Friday, April 9, 2021

H Blitz

Since I am on spring break and pushing all my subbing stories from last week onto next week, that means that it's a day for a random quiz. And since it's H day on the A to Z (which I am doing unofficially), that leads to this quiz... 

H Blitz

This is one of those Sporcle ones where all you have to do it type the word in the answer box and it'll find the blank it belongs in. It is timed (4 minutes), and there are 40 questions.

Everything begins with an H. Hopefully your blog reading today will have reminded you of some of these, like a state or an Olympic event or a Shakespearean tragedy. 

I only got 28/40. I'm sure you can do better. Good luck.

Thursday, April 8, 2021

Good Morning

Buttercup has absolutely nothing to do with today's post, but as today's post really doesn't have an image, she'll just chill in the backseat while I go on about something completely different.

Monday morning, 4:30 AM. I awoke to use the bathroom. 

Before falling back asleep, I picked up my phone. I've been playing Words With Friends 2 since about July, and recently a mini-game has been added. It's a head-to-head competition where I'm given 45 seconds to come up with a word. Me and my competitor get five turns, and highest score wins. 

These mini-games aren't "free", however. To earn a "ticket" to play, two hours must elapse. So, after having been asleep for several hours, I had a couple "tickets" to play. So, I did.

None of this would normally make the blog, except something happened...

I was on turn two when I felt a large jolt. It felt as if a car had crashed into the wall behind my bed. And my heart raced as I had a moment of panic.

I blame it on the hour and being pretty groggy. 

In the next moment, my rational brain took over. "Oh, calm down. That was just an earthquake. You've been through earthquakes before." 

At which point, I realized my clock was counting down, and I needed to play a word, quick. 

I finished the game. I couldn't tell you if I won or lost. Then I pulled up the app on my phone to see a bit more about that earthquake. 

It was a 4.1 (it said 4.0 when I checked, but since then it's been upgraded). Epicenter was near Inglewood in a town called Lennox. I know where Inglewood is. It's not terribly far away. 

I'm actually rather grateful to the earthquake, as I was scrambling for a topic for today's post. I needed something that started with a G, but I thought I might have used this title for a similar post before. Turns out I haven't. But, in 2010 there was an earthquake on Easter, and I posted about it on April 4th. I mean, this was technically Monday the 5th, but I thought the coincidence way too funny not to mention.

Wednesday, April 7, 2021

Fully Vaccinated

COVID vaccine shot, 28 days later...

On my last visit to the Long Beach Convention Center, I made my follow up appointment for vaccine shot number two. I figured the sequel would be much like the original. I was wrong.

The first surprise was that my school district decided that we were going to open to in-person classes. So, instead of heading from home to the vaccination site, I was going to have to leave from the school site (which is a bit farther away as I don't work for Long Beach's school district). 

And, I had hoped to leave early. But, the principal had an all staff meeting that afternoon...

Okay, this is a bit of a story. Normally I wouldn't be invited to the all staff meeting, but with the long-term and how things were opening up for us, I ended up needing to attend this meeting. All the whys and wherefores are way too complicated for this post.

I left campus in a bit of a panic. I figured I was going to be stuck in line for hours. 

I had scheduled my appointment for 3:56 PM. I got to the convention center at roughly 3:50. 

And... There was no line. 

I pulled up. Checked in. (It was a drive up site.) Pulled into the parking lot. Got my shot. And by 3:59 I was parked in the observation area where we were to wait fifteen minutes just in case.

This was my view...

See all those cones? That was the feeder line for cars. Notice there are no cars? If you can see those smokestacks in the distance, that's the Queen Mary.

To my right was this building...

I didn't have a chance to take pics before this as it went so quickly. Way, way different than the first time.

And so, now I have had two shots. I'll be officially fully vaccinated in two weeks (April 13th). 

I worked the next day and felt fine (other than a very sore arm), until I left campus that day. Then I got home. And that's when I felt it. I was so, so tired. And warm and cold at the same time. I went to bed very early, but I was fine the next day.

If you have not had a chance to be vaccinated yet, I hope you're able to get in really, really soon.

Tuesday, April 6, 2021

Easy Fix

At the heart of much speculative fiction (and fiction in general) is a question. What if? On Tuesdays I like to throw one out there and see what you make of it. Do with it as you please. If a for-instance is not specified, feel free to interpret that instance as you wish. And if you find this becomes a novel-length answer, I'd appreciate a thank you in the acknowledgements.

What if that one thing you've been putting off and putting off, that you thought would take you maybe five minutes (or maybe an hour), ends up being way more complicated than you expected?

Monday, April 5, 2021

Dread Plague Face Coverings

Why am I making myself some more masks? 

  1. I'm getting bored with the ones I have.
  2. I cut out some fabric ages ago, and it's high time I got to finishing them up.
  3. My district just opened to in person instruction (right before spring break), so I am going to have need of them.
  4. I don't want to do another "I didn't make much progress on my seven (and a half) year cardi" post.

I only got those two knitted up. I have two more blanket stitched and just waiting for the knitting part...

And I think I finally got the dimensions right on the fabric. These fit so much better than the ones I made last year...

Although, we'll see how much better they feel after I've had them on all day... 

Wow, the freckles on my forehead really popped out on that one. 

I make no promises as to what I'll have completed by next week's post. I'm on spring break, so ideally I'll have more time for my projects, but who knows? 

Friday, April 2, 2021

Brazen Request

Please tell me I am overreacting. 

I've been on this long-term English assignment for a bit over a month. (While you're reading this, I am already done with it. It ended on Tuesday.) Because of everything, many students are behind on their work. I have told the kiddos that they can turn in late work for credit. I only ask they give me a heads-up email so I know to look for it in Google Classroom.

The kiddos on email are kind of funny. Some are very apologetic. Some haven't quite gotten the conventions of email down, so they tell me too little or too much. And, of course, there are the grammatical errors of teens. 

I don't mind it at all. Except for Rodolfo. 

His first email to me: 

I submitted the OMAM chap 3 questions and the OMAM characterization chart.

It would be appreciated if you put this in as soon as possible.

(OMAM is short for Of Mice and Men, the book they're reading.) 

The thing that irritated me? Not that he sent the email at 10:38 PM. What got me was I had just graded the chapter 3 questions and input them into the gradebook, including his assignment. I checked. 

Wisely, I did not respond to his email. Nor did he ask me about any of this in class. (Nor did he stay after class to ask me anything one on one.) 

I was behind on grading. So, the emails piled up from students letting me know they had just submitted something. As did the assignments that were being turned in on time. Rodolfo emailed again: 

I submitted the chap 4 quickwrite and OMAM chap 3 questions. Also waiting for the characterization chart to be updated into aeries.

Yeah, I didn't need the reminder that I was behind on grading. Got it. I'd get to grading his characterization chart as soon as I could. And the chapter 3 questions...? 

Again, I didn't respond to the email. 

I was finally caught up on grading when Rodolfo sent me another email:

You graded the OMAM CHAP 3 questions and my mom is asking me about it. I am just waiting for it to be put into aeries.

Huh? I input that ages ago. But I checked... Nope. For some reason, I had never input his score into the online gradebook. *hangs head in shame*

Otherwise, it felt as if Rodolfo was hounding me about getting to grading his late work. But I'm being ridiculous. I know I am. Aren't I?

Thursday, April 1, 2021

Assigned an Extra Period Remotely

Tuesday, third period. While we were "reading" (listening to the audiobook) of chapter five of The Great Gatsby, I got a text from the secretary in charge of subs at the school. (Remember, I'm at home.) Could I cover an extra period? 

Extra period assignments used to be commonplace. I'd dread answering the classroom phone because it was likely the office calling to ask if I could trek across campus to cover another class instead of getting an hour to myself. (But I got paid for that extra hour, and when they'd call they really needed coverage, so I never turned them down.) I counted them up, and I'd frequently get a "bonus day" out of them if not two per month. 

But, with the distance thing, extra period assignments just haven't happened. 

Until last week. 

The teacher wasn't feeling well. Considering that she had something in the feed on her Google Classroom from the previous day about her maybe not being in class, this must have been something that was ongoing or she was expecting. 

Of course I took it. It wasn't like I had to go anyplace. It was simple to log in.

And a few of the students looked familiar. I had them in the class I've been covering all month. 

(The class was "medical assistant". It's a science elective.)

So, that was another new thing with this distance learning. And just when I thought we'd pretty much done it all by now.