Saturday, December 06, 2008


I have just now, as in a second ago, finished the last school project for the semester. Good grief! I never thought I'd make it.
One class to go, which will probably be spent by eating and commenting how quickly in fact the semester went by, and that's that for me. Well besides the observations in the after-school program on Thursdays, but that's another 2 weeks to go and then really, that's it. Well until next semester that is, when I will start the whole thing again... oy.

I'm brewing some coffee, will make an attempt at not doing any work-related activities this weekend, and try and relax while listening to music. What a luxury. Of course the coffee machine is making some strange noise and will most likely boycott my day by not giving me any much-desired cup of java. Just like the CD player not wanting to spit out the last CD I put in there, the light bulb burning in the bathroom, and my keyboard losing the C key, making typing quite an ordeal.
It's a conspiracy.

Sunday, November 30, 2008

Of Old and New

Yeah yeah yeah, no need to say it; I know you're thinking it... "lazy bones". Sue me, I've been beyond busy and frankly not very inspired to do any blabbering. Besides, since last I wrote nothing exciting has happened, not that there really ever was anything exciting about my life, but this year has basically just been a looong year of routine, exhausting busy routine, but routine nonetheless.
School? Busy. Work? Beyond busy. Home? Well there's a lot of stuff going on that is also keeping us very busy, but this is not the time nor place to talk about it.

There are though, things that have happened which in retrospect have made me think about how funny life can be at times. Not so much funny as in ha ha funny, but with twists and turns that sometimes take you so much off guard that it makes you wonder about this whole ‘free will’ thing.

For instance, a good friend quit work in September. I was sad to see him go, but knew that he was so miserable at work that it could only be a positive thing for him. In a matter of 2 months the economy crumbled, his husband lost his job, they have to sell the apartment they had newly bought and renovated themselves with love and care, and have moved to my friend's childhood town. Now, for all things that could be foreseen, this was a snowball effect that, at least for me, came out of nowhere at a dizzying speed. Yet I still think that it’s the best thing that could have happened to both of them.
My friend, although loving to live in NYC, would often talk about his home state with longing, all the while trying to convince me that I should go and see real cows, as though he felt sorry for me for only knowing those beast wrapped in cellophane at the supermarket.
I learned that his husband is going to reinvent himself and take on a career he has always wanted to pursue (something about health I think), and so in the long run, will probably feel so much more fulfilled that he was at his prior job.
Now, although brought on by circumstances that would have made me loose my hair, contemplate selling at least one kidney, and become a guinea pig in all profitable experiments, the result turned out to be a very positive one, who would have guessed?

Another thing reminding me that life sometimes winks at you in unsuspected moments is human relationships. This year has seen a couple of old friends who for different reasons hadn’t spoken to me for a long time, go through horrible experiences. Regardless of the time that had passed, they called me when they were going through a terrible time and we are speaking again. It took a traumatizing moment in their lives to make us realize that whatever kept us apart was inconsequential.

You know that ad, “The Human Element”? Often in life we forget one key component of this rollercoaster voyage we all go through, and that’s the Hu element: us. We cannot predict or even sometimes understand how other fellow beings will affect us, react to our little quips, or influence how we end up doing things. The whole point I guess is to accept how things happen and make the best of them as we try, really try, to learn. Bottom line? It often takes an old thing to make you appreciate a new one.

Now, if this isn't a perfect example of a blabbering fortune-cookie philosophy, I don't know what is. Must be the holidays approaching…

Thursday, June 05, 2008

Uh... Almost 3 Months??

I've kindly been reminded that I have not given any updates about what this crazy mind is up to....
It is 6:22 AM, so I'm just making a quick dash to let y'all know that I'll be writing this weekend. Promise. Pfttoo (I really don't know how to spit) cross my heart.

Saturday, March 22, 2008

The 80's Without the Hair...

Wow, I haven't posted in what seems years, not for lack of updates mind you, but I've been way too busy.
I won't bore you with school, presentations, analyses or some of the morons I take classes with (there goes the educational system people), nor will I talk about the elections (pleeeeeze, enough with the he said/she said crap! and can we cut it a little shorter next time? thankyouverymuch);
I won't talk about how exhausted I am and that the mere thought of a white sandy beach brings tears to my eyes. I will not mention (Ok a sentence, I have to) how spring is here and YAY! I will not talk about not having a life besides work/school/home, why? you give me an extra two seconds in my life and I swear I'll have a blast with it, really, just seconds will do. I'll steer clear of the usual complains of winter, work, dust bunnies and lack of sleep. So what will I talk about you say? Music!
Yes, music. Let me give you a little background to this story. I had a presentation to give last week and was slightly freaking (as usual), so on the day of, in go the earphones and what did I listen to? what always made me get through exams during high school: Heavy Metal. Yes, nothing like AC/DC's For Those About to Rock (... we salute you... come people sing) or Back in Black to calm your nerves, or give you the nerve to stand in front of 30 teachers and teach them how to teach... *ahem*.
In any case, I revisited my iPod's very small collection of Metal and told myself that if I had a second I needed to update it. So today I decided to put the books aside for a minute and download some Def Leppard, Iron Maiden and Poison (turns out we had AC/DC at home, who knew) ... so 80's! I'm still not crazy about Poison, but damn! I'd forgotten how good Maiden was. Next on my list? Some Van Halen (no 80's list is complete without them) more Maiden and Judas Priest. Metallica is already in there, plus they are timeless so they don't count.

As a side note, I also made a trip down memory lane other than by listening to those bands that gave my mother a heart attack (not Metallica, for some strange reason the woman liked them): Kirk showed me some pictures of himself back in that forsaken era... Dude! the hair! the Miami Vice-like wardrobe, it was too much. There were some good things that came out of the 80's but hair and clothes were not among them, so I'll stick to the music.
Anyway people, I can't think of any other bands I need to download, I need some help here, any ideas?
In the meantime I'll thank my lucky stars that no curling iron or strech jeans are among my possessions but just an iPod about to be filled with my youth. A-ha anyone?

Saturday, January 12, 2008


The hardest part about not writing for so long is, well, writing. After a month of not updating this thing it seems like there is either too much to say or nothing at all. I guess the first order of business is to say HAPPY NEW YEAR! I think there's a protocol about this, about how long after the fact you can still say it. Too late to be wishing happy holidays, but we're still breaking-in this new year so I guess it's still fine, sort of. Anyway, '07 is over and '08 doesn't seem to be that different from last one, so on to some usual business.

Today I received a convocation to work the voting polls on February 5... Oooohhh... unfortunately I'll be in class that night so I don't know if I'll be able to do it. I've called the voting center coordinator (because I'm responsible like that) and she still wants me to participate -"Nathalie! so good to hear from you!"- They must be desperate... I'm a little bummed out because I was really looking forward to 'participating' in this election, hopefully they'll accept me leaving early or maybe it won't be an all day affair.

I will not write my very own personal opinions about the up-coming elections in here because, well you read it, they are personal, I'll just say -tweedle dee and tweedle dum, 'nuff said. OK, not fair, but what started looking like a very exciting happening is now looking more and more like a simple greyhound race: some class, a lot of speed but still only going round and round in circles chasing each others' tails, which they still have, tails that is... ahem.
OK so I will try and not talk about the elections, but given that it's mostly what everyone talks about, and mainly all we see on TV I won't promise a thing.

In other news... there aren't any really. School hasn't started so I can't numb you with it and nothing else has changed. I promised myself at the beginning of last year that I would write more, which I didn't do, well not here anyway, so I won't promise anything. I'll try and keep up with y'all, but again, no promises. There, that's this year's modus operantis: no promises I can't keep. Happy? Yeah, I thought so.

Ta-ta people.

P.S. You know what I love about this blog? it's mine so to hell with run-on sentences, and boy there are some...

Sunday, December 09, 2007

And after all that tooting...

... I caught a cold. A nasty cold that has been bugging me for way too long for my taste. Nothing to do really but weather it out, or starve it. As my paternal grandmother would say: "Starve a cold, feed a fever" like my father reminded me. No choice in the matter really, I have absolutely no taste buds left, and for anyone that enjoys food like I do, what's the point of eating if you can't taste or smell what you're intaking? I've cooked (by some miracle it was OK) but could not get myself to eat more than what is absolutely necessary for this damn machine called my body to function.
My hearing? hubby thinks that I've gone deaf (he's persuaded that by choice). Everything is muffled, but I've almost mastered the art of reading lips. Give me a couple more days of this crap and I'll be an expert. The only positive thing is that I can't hear the constant background noise of the city. I'm thinking of getting close caption though for the TV, the neighbors must be tired of hearing what I'm watching.
Ah, good times. I got the bug everyone is talking about. I feel like one of the King's musketeers: "all (bugs) for one, and one (bug) for all"; But I will suffer like all my fellow mankind, because I'm unselfish like that... ahem, cough cough, sneeze.

Tooting one's Horn; Part Deux

In the spirit of continuing the patting on the back, I will add that I got an A+. Yes, the bestest (shush, that's a word, I'm a teacher remember?) of the best.
I went to observe one of my peers the following day who had presented before me, and she told me that I made her look bad. I apologized but must admit that it made my ego fly to the moon. I mean, this is someone who has been teaching for a while and is really good, what better compliment can I get?
OK I'll admit, the best compliment was the professor telling me, the week after, that I was ready, that she wanted me in a classroom...
And this is where reality confronts idealism. Teaching, as we all know, is the worst paid profession in the world. Although we count on them to form our future citizens, we do not appreciate them as such.
Paying for school, living in NYC and at the same time attempting to have a glimpse of life from time to time is definitely not possible while being a teacher, convoluted but true.
So I'll have to wait until I'm almost finished with my masters, simply because I refuse to go into debt so as to pay for college.
In the meantime I'll continue to hone in on my calling, working at it, making it better (yeah yeah, I'm still not perfect), and maintaining the idealism I have so far. Here's to hoping that I never loose it...

Tooting one's horn; Part Uno

'Tis been a while so we'll do this in little parts m'kay? Don't want to overwhelm y'all and make you run the other way while screaming "make her stop, make her stop!" OK, now that that's out of the way let's get down to business.

People, I'm going to toot my horn as Kirk kindly suggested and my progenitor told me to do cause, well, I listen to the voices of reason.
I kicked some serious ass if I may say so myself. Yup I was good, hell I was pretty darn good! I was shaking, my ears were red, my voice trembled but apparently nobody noticed (well apart from the ears which made a couple of people put on sunglasses so as not to be blinded by them).
I was supposed to give a 15 minutes presentation which went well over 45. People kept participating and asking questions, the professor kept smiling and I kept going. My peers, who are teachers as I mentioned, were impressed. The best accolades I received after it was finished were "you looked like a veteran", someone else said "why aren't you teaching in a classroom?" or "can I have your lesson plan? I want to use it in my classroom" and yet another "wow, if you got us motivated you will most definitely motivate children" Shall I go on or is it already too much self-congratulating?

I feel very good about the whole experience. My adrenaline was pumping, my heart was beating fast, and I felt like I was on top of the world.
I am a teacher people. I am a teacher.

Tuesday, November 13, 2007


So tomorrow I have a *ahem* huuuuge presentation. Well it's not so much a presentation as a lesson taught to... ta da... teachers! Yup, I will be teaching tomorrow, to teachers, math, geography and general culture through the use of recipes (because we all know how much I love food) as if they were9 year olds. I can't wait to make a fool of myself.
Lesson plan? check. Graphs and charts? check. Cards with recipes? check. Nervous wreck? double check.

I know that at the end it'll be fine, but I also know that I'm probably going to blush and stammer. You see I've taught in the past as a college assistant, but that was different, the poor devils thought that I was a genius and swallowed everything I said. Now I'm confronting people that actually do this for a living! Oh good grief. The lesson is pretty solid, but it's the presentation of it that has me worried. You'd think that I was blasé with all the talking, intervening and general comment-making that I do while in class, but nope, I'm freaking.

I've been preparing this for over a month (and still married by some kind of miracle) and tomorrow is D day.
I'll let y'all know how it went. Tonight? I don't think that I'll be sleeping much...