Monday, May 31, 2010

Media of the Week - Oktapodi

Pin It There are certain things we see which make us laugh out loud. Welcome to one of them…

Sunday, May 30, 2010

Moments with Joey – The Dime

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SCENE 1, EXTERIOR. AFTERNOON, PLAYGROUND. The teacher is on recess duty and is supervising the fifth and sixth graders as they play wall ball, kickball, and the other various games taking place. As he is walking along the blacktop, a fifth-grade boy approaches him.

JOEY: Mr. Z, guess what?

TEACHER: You got beat up by a bunch of kindergarten girls again?

JOEY: Yeah, that too; but this is something else.

TEACHER: Fire away.

[The boy looks around to make sure that he isn’t being overheard, and then leans in close].

JOEY: I swallowed a dime last week.

TEACHER: Oh. So, were you trying to...change?

[The teacher starts to laugh; the boy ignores him and continues].

JOEY: I was just throwing it up in the air and catching it in my mouth when GULP! Down it went!

TEACHER: Bummer, now you’re ten cents poorer than you were before.

JOEY: Well, you know I can always look for it when it comes out later.


TEACHER: Okay, now that’s just gross, Joey.

JOEY: But you know what, Mr. Z? I hope it never comes out, that way I’ll always be worth ten cents!

TEACHER: You know what, Joey? You’re worth a heck of a lot more than ten cents…

[Fade to black].

Thursday, May 27, 2010

Media of the Week - Alferd

Pin It There are people in this life who inspire us with their great deeds, their heroic selflessness, or even their small acts of kindness. There is another group who inspire us simply by trying to better themselves. If you haven't heard about Alferd by now, then it's about time you did…

Tuesday, May 25, 2010


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As you may have guessed, today is my day for posting over at Four Perspectives. Today's post is quite the treat, if I do say so myself. Please feel free to make your way over when you have a chance.

Pretty please? With caramel drizzled on top?

Monday, May 24, 2010

The Contest - The Entrants

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You can send your friends to the poll located HERE to vote. Remember, each person is permitted to vote once per day (every 24 hours from the time you voted before) . The contest will end at midnight on Sunday the 30th, Mountain Time. They can also click the handy bar located at the top of the posts.

Good luck to all who entered.

Sunday, May 23, 2010

Photo shoot - Jane

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I realize that I've become delinquent when it comes to posting photo shoots online. This is the latest  - and I'll try to be better about it in the future...

Friday, May 21, 2010

Moments with Joey – New Years and Punishment

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SCENE 1, INTERIOR. NOON, CLASSROOM. RECESS. Only a few students remain in the classroom finishing up assignments. One boy approaches the teacher who is working on the day’s Social Studies assignment.

JOEY: Mr. Z, do you know who’s going to be in your class next year?

TEACHER: Now, just why in the world would that matter to you?


JOEY: I just does. [Pause]. So, do you know who’s going to be in your class?

TEACHER: Yep, and I’m really excited to have you again.

[The boy’s eyes grow wide for a second].

OTHER STUDENTS: Moted! Ooooooo. You got that, Joey!

JOEY: I get to be in your class again? That would be fun!

[The teacher is a bit surprised].

TEACHER: Really?

[Joey nods and grins].

JOEY: Yeah, I like to be punished.

Fade to black.

Thursday, May 20, 2010

Cloudbursts at Sunrise

Pin It I awoke this morning to a daybreak saturated in pictorial cloud character; gray and puffy cauliflower blossoms, like clumps of cottonwood fluff caught in the wind clustered around the rising inclines of Mount Timpanogos—heaps of whipped cream upon a vanilla mountain. Rich, buttery sunlight inked its way over the slopes like caramel topping slathered over a savory dessert.

Even being caught on my early-morning commute behind a slowly moving yellow school bus couldn’t damper my day for - with windows down - the freshly mown grass glistened with the early-morning dew, coating the very air I drove through with the early flesh of summer.

The music playing became the moment.

What a truly glorious day.

Wednesday, May 19, 2010

Media of the Week - Pigeon:Impossible

Pin It I wanted to post something this week which would make people smile. Perhaps even laugh out loud. Heaven knows that we all need little things to buoy us up…it worked for me.

Sunday, May 16, 2010

My Kid is Better-Looking Than Yours...

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I think that this summed it all up fairly well. The contest will officially begin next Sunday - just get me your kid's photo before then. Just know that these photos (without names) will be posted online in a montage for voting purposes.

The poll will be located on the Backroads Photography website next week - Don't worry, I'll provide a link.

By the way if you live out-of-state (unless you want to pay travel fees) you might not want to enter. That is, unless it's a place that I will be at (I do plan to go to NYC sometime this summer and perhaps Washington State…still haven't decided on California).

Friday, May 14, 2010

Moments with Joey – Wimpy Kids

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SCENE 1, INTERIOR. AFTERNOON, HOMEWORK LAB. The teacher moves to the back of the room where two boys are working on assignments. One of the boys raises his hand and waits for help.

TEACHER: Did you need help, Joey?

JOEY: [Shaking head]. No. But Mr. Z, I finished all my homework.


TEACHER: What about your journal entry?

[The boy looks confused].

JOEY: Journal? What’s a journal entry?

[The teacher rolls his eyes and blows out a breath].

TEACHER: Your journal…you know, a diary.

ALEX: Of a wimpy kid?

[The two boys burst into laughter, and the teacher stifles a smile].

TEACHER: Yep, and I’m looking at one right now.

[Joey glances sideways at his friend].

JOEY: Alex?

[Joey snaps his fingers and shakes his shoulders back and forth, as if he were an extra in a Beyoncé video].

JOEY: Oh yeah, I picked that one right off, didn’t I?

[The teacher smiles].

TEACHER: Well, it takes one to know one, doesn’t it?

JOEY: Is sure does, Mr. Z.

Fade to black.

Wednesday, May 12, 2010

Hope of America - Year II

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Photos from

A year ago I blogged about my first time taking part in the Hope of America program. In retrospect, it would be a waste of my limited time to repeat this same information all over again – especially when one could simply click here and read it over themselves, see the photos, and find out about the program I was able to take part in.

With this in mind, I will instead refrain from talking about last year’s program, and focus on this year’s instead.

It was amazing.

There is something to be said of taking part in such an event with thousands of others; namely, sharing a love for this wonderful country in which we live.

I wish I could have bottled up the emotion and the feeling that was there this past Wednesday evening – something that words alone could never accurately portray.

They just can’t.

Just know that the Hope of America was fantastic. If you’ve never before gone – and you have the means – I would highly recommend attending next year. I do wish to include two video clips a friend took for me (even after no training on how to work the camera).

Though video cannot do the program justice, it gives you just a taste of what the program was really like.

These were two of my three favorites; just look for the guy in yellow, row two, at 1:26 in the first video. Yeah, it's yours truly...

Tuesday, May 11, 2010

Media of the Week - The Power of Example

Pin It There are at times, reminders we get which can illustrate the power that our example truly holds for others around us. For my students I always try to set the best example that I can…after all, I know that they are always watching.

You might find a part or two of this slightly disturbing. Take this into consideration before pressing the 'play' button...

Got Some Junk in My…Drawer

Pin It We've all got one of these drawers in our house…it's the place for everything we have no place for. If you'd like to read about it, head over to my other place. I promise that there's more than just junk…

Sunday, May 9, 2010


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God could not be everywhere and therefore he made mothers.

~ Jewish Proverb

Happy Mother's Day to both of my moms…I love and appreciate you.

All that I am, or hope to be, I owe to my angel mother(s).
 ~ Abraham Lincoln

Thursday, May 6, 2010

Moments with Joey – Blacklisted

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SCENE 1, EXTERIOR. MORNING, CROSSWALK. The teacher is standing outside in the early-morning sun with a large, red STOP sign; he is waiting for students to arrive on the other side of the street. A small car turns into the school drop-off zone. The window on the driver’s side comes down, and the voice of a boy in the passenger seat can just be heard trailing off.

JOEY: But I told you that you can’t…

TEACHER: Good morning, how are you guys doing today?

JOEY’S MOM: Oh sorry, Mr. Z. I was going to say ‘good morning’ to you, but I guess I’m not allowed to talk to you today.

TEACHER: What, you’ve been banned?

[The mom glances to the boy in the front seat then back at the teacher].

JOEY’S MOM: Sorry, I’ve been forbidden.

[The teacher nods appreciatively and glances from the mother, to the boy, and then back to the mom again].

TEACHER: So, I’ve been blacklisted?

JOEY’S MOM: Unfortunately, yes.

TEACHER: Well, you’d better not talk to me then; I don’t want to be responsible for getting you into trouble.

[The mother gives a small wave, rolls up the window, and pulls to the curb to let her son out of the car. The teacher continues to cross the students arriving to school].

SCENE 2, INTERIOR. MIDMORNING, CLASSROOM. The class is filing out to labs. The fifth-grade boy is still lingering at his desk. The teacher casually approaches him, starts to say something, and then changes his mind.

TEACHER: Sorry, I was about to make a joke, but then I realized that I’d better not since you’re not speaking to me.

[The boy sits in stunned silence for a beat].

JOEY: No that’s okay, Mr. Z. You can still do it.

TEACHER: [Shaking head]. Sorry, I’ve been blacklisted.

JOEY: Maybe you could write the joke on a piece of paper…

TEACHER: And take a chance on you violating your restraining order? I think not.

[The boy sits for a second longer before answering].

JOEY: Oh, do you know what? I think it would be okay, Mr. Z. After all, I just remembered that today is opposite day.

TEACHER: Opposite day?

JOEY: Yeah [grins]. That means that everything is opposite, so you can tell me the joke after all because I am speaking to you.

TEACHER: I don’t know about this whole ‘opposite day’ thing, I’ve never celebrated it before.

[The boy thinks quickly and changes tatics].

JOEY: Would you tell me the joke if I gave you a hug?

TEACHER: Sorry, won't work work; today is opposite day, remember?

JOEY: Okay. Well, then you could push me away, or punch me in the face instead.

TEACHER: I don’t think I want to do either of those things, Joey.

JOEY: Please?

TEACHER: Okay. I guess I’ll tell you the joke.

[The boy leans forward in his seat and looks at the teacher with anticipation].

TEACHER: Oh yeah, I just remembered…today is opposite day. That means that I can’t tell you the joke after all, sorry.

[There is a slight pause as the teacher begins to walk away].

JOEY: Mr. Z? Would you please NOT tell me the joke today?

[Fade to black].

Tuesday, May 4, 2010

Media of the Week - My New Life

Pin It There are moments in my life when I need to be reminded of certain things. Often, these snippets of time come in the form of a few words spoken by a friend, a certain something I read from a book, or from a clip I see online.

Welcome to such a moment...

Destroyers of Goodness...

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I'm pretty sure that this says it all…

If not, you can always click here.

Sunday, May 2, 2010

Lord of the Blings

Pin It Is your website looking down in the dumps? Is it a stark environment that needs a little whip of cool icing to spruce it up? Do you find that your blog is nothing but a bleak wasteland of nothingness? A sterile place that reminds you of time you had to go to the hospital for that procedure?

If this be the case, perhaps what you need is a little bit of ornamentation to jazz up the blasé of the here and now, and transform it into the hip and new.

For a limited time (and all for the price of free) you—yes YOU—can have the patented Blog Bling added to YOUR site. That’s right…guaranteed to not only increase the overall aesthetic look, but also the resale value of your blog.* Act now - Blog Bling is currently available in several mouthwatering flavors; there’s sure to be something for even the very pickiest of bloggers.

Don’t be the last on your blogroll to take the plunge and get the bling. You’ll either be a leader or a follower…which will YOU be?

Besides, all cool kids are all doing it.

* Not responsible for direct, indirect, incidental or consequential damages resulting from any defect, error or failure to perform in regards to Blog Bling. Avoid prolonged contact with skin and keep out of the reach of children. Use only in well-ventilated area. All warranties are subject to change without notice.

Saturday, May 1, 2010

Out of the Ashes, Beauty will Rise

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I awoke this morning.

It was raining. Have I ever told you that I adore the rain? Of course I have. Probably more times than you wanted to hear. However, hearing the rain this time was different.

Today I was going to a funeral.

Now, before you start to worry, my family is doing well, as am I.

I’ve had a student who’s been absent for a week. You see, his cousin died. My student, I’ll call him Joey, was taking it pretty hard. On Thursday after school I went to visit him.

He told me about the funeral on Saturday. I didn’t want to go. He wanted me to.

I awoke this morning.

The rain was cascading down, and building in the gutters, sweeping over the tops like a waterfall. It gurgled in the downspouts and coated the sidewalks with a glorious infestation of worms – slowly growing mushier. I ventured out into the sullen weather, and gazed up at the melancholy clouds. I couldn’t help thinking how much I didn’t want to attend this funeral.

It was going to be wearisome; after all it wasn’t even a year ago.

The clouds began to clear away as I drove up to the funeral home in the next city. A train blocked my path at one point, forcing me to find an alternate route. A detour for roadwork forced me to take another pathway yet again. Traffic on the freeway and in town was so congested that it very nearly made me late.

It was as if all of the obstacles that could have been put before me were; all of the warnings not to go on.

And yet I drove.

I arrived at the funeral home, and for a few moments I just sat in my car. I didn’t want to go in. I thought of my student, and drug myself from the confines of my car, where the sun was now breaking through the ashen gray haze above me.

I went inside.

The familiar smell of funeral home, and the sight people dressed in black – all of which speaking in hushed tones - was a reflection of another funeral. It was like sliding down a cheese grater.

It was reliving it all over again.

When the service ended, I saw my student. I spoke with him briefly. I put my arm around him and gave him a small hug. And then we stood there, saying nothing. After a couple of moments he looked up at me and smiled.

He told me he’d see me on Monday. He rejoined his family.

I drove somewhere not home in a veritable depression. It weighed down upon me, and like an unwelcome visitor, just wouldn’t leave.

I turned on music to match my mood, which probably didn’t help, but it made me feel worse, which in turn started to make me feel better.

Steven Curtis Chapman once wrote:

Last Day on Earth

I pull over the side of the road and I
Watch the cars pass me by
The headlights and the black limousines
Tell me someone is saying goodbye
I bow my head and I whisper a prayer,
"Father, comfort their broken hearts"
And as I drive away there's a thought that I
I cannot escape, no I, I cannot escape this thought
I can't get away

Oh, if this should be my last day on this earth
How then shall I live?
Oh, if this should be the last day that I have
Before I breathe the air of Heaven
Let me live it with abandon
To the only thing that remains
After my last day here on earth

If this should be my last day here on earth
If this should be my last day here on earth
If this should be my last, last day here on earth

And if tomorrow comes to find me
Looking in the face of Jesus
Will I hear Him say the words "well done" ?

If this should be my last day here on earth
If this should be my last, my last day here on earth
'Cause this could be my last, this could be my last
This could be my last day

It is now night.

I write.

It feels better.

Mom's whole story is here and here. Just know that in the second link the posts are from newest to oldest, you'd probably want to start at the bottom.

Image garnered from:
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