Wednesday, August 31, 2016

What I am Looking Forward to in September

Can you believe the end of August is here? The summer seemed extra short this year--probably because I had to teach an 8-week class in the first half. I didn't feel like summer started (not talking heat) until July 1. But maybe I should be grateful; fall is the best season of the year IMO. So, it's time to start celebrating fall! Here are some of the things I am looking forward to in September:

1. Cooler nights

The days do not get much cooler in AZ in September, but by mid-month I can usually open some windows at night and enjoy a cool-ish breeze. After being cooped up in stale AC for five months, this always feels great.

2. Pumpkin recipes

I love to use pumpkin to cook. It's healthy and tasty! First up on my baking list is paleo pumpkin muffins.

3. Poldark!!!

If you liked Downton Abbey, you would likely enjoy the BBC Masterpiece series Poldark too. I loved season one and now season two starts on September 24. Can't wait!!

4. ANWA's Writer's Conference

This will be my fourth time attending ANWA's writer's conference. This year it is on Sept. 15-17 in Tempe. I love attending because it stretches me and I learn so much. I'm still working on my costume for the protagonist ball, though. Leave me comment with a suggestion (any character from a book you think would make a good costume). Last year I went as Nurse Ratched from One Flew Over the Cuckoo's Nest.

5. Labor Day

Not that I have any plans or anything (too busy to think ahead). Just that a day off sounds nice. And a shorter work week is even better!

6. Project Runway

Season 15 of Project Runway starts mid-month and I will look forward to the new episodes. I miss Michael Kors (Zac Posen isn't as good IMO), but I enjoy the challenges and end products. This article discusses some of the new contestants.

7. New Melanie Jacobson Book

I am always looking for something good to read, and Melanie's books never disappoint. Here's the blurb from the back of the book for her newest, Southern Charmed:

"Lila Mae Guidry is a Southern girl through and through. As a fourth-generation Latter-day Saint in Baton Rouge, Louisiana, she’s proud of her heritage as both a Southerner and a Saint—and she doesn’t take kindly to people who disparage either. Ten years ago, Max Archer was just that kind of jerk. As the mission president’s son, Max spent his entire three years mocking the South . . . and teenage Lila. After Max’s family moved away, Lila forgot about her sworn enemy. Almost.

"When a new job brings a grown-up Max back to Baton Rouge, Lila is less than thrilled with his reappearance, especially since everyone seems intent on throwing her together with this old adversary. Yet fight as she may, Lila soon realizes resistance is futile—their connection is undeniable. Max embodies everything she wants in a man—except perhaps the most important thing—her life is rooted in the city she loves, but his dreams are bigger than Baton Rouge. With such mismatched visions of the future, Max and Lila are faced with a life-altering decision: jeopardize their aspirations or risk losing love."

Well,  that's all the craziness I have had in my mind running around in between all the lectures and lesson plans I have been prepping. I hope your August was great and September is even better. What are you looking forward to?

Monday, August 22, 2016

College Students are Crazy

School starts back up this week! I'm not sure whether to be happy or to cry. College students can be great--but they can also be crazy. One of my favorite Facebook friends (never actually met the guy) is an English professor who has captured some of the funniest conversations he has had with students. And as a 7-year veteran of teaching college, I can verify that students are often this clueless. Here are a few of his posts for your enjoyment:

Student: "Professor! Why did you give me a zero on the paper?"
Professor: "You EARNED a zero because your rough draft and your final draft were the same. It is clearly stated in the instructions that the final draft needs to have significant revisions. AND, I mentioned this in class at least three times."
Student: "But they were not the same!"
Professor: "Yes, they are. I use the compare feature in Word, and it shows me what is different."
Student: "I'm tellin' ya, they are not the same! For the final draft, I changed the date."
Professor: ". . ."

Professor: "When I worked in the TV industry, I had an employee who wanted to take three weeks vacation to go out of the country. He could, but it would use up all his vacation time, as well as his personal days."
Students: blank stares
Professor: "Two days before his vacation, he came to my office to ask for an additional day off because he needed a day to get ready for his vacation."
Student A: "That's stupid!"
Student B: "Yeah, he should just build that into his vacation time."
Student C: "Why are you telling us this?"
Professor: "Next week is Spring Break. We will have class on Friday, and I will be taking attendance."
Student B: "But I won't be here on Friday. I'm leaving to go home for Spring Break."
Student A: "That's stupid!"
Student C: "I see what you did there."

Setting: The professor is teaching seven classes. He's instructed all his students to include their class and section number with each email, along with being specific with their questions.
Student: "Did u get my papers?"
Professor: "Which class are you in?"
Student: "english"
Professor: "That would make sense as I am an English Professor. Which English class and section are you in? Also, which papers?"
Student: "11o"
Professor: "I teach four sections of 110. Which section are you in? At the very least, what time does your class start?"
Student: "im not sure"
Professor: "In that case, I'm not sure if I received your papers."
Student: ". . ."

Setting: Student walks in two minutes after class has ENDED.
Student: "Professor. Sorry I missed class. That was my bad. I came in to see what I missed."
Professor: "Are you ok?"
Student: "Yeah. I just overslept."
Note: This is a 1 p.m. class which ends at 2:15 p.m.

After a small group presentation...
Professor: "Nicely done everyone. I have to admit that I'm not familiar with a type of music many of you mentioned. What is Trap music?"
Students: laughing and talking
Student 1: "It's good music. When you listen to it, it makes you feel like a drug dealer--in your head."
Student 2: "I have some on my phone if you want to hear it."
Professor: "Ah, I think I'll pass. But thanks for letting me know. But if I ever get the desire to know what a drug dealer is thinking, I'll know where to turn."
Student 2: "Just let me know. I'll hook you up."
Professor: " . . . "