Showing posts from December, 2007

The Year that Was: Jobs

Well, I wrote all about this in my Christmas letter, but since most of my bloggy friends aren't on my list, I thought I would go over some of the main events of 2007 as I prepare to enter into a new year with new hopes and dreams. So, here goes. 2007 began with the usual fanfare at the usual time. I wanted more than anything to continue moving forward in my relationship with Susan and to continue to improve in my job/career. To start things off with a bang I got fired decided to make a career change in February. I should mention here that I wasn't really fired, I was just informed that I would not be offered a contract for 2007/2008. There's a big difference. For one thing, I still had a salary. Nice thing, that. And I had some time to plan. Also nice. I was the chair of the developmental writing program at a local university. I was teaching many (7) sections, supervising other people, and attending meetings around the clock regularly. It was really a drag. I was especial

Merry Christmas (and a belated Happy Solstice and Hanukkah)

Happy Holidays from Morgan, Susan, and Karen!

Christmas Poem: A.A. Milne

King John's Christmas King John was not a good man — He had his little ways. And sometimes no one spoke to him For days and days and days. And men who came across him, When walking in the town, Gave him a supercilious stare, Or passed with noses in the air — And bad King John stood dumbly there, Blushing beneath his crown. King John was not a good man, And no good friends had he. He stayed in every afternoon ... But no one came to tea. And, round about December, The cards upon his shelf Which wished him lots of Christmas cheer, And fortune in the coming year, Were never from his near and dear, But only from himself. King John was not a good man, Yet had his hopes and fears. They’d given him no present now For years and years and years. But every year at Christmas, While minstrels stood about, Collecting tribute from the young For all the songs they might have sung, He stole away upstairs and hung A hopeful stocking out. King John was not a good man, He lived his life aloof; Alone h

Birthday Week

Flash back a month or so ago. Susan asks sweetly, "What do you want for your birthday?" Now, I will probably post on this topic one day soon, but it has been a long time since I have wanted something and waited for it. If I want something reasonable (not an RV or a new lap top or anything outrageously expensive), I purchase it for myself. Gone are my girlhood days of the wish list. Everyone I know is this way--we just don't allow ourselves want any more. So, I thought and thought, and here's what I came up with: Yep, that's right. A trip to Johnson City! For those of you out of "the know" (or those of you not from Texas), Johnson City is the home of Lyndon Johnson, our thirty-sixth president. It was actually named for his grandfather's brother, who donated the land for the original settlement. What a trip it would be to grow up in a town named for your family. Perhaps that gave LBJ some of his sense of responsibility and destiny. Perhaps it lent a l

Mothers and Daughters

I lived with my mother for the last twelve years of her life. During that time, she nursed me through a bone graft, and I nursed her through colon cancer, a broken wrist, two broken ankles, emphysema , and two separate iterations of lung cancer. And, of course, I was with her when she died. It was an important time for me in many ways. I got the opportunity to forgive my mother for being mentally ill, for drinking too much, and for being, well, not the best mother in the world to us three girls. I got the gift of seeing Mama as a human being who just didn ’t have what it took to be the mom we wanted her to be. I remember watching her with her beloved cat one day. Kitty was sitting next to Mama on the couch, and Mama was patting the cat on the head. It was the best she could do. And the cat? The cat acted like someone was giving her a sensual massage. I realized then that Mama’s affection and support for us over the years, as limited as it seemed, was all she had to give. As we grew clo

Poetry: Leslie Norris

The Pit Ponies The come like the ghosts of horses, shyly, To this summer field, this fresh green, Which scares them. They have been too long in the blind mine, Their hooves have trodden only stones And the soft, thick dust of fine coal, And they do not understand the grass. For over two years their sun Has shone from an electric bulb That has never set, and their walking Has been along the one, monotonous Track of pulled coal-trucks. They have bunched their muscles against The harnass and pulled, and hauled. But now they have come out of the underworld And are set down in the sun and real air, Which are strange to them. They are humble And modest, their heads are downcast, they Do not expect to see very far. But one Is attempting a clumsy gallop. It is Something he could do when he was very young, When he was a little foal a long time ago And he could run fleetly on his long foal's legs, And almost he can remember this. And look, One rolls on her back with joy in the clean grass!

Final Exams

While my day time students find themselves stuck with the usual final exams, my evening students--who are adult returning students--get the special treatment. Our final exams are always at a local restaraunt featuring really good margaritas. This is the life!

I Protest

I have read some complaints on other people's blogs about posting responses to Blogger in recent days, and I have become concerned. I recently got this blog because Yah**'s blog sucked was experiencing problems, and now friends may have trouble commenting on my new site! Poop! And then this morning, I received this email! Prof J. I've tried to comment on your blog, but the comments section is different than it used to be. I've tried using the "Open" feature as Idon't have a Wordpress (or any other) identity featured. I'm so bummed. Anastasia Beaverhausen If the lovely, talented, and soon to be employed Anastasia Beaverhausen cannot comment on my lowly blog, I'm steamed! I went to my blog control and found out that (although I had previously said anyone could post) the stupid thing was no longer set to allow annonymous posting. So I changed it again. Of course, if my name were as awsome as A. Beaverhausen, I would not want to reply annonymously. I


mama milton: restless hair syndrome I start this post with a nod to Mama Milton, who got me thinking. Hair is one of the principle means of self expression for women (and, to a lesser degree, men) in our society. We color, cut, tease, perm, straighten, process, glue, and spray it into submission. We adorn ourselves with hair. When it changes color or texture or it thins or we lose it, we begin to panic. When we want to change our lives or make a statement, the first thing we change is our hair. Hairdressers even have a name for it. "Post Break-up hair." I have had me some hair dos. 1990 2003 2005 I like to think of myself as a simple woman with simple tastes, but I have been known to go crazy on my hair. Thankfully, I don't have any pictures on my computer of me with a perm , but I once even had poodle hair. Hey! It was the eighties and everyone was doing it! I would have had big glasses, too, if I wore glasses in those days. I even shaved my head in the nineties. What

Because I haven't posted in awhile and this looked like fun

Here's a meme I got from Organic Mama . It's fun, even if it has an inconsistent point of view. 110. My middle name is: Jean 109. I was born in: Jackson, Mississippi 108. I am really: silly 107. My phone is: a hot pink razr 106. My eye color is: green or blue or some combination 105. My favorite colors are: green, blue, red, orange 104. My ring size is: huge 103. My height is: 5 foot 1 102. I am allergic to: shell fish 101. I was born on: December 20 100. I am annoyed by: stupidity and bad grammar 99. Last book you read: How to Re-Imagine the World: a pocket guide for practical visionaries by Anthony Weston 98. My bed is…queen sized, dressed in red 97. One thing you hate about yourself: irritability 96. My favorite holiday is: Thanksgiving 95. The perfect kiss is: soft, sweet, long 94. The last three CDs I bought were: James Taylor, The Weepies, Paul Simon (but this is over a couple of years—I mostly buy individual songs off of I Tunes) 93. Are you living at home: my own 92.

Yellow Dog Democrat

In an earlier post this week, I identified myself as a yellow dog democrat. Bipolar Lawyer Cook asked what that could be. She is not alone. For some people, including my partner , this is not a well known term. Melanie, over at Bean Paste , was quick to offer the definition in the comment section, but I wanted to give you a little bit of the history (I'm all about the history, dear readers). There are competing online versions of the history of the term, and this time, I think that Wikipedia has the more correct of the versions. DO NOT tell my English students about this; they will insist that their desire to cite Wikipedia in academic writings should be honored. The term, "Yaller Dog Democrat" springs from the post restoration period in the South when white men swarmed to the Democratic party as a response to the restoration. Wikipedia sites the book, Exit Laughing , with the story of a Kentucky democrat , Theodore Hallam, saying that he would sooner vote for an old yal