Friday, May 25, 2007


is how much my 6th graders raised this year for Alex's Lemonade Stand which funds research for childhood cancers. Through the course of this school year, we have sold candy, lemonade, paid for the privilege to dress down (preferably in yellow), and today presented a big ol' check to one of the great people that work at the foundation. It has been a great day and a great year.

All in all, this has been the most successful year of my teaching career. Today was just icing on the cake.

Tuesday, May 22, 2007


The following words were gleaned from spam emails that I was sent a few years ago. Some of them just had a nice rhythm. Some were perverse and had to be amended. Nonetheless, here is a poem composed by spambots in December of 2004. Enjoy.

"Desolately Chocolate"

Legally Sepulcral
Hot mommy wants to see you
I’m looking for romance
Interpreter Tonnes
Superb Quality High Resolution Screens
natural method using pills
backwaters teasdale
no waiting in line
dinner banister
of methodical dink go zip rubicon
Palindrome Mommies
idiocy carribean
never seen movies
complimentary megapixel
point of no restriction
If write sun know. Below had part their up no long often life about. Know second house we know work several more.
Write way then sentence land paper why better. Any days no right.
natural enricher for guy part
wealth builder
desolately chocolate
exceedingly manliness
came out with tremendous conclusion
molasses canoe
mosaic adepts
superb quality
selector clubbed
Lag Houdini
Endive amputated
acceptance damnation
pediatric exhilirate
deathtrap Camus
Fabian secretarial
inclosure mundanely
streptomycin emulsifying
I love suffering for nothing
hate bad health
hefner momentousness
maims snug
forfeiture foreshortening
cheapens earring
paintbrushes withering
jolts Cyprian

Thursday, May 17, 2007

Air Force Rules

After realizing their mistake in New Jersey by dropping a flare into the pine barrens and causing a massive fire, the Air Force has offered to compensate those who were effected by this. Contrast this to the Army's acceptance of responsibility to the people of New Orleans. The difference, as far as I can see, is that what the Air Force did was an accident.

Local Highlights

Here in PA, things are a little different than in New Orleans.*

The pictures in my paper up here for the last week (a primary week in PA, mind you), have been Tuesday: Bethlehem is opening a slots casino at the site of Bethlehem steel and a rescue squad captain is charged with assault after trying to help revive a man. Wednesday: Election results, ex-mayor and current candidate hugs wife, the son of a local coroner posted pictures from his dad's work to a MySpace account. Thursday: A local police chief passed away last week from complications due to pancreatic cancer, voters rejected a income tax increase, and a rapist pleads "Guilty but ill." I think some people find live in an area like this just peachy. I find it less than fulfilling. I just don't get it.

And you should read the opinions page. Sheesh. Today's highlights: A man doesn't want police to learn Spanish, he wants the immigrants to learn English; blood needs increase in the summer (from the blood bank director); using gasoline powered vehicles is bad (duh); a thank you to a local school that ran a program on the bad decision to drink and drive; a big thank you to a local librarian. All of these are heartfelt, honest reactions to everyday life. Most are well written, and opinions help intelligent people focus on what's important. (In contrast, unintelligent people use opinions to display their ignorance.)

But life here is not full of all the adventures and excitement that is found in New Orleans in good times, and the trials and tribulations of rebuilding and the buffoonery of the local officials in this difficult times.

Maybe one day, New Orleans will be like this place. I sure hope not.

Wednesday, May 16, 2007

Job Wanted

After 13 years of teaching middle school Latin, I have chosen to resign my position at my school. I do not have a job lined up, but I felt it was time to leave after my most successful year ever. Over the last seven years I have built up the program from only seven students to more than 30 this year. I have had a wonderful time, made some great friends, and achieved recognition for my hard work. The multi-cultural diversity of the student population is a great asset to the school, and the interaction of faculty with the students is amazing. All things considered, I am sad to be leaving such a place.

As the year winds down, I am beginning to look for a new job, a new career, a new challenge. With this in mind, this is what I am looking for (in no particular order):

a job helping to rebuild New Orleans (but not necessarily involved in education)
a job working with technology and computers
a job that will provide me an opportunity to grow mentally
a job with skills that can be transferred to other professions
a job close to where I live
a job that gives merit-based raises
a job that does not involve working in cubicles
a job that includes travel
a job with a company that is stable, well-established, and helps people improve themselves
a job with friendly people
a job with potential (monetary, professional, and otherwise)

I don't think I have a lot of demands, but if I could find something that incorporates all these I would be a really happy guy.

If anyone knows of something that fits the bill, please let me know.

Here's hoping.

Tuesday, May 15, 2007

Are you serious?

I was watching FauxNews today. According to them, gas prices have soared 40% since the Democrats took Congress. I think I may need some more research to back this up, but how do the two things relate? I don't think they do.

How about this one: A fish blinks and a person in Kentucky cooks a chicken. How can you defend the eating of chicken based on these facts?

Um, because they aren't related?

Sunday, May 13, 2007


Why didn't I think of this...

The Charlotte Observer reports:
Students at Charlotte Country Day School participated in Boosterthon to raise money for Fisher Elementary and Ben Franklin Elementary. They raised over $40,000 by running laps. Hope FEMA and all other government agencies let the schools keep this money.

Read the whole article here.

Wednesday, May 09, 2007

This is not helping

Hat tip to G-Bitch for this:

Interactive Map of 10 danger spots in the the Army Corps of Engineers levees in New Orleans.


Good News, Bad News, And Stuff

Easton had its first murder of the year this weekend. Compare New Orleans with 62+.
If I were to compare size of cities, New Orleans rate is tremendous. Easton has 26,000. New Orleans has somewhere between 200K and 250K. If I assume that New Orleans has 260k (just to help with round numbers), New Orleans should have 10 murders or Easton should have 6. No one around here would put up with 6 murders in 4 months. I don't think anyone in New Orleans should put up with 62 either.

Flooding in the Midwest is the worst in 14 years. The stats I heard for 1993 were pretty intense (50K homes flooded, 70K effected). Still that pales in comparison to New Orleans and the Federal Flood (500K effected, 150K homes destroyed). Are my numbers off here? And even though I am not sure they still think about how bad off New Orleans is right now, I am sure they could use our help. It's not how people treat you, it's how you treat people. I hope they are able to rebuild their lives quickly.

I didn't get the job I applied for at the local college. The wife keeps talking about moving to New Orleans. Now I am the one who is afraid. How can we pay for insurance? What if the levees don't hold again? Are there enough hospitals and doctors for us to raise a healthy family? There seem to be more questions than answers.

A want ad is coming soon.

Monday, May 07, 2007

Jazz Fest Review

What a weekend. Here is what I thought about it.

Anders Osborne
The Soul Rebels
The Wild Magnolia
Crab cakes, mirliton stuffing, and pecan catfish meuniere
The Allman Brothers
Joe Krown at Banks St Bar
Rebirth at Howlin' Wolf
cold beer
crawfish beignets
friday night annual crawfish boil
JazzFest Live Tent

Anders losing power on the last song
Friday's unbelievable rain storm
The fried pork chop (the cabbage was ok, but I knew I would regret it)
Alvin Batiste's passing
warm beer
no Dirty Coast booth
small artist colony at the craft area
the fact that New Edition was on the bill
John Mayer bailing early
JazzFest Live Tent sending out CDs

UPDATE: I changed 1st Annual crawfish boil to the annual crawfish boil as B reminded me that he did it for several years running until he moved to Baton Rouge. Also, I have added the JazzFest Live Tent to both best and worst since I still don't have my CDs... and it's May 20

Saturday, May 05, 2007

Wash out

First day of JazzFest, for me at least, was a washout. We got there as early as we could, had a few bites to eat (alligator pie!, oyster patties, crawfish beignets and sacks, fried chicken, red beans and rice, Cabrini Father's club sausage sandwich) and a little to drink (beer -miller lite beer, actually). Then we sat in the Grandstand while the downpour let loose.

While hoping the rain had ended, wwatched a kid swim in the runoff between the dirt track and the infield. After swimming for a few minutes, the rain began again. The kid jumped out because, "I am getting wet!"

I hope today turns out better.

Last night was a kick ass crawfish boil at Sean's house. I think he said this was going to be an annual event. That sounds awesome.

Wednesday, May 02, 2007

Veteran Experience

Keyshawn Johnson was released by the Panthers yesterday. We could use a veteran to help out our young receiving corps. Coach and Mr. Loomis, are you listening?