For realsies

Brief Author Grief January 25, 2015

Filed under: authors,books — peachyteachy @ 8:08 pm
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I just finished reading my first David Rakoff book.

Sharp pain at the fact that he will not be adding more volumes, once I have exhausted the rest of his published stuff.

Big baby, I think—you don’t get sad that Shakespeare is dead and won’t be contributing more to the Complete Works.

Some folks are prolific enough.

Still. . .


2015 For the Type Z Personality OR The Forever Sink January 4, 2015

If I read or hear the phrase “New Year, New You” once more, it is very likely that I will throw a slipper.  A new one.  A Christmas  present–from me.

That is because my aspiration for 2015 is to wear them as often as is humanly possible.  I can do it.  They have  rubber soles that will help me to disguise them as shoes should I accidentally exit the house before spring.

If I can tell  you where my slippers are, then I don’t need another de-cluttering checklist.

Slippers? Check!


My super-achiever sensibility has filtered down to my 10-year-old son as well! HE just took a shower! Hot damn. Happy New Year!

In addition to hygienic prowess, he also managed to work the term “crap-ton” into conversation twice in twenty seconds. You gotta respect that.

Shower? Check!

“Crap-ton” usage? Check!

Type A Together People out there, I love you.  But I am aware of the fact that you may be picturing us in a Judgy show about New You-ness, with you as Simon Cowell and me as me.  I know that you buzzed me or dinged me or gonged me back in the introductory slipper section.

Hang on for just a second there, Simonizer.  In my defense, let me tell you about how things transpire when I follow a more conventional checklist in an effort to adopt new and glorious habits just because the calendar isn’t working anymore.

On New Year’s Day, I opened the napkin-light bulb-water bottle cabinet.  Predictably, I was assaulted by a lot of water bottles, and a couple of the other things.  So I “de-cluttered” it.  That just means that I took everything out of there and spread it all over the counters  organized it into matching containers labeled “Donate,” “Sell,” and “Trash.” Then I went to find a rag under the sink, where I keep 2 or 3 on a regular basis. I am proud of the fact that I do not keep 17.

Guess what I found under the kitchen sink?

If you guessed “A crap-ton of water?” you are correct!

Now it was time to de-clutter THAT cabinet.  Time to throw away another crap-ton of those white sponges that claim to erase anything, but do not erase pencil marks made by second-graders–but that is another arena.

The drain was leaking. It was nasty.

Backstory:  our kitchen faucet (not the aforementioned drain, mind you) has been doing some low level dripping for a couple of months.  Here was the perfect opportunity to fix it! Wait! I know! Since we have to do intensive sink intervention, we might as well do a teeny-tiny upgrade and buy a new faucet!

Yaay! Crap-ton of crap everywhere and we are off to the big orange store where people get things DONE! But NOT a new faucet, because in order to do that, one has to lift that sink out of its sink hole.  Our sink, however, was apparently sealed into place with the same sealant used to seal stuff on the space shuttle or the Millenium Falcon, and a crap-ton of it.

The point is, Simon, that I transformed a de-clutter checklist into a full day of plumbing.  I don’t know a lot about plumbing, but the one tenet of plumbing is that when you work on plumbing, you cuss.  Like, a crap-ton. I ended up manning the screwdrivers under the sink a lot, too, on account of the fact that I am smallish and can fit under there.  And you KNOW there wasn’t just one trip to the store.  No New Year, New Faucet.  Oh, the humanity.

Slippers? Check!


Extreme Couponing as Second Career December 27, 2014

Filed under: humor — peachyteachy @ 5:53 pm
Tags: , ,

‘Tis the season when the teachers begin to speculate about alternate  professions.

I’ve decided to become a Specialized Extreme Couponer ®!  Deodorant only.  I’ve noticed, in the tens of minutes that I have devoted to researching the topic, that the coupon people always have lots of feminine products (like, enough for women of biblical lifespans who never go through menopause). Therefore, I will not be targeting that area.

However, I am hopeful that I will have big success in selling some clinical strength anti-perspirant on the deodorant black market. It’s got to be at least as lucrative as this blogging gig!

Another possible avenue I am considering is the ripe market of Sierra Leone! But not for deodorant. That would be insulting at best.  I think we need to be looking at macaroni and cheese couponing here.  I have a feeling that the generic mac and cheeses are few and far between here, and that Kraft is sitting on a big fat monopoly.  Let’s make a difference, people.


Surviving a Fire Safety Assembly December 6, 2014

Recently, our school hosted a Fire Safety Assembly.  The second and third graders—all 200+ of them—filed in, sat down, and behaved themselves while the blockbuster DVD, Hector the Smoke Detector, was projected in all its splendor.  A few  years ago, the fire department had abandoned the live mascot in costume, presumably due to the fact that the costume had become increasingly grimy and flaccid. I guess they didn’t want to give kids the impression that smoke detectors were constructed of giant flour tortillas.

The gentleman who presented this year was energetic.  Fervently so, really.  I knew that something was awry, though, when he called on a student to demonstrate how to “Stop, drop, and roll,” THEN proceeded to bring each of the nine classes to the front of the auditorium, where the kids lined up, enchilada style, on the floor in glaring violation of the gospel of personal space that we preach day in and day out.  It is a miracle that no one dislocated a clavicle.

This was, however, a mere preview of the ultimate evidence of divine intervention witnessed that day. For when the youngsters had returned to the upholstered seats, bouncy and kicky as all hell, Reverend Firefighter called upon each and every child to pray to be rescued if they were ever trapped in a fire!

The final act involved having every student drop to the ground as if crawling below the smoke, then complete the enormous square of auditorium aisles on  hands and knees.  My students were now not only prepared to respond to a fire emergency, but to a European soccer riot as well!

Did I mention that I had a new student that day? He channeled James Brown in the aisle of the auditorium.

Safety first!






Teaching for College and Career Readiness? Yup! November 15, 2014

Filed under: education,humor,school,teaching — peachyteachy @ 2:17 pm
Tags: , , , , ,



One of the things they tell teachers is that one should not use sarcasm in the classroom.  Anyone who has read a few of my blog posts knows that if I took one of those moronic Facebook quizzes that ask “How sarcastic are you?” I would fall somewhere between “80 and 97 percent sarcastic”. On a good day.  That’s right, I embrace sarcasm as a trusty lifeskill, and I am proud to share that skill with my beloved students.  Without sarcasm, most teachers would be found collapsed in a pool of their own tears by the end of any given day.

Case in point: one teacher was attempting to teach a math lesson on a recent Friday afternoon. She was holding the promise of the weekly prize drawing over the students, in the hopes that this might inspire some shut up reduced volume in the room.  One student in particular was yukking it up as if the expanded form of 768 was as entertaining as an episode of Sponge Bob.  Also, she was repeatedly sticking her ample booty above the desk.  As a holder of an advanced degree, I can categorically assure you that sticking  your ass in the air is not conducive to learning, at least not in math.  Look it up. In my archives.

The aforementioned  excellent teacher made a suggestion to the class: “You can thank Ms. Zippity Doo Dah for the fact that we won’t have time for our prize drawing.”

To this, of course, several students complied, saying, “Thank you, Zippity Doo Dah.” *sigh* Clearly, this teacher had not delivered enough instruction in sarcasm. . .

But then, from out of the clear blue sky, another student, in a raspy and disgusted voice, like that of a 40-year-old smoker, yelled out, “You’re not supposed to say ‘THANK YOU!'”

“You’re supposed to just SIT THERE!”

The teacher swelled with pride.  Until the day got even better. The student continued, confirming that the teaching of the higher understanding of the sarcastic remark had been successful after all.

“. . .and FEEL ASHAMED!”

Teachers really do make a difference, after all.








Cheap Anti-Depressant: Pay it Forward November 8, 2014

Filed under: inspiration,life,motivation,parenting — peachyteachy @ 6:18 pm
Tags: ,

This morning, I was in the checkout line at Aldi.  Aldi is a discount grocery store. I freaking love it.

Today, the shopper in front of me had filled her cart, and had overshot her budget. She asked me for a dollar, and I responded, truthfully, that I had no cash (I am a plastic person; not super proud of that). Things proceeded. I waited. I started to think judgmental thoughts. All of my  ugly cultural biases started to rear their ugly heads. I started to think that I had chosen the wrong lane, which is my shopping specialty.  She kept taking things out of her cart.

The checkout people at Aldi are super nice, as a rule.  The guy in this lane was clearly doing his level best to remain patient.  But there was still a chunk of order on the conveyer belt that remained to be sorted. . .

Then I said, “Ma’am, if you are still having trouble covering it, I would like to take care of it.”

She went from stress to joy instantly.  She high fived me, then my son, thanking me again and again, and telling my son that he has a really nice mother.

The fact is that I have faced financial panic at many points.  I remember my mom counting change.  I have applied for public assistance when I was working full time, to keep my family afloat.  It sucked.

This woman could have easily been one of my student’s parents.  But it doesn’t matter, and I will never know.

I covered twenty-one dollars of her groceries.  No huge virtue of mine at all. Instead of feeling pissy and annoyed (a real option, let’s face it) I got to feel, without a doubt, that I had made a right choice today.  The biggest and best choice of today.


The Groupon Cult October 18, 2014

Filed under: humor,life,writing — peachyteachy @ 3:16 pm

The other night, I attended a book tour date of a well-known humorist who likes to pick up garbage in England.  The deal had been sweetened by the appearance in my inbox of a ticket discount from Groupon ™!

Upon my arrival at the event, it became clear that the gig was not a sellout—at least, not in the balcony.  Except, as you can see, for those of us who bought the Groupon. Behold, the Groupon Row:

groupon rowNote the expanse of empty rows behind and in front of us.  Cozy. I was alone, too, with elbows tucked close to my ribs.

We are the Groupon Nation. I’ll bet there was a disproportionately large number of people with smashing mani-pedis, too.


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