Another Low

How sad is it that I’ve already started a countdown for the end of school?

This year has been rough to say the least. As much as I want to be the person that can, I’m not. And it’s not because I suck, but because I don’t delegate much. I’ve gotten a lot better about it, but I still don’t do it enough. I feel like I have to do it all.

All of these extra things I’ve taken on or have been handed have really taken away time from my students, and for this, I feel really bad. I know that it could be worse, but I also know that I could be better. And while I’m rocking out with some awesome lessons that don’t involve worksheets and are challenging, etc., I don’t have the time to spend with the kids. I’ve been out of class at least twice this month and will be out two more times doing extra stuff. Meetings after school and the never ending research, filing, etc, keep me from attending games, competitions, concerts. This is what I’m missing the most.

This past weekend, some of my students competed in The Future City Competition. They built a model of a city that was eco-friendly. Even though I helped out with their abstract, I missed out because I was meeting with my colleagues about a grant to some traveling this summer. Although they didn’t place, they did receive an award for Most Eco-friendly city. Really, they didn’t place because there couldn’t be two teams in the top whatever from the same school (another group placed 3rd).

I hardly get to see the girl’s group. We have yet to meet this semester. After school tutorials are a dream. Making time to meet with students is really difficult. I have to schedule it way in advance. If you look at my agenda, it’s sort of a joke.

And personal life? Hah! That’s a joke! My loved ones hardly get to hear from me on the phone much less see me in person.

I know this is a career choice that I made, and I love aspects of the job. There are days I come home with my head in the clouds because I had a good day with that kid who doesn’t get it, or a kid said/wrote something amazing, but lately, those days have been few a far between.

I just wish I could go back to my roots. Go back to being what I was at the beginning of the year. I’ve seen too much of the ugly side of education. This side makes me negative and bitchy. It makes me long for summer, but the saddest thing is that it makes me wish I didn’t do what I do.


I Kiss You on the Brain in the Shadow of the Train

I spent the evening in a quaint little coffee shop in Deer Park where everyone knows everyone’s name…seriously, the do. If they don’t, they know someone who does. That’s strange to me. People think that’s how El Paso is. Many have been shocked by the size of it.

Anyway, I was at this coffee shop because my friend’s band was playing. It was pretty cool. Their chai lattes are amazingly good. They’re better than very friendly college student barrista’s at the old peep’s Starbucks.

As I was sitting there listening to them jam out, I was sort of wishing I had my notebook. When I’m around creative people, their vibe rubs off on me. However, now that I’ve sat for a while playing Super Collapse 3 (I rock at the puzzle section, I unlocked more than half!), the muse packed up and took off. I hate how she feels like she can do as she wishes. I need to learn better muse skills.

What’s up with this weather? It’s actually been cold around here, like cold enough to turn on the heater. Insane.


My Version of Counting Sheep

It is 1:34 AM and I can’t get my happy self to bed. I had fallen asleep earlier, but the sound of a ringing phone woke me and I haven’t been able to go back to bed. I dabbled with some of the various notions flailing around in my brain. Still. I need to go to sleep already.

Fortunately, tomorrow will be a day of meetings and mingling. But I’ll pay for it because I’ll be slow when it comes to doing menial tasks like filing or re-organizing my great piles of junk. I have hope that with the good drink (coffee) and some catchy tunes, I’ll be able to whistle away the afternoon and items on my to-do list.

It’s rather sad that my days of nothingness have come to an end. I’m really going to miss them. I attempted to have an adventure every day, but none of my adventures were too thrilling. The coolest thing was Saturday, when I went to Niko Niko's and the owner took my order. He greeted me with a smile. When I said I would like a falafel sandwich, his facial expression portrayed pride in my choice. He also seemed very happy to be at work. That’s always nice.

This evening I was drawn out of my pj’s when Dealy-O called me up and said, “I miss you. Come meet us.”

That’s one of the nicest things someone can say in my book, so I could not object. I’m such a narcissistic bastard sometimes. We met for coffee/tea/hot chocolate. After my chai latte was prepared, the barrista sang out my order. He had a very nice voice, so nice that I heartily said, “Wow, thank you.”


Ode to My Thermos

Chavela is tall and thick como una luchadora sanota. Her body glistens in the sun, but never reflects any facts. The cup attached to her top by screwing it on is big enough to hold the contents of a regular coffee cup, but you would never know that just by looking at it. I fill her up every morning to help endure our long day of incessant whining and last minute meetings. Every evening, when we get home, I take her out of my bag and rinse her out, leaving her insides to dry in preparation for the next day.



I was going through boxes of crap today trying to clean out the closet, not because I need the space but because I really don’t need all that stuff. I’m really trying to purge my life of feelings, things, ideas that I don’t need. This particular task had been on my to-do list since last summer.

It was kind of cool to run into old journals, cards, college essays, letters, and pictures. While going through the box of photos, I ran across one of my best friend Gabriel and I at my sister’s wedding. Seeing our faces frozen still on a day that was so happy and blessed stopped me in my tracks.

Gabi was the first in our immediate family to have a real wedding. All of my other siblings had run off to City Hall to get married. I’ve always thought it was cool that she had sent me an invitation, not included me on my mom’s. Of course, I was given the option of a plus one. As soon as I got it, I knew there was only one person who could fulfill that plus one: Gabriel.

I can’t remember if he attended the mass or I picked him up before the dance and reception. What I do remember is him saying, “I’m going to dance with all of the women in your family before the night is over.”

And that he did. He danced the night away with my mom, sisters, aunts, and nieces. He even got me to dance with my dad.

Seeing that photograph also made me realize how much I really miss him. I’ve tried so hard to find him, but my searches have resulted in zilch. We didn’t have a falling out or anything, we just lost touch.

Sometimes I wonder how different life would have been if we’d stayed in touch because he’s been the one person I can honestly say was my BFF. There was nothing I couldn’t tell him, he always knew how to make me feel better, and he accepted me for me.

For a while, I didn’t think about him. My mom would sometimes ask, “Oye como estara el Gabriel? Dios lo bendiga.” It was then that the memories would rush back. Writing the story about him put some of the memories at ease. It’s weird because I hadn’t felt like this in a long time. I know that I may never see him again, but damn how I wish I would.

The First of Many Victories

When I came out as an Obama supporter, many people told me I was nuts. Frankly, as much as my feminist self would like to vote for a woman, I just can’t. Hillary and I don’t agree.

Obama to me is someone who can seriously help us out. I’ll shut up now and let Mo Rocca’s words do my talking because they say it better.

Here's the thing: Hillary's the person who helps you pack boxes and organize all your shit when you're moving. No one is more dependable. Obama, on the other hand, is the guy who finds you a new place to live.


Adios Navidad

I hate this time of year. All of the Christmas lights are coming down, stores are dead, and the good cheer is gone. It could potentially be a very depressing point in time. Fortunately, the depression hasn’t set in. I’m hoping it doesn’t. I have three more days before I return to work.

Speaking of returning to work, I’m sort of scared of going back. There are many tasks to be completed this spring semester and I fear that I’m going to lose some of my me time. The couple weeks before school let out, I was working 12-hour days pretty much every day. I did tell my students that I was done accepting late assignments. At least their homeroom and unbook reports. They are given deadlines for these assignments in advance. Plus, they are given time in class to complete the assignments.

I really thought that this year was going to be way better than the last two. It seems like there’s always a monkey wrench to be dealt with. There is always more that needs to be done. Or a new task that needs to be fulfilled. And it’s not such a big deal if my writing didn’t have to take the back seat to all this. Perhaps someday I will figure out how to balance life, work, and writing.