February, 2007

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Dear Dominican Republic…

Wednesday, February 28th, 2007

My cell phone “Countdown” tells me I will see you in… well… less than 30 days now.  I’m really looking forward to it.

You have big shoes to fill.  Last year, I did a roller coaster trip and it was nothing short of perfect.  Last year, I came back recharged, warmer, and glowing.

I don’t mean to be one-of-those-tourists but could you please be the perfect trip?

Sincerely yours,
Travis-R.V. [report card version]

Nice Jean Thaw

Monday, February 26th, 2007

I think I see myself for what other people see a lot.


So what am I… and uncoincidentally other people… seeing, as of late?

Calm.  [and as a quiet whisper to the gods of young adult life: I hope it’s hear to stay for awhile.]

My skin is better.  My smile and laugh are returning to their most-genuine of states.  My jeans are fitting better, despite no real kinesiology or science to cause that.  My super funky arm-flailing dance moves are reappearing on dance floors.  All that kind of stuff.  I think it’s partly because winter’s done.  Winter’s done and I’m slowly dealing with things in my disorganized mile-a-minute way.

Any substantial stressful things?  Nope.  just things, and life, and growing up….. things…

Driving back from Edmonton today I heard a song that used to make my heart race… (in a good way) then didn’t for awhile.  It made my heart race again and brought back really great memories.

Must be a sign of this year’s/phase’s thaw.

Classroom Technology

Thursday, February 22nd, 2007

Dear Calgary Board of Education,

(1) My classroom phone is probably 12X more quiet than the other phones in my wing.  No big deal, right?  Well yes and no.  There are 6 rooms in my wing.  When any of their phones ring my ears twitch and I decide whether to “go for it” or not.  I run… get there… and 80% of the time it’s just a drill.  *arg*

(2) My tiny little backspace key on my classroom keyboard is UNCANNILY close to my insert button.  No big deal, right?  Well… I backspace a lot.  My usual keyboards have a giant, and quite forgiving, backspace key.  I miss a lot.  Then all of a sudden I arrow back and start losing all the text I’ve written after the cursor.  Then I forget that Ctrl. Z will undo all of the “overtyping” and it makes me get down on myself that I can never remember a) to be more accurate when backspacing and b) that Ctrl. Z is really quite an effective feature and shortcut.

Please get back to me if there’s any way we can make either situation better…. for the children’s sake.

Sincerely yours,
Mr. R

Ou-est mon “steam”?

Tuesday, February 20th, 2007

I come to school totally charged-up and ready!  I tell my staff all about my convention adventures.  I share how Mark Tewksbury should be made ruler of all.  I brag about how I went to a zillion and three sessions.

I’m so rested from going to Edmonton and having an amazing time, seeing the family and laughing tons.

I use my prep to its fullest.  As the day’s almost done, I make a “to-do” list on my whiteboard for ALL I will do after school.  Start Report Cards…  Do This… Get That… Look-Up…. I think you get the jist.

It is now 4:44p.m. and the moment has passed.  It’s crazy because at 2:45 I was so optimstic.  Flick!!  Light switch off.  Now tired.  Instead I’ll blog and call it a day.


“If you please–draw me a sheep…”

Wednesday, February 14th, 2007

I’ve always said the best books find you. [as opposed to the other way around].

Well, I haven’t always said that, but I’ve thought it for a long time.   And, I have told my students this Robertsonism (both this year’s batch and last year’s).

(As an aside: I’d suppose the same is probably true about movies, and lots of other things.)

Yesterday a book found me via My Secret Valentine [at school].  It was The Little Prince by Antoine de Saint Exupery.

The book had almost found me once before when Allan quoted the story, as it is written–in French, before I went to Montreal.

I read it in one gulp.  Lucky it’s only 100 pages or so… because I’m a very slow reader.  And since your google-savviness can allow you to find the big quote, already, (on my blog) I won’t leave you with that one (although it’s worth leaving).  Instead I’ll give you an entire paragraph:

If I have told you these details about the asteroid, and made note of its number for you, it is on account of the grown-ups and their ways.  Grown-ups love figures.  When you tell them that you have made a new friend, they never ask you any questions about essential matters.  They never say to you, “What does his voice sound like?  What games does he love best?  Does he collect butterflies?”  Instead, they demand: “How old is he?  How many brothers has he?  How much does he weigh?  How much money does his father make?  Only from these figures do they think they have learned anything about him.

and I thought I couldn’t become anymore enthralled with French Culture.

Will you be my valentine?

Monday, February 12th, 2007

Call me a suck… but I kind of like cheesy days/weeks at school.  Our staff is having a Secret Valentine day today and tomorrow.

I think it’s great.  I can’t tell you whose name I picked because that would take the Secret out of Secret Valentine.  But I’ll keep you posted on how it all goes.

In the Spirit of St. V himself, my students are having a secret valentine, too.  I’m sure most of them forgot… because that’s what weekends do–make kids forget.  I’ll just have to remember to have a backup supply of Valentine “stuff” to prevent tears from all the victims of forgetfulness.

Oh, all the lovey gushy things I get to do.  It almost makes up for the endless curses of report card time… which is *oh, right* just around the corner.  Maybe whoever got my name in the secret valentine draw will offer to do my report cards for me.

Big News!

Thursday, February 8th, 2007

An unnamed source has revealed to me that Red Robin Gourmet Burgers… is… wait for it… wait for it…


What you ask??  Can it be??  Will you work there??

YES!! YES!! YES!! 

Calgary, it seems, will have a Red Robin again.  Man oh man oh man.

There is a burger god(/goddess) afterall.

Word is–it’ll open at or after Stampede.

In completely unrelated news [other than also being exciting] Alison–better known as Ali–is returning to the Mothership and serving guests with an Appreciate, Educate, and Accelerate.  I will now be living vicariously through her.  As soon as she sends me a pic in one of their spanky new red uniforms I will post it for all to see.

A big “ready… set… go!!!!” goes out to Ali from all of us here at tjr.com!!  😛

Lundi… Moon Day.

Tuesday, February 6th, 2007

Yesterday, after school, I went home and the Cirque du Soleil show I saw in Orlando was playing on T.V.  It brought back really great memories.

I was watching it… eating trail mix… looking at pictures from Red Robin (that Mary had given me as my ‘secret santa’) and contemplating life.

Inevitably, I thought of two things.  Another round of university, and Montreal.  The two topics aren’t necessarily related.

I, then, started reading old cards I got from colleagues and students.  As I was, my phone rang and I was invited by Kelly to go out for some Virgin Margaritas [honest.] for Margarita Monday and some Appies.

I sat at the restaurant… while visiting… thinking some more about university and montreal and travelling.

Today in the shower… same thing.  University.  Travels.  Life.

I love love love [most parts of] teaching.  I think I just want to extend what I do into a slightly different area.  Not a whole change of pace… just a slightly different direction.  The thing is: that while I’m young it might be easier for a bit of transitional thinking.

Hmmm………  QLC Round II or wise meanderings??