Jan 15

Have you ever attempted to teach a lesson on Martin Luther King Jr. to a group of 2nd grade students with communication disorders whose first language is Spanish? A simplified yet factual exploration into the man behind the holiday managed to slip into the throes of revisionist history as yesterday’s lesson inadvertently wandered off-topic despite Ms. Troi’s heroic efforts to cling to her intended lesson.

Ms. Troi: Does anybody know why Martin Luther King is so important to us?

Kids: Wasn’t he the president?

Ms. Troi: No, he wasn’t the president. Martin Luther King was actually –

Kids: What about Abraham Lincoln? Wasn’t he a president?

Ms. Troi: Yes. But back to –

Kids: But Abraham Lincoln was ass-inated!

Ms. Troi: Do you mean “assassinated?”

Kids: (giggling) Ms. Troi just said a bad word!

Ms. Troi: So Martin Luther King was –

Kids: Was George Washington a president?

Ms. Troi: Yes, he was the first president.

Kids: Oh man, so he must be like so OLD!

Ms. Troi: No, um, he’s dead. But remember, we’re actually learning about Martin Luther King, Jr. He was important because –

Kids: Wasn’t he a president?

Ms. Troi: (Giving up.) Yes. Yes, he was the president. (Holds up a picture of Martin Luther King, Jr. from a history book.)

Kids: Oh, yeah, I know him! He was on TV the other day talking about health care!

Ms. Troi: Here, kids, do this worksheet. Don’t mind me, I’m just going to go throw myself in front of a school bus.

–Troi out

Jan 8

The following is an excerpt from my brain, on 1/08/11 9:12am – 9:19am, PST.

The light has gone out in my bedroom closet. I’ll have to choose my outfits in the dark from now on. Either that or I’ll have to change the lightbu— HA HA, like I would actually attempt to change a lightbulb after the lightbulb fiasco of ’04, when I dropped the fixture and it shattered into pieces on my floor, and I was stepping on glass for weeks but it’s fine, really, because I was overdue for a tetanus shot back then anyway and it totally motivated me to make that appointment. Anyway, people got along just fine for centuries before Humphry Davy invented the lightbulb and Thomas Edison capitalized on it. I can color-coordinate in the darkness. Is this shirt navy blue or purple? Or dark brown maybe? OW is that a piece of glass I just stepped on??

Okay desperate blackouts call for desperate measures — I’m going in. Alright, where do I keep spare lightbulbs? …… shoot that’s one of those items my dad gives me when he comes to visit and says, “Don’t lose this, you’ll need it one day!” and I nod appreciatively and then toss it somewhere obscure, confident my trusty lights will never burn out, unlike my unreliable fire alarm, which incessantly beeped until I removed it temporarily two years ago with the intent to buy new batteries and reinstall it but then I tossed it somewhere obscure and I will probably find it when I’m looking for a toothbrush or stapler or something. Oh, here’s the lightbulb! It says “CAUTION: NOT FOR USE WITH TOTALLY ENCLOSED RECESSED FIXTURES.” But the warning is not accompanied by a picture demonstrating what a totally enclosed recessed fixture looks like, so I’m going to assume mine’s not. I can’t reach the fixture from here—-didn’t my dad give me a stool that I put in a safe yet obscure location? No worries, I’ll just stand on the piano bench. This thing is pretty rock soli—-OW is that another piece of glass I landed on when I fell off of the wobbly piano bench??

You know, it’s fine, really, because I can totally take the batteries out of my digital camera and place them in my flashlight and I can just use the flashlight when choosing today’s outfit, and every outfit henceforth for eternity. It’s really not a big deal.

Shoot, where’d I put my flashlight? Wasn’t it someplace obscure….?

–Troi out