On the heels of many an ass-kicking

13Jun07

My buns have been whipped several times in the past five days. Let me count the ways.

1. Is it possible that I didn’t actually major in English?

I took a marathon of exams last Saturday. The exams were part of a series that is necessary for me to add an endorsement to my teaching license: grades 7 – 12 English. The first test I took was comprised of 120 multiple choice questions that had to be completed in two hours. Not so hard, right? Um, yeah. Have you been practicing your ballad stanzas and working knowledge of reconstructionist authors? Neither have I. The questions on that particular test? I think a PhD would be hard-pressed for answers. So I’m thinking I didn’t pass that one.

2. Gabriel Garcia Marquez, thou revenge is sweet.

Three years ago, this very month, I was laying on my couch reading one novel after another. I was in my third trimester with Makenna, on quasi-bedrest due to pre-term contractions. I was following Her Highness The Oprah and her book club recommendations. With much anticipation, I began reading One Hundred Years of Solitude by Gabriel Garcia Marquez, whose short stories I love. When I finished reading the book, I retitled it Five Days I Will Never Get Back. My friend Myndi wasn’t feeling the love, either. She called the book Ten Days of Misery. Together, we laughed heartily. Oh, how I wanted to love the book, but I just couldn’t. Metalia, don’t hate me.

Senor Garcia Marquez exacted his revenge upon me last Saturday. The second part of my exam entailed a list of 15 novels, of which I had to pick ONE and describe teaching techniques for a ninth grade class. The practice tests I reviewed all included novels or short stories that I knew well. Not Saturday. I looked over the list, my eyes searing through the paper. As if by staring at the list Romeo and Juliet or The Odyssey would magically appear? Shit, throw some Albert Camus at me, I don’t care! The only novel that I had read in recent time to which I could logically respond? That’s right… 100 Years of Solitude.

It was a truly pathetic written response. I didn’t remember any character names, or major plot lines. So my essay sounded something like this: “One obstacle to student learning would be the character names. All the men had the same or similar names. That would confuse a class of ninth graders. FUCK, the book sucked and it confused me! Can I please pretend that the list includes To Kill a Mockingbird? Thank you.” So it is likely I didn’t pass that exam either.

3. Note to self, don’t fly into SFO.

So after my crazy, exhausting battery of exams, I hopped a flight to San Francisco to visit one of my oldest friends Katie. When I used to live in the Bay Area, I would fly in and out of San Jose or Oakland. They are smaller, much more user friendly, with less frequent flight delays. And they don’t have a train, tram, or shuttle in between terminals. SFO does, and it’s called AirTrain. And I was trapped in it trying to get to the rental car stop. All I wanted was to get my car, drive to Katie’s, eat dinner, and crash. But no, the train stopped, and we were all stuck for ten minutes…and that feels like an eternity as everyone around you begins to panic. “If we push the emergency button, someone HAS to let us out, right?”

4. The Bay was made for cruising, the highways made for driving. And I did both, extensively.

Aside from hanging with Katie, the main reason I was in the Bay Area was to attend the wedding of another old friend. Lisa and her husband Mimmo were married in two ceremonies in Italy last September, but they wanted to have a ceremony for stateside friends and family. This took place on a Hornblower cruise which departed from Berkeley and puttered around the entire Bay for about three hours. Much fun was had, but that basically meant that I drove like a maniac (‘cuz I was late) across the Bay from SF to Berkeley, poked around the Bay on a boat, then drive BACK to SF. And then caught my flight home. I’m nuts.

5. Tummy Bugs R Us.

To top everything off, I caught the nasty little tummy bug that has been haunting this house, claiming us one by one. That made yesterday a great day for me.

I am now on the mend. No more butt-kicking, please!

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10 Responses to “On the heels of many an ass-kicking”

  1. And I thought I was busy! Crazy girl! Hope this week is low-key 🙂

  2. 2 jane

    but let’s talk about the good stuff- did you lose any weight? not that you need to you skinny ms. thang. I’m exhausted right along with you. Let’s go to the movies this weekend! Mojitos on me! 🙂

  3. that is some whirlwind trip! i hope you are feeling MUCH better.

  4. 4 Lefty

    Hell, I know they aren’t teaching any of that stuff to MY 7-12 graders. Most HS kids around here can’t even spell.

  5. Well… I liked 100 Years of Solitude, but to each his own, right? I’m sure you will pass with flying colors. Also hope you are feeling better by tomorrow night!!!!

  6. Wow, you are so busy, no wonder you caught the stomach bug flying around.

    I would love to go to San Fran one day, I have heard how wonderful it is.

    And you would think that they would list novels that kids in high school would read. I am not sure many of them would be checking out Oprah’s Book Club for must reads.

  7. I bet you are one of those people who think they bomb an essay, but get an A. You might have written about nothing, but it will come off as brilliance.

    you people, bite me. 😉

  8. Hi all!

    Great book. I just want to say what a fantastic thing you are doing! Good luck!

    Bye

  9. Hello

    Looks good! Very useful, good stuff. Good resources here. Thanks much!

    Bye

  10. Hi

    It is the coolest site,keep so!

    Bye


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