Friday, April 25, 2008

What Color is Your Dress?

It's prom season. Boobs and boutonnieres. woo hoo. When I was in high school, I refused to go to prom. If I remember it was something about...exploitative, excessiveness, starving children, and, probably, "the establishment" (because really, what isn't it behind). I've never regretted not going yet I find myself rather strangely excited about chaperoning this year's MRH Prom, which is tomorrow night at the Sheldon. After some careful consideration, I've decided that my desire to be part of this prom experience stems from: #1 My unfaltering love of the movie Pretty in Pink, and #2 The love that I feel for the kids that I teach (you know, wanting to be part of their happiness & fun & whatnot).

Saturday, April 19, 2008

Wednesday, April 16, 2008

MissileFits Model Rocketry Club

There's been a soft buzz of excitement around my house in anticipation of the 9th Annual MissileFits Rocket Launch in Forest Park. But, now that the weekend of the launch is upon us, the soft buzz has grown into a full blown frenzy of excitement. A sample of phrases heard around my house this week: "That's MY rocket!" "Watch out below!" "Where's the fire?" "I'm just looking at it." "Can we shoot it off now?" "Oh, yeah!" So, Willa named our entry Tammi. It's decorated quite nicely with glitter glue and puffy paint, which you can't see too well in these photos. And, there's plenty of room in the nose for our little tiny fuzzy blue chick pilots and parachute.

UPDATE: Things went well for the dynamic duo. Check out Willa's Rocket and its worm pilot.

Tuesday, April 15, 2008

Senior Pranks

Yep, it's that time.....time for Senior Pranks! woo hoo! Yesterday morning, all the teachers came into their classrooms to find this message:

It says, "Look really hard for them all!" They hid all our dry erase markers and replaced them with chalk. Funny, funny stuff. Today, the prank was even better. The kids found a way to hijack the school's intercom from a regular classroom phone. Once the gained access, they looped some music which played until, presumably, they got tired or caught. Much funnier prank.

The best senior prank was from last year's seniors. Apparently, they put the school (calling it a 'building') and the school's property up for sale in the St. Louis Post Dispatch. I hear it was a steal! Get this. They managed to find out the principals school cell phone number and gave that as the contact number. Brilliant!

UPDATE: They got caught! Apparently, the music also played over the Middle School intercom too. Not so bad in itself but REALLY bad when MAP testing is going on. Not cool. So, the kids were given the choice: 5 days suspension or a week of working the 6th grade academic camps this summer. They both opted for the later.

Thursday, April 10, 2008

Gas Prices

I hate watching local news but do like to be in the know. So, occasionally, I read the local going-ons via the internet. Tonight, I went to and this headline caught my attention, "Activist Plans to Lie in Front of Bus to Protest Gas Prices." While I applaud this guy's activism, I am appalled that he, and most adults, still do not understand how gas prices are determined. So, before you go standing, or lying, in the path of a very large vehicle, take a little time to get informed about the issues. Metro, Mayor Slay, Gov. Blunt, Congress, President Bush.....they do not control gas prices! If you want to know who does, click this. Then go tell someone.

Ban Bottled Water!

If there is any one good reason to drink bottled water, I haven't found it. But, I can offer you four GREAT reasons (in no particular order) not to drink bottled water: #1-always resist plastic (which relies on petroleum), #2-tap water is generally pretty tasty, #3 tap water is free, and #4-you shouldn't create unnecessary waste. Yes, I know that you're thinking, "Well, what about recycling them?" Problem is, no one really does it. Doug James of Cornell says that "Since its recent popularization, bottled water (in all its flavors) has become one of the most consumed, yet least recycled beverages. For example, it is estimated that in 2005 alone approximately 30 billion plastic water bottles were purchased, with only about 12% recycled (in part due to out-dated deposit laws). The remaining 25 billion bottles were either landfilled, littered or incinerated." In fact, you should check his video. Cool stuff. And, St. Louis City is doing it right too. In addition to several influential restaurants, the city has pledged to reduce and, eventually, eliminated bottled from offices, meetings, events, etc. Way to go greener St. Louis City! You too can take the pledge. Just click here for more info.

Tuesday, April 08, 2008

Couple with the Kid

When you're a hetero couple but don't have kids, people assume a couple of things about you. One, you're not married. Two, you're not ready yet. Or, three, you're not having kids at all because you're selfish and hate all children. Since Bill and I began dating in our mid-twenties and didn't marry until our late twenties, we got lumped into group three when we didn't start poppin' out those shorties right away.

Although Bill and I never have hated children, I do distinctly remember feeling very annoyed when inconsiderate people brought their even more inconsiderate children into restaurants that we frequented. It made me cringe when I saw them walk through the door. And, the more baby-distracting gear that they carried the more likely that their kid was going to be a major problem to my excellent dining experience. So, now that we've popped one out, we've become more like that couple. But, we've also tried to be sensitive to others. We eat at weird times on non-popular days. We try to find "kid friendly" even among the independent restaurants that still suit our sensibilities. Or, and this is just the best option most times, gotten a babysitter.

Still, I always thought that the inconsiderate parent problem was not mine because Willa never exhibited anything but a natural talent for being well-behaved and charming in public. But our recent trip to our local fave, South City Diner, demonstrates a contrary experience that is increasingly becoming the norm around our house lately. We walked to City Diner, that was fine. We arrived at City Diner, that was also fine. We entered City Diner and that was when something happened. It was like a dog whistle in that, whatever it was that upset the balance, neither Bill nor I saw or heard it coming. Well, it finally ended but not before feeling extremely uncomfortable, embarrassed, humiliated, and, believe it or not, a lot like one of them! Ugh. And double Ugh.

Saturday, April 05, 2008

Niki de Saint Phalle @ MOBOT

Fall is my favorite season of the year but spring is good too. The blossoms, gentle fragrances, cool breezes--It's all about the rebirth and, I gotta mention, the allergy problems (the latter is a nod to my inner curmudgeon, I apologize). So to soak in some springtime goodness, I took my first 2008 trip to the Missouri Botanical Garden. I had forgotten that they're putting up a new sculpture exhibit for the year. The sculptures are mosaic works by the artist Niki de Saint Phalle. I love the whimsy of her work which reminds me of a lot roadside attraction/insider art. I've always had a hard time resisting the pull of a good roadside attraction. I mean, seriously, who hasn't said, or heard someone say, something along the line of "Can we please stop to see the world's largest grotto made entirely of bottle caps and limestone?" BTW, does anyone else out there remember that PBS show out of KC called "Rare Visions and Roadside Attractions"? I was a huge fan. Anyway, if you get the chance, check out the Niki de Saint Phalle exhibit at MOBOT.