Wednesday, June 15, 2011

summer- blech

I’m no good in the summer.  It’s too hot, too smoggy here in Riverside, it gives me a constant headache for weeks at a time.  I’ve never been a desert or river rat, I’m so white that I go from white to red in the blink of an eye.  Also, having the summer off from school leaves me with nothing to do.  I was thrilled when Serrano switched from traditional to year round school because those 3 months were too long for me to be off all at once.  I’m easily bored with no task at hand, which leads me to sit around doing nothing (usually being too broke to go gallivanting around), which leads me to moping, which leads to depression, which leads to bad bad things. 

So, year round school saved me from summers of misery…. But now, here I am, 36 faced with a whole empty summer ahead of me. 
I'd love to be able to go to baseball games galore, but that's not feasible.  I could spend time down in the SD, but that's not really practical.  There are a ton of projects I could work on, but then it feels like I'm spending too much time around the house... which could be a problem. 

I do need to orgainze my office area, but that requires either a cool-ish day or running the AC which means a higher electric bill... however, it simply must be done.  Well, that's one day.

You have to understand, most of my friends work regular monday to friday jobs, and most of them have families that they spend their evenings with... I'm the oddball who suddenly finds herself with a summer vacation.

Looking back there is a clear solution.... I should have signed up for summer school. *sigh* now I know for next year!

Monday, June 13, 2011

nothing is the same

I drove to Highland today to get my hair cut by the fabulous Helen, who happens to be the mom of one of my old students.  She always catches me up on all the haps in town, and how my old kids are faring.  As I drove back home to Riverside it hit me how different.... how COMPLETELY different my life is compared to when I taught at Serrano. 

I saw the Starbucks that Jerry works at, and remembered him as an awkward, confused 7th grader, the McDonalds Jerry insisted on stopping at when I was bringing him home from summer school, Helen reminded me of the minor scandel at Serrano when Paul got athlete of the year instead of Andy... and taht was just the work related stuff. 

While I'm still friends with most of the people I knew at Serrano, on facebook anyway, my whole lifestyle, my priorities, everything is changed.  I can't imagine going back to the way my life used to be.  I do still see a few VERY IMPORTANT people from that time in my life, but it's in a new way. 

It's like I've pro- and re- gressed at the same time.  Sometimes I feel like I live like a college student (which is what I am, but you know what I mean).  Living in a little apartment with my roommate, doing homework, going to the library, being broke all the time.  But other times I feel like very old.  I look back through my life and see how many times I've struggled and how much I've overcome.

I'm clearly in a new chapter of my life, one I'm really enjoying.  I've lived the high life and know for sure that money does not buy happiness.  But not everyone is as thrilled with my new life as I am.  Honestly, however, I couldn't care less what anyone else thinks.  If my family can't support what I'm trying to do, that's too bad for them.  This is what I should have done 15 years ago instead of being miserably married and settled on a teaching job because that's what was expected. 

Just the other day my sister said, "I'll be glad when this chapter of your life is over and you're onto better things."  But I'm loving this chapter.  Just last night I barbequed with my crazy downstairs neighbors, nothing big, but it was a great time.  I can appreciate the simple things so much, no need for pomp and circumstance. 

So, take a moment to enjoy those simple little things today, toadstools growing up through the grass, the feel of the breeze in your hair, valuable old friends, and great new ones.  <3

Sunday, December 12, 2010

about last night.......

Alrighty folks - I've been talking with a few of you, and after much delay (thanks to RM for fixing my internet!) here is the recap of last night's festivities!

First off, we had a great day at Disneyland.  Like, an oddly good family day.  Everyone got along, no drama.

Even on the way home PG and I had a real convo.

We get back, and PG starts talking to RM about..... um, produce.  Yes, they were talking about school.  RM feels passionate about produce.  PG takes a stand on produce because SF has opinions on produce.  (PG and SF are married).

So, these two fools are getting into an intense discussion about produce.  RM says, "Well, PG, do you even have the education or knowledge base to back up your stand on produce?"  RM said it passionately, but not yelling or "barking" or hostie-ly.  PG flips out and says, "What gives you the right to talk to me that way RM?" all crazy like.  PG gets up in RM's face and just keeps repeating that statement.  RM doesn't want the situation to escalate, so RM gets up and grabs RM's keys and says "I'm leaving."  PG suddenly takes the discussion to a very private and hurtful place, and blocks RM from leaving the house. 

Now, I was still in the back of the house where the original discussion took place, so all I can report is what I heard, what I was told, and what I believe based on what I know about RM and PG.

What I heard was..... RM: "get out of the way, I'm trying to walk out the door."
                                 PG: "No, you need to get out!"
                                 RM: "I'm trying to get out, you need to move out of my way."
                                 PG: "Then you need to find another way to leave!"
(mind you, my house has exactly ONE front door)
                                 RM: "PG, move out of my way."
                                 PG: "I'm going to have that unicycle taken away.  You just wait.  You're going to be cycling along the tightrope at the circus and the police are going to take away that unicycle you're riding around on."  (clearly, the unicycle metaphor is serving the same purpose as the produce...... people be nosy up in this hood).

so, RM gets out the door, and PG starts in on how RM physically assaulted PG.  Which I cannot imagine RM doing.... ever - especially to someone such as PG.

I'm walking down the hall at this point, and PG is on the phone, still threatening RM's unicycle.  I ask PG what possible purpose it's going to serve to try to take RM's unicycle, as it would really hurt other people - especially those who attend the circus.  PG says "I'm calling SF."  I ask why, because at this point SF is working in a galaxy far far away, and has NO way to get to PG for hours and hours.  Then PG threatens to call the cops because of RM's alleged (minor) assault.  Then PG goes back to complaining about the unicycle.

I go outside and call RM, who is not, by the way on the unicycle, but instead standing on the sidewalk 2 houses up.  RM and I go for a late night jaunt around the neighborhood, trying to figure out what the hell happened.  PG starts texting me sayng that RM needs to give up the unicycle, needs to go work for another circus far away, needs to be looking over RM's shoulder because SF could be there.  Crazy talk.  Then PG said that I was getting kicked off PG island, and that I wouldn't be seeing PG or the PGtribe any more.  I asked if this included the PG mascot, Iguanadon, but got no response.  Iguanadon is still around, so I guess that's my answer.

The PG tries to get LM up in the mix, stating the LM owns the circus and can fire anyone LM wants to.  I asked LM about it later, and LM said "Nope, I had nothing to do with it.  WS and I were having our own conversation and staying out of that mess."

RM and I came back like 30 - 45 minutes later, and the dead bolt was locked.  Because RM had grabbed the keys earlier, we just unlocked the door.  LM and WS were sitting in the kitchen, talking.  PG's car was in the driveway, but was no where to be seen. 

RM and I were watching TV a bit later when I hear the screen door close (PG doesn't know how to close doors lightly), and a couple minutes later we hear what is obviously a gunshot.  I feared for the unicycle, but not enough to go outside at that point!

So RM rode off on the unicycle this morning (no gunshot wounds, thank goodness) to go and practice his motely fool studies (his little fool on a stick is named Jones, and his pet monkey is named Jeff and wears his own motley garb).  LM and I were talking and I discover that because LM refused to take a side last night PG isn't speaking with LM either. 

I know PG has a lot going on, but PG is going to end up completely alone if PG can't get it together. 

Hopefully that either clears things up, or muddles them beyond comprehension.

Special thanks to Powerof2, MC and GMP for being the three who know it all and keep talking to me anyway!  A special decoder ring is on it's way to you now.  <3

For the rest of you, make up whatever names you'd like - it doesn't matter.

much love and peace to y'all

Saturday, November 20, 2010

ch ch ch changes

So, it never ceases to amaze me how it took until just a few years ago for The Tipping Point to be published.  I mean, I love Malcom Gladwell and all, but why did it take so long for that concept to become a book.

Everything's gonig along like normal life, until.... that one thing hits the scale and..... well, tips it.  And suddenly life becomes something totally different.

It happend here in Candice-land not too long ago, and things haven't stopped changing since.  It seems every day requires a new set of standards to get by, and even they are constantly evolving.  It's like when you're a little kid at the beach, and every time a wave comes in the look of the sand changes.  You try to build your little wall, or castle, or write your name in the wet sand, and then...... crash, the wave comes and changes things.  As adults I think we all too often become immune to the change.  We build our walls strong enough to withstand the force of the waves, and go about our lives with tunnel vision, refusing to see the changes around us.

Well, I accidentally tore down my walls (to one person anyway), and my tunnel vision goggles got lost in the garage.  Now I'm bombarded every day with the ever changing design of life. 

I'm not complaining, mind you.... it just takes a while to go back to that little kid experience at the beach, where every wave brought something new and exciting; you couldn't wait to see what would be left after each wave.

Now, some of these changes I'd like to throw out the window for good, but I can't do that.  I just have to wait them out - and I'm convinced I can do that.  Other changes I'd like to hog tie down and keep them forever, but I can't do that either.  Change is like dandilion fluff on the breeze, impossible to hold onto.  It's meant to be enjoyed whilst in motion.

I'm in an interesting place in life, yet another new beginning.  My poor Phoenix; seems she barely gets her tail feathers back before she's ignitied in flame yet again. 

I'm pretty damn lucky though.  I've got some incredible friends around me, who I know aren't going anywhere.  It's funny though, they aren't necessairly the friends I would have guessed would be here if you'd asked me a year ago, but I wouldn't choose any other ones if you paid me.  I'm back in school, yet still have the teaching componant attached (to quasi-adults). 

But, yah, life is funny, and at the end of the day, all you can do is laugh......... Danny Kaye style.

Ugh, so broody this one is....... guess it's just the day.

Until next time - peace, hope, and love to you always

Tuesday, November 2, 2010

8 signs from Dr. Rocco's class.....

As most of you know, I've gone back to school.  Since I'd been out of the loop a while, and, since I had no idea what I wanted to be when I grew up (again), I decided to return to the hallowed halls of community college.  Since I was living in Moval at the time, and since the RCC campus was LITERALLY down the street, I went there. 

I was lucky enough to get a fabulous Humanities professor in one Dr. Chris Rocco.  He truly is great.

What is NOT great, however, is the caliber of students in class with me.  Having taught in public education for more than a decade, I thought I'd be prepared for my classmates, but they never cease to amaze me.

What has been shoking me this quarter, however, is how sheltered these kids seem.  We hear so much in the media about how kids are exposed to so much, how it's corrupting thier minds.  However, they are absolutely culture-less.  They really don't seem to know what's going on in the real world, and it's a little scary!

A couple of them had, or planned to vote today.  One other student had watched "The Rally to Restore America and/or Fear." 

Maybe it's me.  Maybe I'm just old and jaded.  I don't know - here are few examples of what I'm talking about....

1. No one in class knew what the Rocky Horror Picture Show was.  They seriously had NO CLUE.  When I brought up Glee, hoping to bridge the generation gap, someone actually thought that the creators of Glee had made up RHPS for their Halloween.  They didn't realize that all the songs on that show were old songs?

2. While waiting in the hallway, or even in the classroom before classes, I'm the only one not sucked into my ipod or phone.  I'm actually willing to have a conversation with a real person.

3. Last week we were discussing Sappho, who lived on the island of Lesbos with a bunch of her girlfriends, and they all sat around writing poetry.  I compared it to Lilith Faire, and got a bunch of blank responses.  When I mentioned Sarah McLaclan all I got was, "isn't that the lady on that commerical to help hurt animals?"

4. Last semester we were discussing the development of the factory system.  Someone in my small group said that they had to work for minimum wage.  When I asked how much it was now she said, "$8."  I mentioned that when I started working minimum wage was $2.75.  The kids were shocked.  They didn't understand how anyone could life on so little.

5. Which brought to light the fact that a gallon of gas, "Way back then" was .99.  No one believed me.

6. The fact that for a moment my fingers' muscle memory wanted to look for the "cent" sign that used to be on a TYPEWRITER.  I think it's where the asterik is now?

7. Honestly, most of these kids could easily have been in my classes at Serrano.  In fact.

8. One girl turned 18 last week.  She asked when I graduated from high school.  I said, "1993."  "Oh," she replied, "I think that's when my mom graduated."

As RM said today, "If they don't get it on facebook, twitter, or from a video game, they have no clue."  I say they need to leave the electronics at home for a day and actually look at the world around them.

Not that I would trade where I am now, don't get me wrong.  I love the "Candice and Rocco show,"  playing tuesdays and thursdays this semester. 

It just brings to mind that song from "Bye Bye Birdie"  "Kids, what the heck is wrong with these kids today...."

Tuesday, October 26, 2010

part one of many

I need to get a phone that allows me to blog on the go.  So often I'm sitting in class waiting for my prof, or waiting around somewhere, or I wake up in the middle of the night with divine inspiration, but I'm far too comfortable to get up. go all the way out to the family room, wait for the computer to boot up, and then hope for a good internet connection (we are SUPPOSED to have free wi-fi here in Riverside, but it doesn't seem to reach to La Sierra).

Anyway, just a few jumping off points that I will come back and detail later. 
* I still owe a "what Candice is reading" for both September and October
* Friendship - when the shit hits the fan you find out who is REALLY there for you, and who just gives good lip service
* My ever-changing plan, and the mentor I am eternally thankful for

and, foremost in my mind - how one little thing can change your life completely.  We are surrounded by change every day, and we usually bend or twist around it, and go about our business.  But every once in a while something small happens, and the changes build and build, until your whole life has shifted.  The key is to find the positive in the change, and be thankful for the wake up call. 

My wonderful friend Lisa takes every opportunity to re-evaluate her life.  Her birthday, New Years, Easter, Arbor Day (for real), and sees every day as a new beginning, a new opportunity to turn over a new leaf and leave the mistakes behind her.  More often than not she, (and all of us) end up making some of the same mistakes over again, but the attempt at self-actualization is a reward in itself.  I want to be more like that, more able and willing to let go of the past and focus on the amazing possiblilites of the future.

before I go off on yet another tangent, I'm going to put the "TO BE CONTINUED" sign up.  **someone** is bringing me some ice cream (yay!) and I can't wait to hear the exploits of the day.

Until later my friends...

Tuesday, September 21, 2010

blog of frustration!

I logged on planning to write a thoughtful blog about changes in life, and how a small thing can make a big difference.

However, I was suddenly set upon by a net of anger, resentment, bitterness, and contempt.  Very thinly veiled contempt.

Things happen in life, that's what makes life what it is.  These things, these events in themselves are neither positive nor negative, they just are.  It is only how we react to them that colors them one way or another.

Yes, some things have happened as of late.  They came out of a bad situation, but I have chosen to look at them as an altogether positive change in my life, and the life of another involved.  I have found happiness and joy in the past month, and feel much more like my old self than I have in a while.  I haven't taken a sleeping pill for weeks, and I wake up every day with a positive outlook.  Has the change made things necessairly easier?  No, change seldom does.  But has it all been worth it?  I can only speak for myself, but I say absolutely.

Others have chosen to respond with anger, resentment, passive agressive behaviors, and childish remarks.  They have decided to be petty, and act in what I would call a childish fashion.  That is their choice.  I don't know what they hope to gain from such behavior, because things are never going to go back to the way they were, and such behavior makes it even more difficult for me to deal with the behavior and the person.  Instead of drawing people closer together, such a reaction is only driving me farther away.  The obvious scorn in one's voice, the sighing and rolling of eyes.... we are all adults, and should be above such childish reactions, but, it would seem some are not.

On paper it is easy to say that I choose to not let such behaviors affect me, but in reality, it is more difficult to do so.  It does affect me.  Does it make me want to run back to the way things were before the event of change?  Hell no, it makes me want to grab the change and run far ahead, away from the way things used to be. 

Things are as they are now, and they're not changing again for as far ahead as I can see.  We all must come to terms with that.  I have, and I'm happier for it.  Others need to do the same.