True Detective

…yeah, that literally couldn’t have ended any better than it did. I need to marathon my way through the entire series again this weekend.  If you’re not watching this show you need to torrent it or steal it or build a fuckin’ time machine and go back in time and watch it or summat.  Holy shit.

What should I get obsessed with next?  Looking at you, Orphan Black.

A tale of two pictures

Picture One is my front yard.  Note the mostly clear deep blue sky and the snow-free, mostly-dry driveway.  It is nearly fifty degrees outside and beautiful.  The snow is melting as fast as snow can; it looks like it’s raining by the door to my back yard, where the eaves are not quite angled properly.

My phone just blew up about a “severe” winter storm watch due to begin at midnight Tuesday night.


The second picture, I think, needs no explanation.  Other than, maybe, BAM.


There is a note in the letter along with the check sternly warning me to have this deposited within five (5) business days.  Ha.  Are there really people who get checks this large and go Oh, I’ll get to that when I have a chance?

I may be rather quiet today, other than this; I did something horrible to the muscles in my abdomen sometime last night that the paranoid/hypochondriac part of my brain is insisting is, like, twelve hernias and the more sensible part of me figures is probably some sort of muscle pull.  At any rate I plan on spending the rest of the day lying down and continuing to mostly avoid the interwebs until I’ve seen True Detective tonight.  Note that if you’ve left a comment anywhere on the site I haven’t seen it yet and won’t until tonight.  Regular angry posteration should resume tomorrow as expected.

On TV and books and daylight savings time

1912257_10152217545273926_821713658_oBut not in that order.

This has been… kind of a shitty day, though not in any way I can put my finger on.  I normally don’t notice the time change, and don’t remember ever having reason to gripe about it before, but I am messed up today for some reason.  I may just be getting sick, in which case that sickness can go straight to hell because this is ISTEP week and I do not have the goddamn time.

I took a nap this afternoon, for God’s sake, which I don’t do very often, and which just made everything worse– I woke up feeling sicker, tireder, and crabbier than I’d been when I went to sleep.  I’ve spent most of the rest of the day reading.  Ordinarily “read and then took a nap” would be a good Sunday, and it’s not like there’s any work hanging over my head or anything like that; I finished that huge pile of grading yesterday.

Item: I have to go on a complete internet blackout starting around eight or nine, because I’m not going to be able to catch the True Detective finale, to say nothing of Walking Dead, until tomorrow… this has been the case for the last several Sundays, of course, but I figure tonight it several times as important.  True Detective has been the best thing to happen to TV for years, as far as I’m concerned, and I ain’t going anywhere near the Web so y’all can screw it up for me.

Another item: I’m never pre-ordering anything from Amazon again.  Brandon Sanderson’s Words of Radiance will have been out for a solid week before it finally shows up at my house on Tuesday (it might be here tomorrow; I often find that I get things a day earlier than they project.)  Ordinarily this wouldn’t bother me except that I pre-ordered the motherfucker in July.  See, Amazon, I pre-order shit so that I can get it right away when it’s available.  That shit shoulda been shipped to be at my doorstep at the latest the day after release.

I finished a re-read of The Way of Kings– that’s the first book in the series– this afternoon, meaning that my last four or five books have all been fantasy epic doorstops.  It’s stunning to me just how much better the Sanderson book is than The Wheel of Time.  I know I’ve done two posts about that reread already, but… man, while I enjoy Jordan’s writing on a sentence-to-sentence level, going through the series again (I’ve finished the first three books) has convinced me that the books really aren’t any damn good.  They’re engaging, which is a good thing, but nothing fucking happens in the entire second book, which is like eight hundred goddamn pages long.  In the SECOND BOOK.  The characters are all literally in the exact same place at the end of the book as they are in the beginning.  In the third book, the main character barely shows up.

This is bullshit.  And I’m not making it to the end without a massive expenditure of willpower, as there are fourteen books in the series and I haven’t hit the long ones yet.  My wife is trying to finish the final book as we speak; she was about a third of the way through it when I started The Eye of the World and I finished the first three WoT books plus the first Sanderson book and she’s still not done with it, and I’m pretty sure nothing but bullheadedness and spite are keeping her reading at this point.  They’re just not very goddamned good, that’s all.

In which I am important and necessary

stamp21Friday afternoon I got a series of emails from my principal indicating that today was going to be a little bit more obnoxious than I’d initially planned.  Apparently he’d gotten an email from the Lord High Muckety-Mucks downtown (and I mean that affectionately, of course) that he and four hand-picked staff members of his choosing were to meet with them (yes, plural, all of the Muckety-Mucks, not just a couple) downtown Monday afternoon.  They were paying for subs all day, though, not just for the duration of the meeting, and we were to meet in our buildings and discuss whatever seemed like it needed discussionation during the morning in preparation for our meeting in the afternoon.

No real indication of what the meeting was about, or much of anything about what we were to bring with us, other than some vague references to some information that downtown already had.  This is, by the way, the week before ISTEP.  I’ve already rescheduled or vocally complained about any number of things that were supposed to happen this week.

I *still* haven’t spent five work days in a row in my classroom in 2014, by the way. I should finally manage that feat next week, since nobody’s moving me anywhere during the week of the test.  But yeah, I was out all day today, in meetings in the morning in the building (where we got a bit of useful stuff done and then sat around staring at each other and speculating about what the hell the meeting downtown was going to be about) and then at the actual meeting in the afternoon with the LHMMs.

There is no story about the meeting itself; as we left it we all mostly figured that downtown just wanted an idea of how good a staff our building had and wanted to see how our lead teachers reacted to being brought downtown on short notice and interrogated about our building plans.  And, honestly, “interrogated” is vastly overstating the case; I’ve been in much more adversarial meetings than that one.  I am not convinced that it was a good use of our time, especially the week before ISTEP, but I think we made ourselves look good and hell if I can think of another way they’re all going to meet the leadership team at once without dragging us out of the building.

Then I got back to the building and taught at Boot Camp until 5:30; we do a few days of intense after-school test prep during the week before ISTEP every year, featuring half an hour of calisthenics led by actual drill sergeants before the kids are sent back to the classrooms.  It’s actually pretty fun, but that meant that today went from 7 to 5:30 and I didn’t get a prep period.  So I’m tired as hell right now.

I have Walking Dead and True Detective to watch tonight.  Too bad I can’t put the boy to bed now.

(I kid.  Sorta.)

Let me state unequivocal fact

harold-ramis-w-twinkieIt is known; you are not allowed to argue the truth of this statement:  Ghostbusters is the greatest film ever made.  Period, point-blank, there is no discussion allowed on this point.  Even if you can find somewhere where championed some film other than Ghostbusters as the greatest film of all time, I was wrong and I can go straight to hell with my stupid stupidness.  If Harold Ramis had done nothing else with his entire life other than either write or star in Ghostbusters, the world would be worse for his passing, and he did both.  To say nothing of Animal House, which may be the only film from the seventies that is actually still funny.  He will be missed.

(The second greatest film ever made is Jaws.  This too is known, and not up for debate.  After that we can fight have a reasonable discussion.)

While I’m here:  If I ever again suggest that I might be part of a probation assistance team, you all have permission to kick my ass in the most merciless way you can manage until I come to my senses and find something, anything else to do with my time instead.  My meeting today lasted from 12:30 until 4:30 and was nothing but pure pain for its entire duration.  I’m a union representative; this does not mean that I do not believe that teachers should be able to be fired, it means that I believe there should be rules for dismissing people and that those rules should be clear and fair.

I am verging perilously close to the opinion that perhaps just this once we should forget the rules, because everything about the situation I’m involved in with this teacher is slipping between cracks for one reason or another.  I know I’m vaguebooking, and I apologize, but I can’t be too specific for reasons that are probably obvious.  I do not like anything about this and I would like it to be over now, thank you.

I have two TV shows to watch now, so g’bye.