Mini-Rants for April Fools

I learned a thing today. There’s a Bulgarian tradition where you gather your neighbours, dig a big hole in the back yard, and then yell at the hole until you get everything out of your system. Then you fill the hole back in.

One of my colleagues is Bulgarian, and we when we’re not talking about work, we talk about other things. Sometimes racia is involved. Today, an invitation to yell at the hole in his backyard, because I am caught in the middle of a scholastic civil war.

I often run a technical programming lab. I’ll put time pressure on students, sometimes they get kind of flakey instructions, I try to give them a taste of what programming as a professional might be. It’s not always glamourous. I give myself the role of senior programmer (read: mentor) as well as boss (final arbiter).

The theory professor in this course, however, is usurping part of my job. Not intentionally, mind you. This person has decided to go off and teach whatever they wanted, with little regard for the actual curriculum. I’ve taught that specific course, I’ll teach it again. It’s not easy material, but it doesn’t warrant teaching “whatever” (that’s the technical term).

The students view me as sympathetic (and rightfully so), so they complain to me. The professor also views me as sympathetic (and generally rightfully so), so they also complain to me.

As for me, I love a good scrap. I mean, I’m not throwing fists anymore, I’ve outgrown that, but there IS a right side, and a wrong side, and I kind of want to wade in there, except it would be the height of foolishness to get involved. It is hard to keep my mouth shut. I may have once clapped my hands over my mouth to stop myself from saying something I’d later regret.

So instead, I yelled at the hole in my Bulgarian buddy’s back yard, after lubricating the pipes with very potent cherry liquor. That hole is full, I tell you what.

Great story. Kudos to the young JohnT for standing up for what is right in this world. I’m picturing the two guys driving away from the school, windows rolled down, smoking cigarettes (you did say 1972) and one of them saying, “Ahh, showbiz. Ain’t it the life.”

MEANWHILE, a musical insanity interlude.

It’s been going on a for a few hours now. There’s a fellow who’s reclining on the sidewalk and he’s not moved for hours. He has found himself two bits of metal and he clangs them together in something approaching a rhythm. He may find a rhythm yet, but it’s definitely not for want of trying.

Sometimes he stops the clanging. He has theories about the universe and he’d love to share them with us, whether we want to listen or not, because he yells them at the tops of his lungs.

These theories include, but are not limited to:


To date, he has not yet cast the spell, so I’m probably alright. If I get cornfielded, his spell may have worked, so be careful.

Man, I could really use a hole to scream into, like, on the regular. That’s great.

I think it’s great that we’re getting this for free, whereas the public will soon be shelling out hundreds for his hardcover memoirs (and the graphic novel versions), and his readings on the stadium/campus/talk show circuits…

I want to join with the others, @JohnT, in wishing you happier days ahead. As I said earlier, you still have Luna and her unconditional love.

Which reminds me of this appropriate old cartoon from the New Yorker. Hope it puts a smile on your face … :slight_smile:

Luna’s 3rd meal for the day was a pork chop. She’s going nowhere.

I kind of like his style.

Hmm. His ideas are intriguing to me, and I wish to subscribe to his newsletter.

Just sick of being sick. I know, it could be worse, it’s just a cold, but it’s a lingering hacking cough and then the tired achiness post vaccine combined to make me one ball of bleh. I’m definitely “good enough mother” this week. The kid’s changed and fed but I just don’t have the stamina to be Fun Mom.

I’m definitely feeling that this week. The Covid fatigue is hitting me hard. I don’t mean that I have Covid and that I am fatigued as a result of illness. I mean the fatigue you get when you are being constantly diligent about a threat that has been going on for so freaking long. I just want to rest.

Unfortunately, my daughter was exposed to a Covid positive person at her daycare. The daycare obviously can’t tell me who it was but it sounds like it was a teacher as opposed to another child. Her daycare has half the classrooms closed and my child is being quarantined for 14 days. Not even a whole month ago, she got a cold and had to isolate because of that. She’s really not understanding why we have to keep her inside and away from other children and people. And, this week, because I have to do my job because we can’t afford for me to get fired, I had to send her to my (vaccinated!) parents’ house so that I could work while she continued to quarantine.

I’m just barely treading water in basically all aspects of my life right now.

Let me tell you folks that it was kind of funny in a way I should be a bit ashamed of for the first few hours.

Once I’ve told you that, let me tell you how he carried on until midnight, getting less coherent and beating his rods in really annoying rhythms.

Then let me tell you how he came back early in the morning, rousing the missus and I out of bed with blood-curdling screams. Was he getting murdered? No, he was using primal magic to drive demons out of some statuary he was slumped against.

Also the rods. Also, “Get out, Chinese demons!” Was he railing against the COVID or the art style of the statuary? I wasn’t prepared to ask him.

So this went on all day and eventually I’d had enough of his half-baked tomfoolery and tried to figure out who to call. The police don’t take calls for disturbances, but it took nearly an hour to get through their dog’s breakfast of a website and navigate their atrocious phone system with baked-in deadends.

He took a break for the night, so I figured he’d be done.

Welllll let me tell you about the blood-curdling screams the next morning! I suppose I could have posted those in the “ever hear an adult scream?” thread, because I thought it was a triple torture-murder. But no, it was the demons again.

I eventually navigated the city’s bureaucracy and found a team (and they’re trained medical professionals) who take care of homeless people in distress. “Maybe he needs a place to stay,” they told me, and after a brief but very amicable phonecall, the team was directed, my “philosopher/shaman” was rescued, and peace was restored.

But that took two days longer than it should. My performance was terrible, but the bureaucracy surrounding it was worse.

Dear Pennsylvania State Police: someone else’s domestic dispute is not my problem. There is no reason for everyone’s smart phone to go off repeatedly like we are under a threat of a fucking nuclear attack just because Daddy is mad at Mommy and swooped up their little semen demon from her.

Creepy bearded guy with thick glasses and mullet grabs little Emily and throws her in in a windowless van? Yes, please alert me IMMEDIATELY. Elmer and Heidi are fighting at the trailer park and using their 9 children as volley balls against each other? Stop interrupting my favorite podcast.

They don’t. he only listens to alex jones

Crisis actors?

So my last checkup the doc said I had high uric acid, so put me on allopurinol although everything felt fine. So no wine and minimal red meat for the last week, and I then started the alopurinol, but had two long days helping out at the kids school for various projects and didn’t drink nearly enough water. Now my foot is like a ballon and really really hurts a metric fuckton. Like a lot.
I am sure it will all work out and is all my fault but fuck me, my foot does smart.
Anyway doc has pulled that med and switched me to colvrys with I do hope helps or my bloodstream is going to be 50% advil liquigels.

My DH suggested maybe they think Barack is a woman?

At least some smartphones allow you to turn off the alert feature. But then you’d miss warnings about extraterrestrials with Covid-19 variants stampeding through Walmart.

I had a gout attack and I wouldn’t wish it on my worse enemy. I feel for you!

The puppy cam I’ve been watching has been switching between being offline and showing an empty playroom. The newest batch of kittens on the kitten rescue cam are being unusually aggressive, and are a bit stressful to watch. I’ve found a bird feeder cam that is nice – and actually has a decent microphone, as a bonus – but something about the page keeps making my browser slow to a crawl.