Thursday, September 28, 2006

Daniel of the Day Vol. I


You know, every day is better with a little Daniel and company. I'm so happy with my feet on the ground.......

Tuesday, September 26, 2006

I'm Blaming Jim Henson


I think I may have figured out what went wrong. Our family dined on a steady diet of The Muppet Show when I was a kid. How, I wondered, did I end up with such an appetite for all things gothic later in life? What in my childhood led me down this path? I think this may be the answer. By the way, Halloween is right around the corner. I am VERY excited!

Monday, September 25, 2006

I Want Those Who Get to Know Me to Become Admirers or My Enemies

ADAM ANT-Friend or Foe

A little Pirate/New Romantic fashion, a little voodoo and a whole lot of fun! Time to dance! While Adam Ant reminds Echo of the perfect kiss, Adam Ant reminds of a great weekend home from college and going to go see Adam Ant with one of my best friends, Frank. Frank and I had one of those fabulous platonic relationships. I know Frank didn't score big points with at least one of my friends, but he was always a sweetheart to me and was the shoulder I leaned on many times. We had great times together and rode out some rough relationships together. I've seen him naked.....running down the street.

Friday, September 22, 2006

WWBD (What Would a Behaviorist Do?) Vol. IV

Dear Behaviorist,
I am an elementary school principal and have been given fabulous training in positive behavior intervention that my district paid thousands of dollars for. My problem is that I do not understand behavioral priciples even after being inserviced and am making a bloody mess of my school. Further, I refuse to take the blame for my mistakes. What should I do?

Eternal Irritant

Dear Eternal Irritant,
First, perhaps as the administrator you should be setting the example for your school staff to follow, we call this modeling. If you are unwilling to admit your mistakes, how will there ever be any growth? Second, once you have accepted that you are in need of additional training, go get it, BEFORE YOU RUIN THE MORALE OF THE ENTIRE SCHOOL! How will your staff ever know how to implement a behavior system if they are incorrectly or inadequately trained. I hardly find this to be the fault of the staff. Modifying behavior is a tricky thing and should not be taken lightly. I suggest you take a long look at yourself and do some serious reflection about what kind of school you'd like to be running. Sorry to go all cognitive on you.

Eternally Controlling,
The Behaviorist

Tuesday, September 19, 2006

A Mighty Fine Vessel She Was

Ahoy, me hearties! I wanted to tell ye a tale of the fine and worthy vessel the Balclutha. Aaargh, she is near me heart 'ere since I set foot on her back in the autumn of 2000. We were sailors and pirates for a night, aye.

Me journeys took me onto the mighty Balclutha with a bunch of young scallywags, lads and lassies. The youngens were in need of some supervison on their overnight voyage. We swabbed the decks, lowered the boats, rowed, cooked and sang sea chanteys. We took shifts on the nightwatch and kept the bells. As the sun rose o'er the bow, while sippin' me coffee and overlooking the sleepy city of San Franciso, this pirate had a most memorable moment indeedy. The sea salt in the brisk morning air was intoxicating.

Arrgh, I miss the sea.

Thursday, September 14, 2006

The Eyes of an Eight Year Old

"Everything is different now, isn't it." While we were riding home together on Monday, September 11, 2006, I was faced with this statement from my eight-year-old son. He has only begun to comprehend what happened on 9/11 this year. We shielded him from it when it happened, because he was only three. Three-year-old children do not need to be exposed to events this horrific.

As he has grown older, he has learned of the constant wars. He has learned of what happened on that day. He has heard of his parents' dissatisfaction with our President. He has heard news of terrorists. He has wondered why someone would purposefully fly a plane into a building, knowing of all the consequences. In short, he has had to face the facts of life. Not all men are good men. That is a harsh lesson.

Explaining the terrorists motivations sometimes is easier than explaining why we choose to go to war. Explaining any of it is worrisome as a parent. Many worry about whether the Nintendo games are going to scar our children. Well, I'll tell you, the games will never touch them in the way that the culture they are being brought up in will. A culture so divided that dishonesty and fear-mongering are apparent at every turn. A culture that doesn't value humility and service. A culture that tells them that bigger is better and the mighty rule in any way they choose.

My son doesn't remember a world before George W. Bush, terrorists, and war. I barely do either. I often wonder what the mothers of children his age in Iraq feel. Are they optimistic, as we are told? I somehow imagine not.

Wednesday, September 13, 2006

Exhaustion is a Fun Drug


After days of sleep deprivation, my brain started doing some weird shit last night. First, it felt like shockwaves, sort of accompanied with a quick flash of light. Then I actually heard things. I swore I heard voices, but no one was there. I felt twitchy and nervous. Made me think of Thomas Dolby. I think I need to go to bed.

Monday, September 11, 2006

Touch and Go Revisited

For those of you who could not make it to the Touch and Go 25th Anniversary Beer Fest, I mean Music Fest, here is a little taste of what made it one of the most fabulous weekends of my life.


Between Big Black and Scratch Acid I spent most of Saturday evening with my eyes rolled up into my head enjoying the wigged out landscape they aurally induced. I'm sure it had nothing to do with the five or six beers I'd had by that point. Mmmm, and did we mention it was Goose Island and Warsteiner they were serving. No Budweiser here, baby. This was hands down the best run outdoor festival I have ever been to. They had the stages running like clockwork, the beer lines moving and the portapotty lines were not unbearably long. This is important when you have had many beers. So, enjoy this next clip of a shirtless Dave Yow of Scratch Acid doing his thing. Peace out!


Sunday, September 10, 2006

In Other News, Tenacious S Fears Head Will Explode

So, how is the Tenacious One doing after just one measly week of grad school? Well, there was a bit of a time management issue with the Touch and Go Festival happening, but other than that, there were no excuses for what happened. As usual, I have a tendency to overthink things and apparently that's what I did with the first assignment. I was ready to write a manifesto and was getting very angry that the sources I was finding were pathetic at best. Then at about 7 this evening I saw the comment from the professor. He was only looking for a few paragraphs. I already had four well developed paragraphs. I think I might get an "A." Unfortunately, I think it may have come with a side of ulcer.

Better Than.....

How could a weekend get any better than getting lucky and finding the dude with the three-day passes? How could it get any better than hearing tons of amazing bands? How could it get any better than the beer ticket lady accidentally giving Lulu and I twice as many beer tickets than we paid for? How? When you walk out of the Touch and Go festival the first day and the flyer pressed into your hand is for a NAKED RAYGUN reunion at Riot Fest on November 5th!!!! I have died and gone to punk rock heaven.

Thursday, September 07, 2006

Still Mourning

Crikey, these Australians sure do get under your skin. I'm not done obsessing on INXS yet. I remembered how much I liked them and that for a good year, this was one of my favorite songs. You know what? I still like it. I think I'm going to go order the CD.

Wednesday, September 06, 2006

Dead Australians I Have Loved

Well, there's really just the one. Good lord, how I miss Michael Hutchence. I know. You're thinking, "T, you've gone soft!" Bite me. He was an awesome front man and some mighty fine eye candy. So, Steve Irwin, you're in good company wherever you are.

I am the World's Largest Idiot

I am so angry right now. I've been really looking forward to the Touch and Go Festival. So what did I do? Nothing. That's right, nothing. In the midst of my busiest work season and heading back to school I completely spaced on buying the tickets and now they are sold out. Angry doesn't even begin to describe it.

Monday, September 04, 2006

Fare Thee Well, Steve Irwin

I come to this post with mixed emotion. While it is a miracle he lived as long as he did putting himself in harm's way far too often, I feel a certain sense of loss as he represents a part of my children's earlier years. OK, the guy was a bit nuts, but I'm thinking he loved the animals. When you compare a crocodile to your wife, I think that is the obvious conclusion.

Saturday, September 02, 2006

I'm It!

I haven't been tagged for any reason for a long time, so the game almost feels new. CP tagged me and now I must 'fess up to my objects of literary attraction.

Well, that's quite a tall order. I honestly can say that I don't think that any ONE book has changed my life. Probably the most influential was Fun With Dick and Jane. You think I am kidding. I'm not. This was probably the first book I read all by myself cover to cover before kindergarten started. I loved reading. I remember being very proud of myself and asking my mom if we could please go back to the library and get more books.

On the Road by Jack Kerouac
I read this for the first time while I was travelling through Europe on my own. My own adventures gave it depth. Some of it was just crazy messed up shit, but I felt he allowed some of my interior landscape to see the light of day without my having to get arrested for it. Better to live vicariously in some cases. I am an expert at this.

From the Mixed-Up Files of Mrs. Basil E. Frankweiler by E.L. Konigsburg
When I was about ten, the wanderlust struck. This book was the precursor to the Europe trip and some serious moving around. I forced my brother and our friends from across the street to read this. We were going to run away to Woodfield Mall. We knew it was large and had fountains with money. We were sure we would succeed. We plotted all of it on the roof of our garage while we threw apples into the neighbor's yard. We got yelled at and we had to abort our mission.

Fargo Rock City by Chuck Klosterman
I think I wet my pants. What a wonderful tribute to how music really does shape your life and provides milestones by which to mark it. Genius!

I am going to preface this by saying I usually do not seek out to cry while reading, and thus have probably avoided this genre in general. I cried as a child reading The Diary of Anne Frank . It was one of the first times I remember really understanding the suffering that other humans are forced to go through. I teared up reading There Are No Children Here by Alex Kotlowitz. This is when I was reminded how fortunate I was and how easy my life really is. Shuts you up real quick.

The Me Book by Ivar Lovaas
While it may be more of a therapy manual, this book has set thousands of children on a journey towards a better life. He is the guru of my profession and I hold the utmost respect for him. For many years he was considered a renegade, but all the while he continued to gather data and perfect his therapy that undoubtedly has made a profound diffrence in the lives of many children with autism and their families. He gave hope when many had given up.

How about Mein Kampf by Adolf Hitler. A book that should never have been written by a man who nevr deserved to be alive.

I belong to the Books of the Month Club. I am currently reading God's Politics by Jim Wallis. I have to REALLY be in the mood for that one. I am also reading Fingersmith by Sarah Waters, a delicious bedtime snack most nights. Additionally, if I am feeling more *Tenacious*, I've read whatever chapter I'm in the mood for from Rip It Up and Start Again by Simon Reynolds. One can never smash too much rock trivia into one's head. Oh wait, maybe you can.

Can I change this to a book I'm going to 'splode if I don't get to read soon? Ever since Echo told me about the unedited version of On the Road coming out next year, I have been crossing days off of my calendar.

Friday, September 01, 2006

My Afternoon

I was walking Bink home from school minding my own business, when some yellow jacket with small insect syndrome decided to take his aggression out on my arm. If I see him again, I'm going to kick his ass. Maybe he'd like to pay the emergency room fee. Have I mentioned that benadryll is coma inducing?