On my favorite part of the day

There are so many possible options. Could it be…

  • My foot flying out from underneath me on literally my first step out of my car when trying to go into work this morning?
  • The not-one-not-two-but-three teachers who grabbed me and asked me for help and/or favors before I managed to take my goddamn coat off once I got in the building?
  • Babysitting a room full of deeply obnoxious 8th graders with no lesson plans of any kind during homeroom and first hour?
  • Returning a computer to a kid for something like the tenth or eleventh time in the last few weeks and catching myself just before telling him that if he lost it again I’d be making sure he couldn’t lose it again by shoving it sideways up his ass the next time I returned it?
  • The ten different kids– I counted– who came to bother me about charging their computers during second and third hour, which is about five times the normal number?
  • My terrible decision to go to Panda Express for lunch?
  • The two hours this afternoon where my right leg decided it didn’t need to be a leg anymore, probably courtesy of item #1?
  • Realizing that I’d been so busy over the course of the day that I’d manage to accumulate forty-five emails that I needed to read or respond to, most before going home?
  • Realizing that the “upgrade” to an essential part of our district’s content monitoring strategy, which hasn’t worked since late December and had just been pronounced “fixed,” was not only not fixed but might have been actually downgraded, and having to explain that to half a dozen angry teachers in half a dozen separate conversations?
  • The general, ongoing feeling of “none of this shit is my fault at all and I’m trying to be as gentle with y’all as I can possibly be while I’m explaining that I know that everything is still fucked and I can’t fix it but I’m starting to reach the point where I’mma snap off on the next person who looks at me sideways about this”?
  • Accidentally sticking my foot into a disciplinary issue with literally 20 minutes left in the school day and emailing another staff member to say “I’m not doing shit about this because I’m tired but you can if you want to”?
  • The vague realization that Friday, at least, promises to be way worse than today was, and tomorrow’s got pretty heavy bullshit potential too?

Right now I think it’s probably the leg, but there’s still like five hours left in the day before I’m going to be in bed.

In which I am old, incompetent, aggravated, and also blind

Today was stupid.

I couldn’t sleep for crap last night, so when I finally dragged myself out of bed it was less because I was done sleeping and more because I was done trying. That’s kind of a basic body function; you’d think I would be okay at it by now. I spent the next four hours getting myself set up to take my Google Level 2 Certification test tomorrow and writing twenty-nine blog posts that will pop one per day over the next twenty-nine days. Only once during that process did I accidentally set the post to display immediately, so some of y’all got a little sneak peek of what day 28 is gonna be.

I then decided to shave and did something I’ve never managed to do before: I cut my upper lip while trimming my mustache with my electric razor. I have had facial hair since starting college at 18; I am now 42 and some change and I was today years old when I made my freaking lips bleed while shaving for the first time. Protip: don’t do this! It hurts quite a lot more than you think it’s going to!

It is now supposedly about six hours later. The clock tells me it’s just barely after 8 PM but I’m pretty convinced it has to be at least twenty-seven o’clock; it has been rainy and gross outside all day and our internet inexplicably shit the bed again about two hours ago and reporting the outage was much more complicated than it should have been– Comcast appears to have “improved” their website again, and I spent far more time than I should have just staring at the goddamn computer screen (tethered through my phone, using mobile data, which is how I’m posting right now as well) trying to figure out how the hell I was supposed to report the outage. This is either a sign that Comcast’s website has genuinely crappy UI or that I’m slowly becoming completely stupid; I’d blame Comcast but not being able to figure simple shit out is becoming a fuckin’ theme with me lately and it’s starting to become a little worrying.

Also, I’ve spent all day staring at screens or text and my eyes are blurry as fuck and the cat is getting spayed tomorrow and there’s gonna be a Comcast technician out between 10 and noon as well, and hopefully they’ll get the internet fixed because I kinda wanted to take this certification test in the morning and it’s three hours long so the earlier I can get started the better. There’s crap going on tomorrow, is what I’m saying, and I don’t have time to be non-internetted and blind.

So. Yeah. If you were wondering how long I’d continue to feel the Christmas spirit, it’s good and gone by now. So less than 48 hours.

Blech.

I gotta move out of this neighborhood

(That’s a BB King song)

Today was fucking awful.

We had … I dunno, six fights in the building today?  Let’s say six, it was close to that one way or another.  One kid caught what I think is probably the worst ass-whipping I’ve ever seen short of Rodney King.  I hope to hell the other kid is in jail right now.  I don’t know why they don’t take you to jail when you attack someone at school; school is the only place you can just beat the shit out of someone and then expect to go home afterwards like nothing happened.  This kid should be in jail.  He should be there until he turns 18, frankly.  But he’s not, because he attacked someone at school and not out on the street.  

Go ahead; there’s six plus years of damn near daily blog posts around here.  Hell, the running average is probably still more than one a day.  I wrote a whole-ass book about teaching that you can look through too if you like.  See if you can find another post where this kid needs to be in jail for what he just did is the topic.  I can’t think of one.  That rough of a day.

And I do not have a hard job, guys.  I really don’t.  There’s a lot of moving parts but I don’t have a hard job, not compared to what everyone else in the building is doing.  And today was damn near too much for me anyway.  I don’t know how the hell any of these people get up and go to work every day.  I do know that there’s no way in hell I return to this building next year.  Not if my life depended on it.  Which means I get to start jobhunting again.  There’s a chance to do the same job just in some other school but for various reasons (which I’ll probably get into eventually, but not now) is not as likely as I’d like it to be, so the best move is to start looking for alternatives now.  Because I can’t be in a place with this rotted a culture any longer.  I’ve never worked in a school this bad.  Not even close.  And I’ll make it to June, but I need to be gone after that, and if something good turns up before then I’ll jump ship.  I’ll be burning this bridge for the last time, but I think it needs to be done.

(Then again, for fun, especially if you know me in the real world, think back over my life since graduating in high school and count the good decisions.  Other than marrying my wife, there aren’t as many as I used to think there are.  I’m actually not very good at this being an adult nonsense.  I remember when I thought I was good at stuff; it was a while ago.)

And tomorrow I’ll get up and do it all over again.  Six more days with the kids and then I get a couple of weeks off.  I can manage this, I think.  I don’t have much of a choice, one way or another.

#Weekendcoffeeshare: Everything is Awful edition

If we were having coffee, I would kind of feel sorry for you, because man, am I not fit for human company at the moment.  I was snarling at my son before I even managed to get out of bed this morning, the news makes me want to cut people, and this new WordPress editor continues to be annoying.  I’ve figured out (with help from Steve D) how to do inline graphics like I want to, but the procedure for it is so ridiculous compared to the last editor that I almost wish I didn’t know.  

Also gone in this new editor: the ability to copy a post, again, which is something I use all the time.  So, yeah, I’m still not onboard with this nonsense.  Not at all.

Oh, and the image appears to be moving down on the screen the more I type, which isn’t how inline images are supposed to work.  I don’t know what the deal is with that.  Maybe just wrap the text, WordPress?  It’s been something HTML has been able to handle for literally as long as there has been HTML.

Yep, still slowly moving down the screen.  So maybe the “Media & Text” block isn’t what I want here.

(Tries to fiddle with settings in this block, somehow all the sudden the entire block is in what looks like 30-point text, swears, gives up, copies what I’ve written, starts over.)

Okay.  There’s a “classic” block that seems to work? And when I looked in Preview, not only did the “Media and Text” block look stupid in general, but it resized the image to super-small and awful.  So literally none of this shit works at all anymore and this cannot possibly be how they want this to be.  I am tired of everything being bullshit, coffee person, and you really shouldn’t be sitting with me right now, because I’m not fit for human company.

Amazon update: I got a notification from them on Friday that they had shipped me … wait for it … one book out of the 28 or 29 that I ordered.  It is supposed to arrive today.  The cover will be on upside-down, inside-out, and no doubt on the wrong book altogether.  I got an email this morning that the rest of them have shipped and will be here tomorrow.  I fully expect them to be completely destroyed or otherwise unsalable when they arrive.  I also expect to have to spend most of my winter break reformatting everything so that I can use Ingram Spark for my printing needs now rather than Amazon.  I’m in too deep with them to even pretend that “Oh, I won’t buy books from there anymore” is a viable option, but I can sure as hell move my POD business elsewhere.  

Later today– in about half an hour, actually– my son is having a friend over for a few hours, so there will be twice as many seven-year-old boys in the house as I’m used to.  This, for once, is not me complaining; one of the disadvantages to only having one kid (and my wife and I both being temperamentally disinclined to socialize if we don’t have to) is that my son doesn’t have as many opportunities to play with other kids as I want him to.  Yesterday he tried to get me to play a game with him that he was making up as we were going along, and it became increasingly clear the harder he tried that I am a terrible father, because I don’t have the patience for the seven level-ups and eighteen unlockable weapons and two thousand interminable fucking rules that he wants to have for what boils down to “we are surrounded by invisible enemies that we must kill.”  There is no actual play, only endless iterations on the rules of the game.

A topic for later: how my kid’s conception of play has been irreversibly altered by role-playing video games.  Because whenever I was making games up with my friends as a kid, they sure as hell never involved lining up every toy sword and Nerf gun in the house so that we could “unlock” them as we played.  

My solution to this, by the way, is that I want him to have friends over more often.  I always felt that my house was where all my friends always ended up when I was a kid.  I want him to feel the same way.  The problem is I don’t think my parents did it that way because playing with me gave them headaches.  Maybe it did, though; I dunno.  Dad will no doubt chime in and let me know.  🙂

I like the drop caps, coffee person.  They will no doubt get annoying eventually, but for now I enjoy them.

Later today I’m making cornbread and chili.  With luck, it will improve my mood.  In the meantime, I’m off to the shower; one of the other fun things about the boy having a friend over is that it’s one of the kids from Hogwarts whose parents have way, way, way more money than we do so everything must be looking nice when they get here to drop the boy off and I cannot allow myself to be lazing around in my sweatpants like I am now.  My pointless and, it should be made clear, utterly unnecessary status anxieties can be something we investigate later, I suspect.

ETA:  I found a typo and jumped back in to edit it and this is what I was greeted with.  Also, I’m done with drop caps already because I don’t like how they look.  But, yeah, WordPress, you really think this editor is ready for the public?:

(can’t figure out how to add an image this far down in the post)

(Oh God FUCK THIS)

(Okay, there’s a button in the top-left to add a new “block.”  Sure, THAT’S TOTALLY INTUITIVE, WORDPRESS.)

This is what the top of my post looks like now…
…and this is what I get if I click “Resolve.”  Oh, and choosing “upload image” doesn’t actually upload an image when I try to do that.  It just crashes.

You have no idea how much swearing I’m doing over here right now.  I hate this SO MUCH.

Oh what fresh hell is this

qwertee_whatever_1519078342-fullEvery time WordPress decides we need a new editor I spend some time wanting to murder things.  I’m not sure who exactly was clamoring for being able to start blog posts with drop caps, but what the hell, I’ll check them out.   Only everything is “blocks” now, and I seem to have somehow lost the ability to insert an “image” “block” into a “text” “block,” so I don’t really see how this shit helps me any.  I mean, hey, drop caps, though.

I’ve had nothing going on for the last couple of days.  I spent all day reading today, after finally finishing The Monster Baru Cormorant last night.  Which I still will need to reread at some point in the future.

Still can’t figure out how to put a picture into a block of text.  I mean, I can set wrap options on the picture, but I can’t move it.  Does that make sense?  No.  No it does not.

I can do a drop cap on every paragraph, though.

(It’s at this point where I realize that the new editor, which is going to “level up my layout,” really doesn’t seem to have an option to do images inline with text, lose all will to live, and switch back to the old editor.  Just once, just once, motherfuckers, I’d like you to roll out a new feature that works when you roll it out.  I don’t have the patience for incompetent dumbfuckery right now.  I just don’t.)

(Also, I want to point out that when I switched back to the “classic” editor, the one that, to me, is still not up to snuff with the editor before it, it got rid of one of those drop caps for no clear reason, but kept the other.  Fuuuuuck this.)