Jennifer D. Wade Journal

Welcome to my online diary, enjoy your stay!

Blog posts August 2008

Jumping Through Hoops

This coming Tuesday, I go back to school.  I have enrolled at the local community college as a part-time student.  I will take one class, two days a week.  And, I will put in some hours as a tutor in the Learning Laboratory, where I hope to help students who need help with English and Writing.  This may not sound like much, but I guess it's a lot more important than I thought because, man, did I have to go through a lot to get there!

I wrote about it several times in the past, namely HERE, HERE, and HERE.  But, to recap:  Back in the spring, the college sent out a flyer advertising its summer and fall schedules.  I cut out the application, filled it out (which, I am almost positive, included mentioning the fact that I already have a four-year degree), and sent it in.  Next thing you know, I'm scheduled for a college placement test.  Whatever.  So, I go to campus to take the test, which included a typing test, a writing sample, an assessment of my reading comprehension, and some algebra and other math for which I have no use.  Later, during a brief meeting with my advisor, she asked why they had me take the test.  Bygones, I said, and she signed me up for the one course I want to take.

Earlier this week, I went back to campus to buy the book I'll need and to get my student ID.  I also wanted to touch base with the woman who runs the Learning Lab.  See, a few weeks ago, I sent her an email (with a resume attached) expressing my interest in working as an English/Writing tutor.  I never heard back.  So, since I was on campus, I stopped in at the lab.

The woman told me that she never saw the email.  But, she kindly explained that if I wanted to be a tutor, I had to fill out the application, write a short statement explaining why I wanted to tutor, and provide two letters of reference from faculty or staff at the community college.  I told her that, considering I don't actually know any of the faculty or staff, I wasn't sure how I would get those letters.  Professional references, however, no problem.  I also said that I would re-send the initial email.

Well, when I got home from work that night, wouldn't you know it, I had an email from the woman at the Learning Lab.  She had managed to find my initial email.  She said that what I wrote in that email would suffice as the explanatory statement and that SHE would write one of the required letters of reference!  Now that I saw how this was going to go, I emailed my advisor - who I had met for all of 15 minutes - and asked her to write the other letter.

After all that, I'm enrolled and I'm fairly sure that I have a part-time job.  But, it really shouldn't have been that hard.  Just ask Amy and Emily.       

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For Pete's Sake!

The following is an approximate recollection of a phone call I received at work this evening.

Me:  Hello.  (name of station here)
Caller:  I'm calling from (name of town here).  I'm not getting you on my TV.
Me:  Is it just our station?  Or is it all of them?
Caller:  It's all of them.
Me:  Sounds like a problem with your cable company.  You'll have to call them.
Caller:  I did, but they're not answering.  That's why I'm calling you, so that you can call them and get something done.
Me:  Sorry.  I can't do that.  You'll have to keep calling them.
Caller:  OK.  But I just want you to know that I'm not going to donate to your causes anymore.  


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Two Down, Eight to Go

At what point does this guy either find another job or flat out retire???

Wash. rodeo coordinator loses 2nd finger on job
Eds: APNewsNow.
      WATERVILLE, Wash. (AP) - Some people may lose sleep on the job
or even lose the stapler off their desk. Dane Keane loses fingers.
      The 52-year-old Washington man was helping to secure a bull in a
bucking chute Saturday evening when his finger got caught between a
rope and a metal fence pole. His left index finger ended up being
amputated at the second joint.
      But it wasn't his first time losing a finger on the job. In
2000, Keane lost the end of his right ring finger and was flipped
into the air by a bull.
      Keane says he loves the rodeo but says it's "a little on the
bad luck side" for him.
      (Copyright 2008 by The Associated Press.  All Rights Reserved.)
AP-NY-08-25-08 2130ED

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The following is a close approximation of a phone call I received from a viewer Friday evening:

Me:  Hello, (name of station here).
Caller (in a rather loud voice):  You know how you show those commercials for the people running for office?
Me:  Uh huh.
Caller:  Well, you never show what party they belong to.  How am I supposed to decide who to vote for?
Me (trying hard not to sound exasperated but most likely failing):  Umm, maybe you should do some research.

After that, there was nothing left to say.  At least, nothing that I could say over the phone and still keep my job.

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Top of the Pops

Now I know why I love this song.  According to CASH BOX, it was #1 on the day I was born.  The classics never get old, do they? 

Straight from the summer of '66, Here's a heapin' helpin' of the Lovin' Spoonful.

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An Observation

I went for a little walk/run this morning along the levee.  I started out heading toward the Kingston Rec Center, but the stench coming from the river was too noticeable, so I turned around and went the other way, toward KIRBY PARK.

About a mile or so later, as I approached the point where I would turn around (near the Edwardsville line, by the tennis courts and the baseball field), I noticed something new.  It was a post with a flat, angled panel on top that looked like a solar cell or something.  There was lettering down the side of the post and, my eyesight not being what it used to be, I thought it said something about energy. 

But, as I got closer, I realized that the letters spelled out "emergency" and that the post was placed in an area where there have been reports of sexual assaults in the past.  Good idea, I thought.

Then, I noticed the other sign on the post:  Out of Order. 

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I Need a Drink!

The work week is finally over!  Thank God!  We had breaking news just about every night, several other big stories in the mix, and the start of the Little League World Series thrown in for good measure.  After all that, I need a drink.  Or two.  Or more.  George knows what I mean.

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Phillies Redux

We want another one just like the other one - NOT!

Last night's game vs. the Dodgers was eerily similar to the one on TUESDAY night:  Chad Durbin blew the save in the 8th, then the Dodgers quickly put the Phillies out of their misery in the 9th.  The only differences were that, this time, the Phils actually lost a bigger lead, left more men on base and struck out even more times!  I think the totals were 8 men LOB on Tuesday, 11 LOB on Webesday.  11 K's on Tuesday, 12 on Wednesday (and a good number of them were caught looking).  The Phillies, being professional ballplayers, should know that they only get 27 outs in a game.  Striking out almost 50% of the time is not good!

Please, Phillies.  If you guys want to win, start playing like it.  If you don't, tell me now so I'll know not to bother for the rest of the season.    

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Get It Together

The Phillies are in first place in the NL East.  Yeah!  But, how they got there is a mystery and how much longer they'll stay there is in serious doubt right now.

This team cannot get out of its own way.  Clutch hits have been few and far between.  The pitchers keep walking batters.  And, the batters who don't get walks, get hit by pitches.  Kyle Kendrick hit a batter Monday night.  Then last night, Chad Durbin (who's been pretty good overall) walked one batter, then hit Manny Ramizez on his way to blowing the save.  In the 9th, JC Romero hit the first batter he faced with the first pitch he threw.

Come on!  Get it together.  It can't be that hard!

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Back to Work

You knew I had to do it eventually ...

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I Wish I Had a Porch

It rained this afternoon.  Twice.  There was thunder and big raindrops poured down, and the sky turned that deep, dark shade of cobalt blue.  If my house had a porch of any decent size, I would have gone out to sit on it.  I would have taken a book to read but would have passed the time watching the rain and looking at the sky.  But, my house doesn't have a porch of any decent size.  So, I stayed in.

I like my house.  I really do.  I bought it after a six-week search, and it was, by far, the best house I looked at.  It had fewer problems than the others I'd seen.  And, it has everything I could want in a house - except a porch.  And, a built-in sauna.  It doesn't have that, either.  But, never mind.  The porch is the important thing.  All this house has is a little tiny front porch that barely has room for a chair.  A metal awning provides some cover but, if it's raining with any force or directionality, you're going to get wet.

One of the houses I looked at had a great porch.  As I recall, it was one of those porches that wrapped a good part of the way around the house.  It was covered with that bright green outdoor carpeting and would have been perfect for having friends over to sit outside and chat while drinking iced tea.  Yes, of course that's what we would be drinking.  Iced tea.  For sure.  Anyway, the porch was absolutely the best feature of the house.  The worst feature was the dead bird I found lying on the stairs to the attic.  Or, maybe it was the narrow channel on the basement's concrete floor, a channel formed by years of water flowing where it shouldn't have been flowing.  Or, maybe it was the out-dated wiring that would have needed replacing through the entire place.

Yes, that house needed a lot of work.  But, I seriously considered buying it just for the porch.

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Musical Interlude

I woke up this mornng and thought about this song.  I don't know why.  It wasn't particularly breezy ...

Another one, not quite as old, but still good.  Thanks to my favorite college radio station for the reminder ...

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Something's Afoot!

The mystery continues ....

Human foot in shoe washes up in Wash.

Officials examine whether find is linked to others found on Canadian coast
The Associated Press
updated 9:55 a.m. ET, Tues., Aug. 5, 2008

PORT ANGELES, Wash. - An athletic shoe containing a human foot was found on a Washington state beach, and authorities are investigating whether it may be linked to a series of human feet found in shoes along the coast of British Columbia.

Undersheriff Ron Peregrin said Monday that the King County medical examiner determined the foot was human and detached from its body naturally after floating in the water.

Peregrin said the foot will be sent for a forensic investigation, including DNA testing to see if it matches feet found washed ashore in British Columbia. Results are expected to take six to eight weeks.

Authorities said a woman told the Clallam County sheriff's office on Saturday that she found the black, high-top shoe along the beach on the Strait of Juan de Fuca, about 30 miles west of Port Angeles.

Animal paw
Five athletic shoes containing human feet have been found along the Strait of Georgia between Vancouver Island and the British Columbia mainland since August 2007. The Strait of Juan de Fuca separates the Canadian island and Washington's Olympic Peninsula.

A sixth foot found in June in British Columbia was determined to be an animal paw that had been shoved inside a shoe as a hoax.

"We're a little apprehensive since the last one was a hoax," said Detective Sgt. Lyman Moores.

DNA testing linked one of the Canadian feet to a depressed man who went missing a year ago. Investigators have also concluded that two of the five feet belonged to one man and that one foot was from a woman.

British Columbia coroner Jeff Dolan has said there was no evidence the feet were severed. Experts say that when a human body is submerged in the ocean, the arms, legs, hands, feet and head usually come off the body.


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Musikfest Blues

Just back from an afternoon at MUSIKFEST.  The temp was in the low 80's, but there was a nice breeze and the clouds provided occasional cover.  There seemed to be a lot of people there.  Some of them had kids in strollers.  I saw one guy actually carrying a baby that looked like it was only a few weeks old!  WTF!  And, there were lots of people on bicycles.  I'm not sure what that was all about, either.  Anyway, I will have to go back during the week when, hopefully, it will be less crowded.  I'll look at the schedule and formulate a plan!  Besides, I have $4.00 in Musikfest food and beverage tickets left over.

I spent my time today just checking things out.  My first stop (after getting tickets and beer, of course) was Festplatz.  I got there just in time to see the Chicken Lady lead the Chicken Dance.  Then, it was off to check out the crafts at Handwerkplatz.  Then, up to Liederplatz, where a folk group was playing.  I listened to them briefly, then started working my way back down Main Street.  That's where I ran across BEAUCOUP BLUE, a father-son blues band out of Philly. They had a drummer and a string bass player with them, and a special guest joined in on harmonica for a few songs.  Really good!  After the show, I asked one of the guys if they ever get up to the Scranton area.  No, he said, but they do play a lot in upstate NY.  I guess they also play in the W-B area (which, I guess, is different from the Scranton area) once in a while because I noticed on their website that they recently played the BRIGGS FARM BLUES FESTIVAL in Luzerne County (**upon further review, they don't seem to have been part of the lineup this year, but I gather that they played there at some point in the past**).  Maybe they'll be there again next year!

Anyway, here's a little taste of Beaucoup Blue.

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Alarm Clock

It's Day One of my regulary-scheduled vacation and, you could say, it began with a bang.  The sound of thunder rolled me out of bed around 8:30 this morning.  Of course, it was raining, too.  It's dry and sunny now although, according to FutureRadar, it should be pissing down rain at this very minute.  I think I'll take advantage of this weather anomaly to mow the lawn.

In the meantime, I really do love to feel the rain in the summertime ...

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Jeez!  That last post was kind of a downer, wasn't it?  Three songs and not a happy tune in the bunch!

Well, no worries.  MUSIKFEST starts today, and if some beer and the Chicken Dance can't cheer you up, nothing can!

Don't believe me?  Watch this!

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