Monday, October 27, 2008

Giant Pumpkins - Oh My!

Here's another reason I love NH, and my town in particular. Every year we have this great Giant Pumpkin Regatta.

First, we have a contest to see who can use a trebuchet to shoot small pumpkins thru small holes in a floating target. And yes, the target moves when the wind blows!

Next, we take some of the giant pumpkins that weren't quite big enough to be crowned #1, and make them into boats for our big regatta. Yep, we scoop out the pumpkin guts and there you have it - instant boat.

The racers spend the evening decorating their craft, and the next day we all gather at the river for the big race:
Since pumpkin boats don't travel very fast they also shoot at each other with super soakers to keep things interesting (and this is NH, so that water is cold in October!)
Don't worry, we have divers standing by for any boat that sinks!

Now we'll bring in the 'big guns...'

But still our brave Fire Chief fights on:

Sunday, October 26, 2008

Life in a Purple State

Only ten days remain until the 2008 Presidential election.  In my entire adult life I don't recall ever looking forward to an election as much as this one.  Is it because I can't wait to cast my vote for my chosen candidates?  Nope.  Here's a list of the reasons why I can't wait for this election to be over with:

~ so I can answer my phone and actually have the person on the other end be someone who is calling to talk to me, not to poll me.  Number of times I've been polled in 2008 -- greater than ten.

~ so I can answer the phone and not have someone offering me directions to my polling place.  I know I'm getting older, but honestly, I can remember where and when to go vote.

~ so I can sleep in on Sunday morning, get up and roam the house in my jammies, and not hear my daughter yelling "Mom, there is a strange man at the door with a bunch of papers and an "insert candidates name here" sign on his car."  At 9AM no less!

~ so I can listen to the radio again, without hearing the words "I will stand beside George Bush" in the ads of the candidates from BOTH parties in the Senate race.

~ so I can listen to the radio again without having to eventually give up and switch to my iPod because the only stations not playing attack ads are interviewing people about the attack ads.  

~ so I don't see the people filling up the comments section of my local paper and tv station continue to spew hate-filled rhetoric about anyone who doesn't share their point of view.  And, for the record, no one party has a monopoly on this rhetoric.  What happened to basic respect for others?  For that matter, what happened to the ability to think for ourselves and not spew some party line?

Okay, I'll get off my soap box for now, plug in my iPod, unplug my phone and cable-tv (but never my internet access,) lock my doors, and count the days until this election ends.  

Oh yeah, and I'll pray that whomever is elected has the wisdom, the will, and the ability to do something to rally the people of the U.S. to address the multiple crises our Nation faces.  Because the job is too big for any one person.  

Friday, October 10, 2008

October Sky

A five page philosophy paper.  Statistics homework I don't understand.  A research methods midterm.  Clients traveling soon.  Tests to grade.  Laundry to wash.  A house that even I term 'dirty.'  Yep, this is the highlight of my to do list for this weekend.  All the things I should be doing.

Outside my office window:

The entire sky is that blue - not a cloud in sight.  Maybe all that stuff I have to do will just have to wait a bit longer....

Tuesday, October 7, 2008

This Can't be Good...

After a long day of classes and a long drive home, I made the final turn toward home.  Sitting a few feet away from my driveway was satellite news truck.  Uh-oh, this isn't usually a good sign.  

The school I live next door to (and my daughter just started attending) was just letting out.  Bus loads of kids were waving as they drove by.  I walked by and noticed the truck was from a Boston station.  We're an hour north of Boston.  Double Uh-oh.  

When Diva and I walked by on our way down, we noticed a man sleeping in truck.  Immediately I start thinking of good reasons why he might be there.  With a hotly contested Senate race, and our status as a purple state, maybe some politician was in town at the local college and this guy thought he found a quiet street to take a nap?  Yeah, right....

Turns out that a former teachers aid (female) was arrested for an inappropriate relationship with a 14 year old (male.)    They communicated via text messages and online chat, so police have plenty of evidence.  The school did a criminal background check before hiring her, but she had no criminal history.  

Now is when I really envy all my homeschooling friends.  It really shouldn't be this scary just to send your child to school.