Showing posts with label Bloopers. Show all posts
Showing posts with label Bloopers. Show all posts

Origin Stories

 The beginning of the Spring semester was just in January but feels like a million years ago.

 I feel like each day is a decade long in this new next chapter that is unfolding in my life, and I sometimes get lost in my  search for peace, happiness and meaning.

 This is my second semester 100% "back in the classroom" for all of my courses after the disruptions of zooming etc, and I'm still trying to figure out how to make a bridge from the things that used to work "before" to the things that will work for the students I have now. 

 I have to assume all of my students have been through at least a few bumps in the past 2 years, and if they are taking face-to-face classes they must be hoping to take part in some new normal  that they are willing to get out of bed, get dressed and  risk their lives for. 

With that in mind I dig deep to make every class meeting special.  They play Reacting to the Past games (which have brought backflips, splits, assassinations,  bribes and much karaoke singing in the past weeks), snack on a buffet of treats and take pretests based on the "wrong answers only" principle.  

I'm doing my best. 

The one thing I haven't done is share what they wrote the first day of class when I handed out a sheet of paper asking for their name, pronoun (omg that is an entirely different column stay tuned), contact info and "What is your superpower If you have multiple superpowers please list as many as you can" (followed by a promise that I will keep them secret).

Here are their answers, in no particular order:

*I'm a Leo!

* I can communicate with inanimate objects, especially electronic devices

*I can wake up at any hour and be wide awake!

*I can forget anyone's name

*I can do anything I put my mind to. I can also fly.

*I can laugh like Seth Rogen

*top secret

*Sense of direction. I never get lost.

*Reading minds. 

*I'm pretty good at multi-tasking and I am (sometimes) a human lie detector

*1) Drinking. 2) Being on time for class.

*Drawing this mouse perfectly every time (NOTE: student drew perfect mouse)

*I've never seen a ferret in person

*I'm a mother of 4, ages 13, 11, 7 and 3

*I love children, especially newborns

*Willpower and chasing my dreams

*Photo editing. Cat whisperer (they all love me)

*I can play 4 instruments

*supersonic flight, super strength, and the ability to manipulate anything at the atomic level

*shape shifting (I'm trans) and being able to write

*The power to control matter

*I can see around corners. I just can...

*Telekenesis

*I'm actually an alien wearing human skin

*I am a curious person and I like to ask questions. I'm good at taking minor details and finding a pattern. I like to debate/discuss. History is one of my favorite subjects.

*Caring, imagination

* I have ADHD and can get hyperfixated on topics I'm interested in and I hope it helps me here!

*I'm always on time, I hate being late. I'm also a super fast runner.

*I can do hair and dye hair.

*Teleportation

*I try my best at everything. Big creativity and sense of humor

*electrokinesis, telepathy, time travel, omni-telepathy, teleportation, that's it!!!!

*Can hold a grudge forever

*Invisibility, teleportation, flight, super-strength, psychological manipulation.  All of these powers are very real. 

*I'm left handed

*I control black holes and gravity

*Invisibility. Persuasion. Shapeshifting. Really smart, really stupid.

*My superpower is my strength and my will to never give up and push myself to keep going no matter what

*I'm able to have multiple hobbies and be very detailed but then I can lose interest within minutes and be super spaced out

*I know how to find out information without being caught

*My awkwardness is mostly amusing! My bosses think so at least!

*Seeing the future

*Invisibility and animal communication (dogs/cats)

*Affect others' emotions

*Photography pro

*My superpowers are staying on task, being prepared for any situation, and having a good attitude

*Super jump

*I've done multiple internships at animal hospitals and I've never had a dog not like me

*Cooking

*spending too much money

*competitive knowledge

*I prefer to keep my powers private lol

*I could fly

*I am not really sure

* I can draw a photorealistic portrait of your face or pet

*Talking with others ;-)

*I am colorblind and good with sports fact

*I am an empath

* I can speak three languages

*I'd say my superpower is to read people

*Having the ability to stay on tiktok all day

*Extreme self-awareness

*Not really sure

*Lol I don't trust you

*I'm good with people

*I am a cyborg. I have two metal rods in my spine.

*I have ADD

*I find ways to solve problems concerning my financial needs since I was in elementary. I'm a hustler. Yes, legally.

*Stubborness and hyperfocus

*I'm tall AF, I play basketball. Main superpower is gambling

*weightlifting

*Chronic anxiety and procrastination, ignorance, camoflauge .... psychosis?

*Super strength (not really I have tiny arms) and super speed (I have to run across campus to get to class)

*Animal whisperer

* Never having to sleep

*I have no known superpowers

*Superstrength, genius, drinking a lot

*I can read people's personalities based on body language and speech (extreme psychoanalysis)

*If I have a superpower I haven't figured it out yet

*I can make clothes

*Perpetual calmness

*overthinking. Sometimes I feel like professor X

*Cleaning my room in under 5 minutes

*I'm really good at tiktok

*I have to come back to this question lol

*My superpower is procrastinating until the last possible second

*My superpowers include overthinking and eating way too much

*Invisibility

*super procrastination

*Cooking and eating way too much

*I can read people's emotions SUPER well ;-)

*Wearing crocs everywhere

* I could read people's minds

*I'm kind! I'm an overachiever, I want the best for myself,  I'm competitive

*Mind reader

*I want to have the ability to manipulate atoms but I won't lie and say I have it already

*I like to laugh a lot and smile

*sleeping for a long period of time

* The power to overthink things

*I can stay calm under stressful situations




How High Can Rocks Fly: Part 2: Do not give rocks to children.

(From December 2017) 

I have to answer the question I don’t know how to ask before I can write something I want to give my students before they take their final exams. 

 For years now, ever since at least 2010 when we lost two people in one class, I have given my students lucky rocks at the end of the semester as tangible evidence of my gratitude for our time together and my good wishes for their future.

 We usually begin Final Exam day with stories and rocks (and for a bit there was a picture thing and once or twice I wore my Harry Potter-looking Ph.D. stuff), but that always left out the student who tiptoed in 3 minutes late, or the students who were so genuinely wrapped up in memorizing the parts of the Treaty of Paris (1898) they were unable to listen.  I don't blame them.

I would not want any student to feel left out, so this year I will give them something to read (this).

One of the reasons I love rocks is they remind me that I have a choice in what I keep and what I leave behind.   

I hope that you all take pieces of this class with you, the good parts, the parts that meant something to you.

 If there were times in the semester when you felt frustrated at me or disappointed in yourself, I hope you choose to put that rock down.

One of the things that makes us human is our ability to question things and to invent stories.  Rocks cannot tell you about the 1968 election and connect it to both the Nixon Doctrine and Watergate. 

No matter how hard they try, rocks can’t tell stories.  Rocks have other uses.

Do rocks worry about being useful? Successful? Important?  Lost? 

Would worrying help the rocks get to where they are destined to go?  

Can rocks fly?  Did this rock come from outer space?  Was it part of a meteor once? 

I do not know. 

I did read once that humans are made of stardust. Stardust pulsing though our veins, connecting us to things that have been and will become. Perfectly amazing. 

I don’t know how high these rocks can fly, but your rock has flown from where it was and then will end up exactly where it is intended to be, at exactly the speed it needed to go.

There. Question answered.

Now something else.  When I bought the rocks there was tag on the bag with was a notice smaller than a fortune cookie that read, “Not for children under 14. Not for food.”

I shook my head.

Who needs to be told that????

What horrible person would be giving rocks to kids? Or think rocks are food?  

Still, there must be a reason for them to have taken the resources to have printed and affixed those particular rules to these rather rock-like rocks. 

I choose to practice radical acceptance, so I’m going to practice believing that those two rules are crucial.  

Rule #1: Do not give rocks to children.

Whoa. YES! Best rule ever. Brilliant. Profound, even.
If you give a child a rock, they might cry.   They were hoping for maybe candy or your Netflix password or to use your wireless headphones. 

You can’t always tell if someone is a child or not based on their age, but you will definitely know if a person is ready to believe rocks are magic and that you are offering them treasure.   

If they don’t want your treasure, leave them to the universe to learn what they need to learn on their wisdom path today.

Rule #2: Rocks are not for food.  

Yeah. Right! Anyone who has heard the fable about stone soup knows that rocks can be the key ingredient in making a community feast. 

I am aware that more than one hundred students are  waiting for me to finish writing this and post exam grades, so for expediency sake, here is a recap of the story à

Our service projects this semester have been our stone soup.  Each student has chosen to use their talents to contribute to a greater mission resulting in something bigger and more awesome than we each could have made on our own.

But OK. Still.  I had agreed to agreeing to the two rules and I’m breaking my rule to follow the rules.

 Good thing I don’t have an editor to answer to. Good thing I don’t have to worry about getting a grade on this essay.  

Rocks are not for food. This is probably the stupidest rule ever.  

If we are at the point where people are eating so many rocks that there are rock shortages and rock overdoses lets reconvene and figure out what bad choices lead our society down that to that path.  Was it Yalta? Was it Perestroika? Can it be connected in any way to blaming Mexico for forcing us to join WW1?

Wait, I am still not agreeing.

Radical acceptance might be against my nature, so I have to practice harder than other people. Here we go.

Do not eat rocks. Be careful what you ingest, be careful that it isn’t toxic or harmful.  Practice kindness to yourself, you are treasure.

 Do not feed rocks to people. Do not feed anything harmful to other people. They, also, are treasure.

 Wish for yourself health and protection; offer the same wish for everyone else.   

Now I see it.

The people who bagged these rocks took the time to wish their rocks would do no harm.
Bless their hearts.

I’m almost ready to finish this story and grade that stack of exams that looms next to me on my desk, but not until I answer the question I’m still figuring out how to ask.



(continued)
(there are only 3 parts, then I really really have to grade.....)




How High Can Rocks Fly? (Part 1): We don’t know what to do.

(From December 2017) 

I’m watching TV while grading exams.

Actually, I’m watching TV while sitting near exams that need to be graded.  It is a show about people fixing up houses and I just want to watch it all the way until the end and see if this mess becomes a home.

 It’s hard to tell if these particular people are especially stressed by logistics of demolition and construction or whether the TV cameras and production crew are making them nuts, but they are cracking under the pressure.   

They spent way too long on decorating projects and are especially stuck when trying to install a single wooden shelf in an otherwise empty room.

“Oh no! Noooooo! Wait ....no! This won’t work!” One says to the other as they almost install the shelf, measure something, then halt their efforts.  They mumble at each other, exasperated, then one turns to the camera and says, “We need a 2-foot board.  I bought one that is 30 inches. It just won’t work. We don’t have time to go buy a new one. We don’t know what to do.”   

The show cuts to commercial with a big truck landing in something and splashing water at camera and I turned the TV off.   I hope someone helped the poor people figure out how to use a saw. 

I’m ready to grade exams now.

But first I have to get the answer to a question that I don't know how to ask. 

(continued*)