29 agosto 2009


thought one:

Monday was the first time i've ever wanted to cry for joy. i had often read in books of people doing this but had never felt the inclination. it rather took me off guard; "what is this, indigestion?!?" i said. then i realized, "Oh. Love at first week. i gotcha." it's just... somebody decided to give me the best-looking, sweetest, most sincere, uber-interested, hardest-working kids in our district. [my brother informs me i'm on my honeymoon.]

"let not the one who puts on his armor boast like the one who takes it off." i'm not boasting; i'm amazed. they're beautiful...

wednesday, going through our social studies book, i hear this, "coooool! que chido, mira! i love this book. Miss Hernandez, can i take the book home, please?!"

as we hurried through 400 years of Texas history, i see something out of a dream: all these little brown/beige faces, eyes wide, eyebrows lifted, mouths open. (i do not exaggerate.)

(just wait until we get to the Mexican War. things are gonna get emotional.)

after we discuss a picture of a very groovy-looking Presidente Antonio Lopez de Santa Ana, (Texans know who i'm talking about), i gaze around the room to see several of my hoodlums with their uniform collars "popped"... early 1800's, Santa Ana- style.

now, tell me please how i'm not supposed to gush.

thought two:

sometimes our proximity to a person takes away our compassion for them. i dunno how to explain it, but i've seen it in my own life.

maybe, with certain persons, we should write our a brief summary of their "story"- why they need us to show them compassion- and then do so, regardless of their personality, baggage, or how they've rubbed us in the past. because, really, what ARE we here for if not to rescue the perishing/ care for the dying, regardless of their congeniality, cooperation, or general likeableness?
all the perks of life can be done in heaven. i can know God in heaven. ditto "suck the marrow out of life." i can eat good foods, enjoy good friends, think good thoughts, love beautiful things... in heaven. and while it's nice to get previews of all that here, the only real things i can't do in heaven are the hard things here: walk by faith, not sight; endure persecution; call people out of darkness and into life; and love those who get no love.
let me know if i missed something.
(besides sin and marriage, etc.)
thought three:

on recent birthdays (of others), i've started to have this sadness.... this awareness... that one more year of life means one year closer to death. likewise, even as i celebrate 1 week completed with my kiddos, i realized that's 1 week less i have to spend with them... and 1 week closer (for them) to adolescence, adulthood, and the ugly wretchedness of the world that wants to eat them.

Time, you are not my friend.

but blessed be God that He does not change! He'll never leave. Christ already did death and is now definitely, extremely, irrevocably alive. Thank You, heavenly Companion, that You will not die on me. O, that all my beloveds be brethren with just an ugly river and some tough years to pass before we meet again on the other side...

08 agosto 2009

why "they should just learn english" is not so easy...

(from a bilingual test prep manual)

"Reasons Why the English Language is Hard to Learn":

The bandage was wound around the wound.

The farm was used to produce produce.

The dump was so full that it had to refuse more refuse.

He could lead if he would get the lead out.

The soldier decided to desert his dessert in the desert.

Since there is no time like the present, he thought it was time to present the present.

A bass was painted on the head of the bass drum.

When shot at, the dove dove into the bushes.

I did not object to the object.

There was a row among the oarsmen about how to row.

They were too close to the door to close it.

The buck does funny things when the does are present.

A seamstress and a sewer fell down into a sewer line.

To help with planting, the farmer taught his sow to sow.

The wind was too strong to wind the sail.

After a number of injections my jaw got number.

Upon seeing the tear in the painting I shed a tear.

I had to subject the subject to a series of tests.

How can I intimate this to my most intimate friend?


There is no egg in eggplant nor ham in hamburger; neither apple nor pine in pineapple. English muffins weren't invented in England nor French fries in France. Sweetmeats are candies while sweetbreads, which aren't sweet, are meat.

We take English for granted. But if we explore its paradoxes, we find that quicksand can work slowly, boxing rings are square and a guinea pig is neither from Guinea nor is it a pig. And why is it that writers write but fingers don't fing, grocers don't groce and hammers don't ham? If the plural of tooth is teeth, why isn't the plural of booth beeth? One goose, 2 geese. So one moose, 2 meese? One index, 2 indices? Doesn't it seem crazy that you can make amends but not one amend, that you comb through annals of history but not a single annal? If you have a bunch of odds and ends and get rid of all but one of them, what do you call it? If teachers taught, why didn't preachers praught? If a vegetarian eats vegetables, what does a humanitarian eat?

In what language do people recite at a play and play at a recital? Ship by truck and send cargo by ship? Park on driveways and drive on parkways? Have noses that run and feet that smell? How can a slim chance and a fat chance be the same, while a wise man and a wise guy are opposites? You have to marvel at the unique lunacy of a language in which your house can burn up as it burns down, in which you fill in a form by filling it out and in which an alarm goes off by going on.

English was invented by people, not computers, and it reflects the creativity of the human race (which, of course, isn't a race at all). That is why, when the stars are out, they are visible, but when the lights are out, they are invisible? And why, when I wind up my watch, I start it, but when I wind up this essay, I end it?

and that's not even getting into phonics... egh. now, go have sympathy on English language learners, and be glad you picked this stuff up without having to think about it. (and thank goodness we're not immigrating to Iceland...)