n. the moment you realize that you’re currently happy—consciously trying to savor the feeling—which prompts your intellect to identify it, pick it apart and put it in context, where it will slowly dissolve until it’s little more than an aftertaste.
think of all the fucking you could do without a condom. how much risk would you run of catching a disease? condoms are a wonderful tool for capitalism since they minimize the risk that laborers will be injured or held back by sexually transmitted diseases and it maximizes the chances that these same people (whom the system depends on) can become safe hedonists pursuing nothing but orgasms indiscriminately.
I’m patient as a calendar. I’ll chew on these words til my teeth grow worn, for years until you let me spit them out.
They’ll puff out my cheeks like a chipmunks. I’ll keep them stored ‘til winter when warm treats keep the beastly freeze away. They’re sugary sweetmeats that The mice will sniff out and nibble on while I sleep. But I won’t speak until you say I’m free. I’ll let them rot between my teeth before I release a peep.
I’ll tell you a secret. There are three on this sheet. I sneak them out for a peek and sometimes to breathe. But then I return them, and I’ll keep chewing, not speaking until you’re done dealing with healing your feelings. When you’re free to see what I mean by my speech, I’ll then peel my lips and preach.
I’m a bird bound toward you with words in my beak. When you’re ready, they’ll feed us for weeks, at least.
i just had my computer plugged into the smart board in my hopkins lecture hall and i was showing that video for that assignment that i posted earlier and before i went up to present i was having a really personal gchat convo with derek and i told him BRB BUT HE DIDN’T LISTEN AND HE SENT ME AN INCREDIBLY PERSONAL GCHAT AND IT SHOWED UP ON THE SCREEN ON TOP OF MY VIDEO AND THE ENTIRE LECTURE HALL SAW IT AND I SCREAMED
DON’T READ THAT!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!
BUT IT WAS TOO LATE AND EVERYONE READ IT AND LAUGHED AT ME AND NOW EVERYONE KNOWS MY BUSINESS
THE ENTIRE TEACH FOR AMERICA BALTIMORE EARLY CHILDHOOD COHORT 2011 NOW KNOWS MY BUSINESS
oh well fuck it good thing i have no dignity because wowwww that is quite possibly the most embarrassing thing that has ever happened to me
but i’m kind of thinking about moving… i mean i’m only going to live in baltimore for two years probably, and one of those years is up july 31st, so should i just move to a different house in hampden, or try out a new neighborhood? or is it stupid to move when i know i like hampden, and that it’s convenient to me, it’s safe, it’s fun, it’s quiet, it’s easy. or is it stupid to stay when just because i like hampden doesn’t mean i wouldn’t like another neighborhood/shouldn’t try to experience something different for year two?
people already set fire to/destroyed one of the new speed cameras in the county!
Crews quickly were able to determine that it was a malicious burning, police spokeswoman Elise Armacost said. The fire caused about $13,000 worth of damage, and officials said the camera is totally destroyed.
apparently blair was monopolizing the conversation at the lunch table today, and christian had something he really wanted to say, so he popped her in the face so she’d let him have a turn to talk. they ended the dispute with a handshake and an agreement to remain best friends despite the ordeal.
how many times have you wanted to do exactly what christian did, but the constraints of society and fear of retribution made you think twice? little kids are the best. how much easier would life be if you could pop in the face every stupid motherfucker who crosses your path?
Sweden’s New Gender-Neutral Pronoun: Hen - A country tries to banish gender.
one of the girls in one of my hopkins classes mentioned this the other day, which is notable in and of itself because someone in one of my hopkins classes mentioned something that was remotely interesting to me… apparently sweden is really pushing the envelope in terms of the development of gender identity in young children:
Earlier this month, the movement for gender neutrality reached a milestone: Just days after International Women’s Day a new pronoun, hen (pronounced like the bird in English), was added to the online version of the country’s National Encyclopedia. The entry defines hen as a “proposed gender-neutral personal pronoun instead of he [han in Swedish] and she [hon].”TheNational Encyclopedia announcement came amid a heated debate about gender neutrality that has been raging in Swedish newspaper columns and TV studios and on parenting blogs and feminist websites.
this is so exciting and amazing. as an early childhood educator, i’ve become really conscious of how i tacitly reinforce both “innocuous” and detrimental conceptions of gender in the classroom. i try my best to refer to my kids using gender neutral group addresses like “friends” and “students” (instead of boys and girls) and i do try to make sure i notice when the boys, and not the just the girls, have new shoes or got new braids or whatever, because they like to have those things noticed and complimented, too. also i’ve been mixing up colors a lot and i give pink to the boys and blue to the girls fairly often, although it still makes me feel weird sometimes and i’m not sure why (maybe it feels like i’m trying to impose some kind of radicalized agenda on my students, when giving boys pink things shouldn’t really feel radical at all). most of the kids don’t even care, honestly. it’s more the boys than the girls and i usually give them shit for giving me shit about it. sadly, my sphere of influence is limited to my own classroom and i can’t really control what messages my students are receiving from other teachers or outside of school in general. and at the same time, even though i try to be hyper-conscious of it, i make mistakes, too. like i often catch myself asking my boys to lift/carry things for me and shut doors and do more “physical” things, when in reality my students are essentially the same size.
At Egalia, one model Stockholm preschool, everything from the decoration to the books and toys are carefully selected to promote a gender-equal perspective and to avoid traditional presentations of gender and parenting roles. The teachers try to expose the pupils to as few “gendered expressions” as possible. At Christmastime, the Egalia staff rewrote a traditional song as “hen bakes cakes all day long.” When pupils play house, they are encouraged to include “mommy, daddy, child” in their imaginary families, as well as “daddy, daddy, child”; “mommy, mommy, child”; “daddy, daddy, sister, aunty, child”; or any other modern combination.
to be quite honest, as an adult in an early childhood environment every day, this might not seem like much, but it’s actually pretty revolutionary. reframing the conception of gender in the early childhood is perhaps the only way of making advances towards any kind of legitimate, legitimized gender equality. way to go, sweden!!!
So some middle school vandal wrote “BOOB$” on our lunch table and when I went to pick the kids up from lunch they were outraged at the ones who read the word out loud because it’s a “curse-a word” and they wanted me to be mad but really I was just overjoyed that my kids can all of a sudden read.
god damn it with this fucking jones falls xprswy lanes closing nonsense. how the fuck am i supposed to get from hampden to sandtown for the next two months going on fucking falls road down through downtown for no goddamn reason fuck it all the hell dammit fuck shit i should just quit.
this is probably the longest thing i’ve ever posted and i wouldn’t expect anyone to read it. as i’ve been thinking about next year and what the fall will be like, i’ve found myself wanting to write and resolve some of the experiences i went through last fall. anyone interested in teach for america or first year teaching in general might find the highs and lows documented below to me somewhat interesting. i found it hard to convey the particular despair i felt and how out of control i really was. i may have repressed some of the hopelessness and terror of being a first year teacher at a school like mine, but it’s kind of heavy.
Evers and I could not be disparate with regard to politics and financial policy. I find libertarianism utterly preposterous as a serious economic paradigm and public education is part of the reason why. I take issue with Evers’s conception that executive oversight of state curricula is necessarily problematic, and his advocacy of powerful state government puts him at one side, and me at the other, of an age-old political dichotomy. I consider myself a socialist in no uncertain terms, and while economics are not the only facet of the debates surrounding public education reform, they are a huge part of it, and Evers and I feel very differently about the role economics and monetary incentives should play in the reshaping of the landscape of public education.
last night i dreamed that you and i went to a stuffy, warm coffee shop with weird yellow lights and ineffective fans circulating hot air and we walked up to an extremely tall woman in line and you said to her, “wow, you’re almost as tall as me!” (i know you would never say that in real life) and she said, “i’m 7 feet,” and you said, “i’m 7’2”, talladarity!” and then the two of you become best friends and ignored me for the rest of the dream.
when we woke up and i told you about it, you said, “don’t worry, the only 7 foot tall woman in the world lives in brazil” before rolling over and going back to sleep.
i have so much hopkins homework i should be doing right now it’s actually sort of simon’s rock reminiscent, but i just can’t focus and part of the reason is THIS VIDEO which has been circulating the bmore reddit and has apparently made its way out of the r/bmore and onto more trafficked pages. the video is pretty disgusting and i mean, i guess don’t watch it if you’re easily triggered by violence, but basically, it’s a group of black men and women in their early 20s beating the shit out of, degrading, and stripping some white dude in front of the court house in downtown baltimore and it supposedly took place on st patrick’s day. the guy is obviously severely intoxicated, not that that’s any excuse for this treatment, but it kind of makes the video worse because he seems unwilling or actually physically unable to fight back and so he just takes it.
watching the video is kind of an intense experience. i actually watched it assuming from its labels on reddit that it took place in southwest baltimore, where i work, but it doesn’t—it seems to take place downtown and appears to have been filmed so it could be uploaded to worldstarhiphop. the video appears out of context, obviously—you don’t see what happens before or after, but it pretty much appears that this guy wasn’t doing shit to anyone and just got jumped because he had a nice watch and things escalated from there. like i said, he doesn’t fight back or make any attempt, really, at defending himself until he tries to take a swing and gets knocked down and pretty obviously concussed (and then, stripped). i mean, it’s a horrible, horrible thing to have happen to someone, regardless of any racial implications or what it says about baltimore holistically.
but with that being said, the reactions to this video on reddit and other places on the internet are more difficult to stomach than the video itself. it’s like as soon as white people feel moderately threatened (and i mean, like i said, the video is bad and horrible, but it’s a VIDEO—could you be more alienated from the actual event?—and 90% of the people issuing vitriolic comments about it have probably never even set foot in baltimore before in their lives) they unleash the most horrific, overt racism imaginable and think it’s totally all right and even justified. i just DO NOT UNDERSTAND. never mind the fact that these commenters apparently can’t possibly imagine the systemic injustices that have led to the people in this video behaving in the way that they did, they also can’t seem to wrap their heads around the fact that this kind of violence occurs all day, every day, all over our country, only we rarely hear about it because it rarely involves white people as its victims.
i intend in no way to victim blame or suggest that this guy had it coming. in fact, i am concerned more with the reactions to this video than the events in the video itself because the events in the video are pretty much objectively reprehensible. the comments people made about baltimore on reddit just astounded me. people saying shit like, "if you visit baltimore but you’re not at the inner harbor or camden yards, you will be shot." or worse, and maybe even more idiotic, "if you’re white in baltimore, you will be shot." but these sensationalistic claims aren’t even as bad as the people who seem to genuinely believe what they’re saying—comments like “And this is why black people stay away from ghetto people. Why everyone stays away actually” and “I was born and raised in Baltimore City. If you’ve seen ‘The Wire’ you’ve seen where I grew up.[I highly doubt this, but whatever] Being white in those neighborhoods is asking for something like this to happen to you eventually. Having to run home from school was a common occurrence for me unfortunately…”
I need to say, firsthand, that this NOT TRUE. i teach at the school that season 4 of the wire was based on and filmed at, and i can say that this is just the biggest load of bull shit ever. obviously, voluntarily implanting myself in sandtown and actually living there/being born there are incredibly different things, but this idea is just such a huge load of bull shit that i don’t even want to address it beyond saying it’s complete and utter bull shit. or, if it’s not bull shit FOR THAT WHITE PERSON, it is certainly by no means the experience that I, also a white person, have had in the community that I work and operate in every day. People’s experiences are variegated and to suggest that all white people will be made victims because they are surrounded by primarily black or poor black people is a pretty outrageous claim to make.
and i will say this. the villainizing of predominately black cities like baltimore is one of the most disgusting things that white america does. feeding people this sensationalist propaganda that IF YOU COME TO BALTIMORE AND YOU ARE WHITE YOU WILL GET SHOT is just so unapologetically racist i just can’t even stand it. first of all, it assumes that if you’re NOT white in baltimore, you’re safe, which is absolutely, 100% not the case. i think if you asked people on the street in sandtown who is safer, white people or black people, in their community (believe it or not, Wire viewers, Sandtown is racially diverse and my school has a huge amount of white and mixed race students), they would tell you that black citizens are the most in danger. it also assumes that all parts of baltimore other than the inner harbor are high crime which is not true (and also, the inner harbor sucks, fuck off). it also assumes that the majority of violence in baltimore is NOT linked to a) drugs and b) gangs, which it is (mostly drugs, but sandtown does still have a pretty serious gang problem). it also assumes, through its vitriolic and dismissive rhetoric, that the problems that baltimore has are not related to great, systemic injustices put into place AND PERPETUATED BY white people. which is, i guess, the crux of the issue.
yes, this was a horrible, horrible video and a disgusting thing that happened and i felt kind of sick when i watched the video. yes, it probably stirred up a deep seated (if even well concealed) racial bias in the stomach of 100% of the white people who watched it. but being caught up in these sensationalistic occurrences and using them as an excuse to say things like ”THE WORLD NEEDS MORE PEOPLE LIKE GEORGE ZIMMERMAN”***(courtesy youtube, thanks) just reifies what everyone already knows: white people are the problem. us. and when the problems that we (and/or our ancestors) created manifest in ways that conclude with white people getting hurt, maybe we shouldn’t be as surprised as we so often are.
*-how come in a case when a white guy gets jumped on the street in baltimore and severely beaten, to mainstream america, it’s black people’s fault, but then, in a case when a black child gets slaughtered in cold blood, it’s still somehow black people’s fault? is it ever white people’s fault?