Sunday, November 21, 2010

Sleeping out to learn about social justice

Tuesday was the Social Justice Sleep-out where my students learned about homelessness while sleeping out on the quad overnight.  I learned that 36 hours is about the maximum that I can go without sleep.

As you can see the students started out quite happy...

The President and Deans came to visit along with one of the night classes.  We had some group conversations about values, integrity and the benefit of a liberal arts education.  And then the rain began ... so we let them come into the "soup kitchen" to have something to eat...

Just as the torrential down pour occurred we kicked them back out into the night to figure out where they were going to sleep and to try to stay dry.  Some settled for under the staircase...

Others went behind the bike rack...

And others wrapped themselves in plastic and slept under the overhang of the building...

When they finally all fell asleep it was about 3am so Karen and I posed for pictures beside the sleeping crew!

In the morning they were awakened by public safety when an angry faculty member called about them sleeping under the stairs near the door of the building.  When the rain stopped at 9am they headed back out to the quad to finish their sleep-out and wrap up discussion.  They went back to their rooms to sleep, I went back to my office to change so I could work the rest of the day. My students in my 9:30am class told me that once you were awake for more than 17 hours your brain acted like it was drunk -- at 36 hours I think there may be some truth to that.

Saturday, November 20, 2010

random things

While Carrie is cleaning up her place and I'm avoiding finishing a task I should get done tonight, I thought I would note a few random things so in theory we can say we have a blog (as opposed to we 'had' a blog).  Sorry no fotos in this entry.

Here are a few things - with no real order or meaning - that have happened since Carrie confessed about the contents of her purse (Foucault would be proud - see The History of Sexuality Vol 1 by him if you want the juicy details on his ideas about confession).

Carrie said she's not going to answer her phone tonight.  Call her, see if she does (wait, I have to hang up first).

For a few months I'd been randomly complaining about an inflamed joint on the top of my right foot.  This was important to me as it was a new place where my arthritis was striking and of course that isn't such a pleasant idea.  Did it stop me at all?  No, not really; I still did construction on my house, had a house work party, taught numerous classes, went up and down my stairs tons of times, helped at a wood party and successfully but sorely completed a 14.7 mile walk (and carried a flag the whole time) with this foot issue.  So I mentioned the inflammation to my rheumatologist a few days ago.  After some x-rays he showed me what the issue was - two stress fractures in my right foot!  We're both happy that it isn't an arthritis thing and that the bones are healing quite nicely but I feel a bit like a major dork - yes, more than usual.  {DANG - I just skimmed our posts - see Sept. 13th}

I finished glazing five windows (= 10 panes of glass) for my porch and am in the process of painting them.  If all goes well they'll be in within the next week or two.  I'm only about 2 months behind the arbitrary schedule I'd set for myself.  At this point I'll be happy when they're done and ecstatic if the panes don't fall out of the frames.

Carrie couldn't think of a word in class the other day in said "well, ah, I can't quite think of the word so let's just say there was a big bruhaha".  Her student replied, "do you mean uproar?".

I went to a conference on trauma and PTSD in DC, complete with some famous goobersmoochers (my friend Gaelyn's word).  David Straithairn sat next to me for about five minutes as I was contemplating leaning into him so I could claim that I touched him, he moved to another place in the room.

I now own five cd's by The National.

Recent visitors to my place:  David & Lucy from Black Mountain NC - Carrie came up to visit as well.  We made jam, went for a long nature walk and had an AWESOME dinner party with my Maine family - Doug, Judy, Gretchen, Ruth, Jen, Dave, Xochil & Josh.  Lauren and Kristi from NYC popped up the next weekend. We took down the garden fences, they dug for potatoes and planted bulbs and then we celebrated by having burgers and beers at the Dugout. 

If any of you need a birthday gift, xmas gift or know of a teacher who wants a calendar for his/her classroom let me know ( - I've got a bunch of fabulously cool VFP peace calendars that run from Aug 2010 (so you can reflect on the recent past) through to Dec 2011.  All the cool kids have them - $15 to buy and free for teachers.

Some of my students found out in an awkward way that if I said I was coming home late from out of town that I might just be saying that so they don't expect evening email responses - I surprised two of them "santa clausing" my front yard (shiny red garland on my mailbox, red bows and shiny pink balls in my trees, little xmas scenes on sticks, white xmas owl on my door) when I arrived home around 6:30 at night.  Nothing like getting busted in the middle of a prank.

I am going back to my task now and am not going to answer my phone.

If you're still out there checking out our blog, we thank you and love you.

xoxo C & K 
WOA (Women Of Action)