20 January 2009
chocolate, co-op, consumer, food, product, sweet
This chocolate — this label, and this particular variety — was quite delicious the other day. I recommend it highly.
You could really taste the honey and vanilla as you let it melt in your mouth. Unfortunately, I didn’t get very much of it. There were a lot of people, and most everyone had some; I think it got broken up into over 40 pieces, which isn’t a lot per person, when you come down to it.
19 January 2009
chalk, chalkboard, classroom, flickr, learning, process, Teaching, writing
Here’s an example of some recent work from my ninth grade history class, if anyone’s interested in seeing what I do, and maybe participating in some of the exercises along with them. Here, the assignment was to write a paragraph on how comedy and tragedy were different in the Greek theatrical tradition.
16 January 2009
art, chinese, drawing, flickr, photo, poetry
I spent a very frustrated class period with my seventh grade the other day, trying to get them interested in Chinese poetry. Many Chinese poems of the Song and Tang Dynasties consist of very long titles and very short poems, so I wanted them to write a few. It was very difficult to get them to sit still and try.
Finally, I just created this poem on the fly, and formed the branch with a bird (I need to re-read the Mustard Seed Garden Manual‘s section on birds) as a way of dealing with my own difficulties with this class. It wasn’t a bad exercise, but I wish I had a few poems of theirs to share, rather than my own.
The poem reads…
My class becomes distracted by a titmouse hanging on an icy branch at the window; angry, I wrote this poem
bird happily — my
fury can only point
at the clock in rage.
It’s not bad, I guess. But it’s not particularly good, either.
16 January 2009
animation, bbc, cars, taxis, transportation, Video
The BBC took the GPS data from more than 300 taxis, and animated them with bright gold dots, and then laid the GPS data over a satellite map of London. The result is extraordinary, and beautiful.
13 January 2009
clean-up, flickr, organization, photos, progress
This is the first of seven or eight photos chronicling the clearing and cleaning of my office space. I did a pretty good job of sorting and cataloguing. There was also not as much trash here as elsewhere. I also held off on sorting through all the papers, though I did at least separate financial from academic materials. Still, I filled a trashbag with junk.
The photo here links to a Flickr photo series showing the gradual cleanup of the desk, if you’re interested in seeing the progression, along with all the interesting things I found along the way. Plus lots of library passes. Lots and lots of library passes.
My mom says that any motion toward cleanliness and orderliness is a movement toward calmness and sanity. You can judge for yourself whether or not I’m any saner today, as a result of having a clean desk, than I was yesterday.
The other nice effect of posting this stuff is that many of you, my readers, commented here or on Flickr about how cool it was that I’d decided to blog about this, or explain the process a little, or show my cleanup progress, and that made me want to do it again. So help me out… go view the photos, comment here or elsewhere, and tell me how good it looks, so I can get the rest of my apartment clean.
11 January 2009
This is the first photo in a series of five about cleaning the mess from the dining room table in my apartment. It had gotten really bad, and the worst parts of it had been this way since September or even August. It was time. My goal was to leave a completely clear surface, and either to throw things away or move them to a place where they could be properly dealt with. Each photo has roll-over notes (thank you Flickr) that explains what the item is, and in some cases where it got moved to in the apartment.
I think it’s an interesting series, because it shows just how busy and chaotic my life had become. The photos also show how I went about excavating the layers to uncover a table where it might be nice to sit, eat, drink, and work from time to time.
Is there such a space in your house that needs cleaning and clearing? Have at it: set aside some time in your week, and figure out how to clear space and throw stuff away. For the record, I filled three (small plastic grocery bags, not kitchen) trash bags with garbage from this table, and got rid of the junk forever.
There are at least three more such spaces in my house right now — my office desk is absolutely appalling, for example. The kitchen needs a lot of work too. Just having done this much, though, feels like a huge weight off my chest, and I’m really happy to have gotten it done.
10 January 2009
calendar, dates, google, pagan, paganism
I’ve been meaning to do this, and a few friends bullied/inspired me into doing it, finally. It’s the list of the various pagan/spiritual days that I tend to notice and celebrate in some fashion when they pass by. Currently, I’ve not added in the poetry associated with each day, but it is a basic guide to the 113 festival days. Hey, any excuse for a party.
Because it’s on Google Calendar, you do have the ability to add this to your calendar there. Because it’s on Google Calendar, you can download it and install it on programs like iCal and the freeware programs like Sunbird/Thunderbird. You can even download it and put it on Microsoft’s program, whatever it’s called. Enjoy.
plain HTML: http://www.google.com/calendar/embed?src=dcg3rk9388q6j9v74ldf8pe34s%40group.calendar.google.com&ctz=America/New_York