use a fork. - Cassandra in New York
was a man from New York
who could balance his cat on a fork.
The cat jumped up high,
and mouthed a great sigh,
As the tines were all covered with cork. - ld
was a man from New York
who loved Chinese noodles with pork.
He tried using sticks
to eat this neat dish,
But ended up using his fork. - ldo
commando’s a rumor
But I’ve no undies in my dresser
Bought some, with all candor,
But they’re on back order
Or as I call them my late bloomers. - Anne Onimous
I’m lazy I reckon
But my tummy I need to flatten
And to shrink my thighs.
Now I’d exercise
But my yoga mat is broken. - Anne Onimous
|Ill or hurt
eagles I wrangle
To cage healthy ones is illegal.
So here’s the angle:
To be a legal eagle
The bird must be an ill eagle. - Anne Onimous
|At the risk
of sounding profound
In life there’s one thing that I have found
(My sage I’ll now invoke)
Today’s mighty oak
Is a little oak that held its ground. - Anne Onimous
|At the bowling
alley at four
A goldfish threw a perfect score
We expressed surprise,
He said, "Come on you guys
Haven’t you seen a fish bowl before?" - Anne Onimous
Re: Padded Tops/Waxed Bottoms
I do deplore the trend to
make children sexy, but overall, I think that censorship is a longer
and slipperier slope. The current rash will likely wither from negative
publicity and time for a fad to fade naturally. However, a mother
who does body modifications to prepare a child for a career they have
not chosen is kind of over the line, and might warrant a visit from
child welfare workers. - Bob of the North, where spring is only the
barest hint on the horizon, so far.
This is so absurd
that I have nothing to say!! Give me a break. - Bonnie
I don’t think "dangerous"
is the word I would use. Disturbing, sick, appalling, would all be
better words. Does she want her daughter to be a Porn Star? - herm
pedophiles will love this! Next they’ll be putting falsie bulges in
boys underwear. - ldo
My God. It takes a lot to
horrify me anymore, but you’ve managed. So now, mothers are pandering
to pedophiles? Where I work, we have had some little girls clothes
that I’ve joked were for Tarts in Training, but it was nothing like
this. This is just insane. I’m finding myself unable to even formulate
a coherent opinion, because my brain can’t understand why I should
HAVE to. What the hell are we, as a society, doing to our kids? Especailly
the girls? Was all of our hard work in the 60s and 70s, for women
to finally have an equal playing field, and be considered (by herself
as well as others) on her own merits and not just how cute she is,
all for naught?
That woman should be reported to CSB NOW (if she hasn’t been already),
and if they can’t find a reason to call this child abuse, then I’d
like to know their definition. - OhioKat
I left a question out of the end of my piece
about child sexualization that I’d like to ask of the women here.
If this "virgin waxing" technique really worked (no proof
of that, I’m sure), and undergoing it as a child would free you from
leg and pubic hair for life, would you think it worthwhile? If you
knew for a fact it worked, would you allow (or encourage) your daughters
to receive it? - Bruce
Saving the planet
needs co-operation. Mostly, I have just tried to regulate my own behaviour,
but have sometimes organized a new initiative. I learned that one
reason the chairperson of a meeting does not vote except to break
ties is that a good chair is not really paying attention to the discussion,
they are more into checking on who has spoken, and who has not. -
Bob of the North
I don’t remember what year
it was, or even what my family was doing that day. I do know that
the snow was falling in large gusty flakes upon the foot or more that
covered everything. The urge to take a hike was so strong that I couldn’t
in long johns, and thick outer clothing with my trusty old parka,
insulated boots and toasty gloves I set out walking down my long steep
driveway without really any direction chosen. My boots lead me first
up a side street with houses banking it on both sides with billowing
furnaces and buried cars parked along it. Though surrounded by habitation,
the outside world was mine alone. The wind at my back and frosted
breath cutting a trail lead me on to the top of my hill.
Crunching a fresh path, I turned to another road that traveled a bit
over a mile to a water tower. Looking up at the frozen steps I have
to admit I was tempted to climb the highest point in my area for the
view I knew would be spectacular. The wind shifted then as though
with warning, stinging my face with tiny ice crystals and I changed
direction in a hurry.
Not in any rush, I cut back along side road I knew was long and winding
with fewer houses that gave way to farms. The trees were bowed with
heavy white icing and the gravel under my feet was so cushioned by
untouched drifts that the peace flowed into me while I trudged along.
The chill didn’t touch me except for my face, and even that felt welcomed
with the exercise of breaking through each step to the next. It was
easy to imagine I was some great explorer in a new land even if I
had gone that way many times in my car on warmer days. Walking lets
you see tracks from deer and take in sights a window never allows.
Hearing the screech of metal caught my attention as I saw a fellow
human opening a mail box up ahead. "Hello!" I called. His
friendly wave towards me with a toothless smile made me quicken my
step as he waited for me. "Out for a stroll or did you get stranded?"
He asked when I got closer. "The stroll. I couldn’t help myself."
Tucking the mail into his coat, he replied;"Then can I join you
as I take my neighbor’s mail to the next farm?" No need to add
my answer, just that the next ten or twenty minutes we went along
the road were sweet with chat between labored efforts of plowing our
steps along. I never even got his name, but won’t forget meeting and
sharing a bit of that day when he finally gave me a light pat on the
shoulder and headed up what was only a driveway because it had space
between the trees.
I continued on to the end of that road to meet up with a partially
cleared route that took me to our county airport. Touring the runways
and hangers to see all the small planes not just grounded but secured
with lines against the storm added to my sense of quiet and stillness
of mankind with the event the blizzard. Following the main route back
did not really change much of my perspective as a vehicle passing
me was unique.
Changing my way back to take in less grades or up hill battles totaled
more miles but hey…knowing terrain and body expectations is important
on long hikes. Taking my boots off four hours after I put them on,
the visions of this Winter "stroll" are still with me eons
A few days after I took the same travels in my car and found I had
hiked about eleven miles. The experience is endless. - Marianne
Disclaimer- All quotes printed in this publication are believed to be
accurately attributed, but no guarantees are made that some incorrectly
attributed, or even outright false quotes won’t get in here from time
to time. I assure readers that I will do my best to weed out incorrect
quotes, and will print a retraction as soon as I become aware of any errors.
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