Monday, September 28, 2009

2 months in...

On the 1st of October, it will be two months since I moved into my new digs. Surprisingly, I'm still alive and kicking. Lots of introspection, reading, and surfing the Web has ensued over the last couple of months, and I expect there will be more introspection and reading to come. Do not imagine that I'm dying for lack of someone to talk with. Introversion has been good to me that way. If I had been gifted with extroversion, I'd be doomed to madness. Scratching my pen on the page and simple chats with acquaintances and co-workers seem to fill the void for me. Then again, I have a wonderful family who endures my visits for supper every other day. If not for them, I would be in a more difficult place, I figure. At least where nourishment is concerned. I just had supper catered by Subway (the healthy choice, at least). Easy enough when you're just one person.
Meanwhile, I'm trying to get through a critique of the works of Ezra Pound and am musing about Soujourner Truth. I first came across these two poets while at the UofW and I was in an English course with a Poetry flavour. Not my favourite course, to be honest. Kinda turned me off of majoring in English. Religious Studies was, in the end, the better choice, for it's lead me into some wicked introspection over the years. Speaking of Pound, I'm trying to read 'Poet in exile' right now, and am not sure how I feel about it. Maybe if I sought to be more interested in it.... I'm also listening to Jann Arden right now. That reminds me that I haven't mentioned what I've been listening to in the car lately. Alternative stations on Sirius. Gives me enough R.E.M. and New Order to keep my brain busy while I'm driving.
Getting back to books... Scholastic has been upping the price and lowering the quality on their book fairs, so the principal and I are looking for alternatives. Usborne looks promising, but we'll see. So, I guess that's about all for the time being. BYE.

Sunday, September 20, 2009

Planning it out

Just finished watching 'Uncle Buck' this evening, and realized it was time to update my blog. So here I go.... This is my second year working at my schools, and I know I've been floating, more or less, from one situation to another. Being more reactive than proactive, and while that's okay, it could be better. So now I'm faced with one major assignment; prepare goals for my year. The teachers have to do it; why should I be any different? No teacher, I, but we're all both students and teachers. The kids can teach just as well as the adults (not the same lessons, but why should there be any repetition?). Meanwhile, I need to think about my goals for the second year. Inventory, my bugbear, needs to be done, but I'm hoping to get that figured out. It might not seem so intense to my cohorts in the division, but I well recall the mess I made in my previous place.
It would be better to figure out how to properly do an inventory. Then there's the weeding and purchasing. Stuff going out and coming in. Transitions always. And then there's the increased rapport between me and the kids. I've got some thoughts about that, which I am going to share with my own diary before I announce them to the two or three people who accidentally come straggling across this blog. Still, it's better that I do establish and maintain a somewhat deeper rapport with the students. Be there as much as possible, you might say. Some kids, because of their own problems, are much harder to reach, but it's better to do what I can than do nothing at all. Why stand on the sidelines and just watch?
Meanwhile, as far as PD is concerned, I've got something planned for October. A SAG meeting thingie where I'll go and learn about libraries and Web. 2.0. Should be very intriguing. Free lunch... can't complain. In my personal life, I'm starting on 'A midsummer night's dream' by the Immortal Bard. Now I'd like to read something by the Venerable Bede. New forays constantly await. I finished reading a book about reincarnation. It's happening all the time, but the book didn't really tell me anything. Yeah, books can't talk. YUK YUK YUK. I guess I should keep digging. Well, that's my update. Later days.

Sunday, September 13, 2009


Without cable, I'm making do with DVD's, Flash cartoons, and Youtube. One show I've rediscovered is "Mahabharat", which is the 80's Indian treatment of the saga "Mahabharata". I greatly enjoyed reading this Indian epic and am glad to see the show is available on Youtube. This show has gotten its fair share of grief for being so cheesy and dated. Maybe it's dated now, but back in the 80's, this was probably the height of quality in India. Bollywood has gotten big over the last few years, and efforts like this series are laughed at now, but I doubt they were mocked back in the day. Meanwhile, I'm watching this series again (as I missed the beginning the last time I watched it), and while I'm snickering at the SFX, I'm recalling the truths of another age, and recalling how important debts, oaths, and karma were to the people of the "Mahabharata". I also believe I should borrow the epic from the library and read it again.
It is my understanding that we are our actions, and "Mahabharat" really lays bare this and other realities. A king has great power, but he is also bound by his responsibilities to his nation and his subjects. The greatest king is a good servant to his people. I heard that somewhere, and the kings of India return to this point several times during the story. Obligation and duty are constantly revisited. I'm astounded again and again by this epic. It is most unfortunate that, so far, nobody's thought to create a trilogy in the colours of LOTR to bring this saga to life. Honestly, this epic deserves better than what the Chopras tried to do with it.
My second topic for discussion probably does not seem to have anything to do with legends. Be patient. I'll start making sense soon. First off, "Do as thou wilt" is a good book. The author neither glossed over nor smeared Crowley's reputation (it would be hard to smear the man's reputation more than he already did himself). I applaud the author and recommend this book highly. Aleister Crowley himself, I wouldn't recommend for a second. When I first opened "Do as thou wilt", I wondered if the whispers about Crowley were true or if they were just part of the miasma he had woven over his life. Part of me actually thought that he had been a boring fellow and had just woven some major whoppers to build himself up in society.
Granted, he had done that, big time. After I came to the end of the book, I came to the conclusion that Crowley had been pretty pitiful. He went out of his way to earn the title of notorious, but I do not believe that he was worthy of the title of Satanist. The closest he got to the 'dark side' was when he met up with L. Ron Hubbard, but the latter didn't seem impressed by him. Opportunist? Yes. Swindler? Absolutely. Hedonist? Without a doubt. But not a Satanist. Not a wizard. Even the alchemists of the past had more determination than Crowley did. At this point, I could get into a major tangent by discussing his potential future life, but I'll keep that for my own diary.
In a way, though, Crowley has become a legend. Probably not the legend he wanted to become, but he's still discussed, and that's fame ... of a sort. BYE.

Sunday, September 6, 2009

Labour Day weekend

Getting a lot of reading done lately. 'Two gentlemen of Verona' was the first devoured. I guess the Comedies are easier to get through than the Tragedies and Histories (I think they're called). I read 'King Richard III' recently as well, and that was not nearly as easy to get through. I've read both plays already, so that increased the pace already. I love that the 'clowns' are usually wiser than their masters. If not wiser, then at least possessing more common-sense. The clown/servant is more grounded than the flighty master with many of the Comedies. Julia dresses like a boy to spy on her 'beloved' Proteus, who says one thing and does another. Everybody has an agenda in this play, it seems. Either way, it's a good enough play. I've never seen it done on stage, but I don't think it's as popular as 'A Midsummer night's dream'. THAT's a popular one.
From Shakespeare to sci-fi I went with Philip Jose Farmer's 'Dayworld'. Freakish! The concept is pretty sound, and if Homo sapiens sapiens keeps going the way it does, we may need to introduce said concept. Still, for those 'day-breakers', at least for some of them, the act is more dangerous than one would think. I've heard of people who can 'compartmentalize' their lives. This trait can become dangerous if taken too far. To go farther would be to spoil the book for those who have yet to read it. Good book, only it took less time to read it than I thought it would. Fast-paced. I hope I didn't miss anything. I fear I have a tendency to skim over stuff.
Now, I have yet to get halfway through this third book, but this one could paint me as a Satanist. I'm reading a life of Aleister Crowley. Hey, the guy is bloody fascinating. At least, this is the miasma he wove over himself before he died. Maybe he was totally boring. The least I can do is read and find out. Before I close this, I listened to Beethoven (ODE TO JOY) and am now listening to John Lennon. Cool. BYE.