Monday, August 27, 2007

We got some much needed rain yesterday and again during the night. The grass, which had gotten brown and crisp, is green again this morning. I think there's rain in the forecast every afternoon this week. Back in June and July when it was raining every day, I longed for just one or two rainless days. Now, I'm wanting just one or two wet ones.

I really wanted to watch a movie on the Hallmark channel last night. August is Mystery Month. It was Perry Mason, though, and I just can't get into Perry Mason. I like Mystery Woman, Agent Jane Doe, and McBride. I like Murder, She Wrote too sometimes but not always. It's impossible to believe there could be that many murders in Cabot's Cove. I do like that look Jessica Fletcher gives the criminals at the end. If I'm flipping through channels and I catch Murder, She Wrote toward the end, I'll just stop there and wait for Jessica to give that look. It's kind of like pity, reprimand, and disdain all rolled up into one look.

Well, anyway, since it was Perry Mason and not something I like on Hallmark, I watched Iron Chef America and then Throwdown with Bobby Flay. The whole time, I was writing a grant, too. I should've finished the grant before I went to bed, but I worked Friday night until 9:00 and then Saturday from 8:30 til 5:30, so I was pretty exhausted going into yesterday. I made myself get most of the grant finished, since it's due today, but by 8:00 I was ready for a little break. So, back to Throwdown. If you've seen it, you know the premise: Bobby Flay finds these people who are experts at cooking a certain dish, and he challenges them on their own turf. They'll cook their signature dish, and Bobby Flay will cook his version of the dish. Then, judges will choose the "winner" by having a taste test. I've seen Bobby whip up on a very nice lady who made macaroni and cheese, a man who had won multiple contests with his signature cocktail, a cake decorator, and I can't even remember who all else. Every time, I'm in a fury by the end. I mean, here's Bobby Flay with a culinary school background, a staff of helpers, experience in Kitchen Stadium, and on and on. He picks on some poor woman who has spent her life perfecting her macaroni and cheese. Flay and his staff meet and work for days on how to beat the taste of the poor woman's macaroni and cheese. They put in seven different cheeses, bacon, and some fancy herbs. Sure enough, the trained chefs they get to judge it choose Flay's mac and cheese over the poor woman who has only herself and her kitchen and her little local mac and cheese reputation. I've seen it happen over and over again on this evil Throwdown show. It always makes me want to walk up to Bobby and say, "Bobby Flay, I want to tell you a story about a man who has a thousand sheep, but he wants the sheep of a man who has only one. This man, with his thousand sheep, takes that other man's sole sheep. Bobby Flay, you are that man." BUT!!!!! GUESS WHAT!!!!! Last night, Bobby Flay took his cocky self to New Orleans to challenge some muffaletta kings down there. And guess what!!!! Bobby Flay's muffaletta got whipped up on. Yep!!!! He lost the Throwdown!!!! I was so into it, I completely stopped working on the grant. Which means I need to finish it up this morning. However, there are four men here building a staircase to our new addition. I'm tired, tired, tired of workers being here every day. Tired.

I have been in a deep, deep depression the entire month of August. School started on August 1, and I wasn't there. I can't even explain the way I felt except to just say it was awful. I've started to get slightly better now. Shontelle e-mails a lot, telling me the downside of everything, and I've talked to lots of other teachers who are all beaten down by the unreasonable demands of administrators who are pushing for test prep in August already. I know I'd be miserable there, but still it doesn't feel right not to be there. I'd just started to think maybe I'd truly done the right thing by leaving, but then something happened yesterday that was like a knife in the chest. I saw Shontelle and Emily at "Meet the Tartars" last week, and they were telling me about something ridiculous that had happened at school--something they were told to do that is just plain flat wrong. Yesterday, I was telling Tim about it and how ridiculous and bad for children it was, and I said to him, "Can you imagine how miserable I'd have been having to do that?" Well, he just looked at me for a few minutes and he said, "You're wrong. None of that would have happened if you had been there. You wouldn't have let it happen." Now, I know he didn't mean to hurt me, but it really has put me back into the depression because I'm pretty sure he's right. I could have probably kept it from happening.

I have some things I want to write about Mother Theresa, but the grant is calling. There are things I really need to say about an article I read yesterday. Later, I'll post the link here with my comments.