Sunday, March 29, 2015

Day Forty: Live Blogging the Season Finale of The Walking Dead

Warning: There will be spoilers!!!

8:00 p.m.  The first face we see is Morgan!!! Welcome back!!!  Who is this? This dude has a W on his head.  So, this guy is a Wolf apparently.  This dude is weird. This dude is threatening Morgan already?  There better be more than two.  Morgan has his David Carradine going. These two jokers won't be back for season six.  Wait.  Has Morgan been clearing the wolves?  Did he tie the girl to the tree last week?  Michonne and Morgan would make a fierce team.

8:13 p.m. Rick has enough band aids to share I see. So, jail is just in another house?  These people in Alexandria are just stupid. Carol is the boss now?  Carol: These people are children; and children like stories. I need Gabriel to die already. If Rick wanted y'all dead, you would be dead. Why is Maggie keeping Gabriel's secret? Did she even tell Glenn?  I told y'all that Sasha was entering crazy Lizzie territory. Carol. is. ruthless.  I picture one of this Matthew Mcconaughey Lincoln commercial with a Zombie biting him on the neck.

8:27 p.m. Nicholas wants to get himself killed.  Nicholas and Gabriel have to go. They have to go. Carl. Why is everybody outside the walls tonight?  Dude these wolves have got to go.  Damn! Daryl taking down walkers with chains and stuff!! One of them is not going to make it back to Alexandria.  Either Aaron or Daryl.

8:39 p.m. We in a fix, Daryl!  Note says trap!  Carol has no Chill!  She's got ole Pete about to drop one.  "I want my dish back clean when you're done."-Carol dropping the mike on Pete.  What just happened to Glenn?  THERE IS TOO MUCH GOING ON RIGHT NOW!!!!

8:47 p.m. Daryl, what are you doing?  This is not a confessional.  Aaron you better not get Daryl killed. Morgan just saved Daryl and Aaron!! Okay, Gabriel you gotta go.  I hate him more than I ever hated Lori and Andrea.

8:55 p.m. Gabriel can't even die right.  I hate him. Eugene really kills me.  He is great for comic relief.  Abraham and Eugene are one of those buddy movie guys from the 80s. Gabriel is the straight up devil.  He looks like Satan walking in. Beat the hell out of him Glenn!!! Oh, I hate this dude man! Nicholas and Gabriel have to go!  Glenn can't die like this.  Michonne and Rick have got to hook up. This fool has let walkers in.  My nerves are shot.

9:09 p.m.  Sasha just kill Gabriel and it will all work out.  Deanna, you are the weakest link.  How is this fool still alive!?  Nicholas should be dead.  Sasha, please kill this dude. Gabriel and Nicholas should just be died.  Sasha, just kill this dude. There is just too much going on right now.  Yes, Glenn!!!  Abraham is so freaking awesome. Are those the wolf guys that Morgan knocked out?  Why didn't anybody hear that gunshot? Carol and Abraham have gotten some of the best lines this season.
Do you mind if I drop this walker off at your little meeting, Rick Grimes. Wait a minute, How did that dude get Aaron's pictures?  See, ya. Reg...Rick, do it.  His luck just ran out!! Rick and Morgan reunited!!!!  So long, Pete!!!  Michonne is back!!! The wolves have arrived!!!

Until next time, "I want my dish back clean."-Carol

Saturday, March 28, 2015

Day Thirty Nine: My Favorite Plays

I will say this, coming up with 40 topics for every day of Lent has been so difficult for me. There have been so few news events that I wanted to cover.  The Draft is still a while away, so every night has been a bit of a struggle.  Only Sundays have provided me with a ready topic with my weekly posts on The Walking Dead.  I'm going to end the regular posts with one more top 10 list.  Tonight's list are my favorite plays.  Some I have taught; some I've just read for fun.

#10-Ghosts by Henrik Ibsen:  This play was sitting on my bookshelf at work for a long time.  I picked it up one day during lunch and began reading it. I was surprised how much I liked it.  Ghosts deals with the consequences of bad choices, philandering, and, of course, dark family secrets.
#9-The Crucible by Arthur Miller: I have taught this play practically every year that I have been a teacher. I love the play because over 60 years later the themes presented in the play ring true. The play is about the madness that was the Salem Witch Trials of 1692.  Miller wrote the play to reflect the events of McCarthyism during the 1950s.  Lies, deceit, vanity, greed, envy, and revenge lead to one of the darkest periods in American history.
#8-The Piano Lesson by August Wilson: I first read this for a grad school class. This play focuses on a families struggle to decide what to do with a piano carved by their great-grandfather.  It divides a brother and a sister who each feel they deserve the precious and unique piano.  It is ultimately a play about family and reconciling the past.
#7-A Streetcar Named Desire by Tennessee Williams: I read this one for grad school, as well.  I'm working up the nerve to one day teach it.  Most high schools read The Glass Menagerie. I'm not a fan.  Streetcar deals with an aging southern belle who cannot accept that she has lost her status in society and the consequences of her actions. It manifests itself in a conflict between her and the brother-in-law she despises.
#6-An Enemy of the People by Henrik Ibsen: It is a play about perceptions. A Doctor, in an effort to protect the people of his town, stands up for his principles, and becomes reviled by the very people he is trying to protect.
#5-A Raisin in the Sun by Lorraine Hansberry:  Raisin recounts the life of an African-American family struggling to find their way in Chicago in the 1950s.  Their struggle is not just with the racism of 1950s America, but with each finding their identity and fulfilling his or her own dream.
#4-Macbeth by William Shakespeare: Although it is one of Shakespeare's greatest plays, I've never taught it, but I love it. It deals with themes of betrayal, corruption, and ambition as Macbeth betrays his king to fulfill a prophecy and the destruction that the betrayal brings to the kingdom.
#3-Oedipus Rex by Sophocles: It's the oldest play on this list. First performed in 429 B.C., it is well over 2000 years old, but it still has themes that ring true today-identity, relationships between children and their parents, and the consequences of poor choices.  Hopefully, not many of us will discover those the way Oedipus did.
#2-Hamlet by William Shakespeare:  A Shakespearean whodunit, as Prince Hamlet tries to uncover the conspiracy to kill his father.  Like Macbeth, his methods for trying to find and punish the murderer, ultimately destroys his kingdom.
#1-A Doll's House by Henrik Ibsen:  Like most of his plays, Ibsen's A Doll's House throws a wrench into the morals of Victorian society.  The play has a woman stand up to her husband in the most profound way possible to show that a woman's voice is just as important as a man's in this world.  Its themes cover sacrifice, loss of identity, control, and the roles of men and women in society.

To add to this list: 5 plays I hate: Death of a Salesman, Romeo and Juliet, The Glass Menagerie, Our Town, and The Play about the Baby.  I truly dislike these plays. I would only teach these plays if there was absolutely no other plays to teach.

Until next time, "I regard the theatre as the greatest of all art forms, the most immediate way in which a human being can share with another the sense of what it is to be a human being."

Friday, March 27, 2015

Day Thirty-eight: Redux-The Best of Diana Dishes

I have been going at this one post a night now for thirty-eight days. To date, I have published 235 total posts since my blog began on June 16, 2009.  I actually started writing my football posts (mostly about the Chiefs) when I was on MySpace (remember, MySpace?  I wonder if I can still access my page.).  I decided tonight to look back over the posts I have written.  Some have been funny; some have been sad; a lot have been written about Tony Gonzalez, and like in my profile, I don't apologize for that.  Looking back at the posts, I reviewed the stats, and tonight, I'm going to present my top 10 posts.  Now, I'm not famous or very popular for that matter.  I average about 10-20 views per post, and I'm okay with that, but sometimes, I post something that registers with some people.  I don't know why. Honestly, I write most of these for me to practice writing. 

I based this top ten list on the number of page views the post received.

#10-"The Twilight Saga...or Why I Would Rather Watch Paint Dry" (November 19, 2011; 318 page views):  This post was a response to why I have not seen any of the Twilight movies.  Four years later, I still haven't seen one of these movies in its entirety, and I regret nothing.  This is actually one of my favorite posts.
#9-"Falcon Was Hiding in the Attic, While My Teams were in the Basement" (October 17, 2009; 363 page views):  The title came from a breaking news post, you remember, the little boy named Falcon whose parents thought he trapped in a balloon made by his father.  He turned out to be hiding in the attic.  At this time, I was mom to 4 fantasy football teams:  The Merry Mad Men, The Crazy 88s, Gonzalez y Gonzalez, and Hecate's Hellhounds.  They were struggling to say the least. (Yes, Tony Gonzalez was my fantasy TE on each team.)
#8-"2013 NFL Predictions Sure to Bite the Dust" (September 5, 2013; 480 page views):  Every year, even this one, I make my predictions for the NFL Season.  It was the first post of Tony Gonzalez's last season. I made the very bad choice of picking the Falcons as NFC Champions.  Ah, well, at least, I got to see TG play that weekend in the Super Dome (all smiles)
#7-"NFL Week 6 Picks" (October 16, 2011; 602 page views): This was one of my regular pick Sundays.  It was an average post. Nothing special. I don't know why it got so many hits.
#6-"Fantasy Draft #4: Matching Mugshots" (September 8, 2010; 729 page views): This was one of my fantasy football leagues draft. My team name was Matching Mugshots, named after Tiny and T.I.'s infamous mugshots.  FYI, starting at running back, Ray Rice, who knew.  Yes, yes...TG was the tight end.
#5-"Best "Fantasy" Tight Ends" (July 6, 2010; 890 page views): This was my list of the guys that I thought were the best looking players in the league, making full use of the play on words on the position of tight end.  There were a couple of tight ends, and a whole lot of good looking guys.  Forgive me for putting Darren Sharper on this list.  That post was 5 years ago. I don't think anyone knew what a scumbag he would turn out to be.
#4-"The Gatsby Complex: Part 4: Gatsby" (May 25, 2010; 1056 page views): Football season was long over, so I decided to do a post on The Great Gatsby, but it turned into 4 separate posts about the characters in the novel and comparing them to modern day celebrity.  It was a fun post, and the series was some of my favorite pieces.
#3-"Bless the Children" (July 5, 2011; 1095 page views): This was one of my more somber posts.  It was dealing with the lack of media attention when it comes to the disappearance of black children, especially Phylicia Barnes who was the center of that post.  I also thought they should make an effort to show missing children everyday.
#2-"Come Back, Shawne!!!!!" (August 5, 2010; 1520 page views): This was an open letter to Shawne Merriman.  It was about his trials and tribulations returning to the San Diego Chargers after a major injury.  This post got a big bump by Shawne Merriman himself! One of my twitter friends retweeted it to Shawne who retweeted it to his fans.  It still has the most comments of all of my posts, mostly by Chargers fans.  So, this became my favorite post.
#1-"My Favorite Celebrity Crushes" (June 16, 2011; 7382 page views): One summer day, I decided to embarrass myself by talking about all of the people I have had a crush on over the course of my existence. The list ranged from Philip Michael Thomas to David Justice to, of course, Tony Gonzalez, who apparently makes his way into practically every post.  It was a fun way to look at how my choices have changed over the years.
After looking at these posts, I realized that most of my writing fell off a bit during my two years in grad school.  I spent more time writing papers than blog posts.  This Lenten lesson will hopefully get me back into the habit of writing more.  I have attached links to all of the post. If you are interested in getting a look at some of my older works, just click on the title of the article.

Until next time, “Taking time to look back, is a foundation on course to build a stable future.” ― Unarine Ramaru

Thursday, March 26, 2015

Day Thirty-seven: Well, this new

So, tonight the internet is still down all over town, so I am writing this post on my IPhone.  I never in a million years dreamed that I would be able to do a post like this. Today, realized just how dependent  we are on the internet. I could not do lesson plans nor record grades because the computers were offline. Ditto email. I could not print pages because our printer is wireless.  The cafeteria line took forever because many of the students have computerized accounts so they don't have to pay with cash.

At home, no online gaming today for me. I could not read my normal dose of news. I ca't use my phone at work, so I try to catch on twitter and Instagram on my iPad and laptop when I get home.  Not to mention these daily posts. I am an internet addict. I love the idea of finding answer to a question in a second. Chatting with friends, former students and classmates all over The world.  I hat using my phone to do it. I love getting news and magazines from all over, but the phone is not cutting it.  Sigh...

Anyway, I hope they get the problem fixed soon. I'm getting cramps in my thumbs tying this so until next time, happy birthday Marcus Allen (my favorite running back), Diana Ross (my blog namesake), and Chris Gonzalez (figure out who he is)!!!!

Wednesday, March 25, 2015

Day Thirty-Six: 10 Things I hate about 2013 The Great Gatsby movie

Monday, I began my annual unit on F. Scott Fitzgerald's The Great Gatsby.  This year will mark the 90th anniversary of the publication of The Great Gatsby.  We are even going to celebrate by recreating a 1920s garden tea party while we screen the movie.  My students are even going to don 1920s attire. My students asked me yesterday which version of The Great Gatsby were we going to watch.  My students want to watch the 2013 version starring Leonardo DiCaprio; while I informed them that we will be watching the 1974 version starring Robert Redford.  They questioned me as to why.  I answered that I didn't like the 2013 version.  Granted, both movies are far from perfect, but I prefer the Robert Redford one.

So, I decided that I would do another top 10 list.  This is my list of the 10 things I hate about The Great Gatsby (2013).  Warning:  This post contains spoilers for those who have not read the book or watched the movie.

#10-Amitabh Bachchan as Meyer Wolfsheim:  I'm all for diversity, but Meyer Wolfsheim was played by a man from India. Under what circumstances in 1920s New York would this man have been able to fix the 1919 World Series.  The casting choice was just distracting. Not to mention a haircut in a barbershop that turned in to a speakeasy/hooch bar.
#9-Tobey Maguire as Nick:  I like Tobey Maguire, I really do, but I just couldn't make him into Nick Carraway. Sure, Tobey Maguire looks the part, but all I kept seeing was Peter Parker.  I don't mean to typecast Maguire, but even when I showed the students picture of Maguire as Nick the first thing they said was "Spiderman."
#9-Baz Luhrmann as Director: I didn't put him higher, because over all it is a very pretty movie, but I was upset the moment I heard he was directing.  While I didn't mind the anachronistic moves he made to make Moulin Rouge a hit, but Romeo + Juliet was horrible.  It was beyond horrible.  Modernizing the movie, but leaving the Shakespeare words., most of my problems with the movie fall squarely on his shoulders. And 3D?  Why 3D?
#8-Elizabeth Debicki as Jordan Baker:  I'm not familiar with her work, but she was not a good Jordan Baker.  I saw her with her normal blond hair, and she is a beautiful girl, but that flapper wig did her no favors in this movie.  She looked like she belonged to Middle Earth more than Mid-town.  Her seductive was laughable, as a matter of fact, I did laugh when she tried to seduce Nick.
#7-The mental institution: Exactly, why is Nick in a mental institution?  I know Fitzgerald's wife went to a mental institution, but Nick? For alcohol abuse, the guy who states in the novel that he has only been drunk twice. I know there were a lot of freaking things that happened in and around Tom and Myrtle's apartment, and I know that he experienced many messed up things during the 3 months, but a mental institution? I didn't know the Midwest was the title of a mental institution.
#6-The music:  The anachronistic music was so distracting, because nothing says the 1920s like Kanye West and Jay-Z.  Also, I don't know the person who decided that Beyoncé should sing Amy Winehouse's "Back to Black," but hey yo, that was a bad idea, a very, very bad idea.
#5-The funeral of Gatsby:  I don't recall them having Gatsby laid out in his house, but okay, I can let that slide, but where was his dad?  You know, Gatsby's dad came to the funeral, right? Not in this movie.
#4-The houses:  Why did Gatsby's house look like Hogwarts?  Why did Tom and Daisy's house look like a Georgia Colonial Versailles?  Why did Nick's house look like the Keebler elves lived there?  Not to mention...THEY ALL LOOKED FAKE!!!  They looked digitally added.  Minas Tirith looked more real than Gatsby's estate.
#3-Leonardo DiCaprio as Gatsby:  Leo was not a bad Gatsby, but seriously, this is the oldest he has ever looked in a movie.  Daisy is about 23 years old in the novel, and Carey Mulligan looked to be that age, but Gatsby is only about 5 or 6 years older, Leonardo DiCaprio looked significantly older especially since he was pushing 40 making this movie. FYI, Tom is only 30; making him 7 years older than Daisy.  They both looked like dirty old men fighting over this young girl.
#2-Myrtle Wilson's death:  Myrtle gets hit by Gatsby's car--a 1922 Rolls Royce. She flies into the air, and then delicately and slowly floats back to the ground, only to appear to have scars incurred during a fight with a fist more than the bumper of a car.  As if it's not bad that we see this floating Myrtle once, he makes us watch it twice, for no apparent reason.  That was not creative; it was redundant.
#1-The Bromance between Nick and Gatsby:  Why does it seem that Leo's Gatsby was more interested in Nick than Daisy.  He is stalking the guy from the moment he arrives, which makes no sense because he doesn't even learn who Nick is until much later.  Why is he watching him from his window?  It's just creepy.  I am aware that Gatsby and Nick spend a lot of time together, but really, the long stares at each other drove me absolutely crazy. They are friends; we get it.  Maybe they should have gotten a room.

Well, that's why I can't stand that movie.  Sure, it's pretty; Sure, it's flashy, but that's why it is a West Egg imitation of the East Egg 1974 movie.

Until next time, "So we beat on, boats against the current, borne back ceaselessly into the past.”-F. Scott Fitzgerald

Tuesday, March 24, 2015

Day Thirty-five: I Got Distracted

I have the attention span of a gnat. I was trying to write a post tonight, but I got distracted. How you ask?  I'm going to take you into a brief period in the life of my crazy brain.  I sat down to write a post on why I don't like the 2013 The Great Gatsby movie, but then I got distracted by Tony Gonzalez on Michael Strahan's A Football Life, but remembered I had seen it, so channeled the tv to Investigation Discovery to watch their new episode of Redrum. 

After about two minutes, I saw a tweet from Bomani Jones about Darren Sharper, and I felt the need to respond, which led to a Buzzfeed article mocking Kylie Jenner's lips, which led to me taking a quiz about how many novels I have read that Roald Dahl's Matilda had read (22 out of 60, FYI).  This led to an article about which movies were better than the books, which should have led me back to the post that I wanted to write about...but it didn't.

Back to Twitter, someone posted an article about Celine Dion coming back to Las Vegas, to AOL...then, back to the article, because I'm going to write this article tonight, Dammit...Next, I saw a tweet about Married at First Sight, changed the channel to watch a little of this weirdo reality show.  Sean, FYI looks older than 34.

Then, there was another Buzzfeed post, and then, I was watching this dude pretend to be Voldemort singing a parody of "Uptown Funk." Hilarious by the way.  This led to a parody about Zelda and being a nerd.  Then, I saw an article inappropriately declaring Bill Goldberg dead, off to TMZ where Goldberg is instead talking about the wrestler who died in the ring this past weekend.  This led to an article they posted about the possibility of Darren Sharper making the Hall of Fame, which led to an article on Scott Fujita calling Sharper disgusting which lead me to Google to read the news...again.  Then, I realized that Youtube page was still open. I went to the Everything Wrong With page, and watched Everything Wrong With The Fifth Element, followed by EWW Michael Jackson's "Smooth Criminal," Katy Perry's "Roar," Iggy Azalea's "Fancy," and Ariana Grande's "Problem." I love sarcasm and mocking, this series is right up my alley. The MJ one was the funniest.  I just finished that, but not the article which led to this. I probably need help. I'll try that Gatsby article tomorrow.

Until next time, "I have the attention span of a 2-year-old. I like to jump from project-to-project."
Reba McEntire, I like Reba; she gets me.

Monday, March 23, 2015

Day Thirty-Four: Law and Order

In the criminal justice system, the people are represented by two equally important groups: the police who investigate the crimes and the district attorneys who prosecute the offenders. These are their stories.

Who knew that those lines would air weekly for over 25 years?  It's not a big secret that one of my favorite shows is Law & Order.  I watched the show from it's beginning in 1990 (when I was in 11th grade) until it's ending in 2010 (when I was teaching 12th grade). The show had multiple partnerships among both the officers and the ADA's. So, tonight, I'm going to pay homage to my favorite show, Law and Order  listing my top five detective partnerships and ADA teams.

The Detectives
#5-Phil Cerreta (Paul Sorvino) and Mike Logan (Chris Noth): They were the second partnership on the show.  I didn't really care for George Dzundza.  He is a great actor, but I liked Paul Sorvino better with Mike Logan, but of course, Mike Logan's best partner was Lenny Briscoe.
#4-Joe Fontana (Dennis Farina) and Ed Green (Jesse L. Martin):  After Lenny Briscoe retired they brought in Joe Fontana, the smooth talking, best dressed detective in the series to pair with Det. Ed Green. These two hot heads constantly came to blows, but Joe was a good replacement for Lenny Briscoe, not great, but good.
#3-Lenny Briscoe (Jerry Orbach) and Mike Logan (Chris Noth):  Jerry Orbach's Lenny Briscoe is my favorite TV detective, and I loved it when he joined Law & Order.  His often jaded sarcasm and one-liners were perfect with Logan's over the top antics, eventually got Logan exiled to Long Island.
#2-Lenny Briscoe (Jerry Orbach) and Rey Curtis (Benjamin Bratt):  Rey Curtis was smooth and gorgeous, and gorgeous, and gorgeous, and handsome with sarcasm (Briscoe) is the prefect pairing.  Rey was the Catholic straight-laced paired with recovering alcoholic bend the rules Lenny.  You had to love it.
#1-Lenny Briscoe (Jerry Orbach) and Ed Green (Jesse L. Martin):  They started off rocky, but when they finally got it together, they had the best chemistry of all the partnerships.  Not to mention, these two are my favorite detectives from the series period.  They both had to watch each other because each realized that neither was perfect, and both were constantly trying to keep the other from slipping of the rails.

#5-Ben Stone (Michael Moriarty) and Paul Robinette (Richard Brooks):  The first set of ADAs.  Stone was the quiet ADA who didn't mind bringing the hammer down on criminals.  Although Stone and Robinette did not always agree, they worked well together. Both ended up leaving the ADA office.  Stone to do humanitarian work, Robinette to be a defense attorney.
#4-Jack McCoy (Sam Waterston) and Alexandra Borgia (Annie Parisse): Sam Waterston's Jack McCoy is one of my favorite television characters of all time.  He is passionate, fiery, and ornery when it comes to his job. He worked well with his female counter parts, and while this one was short-lived, but Alex reminded me of Claire Kincaid, quiet but she would get her point across. Her ADA career ended when her character was kidnapped and murdered.
#3-Jack McCoy (Sam Waterston) and Claire Kincaid (Jill Hennessy):  The third set of ADAs Jack and Claire worked very well together, too well, as they eventually became a couple.  Like Jamie Ross, she tried to get him to see both sides of the argument and challenged Jack, before dying in a car accident.
#2-Jack McCoy (Sam Waterston) and Jamie Ross (Carey Lowell):  Jamie Ross was the soft-spoken ADA who always saw both sides of the argument considering she was coming from the defense side of things. I loved her ethical debates with Jack, and her fights with her ex-husband. I hated it when she left, but loved her return on the defense side.
#1-Jack McCoy (Sam Waterston) and Abby Carmichael (Angie Harmon): Two hard heads working together as ADAs.  This is the most stubborn group to work together, plus Angie Harmon was always trying to send somebody to death row.  No sympathy from her.  She and Jack battled each other almost as much as the battled the defense, but they complemented each other.

My favorite Lieutenant was Anita Van Buren (S. Epatha Merkerson) and my favorite District Attorney was Adam Schiff (Steven Hill).
Until next time, "Three deaths and a kidnapping; I'm only on my second cup of coffee!"-Lenny Briscoe

Sunday, March 22, 2015

Day Thirty-Three: Live Blogging The Walking Dead

Warning:  There will be spoilers!!!!!

Still can't get over Noah's death and stupid Gabriel's betrayal...

8:00 p.m.-So, Deanna is going to listen to techno while in mourning.  Okay. Her kid had crap decision making skills and crap taste in music. Carol's baking again. Creepy little Sam in the window. Sasha is in the tower.  Deanna didn't have to burn Carol's letter. Her son made bad choices and got himself killed, and I hold him partially responsible for Noah, too.  Daryl and Aaron have spotted a light in the woods.  I have a bad feeling about this.

Nicholas is straight lying. He tried to save Aiden? He is such a liar. Nicholas has to die. Nicholas is scared, he lies, so let's put them out.  This kid has to go.  Glen trying to convince them to stay.  Deanna should have learned fro the construction dude. Carol wants Pete dead. Why is there a balloon on the water.  Keep walking, Pete.

8:18 p.m. Michonne is like I'm buying into this, and I don't like it.  Deanna is so weak.  She knows Pete is beating his wife and wants to do nothing about it. Sasha has no chill. She is slipping into Lizzie territory. Enid is going to get Carl in trouble.  Rick is so into Jessie and Pete, he has no Idea where Carl is.

8:29 p.m. Thirty minutes have just gone by swiftly. Noah is on you, too, Nicholas. Nicholas should be dead.  He should get his arrogantly stupid self and have several seats with Gabriel. Nicholas and Gabriel both need to go. Like I said before, this girl is going to get Carl in trouble.  Another walker with a "W" on it's head, and now we know what happened to Rick's blender gun.  Sasha is trying to get herself killed. How did it work itself out for Michonne?  Now, Sasha feels guilty for telling Noah he wouldn't make it.  Maggie hasn't told on Gabriel yet.

8:43 p.m. Notice, Gabriel is like a serpent coiled up and waiting to strike when you are not looking. Nowhere to be seen. What fresh hell is this that Aaron and Daryl have just found?  A woman tied to a tree with a W on her forehead.  So, who are the W people and why did they tie this woman to a tree to die?  Jessie wants to just let Pete keep beating her.  Rick, just let it go. She made her bed.  How is Pete still able to get drunk in the middle of the day?  Pete had this butt-whooping coming.  You don't attack Rick.  I have a serious question. Alexandria has chocolate on lockdown, but the town doc can get liquor whenever he likes? Rick is telling them the truth though, but he is crazy, and Dang, Michonne!  She just knocked Rick the crap out.

Wow! Next week is going to be crazy.

Until next week, "You mean, me?"-Rick Grimes.

Saturday, March 21, 2015

Day Thirty-Two: World Poetry Day

I love when things come across my timeline that helps me with this little project. posted on their Instagram account that it was World Poetry Day.  If you have never heard of, they make products with literary themes.  I love their novel t-shirts, plus they donate a book for every item you buy. I have talked about music, television, novels, movies, sports, and short stories during this project, but I have not talked about poetry. 

William Wordsworth once stated that “Poetry is the first and last of all knowledge - it is as immortal as the heart of man.” That may be so, but I'm not a huge fan of poetry. I'm like most people in that I'm not going to go pick up a book of poetry and read it the same way I would read a novel. I do, however, appreciate a well-written poem that moves me. With that, here are my 15 favorite poems.

#15-"Annabel Lee" by Edgar Allan Poe:  Discovered this poem in junior high school.  It is such a pretty and sad poem--like Poe's life. It tells the story of a grieving lover who has lost his precious love, Annabel Lee. I had to memorize this poem for a class; I don't remember which one, but it has always stayed with me.
#14-"Mutability" by Percy Bysshe Shelley:  This poem speaks to the fact that the only constant in our life is change, and how transitory our lives are.  I actually wrote a paper about this one and compared it to the Kansas song "Dust in the Wind."
#13-"We are Seven" by William Wordsworth:  Another school poem, but it was so beautiful. The narrator tells the story of a little girl with whom he discusses the members of her family. She tells him there are seven children, but you learn that two have passed away. Yet, she refuses to not count her lost siblings because the are no longer physically with her insisting "We are Seven."
#12-"The Rime of the Ancient Mariner" by Samuel Taylor Coleridge:  A longer narrative poem, "The Rime of the Ancient Mariner" tells the tale an ancient mariner who is force to tell his terrible story to all who listen after his reckless actions results in the deaths of multiple men. My favorite line from this poem is "He prayeth best, who loveth best/All things both great and small;/For the dear God who loveth us,/He made and loveth all."
#11-"The Creation" by James Weldon Johnson:  I discovered this work in college.  Absolutely, loved it! It is recounting the Creation myth from Genesis 1-3 through the voice of a minister.  It reads like the sermons that I grew up with and Sunday mornings with my grandmother.
#10-"Richard Cory" by Edwin Arlington Robinson:  The poem tells the story of the most popular man in a small town.  What sticks with you the most is the surprise ending.  Nothing ever prepares your for the ending of Richard Cory.
#9- "The Love Song of J. Alfred Prufrock" by T. S. Eliot: A not so simple poem about a simple man who hesitates at life. It reminds us all that sometimes we need to take a chance, or we, too, will grow old like J. Alfred.
#8- "The Raven" by Edgar Allan Poe:  The poem is read by school children every where, every year.  Poe's narrator and his discussion with a Raven who has flown into his home. It shows the depths to which a person can sink when dealing with grief and isolation.
#7-"Invictus" by William Ernest Henley:  I first became acquainted with this poem by watching the tv show A Different World.  The quote "I am the master of my fate: I am the Captain of my Soul" was on a poster that appeared in the rooms of the ladies of the show.  I looked up the quote and found the poem "Invictus" which is a poem about finding the strength in yourself and overcoming your fears.
#6- "We Wear the Mask" by Paul Laurence Dunbar: This poem, although written about the plight of African American people, has found a place with all who feel downtrodden and forced to be something they are not. We all show one face to the world while keeping our true selves hidden.
#5- "Still I Rise" by Maya Angelou:  Love this poem! It, too, is a poem of strength and dignity. It deals with self-assurance in the face of those who would see you fail.  Each time they try to knock you down, rise!
#4- "I'm Nobody! Who are you?" by Emily Dickinson:  Nobody is not necessarily a bad thing according to Emily Dickinson. It is about being unique, being, different, and not having to be admired to have meaning to your life.
#3- "Phenomenal Woman" by Maya Angelou:  I first heard this poem recited by Phylicia Rashad. Like, "Still I Rise," this poem is about being proud of who you are.  It is the ultimate poem in self-confidence.
#2- "Nothing Gold can Stay" by Robert Frost:  I wrote a post about why I love this poem.  It just reminds us that life is transitory.  Nothing is meant to remain, and we should appreciate it for the beautiful moment it was with us.
#1- "Anyone Lived in a Pretty How Town" by E E Cummings:  This is such a pretty little poem, which has such a deeper meaning.  Anyone focuses on how we are so consumed with ourselves that we don't recognized the people around us have problems, too.  It also discuss how often living the day to day we forget of dreams living our day to day and how quickly it all passes.

So, what are your favorite poems?

Until next time, "Every poem is unique but each reflects the universal in human experience, the aspiration for creativity that crosses all boundaries and borders, of time as well as space, in the constant affirmation of humanity as a single family."-Irina Bokova, Director-General of UNESCO

Friday, March 20, 2015

Day Thirty-One: March Madness

Short post tonight. It is that time of year when my timelines are inundated with the NCAA Basketball Tournament.  Just about every one has become infected with March Madness and struggling to cope with broken brackets and lost wagers.  Not me...
I would casually watch the tourney during the early nineties when Shaquille O'Neal was with the Tigers.  I booed Duke and watched until the SEC teams were eliminated, but I never really watched with any interest, except in 1997 when a young man from Cal toook the court before being drafted by my Kansas City Chiefs.
Truthfully, I haven't really watched since 1997, even then I was almost forced.  We were having a study party and watching the games.  I've more or less resented it because it use to begin during our spring breaks here in Mississippi.  During the break, I just wanted to catch up on my soaps and my tv programs, but alas, it was mostly basketball and reruns. I just couldn't wait for it to end. I have filled brackets (unsuccessfully) for a couple of years with a few of my former students that I use to play fantasy football with.  I never really cared enough to do the research in filling it out.
Right now, I'm going through another March Madness. It's called senioritis--that time of year when senior high school students decide that they want to coast through the last two months of the school year. I'm trying a healthy dose of motivation, but you guys say few prayers for me...
Until next time, "Spring is nature’s way of saying, "Let’s party!"  ~Robin Williams

Thursday, March 19, 2015

Day Thirty: My Favorite Villains

I'm an unusual girl who does not follow the well-beaten path. When you meet me, I probably break every preconceived notion you have about me. I listen to country music and classical music, but I'm not a big fan of rap music.  I like the romantic writers, but I hate romance novels. I HATE CHICK FLICKS, and ALL THINGS LIFETIME!!!

I do, however, love a good bad guy. Even now, my twitter bio declares that I root for villains. Sometimes, I do, because let's face it, the good guys are often annoying.  So tonight's post is all things villain.  They may come from movies, television, or books. #10-Hedley Lamarr:  Harvey Korman as a villain.  Blazing Saddles is one of my favorite movies, and Hedley Lamarr is the absolute worse villain, but man is he funny.  Every devious plan that Hedley makes goes deliciously wrong, especially that piece of hard candy that almost takes him out when he does his evil laugh.
#9-Keyser Söze:  Kevin Spacey fooled us all. Verbal Kint had us, all including those "usual suspects" and the cops, believing that Keyser Soze was the devil incarnate, when he was the limping little snitch who had the best walk out of picture in movie history.
#8-Bellatrix Lestrange:  This has more to do with Helena Bonham Carter playing Bellatrix.  Bellatrix is one of Voldemort's most devoted death eaters.  She is bat crap crazy psychopath committed to his cause beyond belief and takes pleasure in doing her "master's" bidding, even killing her cousin Sirius Black.  The delight that she takes from committing her crimes only rivals that of the Joker.
#7-J. R. Ewing:  Growing up I watched a lot of those 1980s primetime soap operas, and there wasn't a bad guy badder than J.R. Ewing. He was the most despicable character to ever wear a Stetson.  He wouldn't hesitate to back stab his brother, his mother, his wife, his children.  He was even able to withstand a bullet from his girlfriend.  Even in old age, he still instilled fear, and the only thing that stopped J. R. Ewing was the death of his portrayer Larry Hagman.
#6-Victor Newman:  Eric Braeden's Victor Newman is daytime TV's J. R. Ewing.  He's like an evil phoenix that rises from the ashes to destroy anyone and anything that stands in his way. He will betray wives, girlfriends, children and takes pleasure in ruining his real or perceived enemies.  He can be sensitive one moment and then locking you in the basement in the next.  How Nicki can still tolerate him is beyond me.
#5-Regina Mills/the Evil Queen:  Lana Parilla is absolutely wonderful as the evil queen/Regina. Even though I don't regularly watch Once Upon a Time much anymore, she was one of the reasons I did tune in every week. Parilla is able to play her character as the worse type of human being (I mean, who wants to kill a child for spilling secret, HELLO, child), yet she also shows you the vulnerable side that makes you believe she can change...into yet another fabulous outfit.  Lana Parilla can work a hat, sister, and Regina the Queen has the most fabulous wardrobe on television.
#4-Fiona Goode:  Thirteen episodes just were not enough for the fabulously devious Fiona Goode, the supreme of American Horror Story: Coven. Like Regina, Jessica Lange's Fiona had a wardrobe to die for, and if you crossed her, you would die.  She kills a gorgeous doctor in the first episode just give herself momentary beauty.  Not to mention some of the best lines.  My favorite: "This coven doesn't need a new supreme; it needs a new rug." Fiona declares after killing one of her charges who is dying on said rug.
#3-The Joker:  Whether it is Jack Nicholson in Tim Burton's or Heath Ledger in Chris Nolan's, I love the Joker.  His sarcasm and wit, his ability turn on the charm and slit your throat at the same time makes the Joker a fascinating character you can't take your eyes off of. I wasn't sure I would like Ledger better than I liked Nicholson, but one scene made me like him just a little bit more.  The ad-libbed hospital explosion.  I don't know why that's my favorite Joker scene, but it is.  I'm just sorry Heath Ledger is not around to give the character another turn.
#2-The Wicked Witch of the West: Margaret Hamilton has been scaring little children for over 75 years. Her laugh alone will make little kids wet their pants.  Why so angry?  A little girl named Dorothy not only killed her sister, and then had the audacity to sport the dead woman's shoes thanks to Glinda the alleged good witch.  Seriously, isn't Glinda the real wicked witch? Yes, Hamilton's witch is all kinds of camp, over the top, and wonderful-"I'll get you my pretty, and your little dog, too."
#1-Pennywise the Clown:  We can all agree that the 1990 miniseries It was pretty horrible. Special effects were not top-notch, but there was one redeeming feature of this movie, Tim Curry's portrayal of Pennywise the wise-cracking Clown version of the monster "it" who was stalking the children of Derry. Tim Curry is the reason that an entire generation suffers from coulrophobia.  You cannot even mention Pennywise's name to some people without eliciting a reaction of fear. That's why he's my favorite.
So, who is your favorite bad guy?
Until next time, "I'll drive you crazy and I'll kill you all! I'm every nightmare you've ever had! I am your worst dream come true! I'M EVERYTHING YOU EVER WERE AFRAID OF!"-Pennywise the dancing Clown.

Wednesday, March 18, 2015

Day Twenty-Nine: Darren Sharper

I, like most of America, have a very short attention span.  We watch the news, see a breaking story, and follow it until a new breaking story comes.  I say this because yesterday, while I was reading the news on my lunch break, I saw an article on Darren Sharper.  I had honestly forgotten that dude has been in jail for the last year.  I was taken aback.
I still can't get over the fact that Darren Sharper, the handsome, dapper safety for the Green Bay Packers, Minnesota Vikings, and New Orleans Saints is accused of horrific crimes.  The 5x Pro Bowler and Super Bowl champ stands accused of two counts of rape by use of drugs, four counts of furnishing a controlled substance and one count of possession of a controlled substance in the Los Angeles case, and he has been charged with three counts of rape in New Orleans, two in Arizona, and a pending two cases in Las Vegas.

I'll admit I was a Darren Sharper fan. He was a great player, good looking, fun to watch, and even after retirement I would watch him on NFL Network. He seemed like a good guy doing charity work, and bragging on his daughter.  You know, I wanted to give him the benefit of a doubt.  I really did when he was first arrested and charged in Los Angeles.  In America, we are supposed to be innocent until proven guilty, but then, the investigations into his behavior started popping up all over the map. 

This wasn't some lovesick "groupie" trying to score a huge payday with a good-looking athlete. This was something much darker.  To hear how he "allegedly" lured two young ladies to his hotel room, drugged them, and then raped one then the other made me sick to my stomach.  Then, came the stories of the young lady all the way across the county in Miami whose case was dropped because of insufficient evidence, then New Orleans (with a former cop as an accomplice no less), then Arizona, and finally Las Vegas.  There are at least eight women in five different states.  I can't even pretend that there is a conspiracy.  Not only did he "allegedly" rape these women, he drugged them.  These cases could have easily become murder cases as well. Mixing alcohol with controlled substances like morphine and Ambien could have easily triggered a bad reaction and permanently damaged or killed these young ladies who had already suffered such a horrific trauma. 

I have heard too many stories of bad reactions when people are drugged.  I don't drink alcohol, for many reasons, but when I was in college, the few times I went to parties, clubs, or bars, I always ordered a bottle of water or bottle of soda.  I would keep the cap on until I wanted a sip. If I danced, it was always between my fingers.  If I took my eyes off of it for a second, I wouldn't drink from it again. Even today, I'm leery of drinks that I haven't seen poured in front of me. It's sad that I have these thoughts when out instead of enjoyment.  My grandmother even preached pants on a first date, have your own money, and keep your keys handy.

Let's be honest, most of us would have done the same thing if a good-looking, charming, former professional athlete who we "think" we know because we have seen him on our television screens weekly for years asked us to go to his hotel room for a drink.  I would like to think that I would have waited in the lobby, but who knows what you would do.  People make bad decisions when they are star-struck.  That does not give him the right to drug and rape these young ladies.  All those years on the field cheering him on the field, who knew this darkness lurked beneath the surface.  Now, he is faces up to 30 years in Los Angeles, life in New Orleans, and I imagine similar time in Arizona and Nevada if the charges move forward.  Now, he has become a lesson.

Until next time, I leave you with this from Kurt Cobain, “Rape is one of the most terrible crimes on earth and it happens every few minutes. The problem with groups who deal with rape is that they try to educate women about how to defend themselves. What really needs to be done is teaching men not to rape. Go to the source and start there.”― Kurt Cobain
Update:  March 21, 2014, it was announced that Sharper was seeking a plea deal and will enter a plea of guilty Monday for a global plea deal to cover all the charges in all for states.  The details of the plea will not be revealed until Monday, March 30.  It is said that he will receive "significant time."

Tuesday, March 17, 2015

Day Twenty-Eight: The Loop Songs

I admit that I have an addictive personality.  When I like something, I spend a lot of time talking about it, reading about, etc.  You would not believe the unnecessary stuff that I know about The Lord of the Rings movies, David Justice, the Atlanta Braves, Stephen King, David Morse, The Great Gatsby, Denzel Washington, Orlando Bloom, Tony Gonzalez, but I digress.  I'm not a stalker, because that would actually require work, and I am too vain to actually do that, because...lazy...

Anyway, I have this really bad habit of listening to songs on a loop. Most people will listen to a song a couple of times and then move on. Not me. I can literally listen to the same song for an hour, and it will not bother me in the least.  Students who have had the misfortune of spending detention with me will testify to listening to "O, Fortuna" and "Danse Macbre" over and over.  I love the songs; them not so much.

Tonight's post is about 10 songs that I have often listened to on a repetitive loop, much to the chagrin of my family and friends. Yeah, these are also songs you have probably seen me singing at the top of my lungs in my car, too.

#1-"We Belong" by Pat Benatar.  There is barely a day that goes by that I don't listen to this song. I don't have a favorite song, per se, but if I did this one would be right at the top of the list. I can and do listen to the song ad nauseam.  It's in my car, on my MP3, on my computer, my iPad, my iPhone, my work computer.  Any time I want to hear it, it's there to bring me joy.  Besides, Pat Benetar has a great voice, and damn, Will Ferrell for putting it in that scene from Ricky Bobby.

#2-"Bohemian Rhapsody" by Queen. I love, love, love, love this song!! I played it so much in high school that my grandmother put a ban on it in her house.  Every other day, I play it during my off period at work, because it just speeds up tasks.

#3-"River of Dreams" by Billy Joel. I fell in love with the song in college, and it is on my work computer. When ever I hit my rock playlist, it is always the first song I play.

#4-"Oh, No" by the Commodores.  The Commodores have always been one of my favorite groups.  This Lionel Richie led song found its way on practically every mixtape I made from 1990-now.  One, because it so short, it always fit in that extra space at the end of the tape, and two, it's just a simple but beautiful song. FYI, it was on the end of a cd I was listening to this morning going to work. I played it about 4 times before I made it to work.

#5-"Sail On" by the Commodores. Told you they were one of my favorites.  Even though this is a break-up song, it just has this positive beat, as the narrator tells the former flame he's looking for a good time.

#6-"Shake it Out" by Florence and the Machine.  I first heard this song by accident channeling the tv one morning and landing on VH1.  Whenever I find myself in a bad mood, I crank this song up to the top of the volume and shake the devil off with my loudest voice.

#7-"By Your Side" by Sade.  This is probably one of my favorite love songs.  I listen to this song to mellow out.  I just listen to her, sing a little too loud, and sway.

#8-"Take me to Church" by Hozier. You like it; you hate it.  I don't care, because I absolutely love this song. From the background instrumentals to the singer's voice.  I could listen to this song all day.

#9-"Keep the Faith" by Michael Jackson. This is my favorite Michael Jackson song. It's from the Dangerous album. This is really one of those stand up and sing praise songs.  It's an inspirational piece that makes you believe that you can get through any problem big or small.

#10-"No Rain" by Blind Melon. I pretty certain Shannon Hoon was referring to himself when writing these lyrics, but no song describes me better than "No Rain."  If life had a theme song, this would be mine. Playing in the background as I walk the halls, teach my class, brush my teeth...I find myself humming the song often.  Sure, my life is pretty plain, but always interesting...

Until next time, "All I can say is that my life is pretty plain,  You don't like my point of view,
You think I'm insane, It's not sane, it's not sane."-
Blind Melon

Monday, March 16, 2015

Day Twenty-Seven: 10 Things I Hate about The Hunger Games...Movie.

I really loved The Hunger Games trilogy from the moment one of my classes suggested that I read the series.  Although I like the books, I'm not a big fan of the movie.  The movie wasn't bad, but there were several things about the movie that I didn't like.  Here are the 10 Things I Hated about The Hunger Games in no particular order.
#1-The Point of View:  In the novel, Katniss is your 1st person narrator. In the movie, you have to rely on a 3rd person narrator, which detracts from the inner turmoil Katniss feels, especially when it comes to Peeta and Gale.
#2-Peeta:  I like Josh Hutcherson. He's not a bad actor, and he's even a little cutie. He's not my Peeta. Nothing about Josh Hutcherson says he can throw a 100 pound sack of flour or was a wrestler for that matter.  Plus, he's shorter than Jennifer Lawrence.  Liam Hemsworth would have made a better Peeta, or the kid that played Cato.  Also, they made Peeta into such a weakling.
#3-Katniss: I like Jennifer Lawrence as well.  She is a great actress. Here are my problems. One Katniss is suppose to be a rather thin girl.  Jennifer is not heavy by any stretch, but she looks like she has never missed a meal whereas Katniss has.  She is too pale for the character as well.  I actually saw the girl who played Clove as a better fit for Katniss as far as appearance was concerned.  P.S. Why was Katniss so distant AT ALL TIMES?!! Especially in the cave, when she really was feeling Peeta. At times Jennifer Lawrence played Katniss with the interest that Suzanne Collins had with the final book.
#4-Katniss/Peeta's Capitol Costumes: The girl on fire looked more like smoked Alaskan. The costumes were better by Catching Fire, but their coal miners outfits were beautiful until the fire was added. Then, they just became rather lame.
#5-The Mockingjay Pin: When I took my students to see The Hunger Games after reading the novel, one of their biggest disappointments was the fact that Greasy Sae instead of Madge Undersee the mayor's daughter gave the pin to Katniss.  While it made for an interesting moment between Katniss and Prim, it lost the symbolism of that moment between Madge and Katniss. Madge giving Katniss that pin is a big eff you to the Captiol from the daughter of one of its underlings.  Plus, it has a connection to Haymitch as well, which of course you lose when you have it being a not-so-good luck charm for Prim, and it will be difficult to make the connection between the Haymitch and that pin later in the series.
#6-Haymitch-I liked Woody Harrelson as Haymitch, but why remove Haymitch from the stage in District 12. His stumble was more choreographed than we are led to believe, but you lose that when they remove his presence until the drunken stupor on the train.
#7-The dogs: If it was one thing the Capitol loved to do, it was to mess with peoples minds. So, at the end of the games, it had Katniss, Cato, and Peeta to the cornucopia.  The dogs had hair and eyes to match the tributes who died during the games.  The dogs in the movie were a weird pit bull type hot mess.  Of course, they would have no problem killing those dogs, unlike the characters in the book who felt bad about possibly killing fellow tributes again.
#8-Peeta's dad's cookies:  They just eliminated the moment between Katniss and Peeta's dad.  He gives her the cookies that she eventually throws out of the moving train.  She throws them away because the remind her too much of the bread that Peeta throws to her when she was starving.  They, of course, hit a patch of dandelions which also remind her of Peeta. They show the reader that Katniss my have more of a thing for Peeta than she would like to admit even to herself.  They also remind her how much she feels obligated to Peeta.
#9-Katniss' dad:  She mentions her dad through the movie, but we couldn't get a flashback to see how close these two really were?  We just get dad blowing up, not making bows, or teaching Katniss to hunt or scavenge, just BOOM, dad's dead.
#10-The Avoxes:  The avoxes were a big deal to Katniss in the novel, especially the red-haired girl who served her in the penthouse--the one she saw attempt to escape while she and Gale were hunting in the forest.  No mention of this in the movie, she barely notices the avoxes, much less recognizes the girl.
These are not all of the differences between the movie and the books.  These are just some of the ones that bothered me the most.  FYI, I never really cared for movie Gale, nor book Gale.  Just an observation.
Until next time, "Happy Hunger Games! And may the odds be ever in your favor" -Effie Trinket

Sunday, March 15, 2015

Day Twenty-six: Live Blogging The Walking Dead

Warning: There will be spoilers!!!

8:00 p.m.-It's been a little too lucky and a little too quiet on The Walking Dead. I have a feeling that there will be some killings tonight, and not just walkers.  Nothing good ever happens when Gabriel opens the show.  I hate this dude. He is Lori and Andrea. He's been on the sidelines for the last two weeks, and I haven't missed him at all.  Three weeks ago, he threw away his collar, and now he is tearing up the Bible.

8:06 p.m.-Noah wants architecture lessons?  My niece interrupted so I had to sing "The Check-up song" from Doc McStuffins.  FYI, I hate Aidenn, and who thought it was a good idea to take limpy Noah and Eugene with them on a run? Would someone give Eugene some grown-up pants?  Eugene is a hot mess.  This whole run has bad news written all over it.  If I had to choose between Eugene and Gabriel, I'd take Eugene because at least he provides comic relief.  Tara tells Eugene that he is up, and Eugen is like, "The hell I am."  Aidenn, why can't you follow directions. Bomb, boom...OMG...Aidenn is such a dumba**!!! I hope he is dead.  Take it back, I hope he is almost dead, so they can tell this dummy "I TOLD YOU SO, JACKASS!!!"

8:22 p.m.-Aidenn's dead. Not much of a loss.  Ah, Man, Tara is messed up. Come on, Eugene. You can't shoot one walker. Man, Sam is a freaking cookie fiend. Let Aidenn, die.  Something bad is up with Abraham. The Alexandria people suck at everything.  How in the world did they live so long?  They could not hit the broadside of a barn.

8:32 p.m.-Abraham is going HAM on these walkers. He is in the zone!!!  This is so awkward between Jessie's husband and Rick, and is Doc drunk?  Wait a minute, did Eugene just grow a pair?  He's actually trying to rescue Tara!!  Just shoot Aidenn in the head, and be done with it. Well, they couldn't get him down. Deuces Aidenn, can't say I'm going to miss this big dummy.

8:42 p.m. Abraham chastises them, and Francine punched dude's lights out. Back at the warehouse. It's looking bad for Glenn and them. Deanna is not happy about this, but it is what it is. Maggie is right about them knowing how to do things.  Sam is a pain in the butt. Sam is another Lizzie.  Oh, I am loving Eugene tonight. Eugene to the rescue.  Oh no, Not, Noah!!!! Nicholas has to die!!!  Glenn needs to kick the crap out of Nicholas. I hate these dudes from Alexandria. Noah's death is right up there with Hershel's for gruesome.

8:55 p.m. Eugene was about to cap ole boy. Glenn only needed a couple of swings to take out this dummy. I hate Nick. Doc is a up to some stuff, and I don't think he is going to make it to the finale.  Did they leave Nicholas at the warehouse?  I hate Gabriel. He is such a...Gabriel left his flock out to die. Gabriel should have died instead of Noah.
What do you mean only two seasons left!!!!!?????
Until next week, "You are gonna have to kill him."-Carol

Saturday, March 14, 2015

Day Twenty-Five: Happy Pi Day!!!

Today has been declared Pi Day because today is 3-14-15 and twice today at 9:26:53 will have the numerical equivialent of the first 10 numbers in the irrational number that represents Pi.  Since Life of Pi is one of my favorites novels, I've decided to list my ten favorite bildungsroman novels/novellas.
For those of you who have not taken one of my actual classes or do not actually care about literary terms. Here is a formal definition of a Bildungsroman novel according to,
  • Bildungsroman is a special kind of novel that focuses on the psychological and moral growth of its main character from his or her youth to adulthood.
  • A Bildungsroman is a story of the growing up of a sensitive person who looks for answers to his questions through different experiences. Generally, such a novel starts with a loss or a tragedy that disturbs the main character emotionally. He or she leaves on a journey to fill that vacuum.
  • During the journey, the protagonist gains maturity gradually and with difficulty. Usually, the plot depicts a conflict between the protagonist and the values of society. Finally, he or she accepts those values and they are accepted by the society, ending the dissatisfaction. Such a type of novel is also known as a coming-of-age novel.
This list is not based upon how many times I've read or taught the novel, although Siddhartha is the one I have read the most.  These are the one's who's stories touched me and taught me lessons that have never left me. 
  1. Siddhartha by Hermann Hesse-This is probably my second favorite novel to teach every year. I sometimes read this novel twice a year. It follows the journey of wisdom of a young Brahmin named Siddhartha.  It is loosely based on the life of Buddha (Siddhartha Gautama). It is a wonderful novel for students about to embark upon their life after high school.
  2. It by Stephen King-This is one of my favorite book of all times. I have only read it three times because yeah, over 1000 pages.  It seems like an arduous task, but It is well worth the journey to follow these 7 friends as they battle a primordial evil lurking beneath the streets of their hometown.
  3. Tiger Eyes by Judy Blume-I must have read this book a dozen times in junior high, high school, college, and adulthood. I had to replace my copy, which as you know is a big deal with me. It follows Davey Wexler (a girl, fyi) as she and her family tries to recover from the murder of her father.
  4. Life of Pi by Yann Martel-I could not wait to teach this novel to my students. Pi Patel is truly one of my favorite characters. The novel follows both his religious journey, and his journey of survival in a lifeboat with an adult tiger.
  5. The Outsiders by S. E. Hinton-Teenage angst at its best. First read this novel in 6th grade, one of the few non-Stephen King novels I read. It inspired me to read every S.E. Hinton novel I could read, especially when I found out that S.E. was a girl. The novel follows Ponyboy Curtis and the rest of the Greaser gang as the fight the class struggle. 
  6. The Hunger Games Trilogy by Suzanne Collins-Katniss Everdeen. She has to be one of my favorite female protagonists (even though I like Jennifer Lawrence as an actress, I'm not really fond of her portrayal of Katniss, but that's for another post).  Its a dystopian novel that follows Katniss, her family, and friends as they struggle to survive in Panem, and their eventual fight against the Capitol.
  7. Their Eyes were Watching God by Zora Neale Hurston-Janie Crawford struggles to break free from societal bounds to find the love and become the woman she wants to be. This novel published in 1937 was a novel ahead of its time, and it was an inspiration to another author on my list.  My students, especially the girls, love the novel because of Janie's courage to fight to become the person she is meant to be, and not what others want her to be. 
  8. The Harry Potter Series by J. K. Rowling-So far, I've only read the entire series twice, but I plan to read the entire thing again this summer.  You know, because I forget stuff.  Although the novel is about young Harry Potter and his fight to rid the wizarding world of Voldamort; I see it as having three protagonists: Harry, Hermione, and Ron, because all come of age together in this series. Fight me.
  9. The Adventures of Huckleberry Finn by Mark Twain-I hated this novel in high school, but as an adult, I have found this novel to have more and more depth each time I read, especially in the character of Huck Finn.  The novel follows Huck Finn and a runaway slave named Jim as they find multiple misadventures along the Mississippi river.  Even that seemingly unnecessary reappearance of Tom Sawyer has its place in Huck's development.
  10. The Color Purple by Alice Walker-I had seen the movie as a junior high student, but I didn't read the novel until college.  Miss Celie's journey from victim to independent woman is a journey that I wish everyone would read. She finds strength, hope, friendship, and love that helps her to overcome so many horrors that haunted her life.
Honorable Mention in no particular order.  These are all great novels in their own right. I love these book as well, just not as much as the ones listed above.
  1. The Kite Runner by Khaled Hosseini
  2. I Know Why the Caged Bird Sings by Maya Angelou
  3. Jubilee by Margaret Walker Alexander
  4. To Kill a Mockingbird by Harper Lee
  5. The Body by Stephen King
Until next time, “Parents can only give good advice or put them on the right paths, but the final forming of a person's character lies in their own hands.”― Anne Frank

Friday, March 13, 2015

Day Twenty-Four: The Netflix Conundrum

First and foremost, I love Netflix.  I love the selection of television shows, documentaries, and movies it provides.  I don't even mind that they remove movies and shows every month or so, because honestly, when would we have time to watch them all anyway. Practically the only time I even buy DVD's now is for my class (and if they would let me stream them on Netflix, I would).

My only problem with me. I have no self-control when it comes to the original programming on Netflix.  Now, I purchased a subscription to Netflix for one reason-to watch the first season of their original series Orange is the New Black.  It was summer, and I really didn't have anything else to do. So, I watched Orange is the New Black.  I was hooked, and before I knew it, it was midnight, and I only had about 3 episodes left.  I had to force myself to go to bed and wait until the next day to finish.  The next day, I finished the series, and I felt empty, because I realized that I would now have to wait an entire year to see the next episodes of my now favorite show.

Yesterday, I saw some people tweeting about this new Netflix series, The Unbreakable Kimmy Schmidt. If you haven't heard about the show, it follows the misadventures of a girl who spent 15 years trapped in a bunker held prisoner by a cult leader, and now she is trying to build a life for herself in New York.  My tv was tripping last night, so I decided to give the show a try on my iPad.  Okay, it was love. It was not the perfect show; it had flaws, but it made me laugh. I especially love the frenemy relationship Kimmy has with her roommate Titus. This post is not about Kimmy. I want to rewatch, then write a post.

My biggest problem with Kimmy and OITNB is that I NOW HAVE TO WAIT A YEAR TO SEE NEW EPISODES.  Hi, my name is Diana, and I don't have any self control.  I mean, fortunately, OITNB will be back in three months, but I know that within a day or two of its release, I will be finished with the entire season waiting for the next to come. 

See, I'm more of a procedural drama than serial type girl.  Dallas, Falcon Crest, and Knots Landing ruined me for serials.  I like episodes that come to an end, which is why I was such a fan of shows like CSI, Law & Order, and Criminal Minds.  These serials kill me.  I remember last summer having a three day binge on the show Weeds, because I simply had to see the next episode.  Therefore, I limit the number of serials I watch on regular tv.  I have never watched Scandal; I watched one episode of Empire and baled; I watched a couple of seasons of Grey's Anatomy before I ditched it. I even kicked Under the Dome to the curb.  My number one serial is The Walking Dead.   I can get through a season of The Walking Dead relatively angst free. Plus, AMC loves their The Walking Dead marathons.  My other show is American Horror Story.  I know this year Freakshow was horrible, but I watched the entire thing. I use to watch Once Upon a Time, but I lost interest because too many characters and storylines.  They control my coming back, but with Netflix, it's like Lays potato chips, no one can watch just one. I watch episode after episode until my eyes finally say NO MORE!!!

This summer, I plan to start House of Cards. I didn't this week because I still can't get over the fact that I watched the entire season of Kimmy.  Netflix is wonderful in that I can watch entire series at the click of my mouse; the bad news is I will be a little sad when each of those series end, and I have to wait. [This is why I waited until the last Lord of the Rings movie premiered before I watched the first two.]  Oh, Netflix, I love you, but I hate you, too.

Until next week, "I hate myself for loving you/Can't break free from the the things that you do/ I wanna walk but I run back to you that's why/ I hate myself for loving you."-Joan Jett

P. S. The theme song to the Unbreakable Kimmy Schmidt is so perfect!!! I love it, and it is stuck in my head.  Mike Britt was the perfect actor for the viral video to the song.

Thursday, March 12, 2015

Day Twenty-Three: The NFL Offseason

Everything electronic in my room is going bizerk tonight, much like the past two days in the NFL. Usually, I don't pay much attention to the offseason wheeling and dealings that take place, unless of course they involve my Chiefs. Speaking of which, fare thee well to Dwayne Bowe, and hello to Ben Grubbs.

Patrick Willis and Jake Locker both retired.  Patrick Willis will be a big loss to the 49ers. I actually forgot that Jake Locker was still playing.  The Niners lost Justin Smith, Michael Crabtree, and Frank Gore.

Frank Gore signed with the Colts, and DeMarco Murray signed with the Eagles, which caused a wave of hatred to rise up from Cowboys nations.  Who Dat Nation was brought to tears when Jimmy Graham became a Seattle Seahawk, and Max Unger became a Saint. Ndamukong Suh signed with the Miami Dolphins.

Nick Foles was traded to the St. Louis for Sam Bradford (why?).  The ever-injured Ryan Mathews signed with the Eagles. So much crazy, and it's just getting started...

Until next time,
"You don't know. You just don't know. You may think you know, but you don't know. And you never will."-Jim Mora, Sr.

Wednesday, March 11, 2015

Day Twenty-two: The Golden Girls

Okay, I wanted to do a less serious post tonight.  One thing that you may not know about me, and that I should be embarrassed about, is that I love The Golden Girls.  Each night, I watch at least one episode before bedtime.  It helps the mellow me out with a good laugh. The thing I love about The Golden Girls is that we all know someone like the characters in the show. Besides, it was the prototype for shows like Girlfriends (Joan=Dorothy, Toni=Blanche, Maya=Sophia, Lynn=Rose), Living Single (Khadijah=Dorothy, Regine=Blanche, Sinclair=Rose, Max=Sophia), Sex and the City (Carrie=Dorothy, Samantha=Blanche, Charlotte=Rose, Miranda=Sophia), etc...The show aired for seven seasons with 180 episodes, and I think I've seen them all at least twice.

Dorothy the smart, snarky, sarcastic know-it-all, Rose the sweet, St. Olaf story-telling, dimwit; Blanche the over-sexed, egotistical southern belle, and Sophia, the cranky, Sicily story-telling, curmudgeon. For all their differences, for all their faults, they were one happy family (albeit a dysfunctional one). By the way, if you're asking, I'm Dorothy for more reasons than I care to admit.

So, for tonight's blog, my five favorite episodes of The Golden Girls in no particular order:

  • "Henny Penny — Straight, No Chaser"-The girls help Dorothy by putting on a presentation of the fairy tale Henny Penny.
  • "In a Bed of Rose's"-Is that a dead man in Rose's bed?  The girls try to find out what happened as Rose tries to work through the fact that she has killed some men in bed.
  • "Ladies of the Evening"-The girls have tickets to meet Burt Reynolds, but not enough to include Sophia. Will they make to their evening with Burt?
  • "The Actor"-Each of the girls have a part in a local theater production, but they also have the eyes for the lead actor in the play.  Will one of them be his leading lady or will all of them get burned?
  • "One Flew Out of the Cuckoo's Nest"-The series finale.
What's your favorite episode?

Until next time, "My mother always used to say, "The older you get, the better you get, unless you're a banana."-Rose Nyland Sorry no pics. Blogger and I are having issues.

Tuesday, March 10, 2015

Day Twenty-One: SAE Scandal

Last week, during one of our class discussions, one of my students asked me why there are black and white sororities.  I was taken aback, but the student is a senior and about to go to college where this will become an issue.  I had never attempted to pledge a sorority, mainly because they were not allowed on my college's campus (we had so-called social clubs, which were knock off sororities and fraternities, but I digress). I've just never really been into the sorority scene. I did community service through my campus job and clubs, I didn't like to party, and I barely could deal with one or two roommates.

Anyway, the student then asked to clarify why there were separate sororities and fraternities.  I explained that the "black" sororities and fraternities were founded because black college students were not allowed to pledge the white sororities and fraternities.  I then explained that the traditions continue, because many of the "white" sororities and fraternities STILL don't want to pledge black members to their sororities and fraternities. Some, not all. I also explained that many "black" sororities and fraternities do pledge white members.  Having attended an HBCU, I've seen white sorority girls and white fraternity boys.  Yet, I explained, it is still difficult for black students to break the ranks of the "white" sororities and fraternities. I used the University of Alabama as an example. As we continued the discussion, another student chimed in to say that during one of the college days they had attended, they had heard an official say that they believed that in the very near future that sororities and fraternities were going to go to the wayside and eventually be gone from most if not all campuses do to the continued issues of lack of diversity, alcohol consumption, racial/sexual insensitivity, and hazing issues. I don't know if that's true, but it does give you pause especially in light of the Oklahoma incident.

Everyone else has put in their two cents, so I might as well throw in mine.  Unless you have been living under a rock, you have to have heard about the fine, young men of Sigma Alpha Epsilon Chapter at the University of Oklahoma, and the bus trip they will never forget.  The young fraternity members were singing a racist chant on a bus that included no black people signing with the frat, or that they can hang them from a tree.

America is always ready to tell black people that we are too sensitive, and that we throw the race card far too often.  This ladies and gentlemen is the reason why. All too often, we see young men and women throughout the country doing overtly racist acts and then trying to pass them off as jokes. They are not jokes; they are not funny; they are offensive. I just do not understand how reasonably educated people can find this appropriate, and I have seen many comments where people are defending the young men. What they did was indefensible.  Praise the person who recorded it and posted it, because they felt it was wrong.

Now the young men of the fraternity are without a house, the people who run the house are without a job, and the two leaders of the chant are without a school.  Here is something I will never be able to understand.  You sit with each other in classrooms; you do projects with each other for class; you go to football/basketball games together; you play on the teams together; you celebrate victories together; you share dorms; but you cannot pledge to be brothers and sisters together?  This confuses me. It's like those high schools that still have separate proms, but everyone attends the homecoming dance.  It makes no sense.  Whatever happened to the golden rule-"Do unto others as you would have them do unto you."

No matter what you believe
Jesus: Love thy neighbor as thyself.
Buddha: Consider others as yourself.
Mohammed:  Hurt no one so that no one may hurt you That which you want for yourself, seek for mankind.
The Talmud:  What is hurtful to yourself do not to your fellow man.  That is the whole of the Torah and the remainder is but commentary. 
Egyptian Late Period Papyrus:  That which you hate to be done to you, do not do to another.
Epicurus: Neither harm nor be harmed.
Confucius: Never impose on others what you would not choose for yourself.
If only we all could follow these simple maxims, how much greater would our country, our world be. Treat everyone the way you want to be treated.

Until next time, “No one is born hating another person because of the color of his skin, or his background, or his religion. People must learn to hate, and if they can learn to hate, they can be taught to love, for love comes more naturally to the human heart than its opposite.”- Nelson Mandela

Monday, March 9, 2015

Day Twenty: The Mid-way Point

I’m at the halfway point of this Lenten blog challenge.  Whoo-hooo!!!  Only 20 more posts to go!!! Honestly, this is harder than that time I gave up potato chips.  Anyway, I have been feeling a little run down lately.  I’ll admit that I do not eat the way a 40-year-old should eat.  I know I should eat better, but I’d much rather eat a burger than kale.  It’s hard to change 40 years of bad habits.  After reading a few articles, I decided to give up caffeine (the headaches are miserable, fyi), and try this juice cleanse that I have heard several celebrities talking about on Twitter and Facebook.  Everyone talked about how they felt better and energized after the three day detox.  So, why not?
The first thing I did was look up juice cleanse products on Amazon.  I wanted them already prepared because yeah, lazy.  I’m not rich either.  The first one I found was Juice from the Raw 3-day organic cleanse (18 bottles) for $89.  The second was Jus by Julie 3-day cleanse for $129, and another was  the Suja Juice 1 day (6 bottles) for $51. I didn’t see pre-made as a possibility for me.
I decided to find alternative to these out of my budget cleanses.  I found the “I’ll try anything once: Cheap D.I.Y. at Home Juice Cleanse Edition” by a blogger named Hannah.  She seemed to enjoy the cleanse she tried, and her juice recipes actually didn’t cost a small fortune.  She spent about $45 on her supplies, and after my trip to Wal-Mart, I spent about the same, plus I will have fresh fruit and veggies when the cleanse is over.
Hannah’s Juice cleanse requires the drinking of six drinks a day for three days.  The cleanse follows this schedule:
  1. A green juice for breakfast
  2. A fruity juice for a mid-morning snack
  3. A green juice for lunch
  4. A cayenne pepper lemonade for the mid-afternoon snack
  5. A green juice for dinner
  6. A banana/cashew drink for dessert
    First up is the green juice drink for breakfast.  I used kale, a spinach combo (spinach, bok choy, red and green chard), a granny smith apple, a kiwi, and a banana.  I was expecting something along the lines of absolutely gross, but it really was not bad.  I did not taste the kale and spinach much at all, but the apple and banana was noticeable, which is fine because I prefer fruity to greeny.
    Drink #2-is a fruity juice.  I used a half a pineapple, one red apple, and a cucumber.  This drink is palatable as well.  I will say this. I do not like the foamy texture of the drinks; I might try to cut them with some bottle water.  It took two hours just to drink it all.  It’s the foam.  Texture is a big thing with me. 
    Drink #3-a green again. Okay, I’m not feeling so well after this.  By the time I finished, I was feeling nauseated.  I don’t know if it’s the banana or just the foamy texture, but I didn’t do as well as I supposed.

    So, I ended the day with solid food because the nausea would not pass.  I've decided that I may enjoy doing two or three, but six may be pushing it.  I'm going to try the alternate fruit juice and the lemonade tomorrow.
So, I tried something new. I'm still burping banana, which FYI is totally gross. Like I said earlier, the drinks are not bad.  They taste fine, but something would not agree with me.  Maybe tomorrow...

Until next time, "We keep moving forward, opening new doors, and doing new things, because we're curious and curiosity keeps leading us down new paths."-Walt Disney

    Sunday, March 8, 2015

    Day Nineteen: No live blog...

    There may be may be spoilers anyway...

    So, one of the easier posts I've been able to do was my weekly live post about The Walking Dead. However, my cable company decided that "hey, it's a good idea to do updates during prime time when most people are actually using their devices." [Hi! I'm poor decision making Rob Lowe, and I have cable.]

    I mean, I could have typed the blog in word and then just cut and paste, but in my neurotic mind that's kind of cheating. So, I'm just going to talk about the show.

    I honestly don't know who is crazier Carol or Rick. She threatened a little kid with walker death or cookies. Carol reminds me of that crazy video they trot out to teachers showing us how people can hide guns (I imagine she has about 4 or 5 weapons on her at any given time).  Meanwhile, Rick is being rather a horn dog with Jessie.  She is annoying to me, but Rick has it bad, and of course that little moment with the gun at the end, what was that about?  P.S. Jessie's husband was an obnoxious jerk last week, and this week he's all "Hey, how's it going?"

    Sasha is going to kill somebody.  I know she freaked out at the party, but that whole apocalypse cocktail party was uber-creepy and awkward.  But, as a bonus, we learned that Sasha and Michonne are not the only black women in Alexandria.


    Daryl and Aaron (and I guess, Eric) have developed a weird relationship bonding while killing walkers, putting down Buttons the horse, eating spaghetti, and talking motorcycles. 

    I wonder who Sasha heard at the beginning of the episodes. Why did that walker have a "w" on its head? Who knows...

    Until next week, "Blame it all on my roots, I showed up in boots and ruined your black tie affair."-Garth Brooks