Friday, October 31, 2008

I bet living in a nudist colony takes all the fun out of Halloween.

Still planning on opening your door to all the trick-or-treaters? Or ever sleeping without this image haunting you? Didn't think so...

I'm looking forward to Halloween, as it means I get to dress up, even though I am 27 years old. I was all over Homecoming Week dress up days; yes, I live the teen life vicariously through my students and career. Go me! While out looking for a costume I came upon a glitch in the plan: the only ones available for adult women are some variation of the skank theme, such as "Slutty Snow White" or "Trampy Firefighter." Hmmm...quite the conundrum. While I'm sure there are teachers who would show up in such get-ups (Mary Kay Letourneau), I'm going to have to pass on risking my job and any respect I've gained thus far from my students. I'm thinking a classic like a vampire will work, with the fangs, blood, and some big crazy hair. When in doubt, go with the big hair; this philosophy has opened many doors for me.

Sidenote: I spent a few hours Thursday night passing out toothbrushes for the Kern Dental Society at Safe Halloween (hey, lots of kids were excited for our "treat"), and I noticed quite a few booty shorts, bare-midriffs, and go-go boots on ten year olds. Nice. Why are we in a handbasket and where are we going?

Wednesday, October 29, 2008

Now I ain't sayin' she's a...

Not a day goes by that I don't engage in an enlightening and interesting conversation with at least one student, and that's what keeps me going back everyday...and my mortgage. Case in point: Monday was the school blood drive, so inevitably kids began asking about donating plasma, for which they get paid, and then the questions began about how much they would get for donating, um, things necessary to make babies. Oh, we also learned about stocks, bonds, and the importance of saving your money!

During my prep period today (an hour for me to get stuff done and to NOT have to talk to students) a student we'll call Mike wandered in (why aren't you in class?) and started doing his typical schmooze bit. I interrupted him to inform him I know what he is up to, and told him I was onto his game of manipulating/charming/playing all the adults in his life. He was taken aback by it and replied that I notice a lot of things others don't, and that I am different from most. Where are you going with this, Mike? Asking him to expand, he told me that I am good-looking (I have come to realize it doesn't take much for teenage boys) yet I don't use it to get what I want, as I went to college and have a job, when I could find myself a sugar daddy to put me in the lap of luxury. I'll keep my options open...or not.

Tuesday, October 28, 2008

Big goals in life.

The summer of 2008 will forever be remembered as one of my more difficult, as it did not include standing in line for the new Harry Potter, and I knew that I never would again experience the anticipation and exhilaration of having the Borders clerk hand me a book full of new wizarding adventures. To make up for this great loss in my life, I decided to read the entire series again in order, and I picked up #1 as October began. I found myself quickly finishing the first few and decided I was going to step it up and read all seven in the month of October. I am proud to say, family and friends, mission accomplished. I know, hold your applause. I highly recommend the continual reading of this series, as each time one discovers new details and angles. I know there are many more important pieces of literature I should be devouring, and I do, but Harry Potter just cannot be topped (sorry, Twilight fans). I never would have thought I would discover a series that brought me greater joy than the Baby-Sitters Club (oh, the folly of youth!) but you never know what surprises life has in store.

Leave your book recommendations here, please. :)

Thursday, October 23, 2008

Steals and deals.

A base has been stolen! Go to your local Taco Bell to claim a FREE crunchy beef taco on Tuesday, October 28th, from 2pm-6pm. Thanks, Jason Bartlett! Seriously, this isn't one of those In-N-Out 60th Anniversary rumors. Now if only Target would get involved in this freebie madness (insert diabolical laughing).

Wednesday, October 22, 2008

For Jaime!

America has been waiting with bated breath for a decade for Guns 'N Roses to release its "new" album, "Chinese Democracy," and back in May Dr Pepper decided to up the ante and encourage Axl and the boys along, promising a free Dr Pepper to all Americans if the album dropped this year. Well, folks, the wait is over! Dr Pepper is ready to give out free soda coupons to every American when the album releases on Nov. 23, 2008. If you're out to get a free Dr Pepper just follow these simple steps:


1. On the Nov. 23, 2008 release date, go to

2. Register your information to receive a coupon for one free 20-oz. Dr Pepper.

3. When your coupon arrives, redeem it wherever Dr Pepper is sold.

4. Drink your Dr Pepper slowly to experience all 23 flavors. Dr's orders.

Coupons will be available for 24 hours, starting at 12:01 a.m. Eastern Time on Nov. 23, 2008. Allow 4-6 weeks for coupon to arrive. Coupons will expire on Feb. 28, 2009. Limit one coupon per person. Full terms and conditions available at

Tuesday, October 21, 2008

Straight dorking it.

Have I always been a huge nerd and this trait was lying dormant until now? Or am I just realizing it myself and everyone else has been in on the joke for years? I came across this t-shirt today and was disturbingly excited about my discovery. I also read an excerpt to my class about the "humorous" history of money from Dave Barry's Money Secrets, but I was the only one thinking it was funny, besides the students with either a) my sense of humor or b) the good sense to laugh at Miss Urmston's jokes. Learn now, kids; this trait will serve you well in life.

Monday, October 20, 2008

The second quarter is in full effect.

The school year is already one quarter of the way over and I cannot believe it. If the rest of the year flies by like this, I will be a happy camper! What's really fantastic is that I, procrastinator extraordinaire, already have grades entered, even though they aren't due until tomorrow at 4pm. Go me! I feel I can now lecture my students about not putting things off until the last minute with a clear conscience. In honor of this great day, here is one of Jack Handey's "Fuzzy Memories."

Remember when the teacher would forget to give the class homework and you'd raise your hand and tell her she forgot, there would always be people who would moan and complain? Didn't you hate those people?

Thursday, October 16, 2008


I have not been that vocal about the whole Prop. 8 business for awhile now, as initially I wasn't sure about whether or not I supported it, and I don't think it is my place to spout off my opinions to students. However, the more research I have done concerning it, I now know I will be voting yes.
I received some fun news today regarding the CTA, my teachers' union: we are donating $1 million dollars to the "No on Prop. 8" campaign. I have had issues with the union for awhile now, as I think they are a waste of money ($86 a month for some crap magazine) and they keep people on the job who should have been fired a long time ago, but they stay under protection of the union.
From what I have been told by my representatives, the CTA is an agency shop, which basically means you pay dues whether or not you belong to the union, so I've always just kind of gone along with it. No more! I am right now searching the CTA website and contacting my rep. to withdraw my membership. Of the 20 billion things that need to be taken care of in the classroom, this is where my money is going? I wouldn't be in support of the $1 million donation even if it went towards the "Yes on Prop. 8" campaign. GRRRR!!! I still love my gays, but I don't see why sexual preference ever needs to be discussed in the classroom. Label me an ignorant conservative to your heart's content.

Excellent NPR article that highlights some of the ramifications if "Yes on 8" is unsuccessful. These are some of the things that really opened my eyes to why I should support its passage; people demand tolerance for their beliefs yet do not afford the same treatment for others.

Wednesday, October 15, 2008

For Kyle!

Sunday, October 12, 2008

I want...

Monday, October 6, 2008

Spare time on your hands?

I have a very strict game plan in my classroom and closely follow the schedule of units I put in order before the semester even starts, meaning this week my students are learning about "Business Organizations," such as corporations and sole proprietorships. However, what with all the great fun currently taking place in the real world, we are regularly NOT sticking to my lovely schedule and discussing "what went wrong?", which is great because it shows they're interested in/fearful of their non-existent future. In the midst of my continuing research to figure out how to best answer their many questions, I found a great paper written by a Professor Fred Foldvary, who I can forgive for residing in Berkeley, as he supports the free market and is not a Democrat. It's 40 pages, but what else are you going to do after you bury all of your money in the backyard? I love my Google like a fat kid loves cake...or like a Meghan loves etsy.

Saturday, October 4, 2008

Awww, cheese and crackers!

My brakes have been squeaking for a good few weeks now, but I found time today to get them fixed by my dad-thanks, Dad! What took about 20 minutes the last time turned into a 3 hour ordeal, but I was finally on the road...for about a mile until they locked, the tires began smoking, and I could no longer move. I frantically searched for the hazard lights button (apparently it's easy to miss when it's BIG and RED) called my parents who were headed over to Michael and Jaime's, they flipped around, and my dad helped direct me back home. (In the meantime, jerkface man in the big truck laid on his horn and threw up his hands when I directed him to go around me; it was a lovely lady who took the time to check on me and offer her phone-thanks, good Samaritan!) The brake plates were switched to the correct place (about another hour) and I was good to go-I love my faithful Honda and my devoted parents...although they suggested I find a husband stat so as to relieve themselves of such duties.

Friday, October 3, 2008


Happy birthday to my pretend best friend! Ms. Gwen is 39 today. Yes, 39. Wrap your mind around that one and appreciate her amazingness even more.

Thursday, October 2, 2008

Make money your god and it will plague you like the devil.

Amidst the many discussions and debates concerning the government's $700 billion bailout, I continue to be bothered by the fact that the individuals of America are not taking responsibility for their own financial blunders. The average American has $10,000 in credit card debt, we continue to blow money on total crap (I am guilty of losing all control at Target, too!), and then all fingers point to the big guys. Yes, Fannie Mae, AIG, Wall Street, the whole bunch used predatory lending tactics and made shoddy investments and are not having to face the consequences of their mistakes; but that doesn't roll out the red carpet for the little people to blame all of their financial woes on someone else. Take responsibility for your own actions, pay your bills, and quit living beyond your means! Nobody forced anyone to buy anything. It may mean canceling the cable or limiting the Christmas budget, and if a recession occurs it will suck, but it's a natural part of the business cycle. On the bright side, most last for about 16-18 months, they help weed out waste (did the offices at all the high schools in town REALLY need the Culligan man to deliver water every week?), and we can all give each other meaningful homemade gifts for the holidays. Seriously, family, prepare yourself for puff-painted tees and wooden cars from Candice.

Wednesday, October 1, 2008

Almonds make everything better.

As many of you know, I am currently in training for the Nike Women's half marathon in San Diego in a few weeks. I am scheduled to run 6 miles today, but something (ie my scale) tells me I should double...or triple that number. Why, one might ask? I rode my bike on over to Rite Aid last night to indulge my new healthy self in ONE scoop of sherbet. One...of sherbert, the sorriest excuse for ice cream. But what's that on the shelf marked 50% off? Why, none other than a big ol' bag of my favorite almond M&M's. In these rough economic times, who could turn down such an amazing deal?

People, there is a reason I don't have a well-stocked pantry and fridge (besides just being one of the cheapest humans alive). I have little to no self-restraint when it comes to chocolaty goodness, and as I type I am finishing off the last of the bag o' delectable deliciousness, because we all know it's better to just end it quickly and get the culprit out of sight than to eat the recommended serving size. Who's with me, ladies? Stupid Rite Aid and its Thrifty ice cream are to blame. The road to hell is paved with good intentions...I'm taking ex-lax and getting this taken care of quickly.