31 May 2014

Dog-Sized Rats to Participate in NYC Census

No, really, this is a true story.  I can NOT make up something quite so twisted and sick.

Ok.  So here's the deal:  foot-long rats have been documented in even the most exclusive restaurants of New York City.  No exaggeration - some of these rats look more like "linebackers" than rodents.  Monster big things can only fit into shoe box sized traps.

Rather than ohh, I don't know, paying people to just kill the rats that some say are the size of small dogs, the city is going to spend $600,000 to do a cute little census so that they can get to know our fuzzy friends.  Their habits.  Their hopes.  Their dreams.  And then?  Somehow their "presence" in the city will be "reduced" via this "tracking." 

Sounds like a bunch of useless buzzwords to me, as no exterminator company is mentioned, nor yet are the words "death" or "kill." 

From the comments section:

gzizzle:  You know.. If you citiots stopped crapping and urinating in the streets and practiced at least a modicum of general sanitation, this wouldn't be an issue. Between the cockroaches, rats and pigeons, it is a surprise you all aren't infected with some type of mange or pox.

jnsesq:  But they are: Liberalism.

Ha ha ha! 

Other commenters suggest moving PETA world headquarters to NYC.  You know.  They love animals so much and all. 

29 May 2014

Selfies Kill!

‘I lost my friends, my education, my health and almost my life. The only thing I cared about was having my phone with me so I could satisfy the urge to capture a picture of myself at any time of the day.'

Yep.  Taking too many selfies means you have Body Dysmorphic Disorder (BDD) and are very ill.   You could, like, be overwhelmed with grief and go try to off yourself if your pictures don't turn out juuuust right.  This is a very serious and deadly disease!  Eeep!  (Article here.)

So these "selfie sickos" need cognitive behavioural therapy and bla bla bla to the tune of billions of dollars (my made-up estimate).  My program is way cheaper, folks.  You keep paying for internet access and all that, and I just swipe your phone.  I always wanted one that would connect to the internetz and take pictures and do that texting thing and so forth.  Ok.  To be competitive with my psychiatry-practicing colleagues nearby, I will charge a $50 copay for the service.  You know.  I don't want to undercut my competition, even though my therapeutic program is probably just as effective as anyone else's.

PS Does my butt look fat from this angle?  Maybe don't answer that or I'll cry and need like, lots of therapy, too.

24 May 2014

New School Program!

It isn't enough that everyone's starving on the new Mini-Munchkin (tm) sized meals they serve in the school cafeteria.  With horrid semi-rancid vegetables.  Now, teachers will have their BMIs recorded annually by the school nurse and appropriate notes sent home to their families under new federal guidelines pushed by Michelle Obama.

Can you believe it?

To save postage, however, these "you are fat" letters will not be mailed home.  They'll be placed in an envelope with a special sticker on the flap.  Oh.  And only overweight teachers will receive the notes.  In front of their peers.

Think teachers would stand for this new program if it were real?  I'm thinking... no.  Go take a look at the school photographs.  Aside from a few skinny-minnie teachers fresh out of college, teachers look... like normal overweight Americans.  Normal people.  Who would be humiliated if they got notes like this despite the fact that - guess what? - they already know they are fat.

So why are we doing this sort of thing to children who have no choice about going to school? 

Here's a story about one little girl and her family in New York.  I'd like to see the staff at that school measured and their results recorded in the school nurse's office every year until this stupid program is over.  News flash:  we all know who the fat kids are. Why humiliate these children?  This is just so cruel.

19 May 2014

How Do You Handle Prank Phone Calls?

I got a phone call from what is obviously a boy whose voice hasn't changed yet.  He claimed to be from Cityname Public Schools and he wanted to do a survey.  I hung up.  I don't do surveys with 12-year-olds.  I looked over at the caller ID and of course it's a "private number."  So I guess his parents won't get a phone call tonight. 

I told Patrick about it, and he said about an hour ago, someone from Wal-Mart called asking to do a survey about Cheetos.  And the voice was one of a younger person.  Great.  So I guess we have a crank caller.

I told Emperor that I thought it was sort of ODD that we tend to get these phone calls just after he goes to the park with his friends. 

OH, but his friend would never do such a thing!

Well, I didn't say he would.  I just wonder who-all else was at the park today and if anything unusual happened. 

No.  Nothing unusual.  The only thing that was different today was that his friend's friend, "Name that sounds like a baby pony," asked for his phone number.

Uh-huh.  Well.  You just tell Pony Boy that your dad said to quit calling here.  He's not in trouble, and he's not violent or vicious, but I do want him to stop bugging us.

16 May 2014

Not a Common Core Homeschool.

"Just watched Fox. They interviewed a family of homeschooled kids. The oldest 4 were in college by age of 12. Architect, Navy Doctor, Masters in computer science (18 yrs old), degree in music. Their book is The Brainy Bunch. A-mazing. The words 'common,' 'rigor,' 'deeper thinking,' 'assessment,' were never injected into the conversation. Weird."

-- Brenda Hewett, on facebook group CHOOSE TO REFUSE COMMON CORE.

15 May 2014

Using VitalChek for Birth Certificates!

The vitalchek.com website warns it could take over a week to receive birth certificates.  But I ordered mine on Monday and it arrived this afternoon (Thursday).  You can't ask for better service than that.  I only wish that they didn't change the look of the birth certificate.  My old one was on special very odd paper.  Hand-signed by all kinds of strange people and a dandy raised stamp-y thing.  White.  This one looks like a cheap fake check, much like the ones you get in the mail that say "For Demonstration Purposes Only" all over them.  Siiigh.  Oh, well.  Valid is valid, even if it doesn't look like what they issued 44 years ago.  I'm out $77, but I now have two birth certificates, just in case I need to provide proof that I was born to two different entities at once.  I now, once again, officially exist.

14 May 2014

Potential Mafia House for Sale!

It's way back behind the barred gate.  Foreboding.  English Tudor-style.  Dark.  Decorated in what appears to be casino carpet remnants.  PERFECT for staging Godfather IV.  Six-car garage.  Must see to appreciate.  Only $140,000.  Being sold off to settle the estate of the previous Don... er, owner.

"Homeschool" Torture

Six brothers from a reclusive family have been charged with sexually molesting a little four-year-old girl.  And they kept it up - with their mom's knowledge! - until another brother told authorities.  By that time?  That little girl was 16. 

Only imagine what it was like growing up in that house.  The parents had little contact with the outside world and they were "homeschooling."  One of the older children demonstrated difficulty writing his NAME when police spoke to him. 

I'm on some facebook boards that vehemently deny this sort of story has anything whatsoever to do with homeschooling, because many of the "children" charged are adults.  And how many teachers are out there giving lap dances to students and sexually abusing the kids there?

And I'd add:  besides, this abuse started when the kid was a preschooler.

All of that, though, doesn't change the fact that this poor child was kept from the outside world and tortured emotionally and physically.  And it doesn't change the fact that these "parents" used homeschooling as a tool to hide the abuse from people who would intervene.

It appears that North Carolina (where the abuse allegedly occurred) has some pretty strict laws.  The children were to be tested annually.  So the parents were likely not following the law, any more than they were following the regular ol' compulsory education laws.

Do you think changing any laws would prevent this sort of thing in the future?  I am not sure if this girl saw a doctor each year or anything like that.  It's just disgusting and horrifying that this could happen to a little child.  I do wonder what we as a society can do to prevent this sort of thing without a witch hunt.

13 May 2014

Whyyy, Mom?

Why do you keep stealing my favourite clothes and throwing them away when I'm not looking?  It's not faair!

12 May 2014

Have You Ever Misplaced an Important Document?

I have. My birth certificate has gone missing.  Well, it was very, very faded anyway.  And it wasn't on normal paper but some odd metallic-like thing, and all the creases destroyed the lettering.  But it was real.  Now I have no proof I exist!  I need to get another.

A recorded message at the health department in the county where I was born has about a zillion prompts.  Are you in a life-threatening emergency?  Hang up and dial 911.

Do you need to report toxic waste?  Press 1.

Do you need HIV testing?  Press 2.

Do you need to be tested for a "communicable disease?"  Press 3.

Do you need a birth or death record?  Press 4.

Wow.  I asked the lady who answered the phone what kind of town they were running that this is the sort of first impression you get of the place.

"Ma'am?" she answered.  "This is Cleveland.  Nobody going to be here that doesn't have to be here." 

Yep.  "This is Cleveland" is actually a marketing/tourist-y gimmick.  She was just being a bit honest about it.  :)

11 May 2014

Pray for Orrick!

One of my friends and his wife and children were hiding under tables in a local church when the tornado struck.  No warning.  His home is spared, but the family has lost the van.  His wife's family's home was damaged.  Most of the town looks like God got a lawnmower out over it.   Take a look.  Isn't it amazing no one was hurt??

07 May 2014

Wrapping up our School Year!

My complicated method of storing records:  pop an occasional worksheet or writing sample into a three-ring binder.  When the school year is over, use yarn and an oversized needle, and thread through the holes.  Tie the ends so you have a little "book."  It doesn't have to be super-durable, as it's just "proof you did something this school year" and not an item for the National Archives.
Emperor's packet was stacked on Woodjie and Rose's packet, and a few science workbooks were thrown in the middle somewhere. 
Now it's all tied together like a package and labelled.  School year is finished.  Ta-da!  I have a ton of these in the basement.    I don't know who would ever want records or proof that Elf and Emperor did their work in 2006, but it's all in the basement "just in case."  It feels good to have it all squared away and in a safe place.

06 May 2014

Martha Lafite Thompson Nature Sanctuary

We went to the Martha Lafite Thompson Nature Sanctuary today.  Once a month, they have a program for homeschoolers.  On our walk, we found a little turtle!
Rose was brave enough to pet the "hissing cockroach" that was on display.

Yikes!  We found this on our nature walk, too! It was about 20 feet long.  Okay... maybe closer to about two feet.  But we all jumped when we discovered one another.

Leopard slugs. 


A Prayer for Homeschoolers

I think one of the hardest challenges new homeschoolers face is letting go of how it "should" be. If I have one prayer for new homeschoolers, it is peace. Peace from struggling to find the "right" curriculum for a 5-year-old. Peace from worrying about how to "schedule" their time. Peace from the fear that they will "miss" covering a subject sufficiently. I think public school has created a culture that has damaged many parents. It has minimized their sense of importance, and their confidence. To all of you just starting out - You've got this!!! It will be ok!!! And may you feel the love and peace of The Lord surround you as you answer His call!!

- Anonymous, on a homeschooling facebook group.

01 May 2014

"Fair?" Skin Colour in India.

I don't get it. These people lived under the boot of the English. WHY would they want to look white? The products they use to "bleach" themselves won't make people white.  The fathers in the film saying such nasty things about their kids, and the teachers even saying mean things because children are "too dark?"  Poor kid, to hear his own mom saying what do you think?  That he goes to school with the English children that he should expect to be treated well and be able to study?  Schools for people like them are schools where no-one cares.  The little boy douses himself with powder to try to fool the other children... but he always sweats and the ruse is up.

Woodjie's Roller Dance Routine!

Only a few people were selected to perform their routines at a recent club fundraiser.  I went to upload this video and was pretty shocked...