Green's Hill-Amy Lane's Home - News

Monday, June 30, 2008

Fiber follies

So, are you wondering what else I've been doing besides writing?

Well, there's some of this...

(That's the kid sized blanket that Cave Troll decided made him a charity of one:-)

A little of this...

(And that would be one of the pairs of socks I'm working in--the yarn is Wool Quarters by Mountain Colors--I forget the colorway, and the pattern is one of the Stansfield variations from the second Charlene Schurch sock book .)

And some of this...

(And that was supposed to be a double shot of Rio de la Plata yarn in this lovely multi-dyed blue/green/violet, and the Spring Forward sock in *snark* African Gray. I think what we got was Ladybug, after exploring her sister's make-up bag. Bad Ladybug...bad...)

There would also be some other socks--a pair in this lovely cotton/elastic that Chicken cast-on and now I get to finish (*snork* I get to finish them because she BAILED!!!) and an antique rose striped jaywalker, and a lovely pair of peacock-eyelet socks, all of which I wanted to load on but blogger was being a total fucker so I didn't.

It doesn't matter anyway, because as much as blogger is being a total fucker, it doesn't change the fact that I would be MORE than happy to spend my small amount of knitting time doing socks in the night rotation during my scant television time, but I'm not. No. I'm spending my precious and scant night knitting time on this...

(Please blogger load you spasmodic electronic fuck!) This would be a sweater, sized XL, for Chicken. Her request, both the color and the fiber. THAT is the back of your basic Lion Brand Acryllic Homespun yarn-splitting crapfest, because she asked me. And I love her.

And now, ladies and gentlemen, you know my great shame. The colorway? Mardi Gras--and on behalf of knitters everywhere, I'd like to apologize to New Orleans.

And now, I have to go kill some folks on paper--but that's okay, because my knitting wasn't that appealing anyway.

Saturday, June 28, 2008


Okay--I'm at the part of Bitter Moon where I'll be sitting at my keyboard sobbing, someone will ask me if I'm okay and I look up, dazed, and nod, angry that I've been pulled away from the thing that ripped my heart out.

Don't ask. I'm not giving away spoilers.

But the house is falling to crap and the children are running fair-isle (it's a Harlot joke, but a good one!) and when I surface from my dive into the alternate land of the three moons, I am frequently overwhelmed by the to-do list of just being a human mother of four. Would you like to see my to-do list? I warn you--it's scary and a little graphic, but here it is:

1. Clean the bathroom.
2. No time to clean the bathroom, nag one of the kids to clean the bathroom.
3. Remember to nag kids to clean the bathroom now that I've asked them to do it.
4. Remember to water to lawn.
5. Read...I should be reading. Good writers always read. What should I be reading?
6. Remember to find book.
7. Clean off the table.
8. Clean off the table after I check my e-mail, check my book-stats, and blog.
9. Find camera to blog.
10. I can't find camera--maybe it's on the table.
11. Shouldn't the table be clean by now?
12. Pick kid's clothes off the table.
13. Remember to go potty.
14. Throw kid's clothes in the hall pile.
15. Remember to do laundry.
16. Go to the bathroom.
17. Trip on the laundry monster on the way to the bathroom.
18. Stop at the laundry monster and start folding.
19. Don't just fold, dammit--you have to plot your book while you do something this mindless.
20. Did I remember to add that detail about Torrant?
21. What about that detail about Trieste?
22. Did I add the narrative overlay for every part?
23. Did I go back and count parts?
24. Did I remember to go to the bathroom? Eventually I'll have to go to the bathroom...
25. What's that smell? Did I forget that Ladybug went to the bathroom.
26. Change the baby's diaper...somebody? Please?
27. Find diapers in cyclone disaster site known as kids' room.
29. Change their sheets...
30. Do kids' laundry, dammit--didn't I just think that?
31. Okay, doing laundry. Oh shit!
33. Okay, dog's all gone. That's good. Doing laundry.
34. Did I mention that thing about Eljean?
35. What was that character's name?
36. Must ask Eric to make sure the name's sync on the next read through.
37. And while I'm in the garage, I should get a soda.
39. Okay, laundry moving. Now to add basket to the laundry monster.
41. What do you mean you're hungry? OH. Well, I guess it's time to eat.
42. Why aren't the dishes done. WILL SOMEBODY DO THE DISHES?
43. I know you did them yesterday. My question is, DID YOU EAT TODAY?
44. Okay, well, will you eat today after I cook?
45. Nevermind, I'll do the fucking dishes. (Thanks Mate, btw, who did them today. Love Mate.)
46. Oh, gees, my hands are in the soapy water, and I haven't gone to the bathroom.
48. Dammit, hasn't anyone cleaned the bathroom yet?
49. Well, at least I found my book...
50. Mmmm... good book...
51. Oh yeah... lunch. After you brush your teeth. And floss your teeth. And hand me the toilet paper. Good Ladybug--thanks for the toilet paper can I get up?
52. Lunch. Thank heavens, lunch is working.
53. And my computer is nearby--let me just check my e-mail and my book stats and start writing...
54. Lunch is done...
55. Kids are playing in the laundry monster...
56. I guess the mildew won't take over the bathroom today...
57. Ladybug needs another change? Bring me your diaper, baby, mom's on a roll...
58. Just got another e-mail...
59. Replied to it...
60. And now I can write.
61. I'll take blog pictures later today...
62. As soon as the bathroom is clean...
63. And the laundry monster is vanquished...
64. And lunch is finished...
65 and the kids are asleep...
66. And I've sat down with my knitting...
67. And woken up from my nap.

*whew* Just imagine what I can do after lunch!

69. Make one of the kids turn it off.
70. Go back to sleep.

Friday, June 27, 2008

I'm going to limbo!!!

And seriously--if there's knitting there, it sounds better than heaven. For one thing, gauging from my few real sins, I think there's sex in Limbo, and I'm pretty sure there's chocolate! (Thanks, Donna Lee, for the quiz--you give me the best stuff to snarfle!!!)

The Dante's Inferno Test has sent you to the First Level of Hell - Limbo!
Here is how you matched up against all the levels:
Purgatory (Repenting Believers)Moderate
Level 1 - Limbo (Virtuous Non-Believers)High
Level 2 (Lustful)Moderate
Level 3 (Gluttonous)High
Level 4 (Prodigal and Avaricious)Very Low
Level 5 (Wrathful and Gloomy)Low
Level 6 - The City of Dis (Heretics)Very Low
Level 7 (Violent)Moderate
Level 8- the Malebolge (Fraudulent, Malicious, Panderers)Moderate
Level 9 - Cocytus (Treacherous)Very Low

Take the Dante's Inferno Hell Test

Thursday, June 26, 2008

If you give a mouse a cookie...

Yesterday was a day of dentist appointments.

First, Big T had his first cleaning with a grown-up dentist--this is the guy who's been my dentist from the time I was an adolescent until now, and who has treated my parents for 25 years too. When I told everybody that "this was Pete's grandson" there was much rejoicing--my dad is a pretty memorable guy.

So, T goes in to have things sonically comboobulated, and I sit down, and pull out my iPod and pull out my Spring Forward sock which requires a little concentration, and I start to knit and 'write'--plan what I'm going to put on screen the next time I get my computer and some peace. (Or not so much peace--writing with 4-5 other people in the house is like writing at a coffee booth in Times Square.) And it's good--in fact, it's REALLY good--it's the most time I've had in my own head since school has let out and my morning commute has gone bye-bye. And have I mentioned this colorway is frickin' gorgeous? Yes? Would you like pictures? Too bad... (Seriously--I'm planning to take pictures later today, but right now, I've got 20 minutes to blog before people start waking up!!!)

It's a good thing I liked all that silence, though, because I had to do it all again when Chicken got her braces taken off!

She gave me a hard time, too--as I was getting out of the car she told me to "C'mon, mom, move your big butt and your seven socks of doom!" For her information, I was only wrangling four socks yesterday, but I did get the point--she was anxious to get the braces removed, and sure enough, she now has a perfect smile. She should. It cost as much as my first five cars. Anyway, there I was--my iPod and my sock. I did take some time out to pimp knitting to a charming and handsome young EMT who had broken his hand in his transport door (OU--UCH!) and was there to fit his own retainer--he was a fun chat, actually--but other than that, me. My iPod. And my sock.

And I get to do it all again today.

Because Big T has to go back in this morning for fillings. And even worse? They were able to move the date of my OWN cleaning to today as well. Which is why I don't really have time to get you pictures.

But I WILL have time to work on my sock.

*sigh* It really is a good thing I LUUUURVE that sock.

Wednesday, June 25, 2008

And some more about me...

You were all so sweet about my un-boringness--thank you! (I wasn't fishing for compliments that time--swear!!!) One of the interviews is out, and I thought I'd post it for you--but you are under NO OBLIGATION TO READ IT. (But do give Kenda a hullo--she's been very sweet, and she, too, is just starting out as an independent spirt:-) So here I am. Anybody think I should hire a super-model Goth chick to sub for me in the photo? It's starting to sound like a fanTABULOUS idea!!!

I've got other book news, but I'll post it tomorrow (and it should be on the website by then--let's cross our fingers for Mate, the amazing and successful WoW troll!) and in the meantime, I'll leave this tiny post with a moment of Ladybug Zen.

We were in the pool yesterday, and Ladybug was doing her limpet-impersonation in mama's arms. Mama, after 40 minutes of talking to Ladybug and Chicken and the Cave Troll in the weird, toxic air was beginning to ramble, and Goddess knows what I was saying to her. Well, the whole pool knows, because at one point I said, "Can we kick now? Good job. Let's kick. We can kick. We can kick and our little feet will do the work. Isn't that great? Isn't it cool that we have feet?"

And then Ladybug practically stood up straight in the water, grinned that little gap-toothed grin and shouted, "I HAVE FEET!"

And so she does--good for her!

Tuesday, June 24, 2008

Blah blah blah me, blah blah me, blah blah blah...


I'd been waiting on two interview requests--one posed two months ago, and one sent about two weeks ago.

Both interviews arrived yesterday.

It's funny--because e-interviews always say, "Don't worry--take your time--it's no big deal..." but I always feel like I've got a live snake in my e-mail box and I would rather wrangle that puppy now than surprise myself with it tomorrow, so I did them both in short order, and as a result, I was too damned bored with myself yesterday to blog.

And I'd like to apologize to you all for boring you senseless for the last two years, because I am NOT that interesting a person. Seriously. Not even a little bit. I'm the human equivalent of watching paint dry, and I'm sorry I'm even back on line again, pretending to have brain cells--we all know THAT'S a laugh and a half---except laughing would be the opposite of boring, and I'M BORING!!!

But, uhm, that's not going to stop me from posting the links when the interviews are posted. (Well, uhm, DUH!)

Anyway, I've enjoyed looking at everybody's sunny day pictures, because here in California, the weather is apocalyptic, with a chance of orange. Seriously--there are too many wildfires to keep up with, and here in the valley, the air actually has texture. I got home from the gym yesterday and told the kids not to go outside and breathe because something might get caught in their braces, and the little kids were SERIOUSLY wiped out from their 45 minutes in the pool. And speaking of wiped out? I spent an hour doing water aerobics and then 45 minutes shuttling Ladybug around the pool as a human sedan chair--I came home, where Mate was doing a major home reorg and proceeded to make my mark by sleeping all day when I wasn't TALKING ABOUT MY BORING ASSED SELF! I. Am. Such. An. Idiot.!!!! Overdoing it your second week at the gym is SUCH a rookie move--and I always make it. Always. But the short people were wiped out too, and I'm debating whether to take them to the pool today. I mean, it is a chance for them to get out and do something, but the air here is unhealthy to breathe. I actually feel guilty for even thinking about getting into a car and doing shit--including (you guessed it!) going to the gym!!! But then, it's not like I'm going to walk in this weather, right?

Anyway, enough about me... oh,'s a blog, isn't it?

So I got a contact from a local store called 'The Gilded Bat'--they asked if I wanted to bring some stock in and do a book signing. I'm tickled--and not just because the name of the store has totally charmed me--I was Mona in our high school production of 'The Singing Bat' and this feels like kismet. I might actually get my book signing after all! (But since I'm the world's most boring human, there's no telling how THAT'S gonna go!)

But I promise (well, a loose promise) pictures next post--I want to have the short people holding some more socks...that Sproing sock from Knitty is as cool to knit as the Monkey sock, and I want pictures--it would be neat to be the one starting the next sock phenom, right? And there's another trip to the zoo in the next few days (although, if the smoke continues, we may just make it a trip to see WALL*E and call it a day. Ladybug is doing the dance of joy on the couch for every WALL*E commercial, and the whole family is reciting the tagline. We're sheep, but we're happy sheep who worship the idol of Pixar.)

And maybe I can catch up on YOU today. Believe me, it would totally be my pleasure!

Sunday, June 22, 2008


Every year for the last ten years, this time of year is eaten up by 'recital'.

Some years it coincides with graduation, two years it coincided EXACTLY on our anniversary. Sometimes Mate volunteers to be security, and before the second wave of kids, I was doing some sewing and piecework for the costumes.

But every summer, once a year, we sit, sweating, in the 60 year old theatre, in 105 degree heat (okay, one year it was 80...) and watch our Chicken--and for the last two years, the Cave Troll--perform dancing and/or gymnastics.

It's sort of wonderful, actually.

I mean, it was hot--it was so hot that 1/2 through the first act of the four hour recital (not kidding. I might have even underestimated that a bit, I think it was 4 1/2 hours...3 to 7:30 p.m. No lie.) I dumped two ounces of water down my shirt, and by the time intermission hit, there wasn't even a sweat-spot between my boobs. Seriously--hot. Uncomfortable. I kept nodding off when my kids weren't up there--even for the numbers I wanted to see. But there WERE some numbers I wanted to see. Chicken's main dance teacher, Joanna, has taught a number of her teachers--I've seen the dance teachers grow up too, and when the dance teachers perform, it really is something special. Chicken's dance-class teacher, Em, has gone from bony adolescent to fan-TAB-ulous young woman, and watching her dance with the young men she grew up with brings a lump to my throat.

That and the Senior dances.

When kids 'graduate' from high school, they also 'graduate' from Joanna's. That doesn't mean we never get to see them again--it just means that they're no longer kids, and they get their 'senior dance' and they get treated as adults as well. So they get to choreograph their own dance to music that they've chosen--it's always special, and usually a little teary, and yesterday was Bethany and Andrew's turn to graduate.

Bethany and Andrew are special. Their sister, Megan, is in my daughter's class, and all three adopted siblings (all five, actually, Brandon, their brother, graduated five years ago and helps with whatever he can--it's his job) have special needs. Not 'special needs' Big T style, where we have to repeat things ad infinitum, and sometime we need a baseball bat with a railroad spike in it to help him get irony--no, nothing that easy. All of these children are SEVERELY mentally disabled, some of them with physical problems to boot. Bethany doesn't have any understandable speech capabilities. Andrew does speak, but he suffers from premature aging--he's been bald for five years.

You'd think they would be a bad match for a dance program, and there are challenges. (My daughter frequently muttered that she wished someone ELSE would get the job of telling Megan where to be on the dance floor, but once someone else GOT that job, she was a little hurt--she'd been doing it for three recitals.) For Bethany and Andrew, Andrew--who is actually a very proficient dancer, with a STRONG sense of beat and a powerful, fire-hydrant proportioned body--has always been in charge of Bethany. During recital, Bethany, happy to be on stage, happy to be dressed in constume, would work hard at the moving when the other kids did, but often needed a nudge or a prod or a hand to be told where to go next, and her big brother provided.

For Bethy's Senior dance, she was the only one on stage.

The music--a terribly sweet John Meyer song--played, and Bethany watched in fascination as her shadow from the spotlight made her every dance barre pose look gorgeous and graceful. She was dressed in her prettiest pink organdy dancing dress, and SHE was the star. Nobody told her what to do or where to go (although Joanna came out for a moment and danced with her, which just sent the tear factor over the edge) and for these moments, she was the prettiest of princesses, the most darling of ballerinas, the shiniest of stars, and every pose she made was perfect. Sometimes, she would stop watching her shadow in the spotlight long enough to turn towards the audience and smile and clap because it was all so perfect, and she was glad we were there to share.

People in the audience who had never seen Bethany were in tears when the dance was over.

People, you don't see undiluted joy that often--and they'll never be able to sell it. My price was five hours of sweating in a darkened theatre between cheering for my kids. Dust for diamonds, if you ask me.

And Chicken and Cave Troll? They're in recovery at the moment. Chicken's big moment (and Joanna, of whom she has been a little bit in awe since she was three years old would not believe this) was not the dancing, it was the curtain call. She was so glad that she got to be in the middle, with her arm slung around Joanna's shoulder at the end of the recital.

The Cave Troll's big moment was getting his Spiderman action figures after the recital. He did turn to the audience and wave and smile (as per Chicken's order, actually) but really, he was ready to go long before they let him, and as far as he was concerned, it was his usual potato-on-a-gym-mat routine, except this time, he was hotter, tireder, and hungrier. Just like at the State Fair, he's been JOBBED!!!

Lucky me, I've gotten several times my investment in both time and money. He gets the hugs as residuals.

Friday, June 20, 2008

And the Parade goes on....

** I started a second scrap blanket with some Lion Brand Homespun leftovers. I was going to give it to a student, but that time came and went, and so it was a blanket without a home. The Cave Troll was sitting on my lap yesterday as I finished it (with some yarn I can't identify, but I'm pretty sure Tinkingbell would call it 'Dead Muppet: Colorway Grover') and I said, "What do you think, sweetie, should I keep this blanket or give it away?"

"Give it away!" He said gleefully, and I smiled. Project Linus, I was thinking, here we come!

"Who should we give it away *to*?" I asked, trying to lead him to the whole 'charity' idea.


*sigh* And so we have our 5 billionth crocheted blankie. It's his very favorite ever. He especially likes Dead Grover.

**I picked Big T up from karate yesterday, and he asked me for a razor again. It's time--he's starting to sport a Shaggy Special (from Scooby Doo) and I said yes, and then proceeded to mortify him by driving to MacDonalds for the second time that day for a diet coke. (Something about that soda/syrup ratio...mmmmmmmm.....)

He was totally embarrassed--he was hoping the same girl wasn't there this time who had waited on us when I was taking the big kids to their orthodontist appointment earlier, and me, being his mother proceeded to give him a ration of shit.

"Would you like me to find a more socially acceptable addiction?" I razzed, "Should I start freebasing cocaine or injecting heroin into my eyeballs?"

Of course, by this time, we were even with the girl in the cashiers window, and that last phrase needed some explaining, and when I was done, she nodded sagely. (She was probably twenty.)

"Well, yeah," she said, "Just wait until the wedding."

I looked at her oddly because it seemed like such a non-sequiter. We were halfway home when it gobsmacked me that she thought Big T was my BOYFRIEND. I pointed this out to him, and when we were done chortling away the biggest attack of the oogies EVER, I said, "Well, kiddo, it's probably the beard."

**Me and McDonalds cashiers, right?

About a week ago I was the one who left the CASHIER in tears laughing--but it's his own damned fault. He was trying to push their new iced coffees on me, and I wasn't buying. Coffee and milk does something unfortunate to my innards--it's certainly not worth the taste. So I was being discreet, right? But the car at the first window was having a problem, and this guy was bored, and so he was relentless...and very charming, I might add, for a bored teenager. So after hinting delicately at intestinal problems (is that delicate? I didn't think so at the time!) and 'tummy troubles' I finally said, "Dude, one of those things and I'd be on the pot all day--I'm pushing my luck with the diet coke as it is!"

And then the cars in front of me moved, so I never did see if he picked himself up from leaning weakly against the back wall, holding his stomach and laughing like a loon.

**I actually made it to the gym yesterday--and brought the short people. I can't do this too often--the price for them went up, which is too bad, because that hour after swimming laps, when we're all in the pool was sort of nice. Of course, Ladybug thought so--her brother got her one of the flat kick board things that they have and she pointed to it and said, "Sit". So basically, our Lady of Bug got to be pushed around on a water sedan chair for 45 minutes, until I said, "You know, I had an aerobics class and some laps...I'm DONE!"

In the mean time, the Cave Troll sat on the steps and played around the chrome pole that you lean on when you're getting into the pool and told me that he was swimming. (I'm SWIMMING, mom, I'm SWIMMING!) He freaks out if you try anything more challenging with him--I dread swimming lessons, if we ever get them. I think he'll probably have to just bob around, experimenting with his body in the water until he figures it out by himself. (With mom or dad VERY close by, of course.)

Anyway, I'm going to try to catch a class on my own, and leave these guys home with the big kids for an hour--I feel REALLY bad about it, but my feet, DUDES--they feel so much better after on class, and if I could get into some shape, I'm thinking they might not be so quick to betray me to the pain gods, you feel me?

**Chicken gets her braces off before Australia. I don't really have a funny story for this, but I'm soooooooooo very happy for her. Yay Chicken!!!

**and I think I've lost my glasses--my spiffing new ones. I'm stopping at Wal-Mart to see if they got left there with my sunglass case, because it was the last place I remember having them, but after that, I'm at a complete loss. *sigh* Well, at least the ones held together with the paperclip are still good. I was getting spoiled anyway--the new ones fit SOOOOO sweetly... well, everybody cross my fingers for Wal Mart, yes?

Good days, everybody!

Wednesday, June 18, 2008

Meditations on a Farting Dog

Imagine a completely destroyed suburban home, late at night. Mate is working hard on WoW in the living room, I am working hard (don't laugh!) on Bitter Moon II, when suddenly our peace is interrupted by a series of intestinal sounds that would frighten the dog...if she wasn't half deaf and the one emitting them.

Me: "Fucking dog."

Mate: "Why, what's she doing?"

Me: "Trying to jet propel herself across the kitchen floor. She keeps sticking on the kool-aid--it's all that slows her down."

Mate: "Nice."

Dog: plbt...ffft...pblogp.t..splt...ssssssssssstttttttblurpt

Me: "Either that, or she's trying to play the Star Spangled Banner with her ass..."

Mate: "Do you think that would get her on Letterman? Would we get paid for that?"

Dog: ppppppllllllllllllbbbbbbttttttt....ssssssssssssssblrupltlprlpt.sssssssstttttttttttttttfffffffffffffffff


Thank you, thank you very much... we'll be here all week!

The Parade of Weird

First of all, a couple of pictures to show that the babies are growing just fine, and that I have yet to off Mate as part of an elaborate insurance scam. Plus, the kids are just damned cute.

And speaking of Mate--

Yesterday was our 19th wedding anniversary. No, I didn't forget--I'd just done a couple of emotionally heavy post, and I was pretty happy to just take the day as it came. We actually did nothing and gifted nothing--mostly because we wanted to save the $$$ for a time when we could be w/out kids and we didn't have work and softball and grocery shopping etc.--but we did say Happy Anniversary, and I did get him a card. But really, what do you give for the 19th wedding anniversary--1st is paper, 25th is silver, what's in between? I asked Mate and he said "fist bump" so pretty much we went with that.

And other than that? Well, report cards came today--Chicken is holding a 3.5, and Big T passed 4 out of 6 'healthy milestones' for P.E. All things considered (including the family fat) I'd say that's no small thing. (And neither is he, at 6' 3" and 310 lbs.) We finally got him a pair of sunglasses as a gift for his black belt, and today on his way out to mow the lawn he stopped, turned around, and bumped them up his nose ala Tom Cruise in Top Gun. He was so damned cute I almost cried.

And on the knitting front--well, I'd planned to do a parade of socks (as opposed to a parade of weirdness) to showcase the many flavors of sock I'm tasting at the moment. All I ended up doing was the brown/tan/black/cobalt Opal that I'm going to do a basic vanilla with. I actually have someone in mind for these--she's an e-buddy and a blog-lurker so I'm hoping she'll give me a buzz and let me know if she likes this color (as craptacular as the picture is) or if she'd rather have the 'African Gray' in Louet Sales that I'm doing the 'Sproing' socks with (you know, from the new Knitty?) I really love the African Gray color--it's this combo of pewter/orange/violet/brown that sounds really barftastic but is, in fact, gorgeous. I especially love the fact that it's not 'Norwegian Blue' because everybody knows that parrot is stone dead! (hee hee hee...must love the classics...)

And other than that? I NEED TO WORK ON THE BOOK. It's killing me. I need to--I'm just enjoying the knitting and the vegging with the kids too much... I need to desert the family in the PM and get my shit in action. Besides...I'm on the downhill slope. It's not even work anymore!!!

And that's about it... I really enjoyed seeing what everybody's reading with the meme yesterday--even if there were legal manuals and history texts--just proves the power of the written word, as well as its versatility, write? I mean right? (hee hee hee...I must be drunk on vacation...)


Tuesday, June 17, 2008

Roxie's Meme

Okay--Roxie tagged me, and this sounded very covert and fun...

"PS - you have been meme-tagged.Pick up the nearest book.Open on page 123.Find the fifth sentence.Post the next three sentences.Tag five people,and acknowledge who tagged you. "

Now, the book I'm READING is Lover Enshrined, because sometimes, I am a sheep. But the NEAREST book is my son's copy of Ender's Game (which I made him read because it rocks) and here we go:

"She did not let her parents know, and above all never hinted to Peter how often she thought about Ender, how often she wrote him letters that she knew he would not answer. And when Mother and Father had announced to them that they were leaving the city to move to North Carolina, of all places, Valentine knew that they never expected to see Ender again. They were leaving the only place where he knew to find them."

*EDITED TO ADD* Okay--I checked Roxie's blog, bless her, and she put in a SANNA TEASER...which A. Makes me want to read the third Sanna even more, and B. makes me want to copy her like a 3rd grader. So here's from pg. 123 of Bitter Moon II.

“Who’s that for?” Eljean asked, looking at the little space towards the back. There was a stool there, with a battered lute case at the foot of it, and a glass of water at the ready.
“No!” Aylan barked, glaring at Torrant. He was all but supporting Torrant’s weight, although he was doing it so deftly that Stanny hadn’t noticed.
“I have new songs I want him to bring her…” Torrant began.
“And how will he know the melody if I don’t…”
“SING THEM!” They both shouted together at the end. They stood then, toe to toe, heating the room temperature with their glowers.

I tag Knittech, Catie, Louiz, Galad, and Donna Lee!

Sunday, June 15, 2008

Dad's Day...

When I was five, and my mom and dad had split, my dad went in to talk to my Kindergarten teacher before school started and told her, "She's going to be left handed."

The teacher didn't believe him--he was a man, it was 1972, and men didn't know jack about parenting, and so the useless experiment with me and the crayon in my right hand began.

In 1998, when Big T was 4 and we went to meet his pre-school teacher, Mate was going to school and working nights while I taught full time--Mate actually spent more time with Chicken and 'T' than I did. And so I was reasonably appalled when T's future teacher (who is all in all a very nice lady--we went to her retirement party and gave her a mug with a grown-up and a 1st grade picture of T on it--she cried) walked around Mate and came up to talk to me. During the ensuing meeting, she directed all questions to me, even though I had to defer a lot of them to Mate. It was embarrassing, but it also made me a little angry on behalf of all men everywhere. Where is it written that the Dad is the inferior parent?

It's not. My dad was my sole parent for a while, and I could point out all sorts of mistakes he made (there is an incident with an alligator lizard that he will never live down, and rightly so) --but I could also point out that he fed me, clothed me, and let me know I was cared for while working, going to school, and making an income so miniscule it could be measured in the bottom half of three figures. I never had a Christmas without presents, and although we forgot Easter once, my birthday was never once forgotten. And of course, let's not forget that he went out and found me a kick-ass step-mom, too. I mean, if a dad's gonna make a good decision, that would be THE one to make, right? (Remember what happened to Cinderella? *shudder* No one wants that.) So my dad was sort of my high-watermark for a dad, and you know? Mate's done me proud.

Mate is signed up to do security for Chicken's dance recital--he's done this for the last couple of years, and I feel vaguely guilty because, well, I haven't. I've helped clean up the high school where it's held, and done some sewing and some other stuff, but I've never been back stage, even though Chicken used to beg me. But Mate can get it done. And Mate's done that a lot. Mate does orthodontist appointments and school events and soccer games. Mate does karate and doctor's appointments and sick days. Mate does KIDS, for better and for worse, for spankings and for ticklings, and he does it well. He sets up computer games and oversees internet connections and signs kids up for school. I could nag about a bathroom entering it's second year in limbo, but I won't. Mate helps me with the house and tells me to sit down when my feet hurt and forgives me for my yarn addiction and the space that it eats up. I can forgive a bathroom--I can forgive a lot of things, as long as I have my Mate, sitting next to me in the car, cracking one liners and harassing the useless teenagers, I mean beloved older children, and then cooing over the total and complete cuteness of Ladybug, who has him wrapped (as did her older sister) completely around her finger.

Yesterday he took a look at the fat rabid squirrel that is my hair and fanned out his hands. "Jazz-hair" he said, complete with finger twitching. I laughed my ass off--I'm still laughing my ass off.

Today, we went to my grandparents for a late lunch and to give my grandpa chocolate for what looks to be his last father's day. Mate played with his children while I visited, which is what he always does. I watched him, and then watched my grandpa, whom I've always idolized a little for various reasons I won't go into now, and thought, "Gee--I'm forty years old, I still have my grandpa, still have my father, and I still love my husband. I did have a lucky star or something, didn't I?"

Now Mate and I were young and skinny when we met--in fact, the two of us then probably weighed what I do now--and stupid and cute and naive and so very in love.

I wasn't thinking of what kind of father he'd make. I wasn't thinking about a week where we'd have four kids and six activities work around our own anniversary. I was thinking that he was cute and he made me hot, and really, when you're nineteen, what else is there?

Well, wasn't I lucky, because the duties of Mate/Dad are myriad and frightening, and while he does let a few of them drop, well, that's a lot of balls in the air, baby, and I just love to watch the other one's fly.

Happy Dad's day, Daddy. Happy Dad's day, Mate. You guys are the ones that made this day special--we just provided the home made cards.

Friday, June 13, 2008


Okay, graduation is over, and just in time for the end of school, some of you will notice from a certain missing post that yes, Amy Lane, showing a learning curve the shape of a dead vampire's heart rate did, indeed, screw up her almost perfect record this year of not shooting off her big fat mouth on the blog and getting in trouble for it at work.


You'd think I'd know better. Hell, I PRAY DAILY that I have learned better. Alas, I don't know better and suffice it to say that the same monsters who hid in the library closet and ran tales to me were just as happy to run my BLOG to the last person I wanted to see it. And now I'm in trouble.

And I deserve it, and that's all I want to say about that. (Really. I don't think I can say any more on the blog without pissing someone else off and making it worse--and what I really want to do is run back on campus and make it better, but I have to wait until Monday.) Anyway the whole incident did make me think, in a way that's been niggling in the back of my mind all year, about the difficulty of people (okay, maybe just me) forming attachments in this profession.

Teachers spend their day with their students.

I mean, I know it sounds obvious, but really--who are we supposed to bond with? It's supposed to be our classes, isn't it? We're supposed to be there for our kids. And when I first started here, that's what I really loved about our staff--we bonded with our kids. But there's a couple of problems with putting all of our emotional eggs in this basket.

A. The kids come and go. And as much as I love them, and as much as I love it when they come to visit, the fact remains that the people I love most about this job desert me a lot. It hurts.

B. The teachers (at least in our school for a while) also come and go. For a short, blissful time, I had several teachers on campus that I could shoot off my big mouth to and they could help me come to my senses before I went and did something just this stupid. They have since gone, and although I still have Lady in Red, she is just as busy, and just as isolated, and just as cross campus as I am. There's no dodging into the classroom next door to talk to one of my few remaining buddies--she's 1/2 a lunch-period away.

C. The people left in my department are good people. They are smart and funny and wonderful. They are also mostly all men with a mentality swept in a 180 degree arc from my own. They think I'm from Venus. Most of the time I think they're from Mars. Sometimes, I think they're from hell, but mostly, really, it's Mars. We respect each other (I mean, if nothing else, Venus does have her own gravity and mass, right? You don't want to get in her way when she's having a hormonal nadir) but we don't always understand each other.

D. The kids are kids. They are all about the drama--even the best of them--and it's easy to forget that we are not all about the drama as well. I've seen old and gray men get caught up in the uber-angst of a really charismatic, drama-ridden high school student. The fact that I get caught up in the sturmunddrang without even realizing it goes without saying. As adults, our peers can be the mirrors of our behavior, to show us what is outrageous and what is sane. As teachers, we (I) often forget that our students may serve as our mirrors, but they're more like funhouse mirrors--their perspective is often skewed by their youth, by the hermetically sealed school culture, and by the fact that we spend five hours a week locked in a tupperware petrie dish with them. Bonding with them to the exclusion of adults is easy, but it sure isn't wise.

The absolute loneliness of these circumstances was brought home to me by a series of moments that I think the powers that be will forgive me for talking about.

A. One of my all time favorite administrators is retiring. I respect this guy about as much as I've respected ANY authority figure at ANY time in my entire life. (My clan isn't big on authority. This total awe and respect was something of a revelation for me.) As he gave his (brief, informal, lovely) last words to us as a group, he said, "Take care of each other. That's one of the things this staff needs to work on." I wanted to cry when he said that, because when I was thinking about it, I couldn't pin down one person on campus who needed me to help take care of them.

B. One of my colleagues from Mars (who has said outright that he doesn't give a shit about the blog, period) was in his room and I went to talk to him about my latest disaster.

"You fucked up," he said, shrugging.
"No, no. You fucked up."
"But...that's not fai...."
"You fucked up."
"Fine, I fucked up."

And then we talked about something else. And this encounter made me feel so much better than anything all day. Why? Because I fucked up, and he was still willing to talk to me. Now it's very possible that any of the other men in my department, or even the very young women, would be willing for me to come in and shoot off my mouth and to, you know, be friends? But I don't have a lot of time to invest in those friendships--I don't go out after work. I spend 15 minutes of a 45 minute lunch in the staff room. I've known this guy for 13 years, and he can say "You fucked up," and we both know that we still have to work together and it gave me, at least today, the sort of freedom that really good friendship does. But I don't know how repeatable this moment is--and I don't know anybody else this could happen with. This moment was serendipity, pure and simple--well placed but, well, isolated.

C. Another colleague brought his wife to graduation tonight. She loves paranormal romance and she ran up to me saying, "When's Bitter Moon II coming out?" and we started talking books and authors and things we loved about books and authors and book stores and... and... and...

And her husband turned to me and said, "Look at you light up. I don't see you light up like that at lunch. You come into lunch and you look like you're going to kill someone, but right now you're all lit up inside."

"Oh," I said, thinking about it, "There's nobody at lunch who would give a shit about these things."

And now I'm back to isolation again.

Of course, none of this is meant to excuse my initial fuck up, right? But it is starting to make something else, a sort of terrible, uncomfortable truth, very very clear to me.

I just wish I knew what to do about it, that's all.

Wednesday, June 11, 2008


Okay--as a long time crocheter who still visits the dark side on occasion, this blog--snarfed from the place where goddesses bitch has totally entranced me. You can tell. I just did two links in one post.

As random as turkeys in space...

Yup. I've got 3 days left before graduation. I am physically incapable of profound, and mentally incapable of organized. Hell, I'm not even sure I qualify as sentient! But I still have lots of crap floating around in my head, and so, in Cory's words, I'm going to unload some of that "shit into my yard" and see how much stinks, and how much is just random shit, right? Here goes:

* Walking around the neighborhood with feet that don't hurt is magical. It's like flying or teleporting or something. You know you're either getting old or fucking up when your body big time when you stop taking good health for granted.

* I'm typing this blog during my 6th period final, which, oddly enough, is at 8:00 in the morning. All year, I've been getting here at 8:45 in the morning--I'm so tired and disorganized, that I just gave my 11th graders the 12th grade final. They're so tired and disorganized, that they didn't recognize the mistake until question 66.

* I showed Chicken a passage from BMoon II last night that she really loved--she laughed AND cried at the same time. I tried to tell Mate about it, and he looked puzzled, said, "uh-huh" and went back to his WoW game. I took the ball of Schaeffer's Anne out of Chicken's hand before she could throw it at her father's head, and then I took the book she went for after that. Then I heard myself tell my daughter, "That's okay honey, he's a man...he's just not going to get it like you do." And then I felt REALLY bad. I think I just failed 'Parenting 101.2: gender stereotyping at it's worst.'

* I have a VERY talented, VERY flaky student in my 2nd period class, who put all of his grade-D eggs into a book report basket. And brother, was this book report epic--$250 in fake body parts, 40 minutes on dvd hastily edited to 16 on borrowed equipment, a script adapted from four best-selling novels about a serial killer who kills serial killers...seriously--this guy is an ubergenius w/camera, script, and vision.

It's unfortunate that part of the script involved a prostitute (played by his mother--who, btb, all the other kids proclaimed to be VERY hot) and a fake body part that only she could by from a store that only adults can enter. Oh yeah--it also included a big set of garden shears and about a gallon of fake blood.

And the thing that got me most about this masterpiece--besides the fact that it was one of the most disturbing things I've ever seen--is that I PREDICTED THE ENDING BEFORE I SAW IT. "Markus," I said, shaking my head, "There had better not be any amputated weiners in this magnum opus of yours, okay?"

"Don't worry, Ms. Lane--it'll all be kosher."

People, that hot dog was NOT kosher. But the kid still passed. What can I say? I"m a sucker for the classics.

* I left the short people with the tall people this morning instead of taking them to day care. What can I say? I had to be here an hour early, and they were SOOOOOOO tired last night. It's recital week--we enrolled Cave Troll for gymnastics and Chicken for dance, but we decided Ladybug wasn't quite ready to go do gymnastics for an audience yet. (Sue us--she's two!) Anyway, when Ladybug realized that the Cave Troll was going somewhere without her, there was MUCH WEEPING, WAILING AND CARRYING ON. And then the Cave Troll didn't get home for rehearsal until almost 9:30. Suffice it to say, that if all has gone well, the two of them are still sleeping while I type this.

* I tried to load pictures from the camera onto the computer a couple of nights ago, and the whole works froze up. (Fucking computer--just sayin'...) Anyway, I haven't forgotten that the blog is a terrifically handy place to put pictures, neither have I forgotten that I'm knitting, nor that my children are most certainly adorable enough to post. It just hasn't happened yet.

* I am currently working on 5 pairs of socks. Yes. Five. It's actually sort of a cool system. They're all completely different colors, and three of them have patterns--one set of jaywalkers, one pair of sport weight w/a basketweave, and one with a little cloverleaf/rib thing going on. Two pairs are two at a time on magic loop, and the others are on either two circs or magic loop, (I"m thinking of casting on a pair on dpns, just to round that out, btw) and NONE of them are in the same yarn brand. Not one. I've got Mountain Colors Wool Quarters (dark autumn colors), Meillenweit self-striping (antique rose colors), Cherry Tree Hill (spring iris colors), Louet (peacock colors), and this fairly obscure yarn called Rio Platas that's kind of hand-dyed uberfunky (sea shore colors)-- and I'm thinking of doing some earth colors on the dpns and then just... just... pulling out whatever sock strikes my fancy. It's the ultimate in process knitting! I"m serious. Whatever I want to knit, be it vanilla or chocolate/cinnamon/strawberry--it's there! It's all in the big yarn bag! I loves it... I'm nearing the end of one of the pairs and I almost resent it. I may never knit a single project again! (*snort* As if that would have happened anyway!)

* Bitter Moon II--I think I'm within 100 pages of completion, and I'm torn between frustration, because this is a BAAD time of year to be writing and I want to get it done, and...well...that same sort of feeling I've got with that almost completed sock. I don't want it to end. It's beautiful. I've been planning this book climax for two years. It feels so perfect I don't want to rush it. In fact, I'm AFRAID to rush it. What if, after knowing what I want to write for two years, I totally rush it and fuck it up. How bad a writer would that make me, fucking up what should be a perfect ending? So I love it, I'm exhilarated, and I'm terrified. Everybody--it's time for my prayer: Holy Goddess, Merciful God, PLEASE LET IT NOT SUCK!

Thank you, thank you all.

Saturday, June 7, 2008


Where have all the bloggers gone... (long time passing...) Seriously--you can tell the weather in the States is hot and bright these days because not many of us are inside on the computer! Okay, well, I was, but Nor-Cal has been like a hair-drying pollinator these last few weeks, and as a result I have a sore throat and a stuffed head and the urge to nod off at odd hours...and then wake up and announce my intentions to go do something ambitious like take a walk or wash the dishes, just to get up and do something!

Anyway I kept trying to write, and what I ended up doing was read what I had previously written, and...I'm pleased. I'm pleased. It'll probably suck, but for the moment, I'm all caught up in the 'yeah--it wasn't bad. I may not suck after all...' I'm still not focussed enough to really write--part of it is work. I was 25 questions away from finishing my Junior final when the computers went down on Friday, and I feel...suspended. Part of it is, I'm in the home stretch--and judging from my past behavior, I tend to stop, recap, and think carefully about what I've done before I move on to the last 100/150 or so pages, and that's what I'm doing now. I like what I've written--I want to keep it consistent.

Anyway, enough of that. Last week, when Mate and I got to go out to dinner and see two movies, we went to Macaroni Grill. The Grill has, as a feature, white paper table cloths, and they give out crayons when you walk in. Last week, Mate and I, in a moment of whimsy, wrote a list of songs we'd want played at our 20th wedding anniversary--which will be next year, actually. I was bemoaning the fact that we couldn't rip the table cloth off when Mate whipped out the camera phone and took a picture. Well, I highly doubted we'd be able to read the songs from the picture, but last week? Mate sent me the list. He claims not to be good at the grand romantic gesture, but I think this was a definite 'awwww' *sniff* moment. Anyway, it got me thinking. I tend to soundtrack my life--hence my attachment to my i-pod and it's 2251 songs--and every morning I play 'i-pod tarot' on the way to work. Some songs mean certain things to me. So I thought here, I'd give you certain events in my life, as they are soundtracked.

Big T--Jeremy Spoke--Pearl Jam (they were playing this fucking song nonstop the year he was born--and I must have had six Jeremy's in my first set of classes as a teacher. For those of you who know this song, you can see how it might have been a cautionary tale for how NOT to raise your kids.)
The Ice Cream Song--Sarah MacLoughlin (he loved this song as a kid)
Way out over the ocean--Henry Nillson
For Baby--John Denver

Chicken--The Ice Cream Song--Judy Collins
Watch Out for Mr. Stork--Sound track from Dumbo
Lord of the Dance--it's a Methodist hymn, the only thing I took away from church for the family

Cave Troll--I don't want to live on the moon--Ernie
Sunshine on my shoulder--John Denver
ABC/123 --Soundtrack from Stop the World, I Want to Get Off
Snuggly Puppy --Boyton

Ladybug--Sweet Dreams--Patsy Kline
Sunshine on my shoulder--John Denver
Personal Penguin--Boyton

Jeremy--Pearl Jam
No Way Out--Tesla
Night--Bruce Springsteen
At the end of the day--Les Mis
End of the world--R.E.M.
Get in the ring--Guns & Roses
Don't you forget about me--Simple Minds
Dear Prudence--any version
Numb--Linkin Park
High school never ends--Bowling for Soup
Cellblock Tango--Chicago Soundtrack

For my books, I usually had around six songs running around my head per book. Of course, as soon as the book goes to press, I forget most of them. These are the ones I can remember. When I hear a book song on my i-pod or the radio, I take it as a direct sign from the Goddess that I shouldn't quit writing. Ever.

Sweet Child of Mine--either version
Worlds Apart--Bruce Springsteen
One Headlight--Wallflowers

Welcome Home--Til Tuesday
Christmas Day--Dido
Crash--Dave Matthews Band
City by the Bay--Journey

Lifetimes--Sheryl Crowe
Greatest Mistake--Sheryl Crowe
The Fuse--Bruce Springsteen
Secret Garden--Bruce Springsteen
Elope with me miss private... (I forget the artist--but it's on the Juno Soundtrack)

Bitter Moon I & II
Kingdom Come--Coldplay
Hide Your Love Away--Beatles
Tuesday Morning--Melissa Etheridge
Beatles on Buegrass--it's a cd my administrator put out--it's really awesome
Last to Die--Bruce Springsteen
Hands Held High--Linkin Park
Fall of Rain--Les Miserable
The Highwayman--Loreena McKennit
The Mummer's Dance--Loreena McKennit
I Will Follow You Into the Dark--Death Cab For Cutie

Okay--that was fun!! But, seriously--does everybody remember that line from 'Working Girl'? "You want another answer, ask another girl?" Doing these things is sort of like that only different:

"You want another list? Ask another day!"

But for today, I like the look of, my blog question for interactive blogging: in the comments, if you can, give me a soundtrack for something--knitting, kids, traveling--whatever! I'd love to see them!!!


Thursday, June 5, 2008

Eh...when I liked lemonade, it was fire!!!

I snarfed this one from Donna, and I'm serious--when I liked lemonade and thought I was courageous at my best, I was fire...I changed the emotion to 'fair' and the food to 'potato chips' and here I am at water... I'm gonna go see who I am when I like chocolate!

Your Power Element is Water

Your power colors: blue and aqua

Your energy: deep

Your season: winter

Like the ocean, you evoke deep feelings and passion.

You have an emotional, sensitive, and spiritual soul.

A bit mysterious, you tend to be quiet when you are working out a problem.

You need your alone time, so that you can think and dream.

Wednesday, June 4, 2008

Fingernails. Grabbing. Ledge.

Ugh! So close to the end of school, and yet... 7 working days to go. I've said it before, the end of the year feels like taffy on one of those taffy pullers you see on the boardwalk, where this thick, gooey, disgusting mess (I don't like taffy) is stretched impossibly thin until it gets so damned tough it breaks your teeth and rips out your fillings. Are you feeling my pain yet, because I could go on!!!

Anyway, my throat is sore and I'm once again exhausted--I read the end of 1984 to my Seniors and Gatsby to my Juniors, and I was a little surprised that, after whining at them continually to read the fucking book and do the fucking questions, that once we reverted back to kindergarten and story time, they were totally entranced. Well, if nothing else, I can say I sent them out the door with that, right? But all I wanted when I got home was to nap, and all four kids were talking at once and then, *SURPRISE* mom and dad showed up to take Chicken to her media presentation. Which was great on the one hand, because it meant that Mate got a few minutes to sit down and have some dinner before he had to go watch her, but on the other hand, I had one of those disorienting moments when the day job interposed itself on the night job, and all I wanted to do was yell at people to be quiet so I could think. The moment passed, and it was me and the short people, and they were destroying the house.

Anyway, that was the day, but I'll leave you with two things that happened that totally made it better.

The first happened in the car. The Cave Troll and Ladybug have been fighting like, well, insects and trolls for the last few weeks, and so this time, when I stopped to get their milk and french fries, instead of getting them one order to share, I got them two orders, each in a separate bag, so they might not argue over them continually. And then I heard it. RRRRIIIIPPPPP. Looking in the rearview, I started lecturing the Cave Troll, "Please don't rip up the bag and the fries and the napkin...please don't make a mess for mommy." And then I looked up into the rearview again and laughed so damned hard I almost had to slam on the brakes. He'd ripped open one seam of the bag and situated it on his head like a hat and was looking at me benignly in the mirror. He wore that damned thing all the way home.

The second was tonight. Chicken, tired from her school presentation, was getting ready for another activity tomorrow and grumbling about it. "Darn it--it's eight grade, Mom. We're not that special--for the love of crap, just let me get the hell out of middle school!"

*sigh* *sniff proudly* Yup. That's my sweet little girl.

Monday, June 2, 2008

stuff and stuff!

First of all--a couple of weeks ago I was terribly remiss--and it made a good story, so I really should have told it!

I put a couple of skeins of sock yarn into the mail for Galad, and then e-mailed her to tell her it was coming. She replied, and we both had to laugh, because it seems that she had the same idea! The digital camera is MIA, but it was dyed in her home state of Arizona, and it's the colors of the saguaro sunset--it's gorgeous, and it was so thoughtful, and really, I have to wonder if our packages waved to each other in passing! (For some reason this picture isn't loading--bummer!)

And now I'm REALLY mad the camera is elsewhere, because Donna Lee's package FINALLY got here--and it was a doozy! A couple of weeks ago I won a contest on Donna Lee's blog, and the package got misrouted, and then it got routed and dudes! On top of Galad's random kind of yarn-ness, this was too much! It was two skeins of summer weight sock yarn (one Sockotta in beach tones and one On-Line, in a sun-washed rainbow) and... and EVERYTHING. There were pretty pretty stitch markers (did you make those, Donna, or one of your beautiful daughters?) and a ladybug tape measure that I have to hide from Ladybug because she's SURE it's hers and that is just too darn adorable for words, and then... then...there was the COUPE DE GRACE! Seriously--Donna's husband, Peter Kevin, made Donna some sock-blockers a few months back and everybody was SOOOO impressed--they were pretty and functional and thoughtful...and DUDES! I GOT A PAIR!!! And now I'm REALLY ticked that the camera isn't working because I would wave them around and dance a jig! Oh...wait... folks...I'm getting a plan! We'll see if it works out! (It did--voila! Pictures!) But there was also a lovely card--which enchanted the children and tastee cakes and sheep themed chocolate!! All in all--it was fun. It was fun and useful when I both needed both, and I can't thank Donna Lee enough!!!

*whew* I'm tired just with all of that--but I've got something funny to tell you and then I'm done.

It's that time of the year when I'm bitching at the kids to just hang in there for just a few more days and begging them to do their work and ordering them to just for the love of crap shut up and listen and dammit, this is my room and they don't get to "WHAT? me when I say "For the love of crap, this is the sixth time, I'm done being nice, SHUT UP OR GET OUT!" And you start wondering if you're a good person anymore, much less a good teacher, and it hurts.

So, in the depths of that moment in time, I was on my way to McDonalds for the kids' chocolate milk and my diet coke (our afternoon ritual) and I'm sitting at a stop light--knitting a sock, like you do, right?

Next to me, this carload of kids is going full out, drunken-ape banana-shit. I look to my left and roll down my window and two of them are my students and they are losing their 1/2 grown nuts, and they're CRACKING UP! "Omigod, Ms. Lane, we were like, is that woman KNITTING, oh wait, that's just like Ms. Lane and then we were like that IS Ms. Lane, and you knit at stoplights just like you said and is that the Cave Troll? And Ladybug? And hey (this to the driver) that's Amy Lane--you know...yeah the one your sister told you about (and the driver said) omigod, I love her books, my sister's just apeshit over her books, omigod Ms. Lane I'll tell her you said hi!" Remember, this was four kids, all talking to me, all talking at once.

And they were happy to see me, and dammit, I was happy to see them, and you know what? I'll be sad to see them go.

So it's been an awesome day--and I'm glad to share.