Archive for December, 2009

blog hiatus

I really will blog again–but Christmas has kicked my butt, blog-wise. Anyway, I have lots of great pictures and fun things to post, and I promise them within a week. How’s that for a promise? (Or a tease?)


happy holidays!

another Mary conversation

[Mary is reading my copy of Alan Bennett’s play, “The History Boys,” sprawled on the floor.

Me: What are you doing, Mary?
Mary: I’m working on my dissertation, Mom.
Me: Oh. Is that tricky since you can’t read yet?
Mary: No, I read the W’s.

critical thinking, redux

Mary is really getting old enough to understand plots now. She still loves “Dr. Who.” Today, we discussed the conventions of the show. She totally understands genre!

Mary: What’s that?
Me: What do you think it is?
Mary: An alien.
Me: That’s right. I think so, too.
Mary: A green alien.
Me: A nice alien, or a mean one?
Mary: A bad one.
Me: What do you think is going to happen?
Mary: The Doctor is going to send the alien away.
Me: I bet you’re right.
Mary: And then he’ll hug Rose.

ha ha ha. I love that kid.

can I just say a few things, students?

* If you have not been concerned about your grade until now, it is too late. (Friday is the last day of class.)

* No, I cannot read your rough draft right this minute and tell you how to get an A.

* No, I cannot guarantee that if you follow all of my instructions from the last paper, you will get an A. Or, rather, I can, but only if you actually understand and apply all of the things I said, as well as fulfilling all elements of the written assignment.

* No, there is not more extra credit. You should spend your time studying for the exam.

* Yes, I am serious that missing class will affect your grade. That is why the syllabus says so. The syllabus. The document you got on the first day that outlines the whole course, which is available on the course’s web site and has been all semester, as well as being handed out on paper.

* My name is not Joann!

* Yes, I will help you refine your thesis statement. No, I will not choose your topic for you.

* Please stop smoking–you smell like a chimney and make me feel ill, plus you’re going to die young.

* No, I do not remember exactly what it was that was too broad about your thesis statement from the first paper. Do you have the paper with you? No? Do you remember your topic? No? Well, maybe you should bring the paper and come to my office hours, since I DO NOT HAVE EVERY PAPER FROM EVERY ONE OF MY 110 STUDENTS MEMORIZED!

* Yes, I can help you spell “Boleyn,” although I must say that if you can’t spell her name you probably do not know enough about her to be writing about her in a paper.

* My name is not Theresa!


…dressed for farming:

so proud of Mary!

This week, she identified her first cultural allusion. ha ha.

She was watching an episode from season 1 of the new series of Dr. Who, and there’s a scene that’s a visual reference to the part of “Yellow Submarine” where the Beatles are all running back and forth across the hallway and going in and out of doors.

Mary said, “Look! It’s like the Beatles!”