Thursday, March 31, 2011

Video Thursday

 Mark is always buying Chandler new toys. 
The only thing is that Mark doesn't want him
to actually play with the new toys because within days,
if not hours, Chandler destroys them. I on the other hand
figure that if it makes my dog happy to rip the guts out
of his new toy, then let him have at it.
This is a little video of me giving Chandler the new
toy Mark bought him, and Mark trying to retrieve it.
Enjoy.

Wednesday, March 30, 2011

Hurry Up, I Gotta Go!

When we first got Sasha, I thought it was hilarious when Mark would come out of his bathroom shrieking,
"There's dog piss and shit in my shower!"
I'd make jokes, and mock him for being so sensitive about it.
"You have to clean it up, I'll vomit.", he'd tell me.
"It's just a little piddle, and a tiny turd, you big baby."
Well, it's not so funny now as I stand in the middle of a puddle of pee, in front of the mirror. It seems that Sasha has found my bathroom, and she finds it easier to do her thing in there than trudging all the way back to the bedroom shower.

Sasha was given to us with a sob story about her owner getting sick, and having to move our of her house, into a studio apartment. I now have doubts about that story, and I think I know the real reason Sasha was orphaned. She pees in the house. The previous owner had her for only a year, and then 'had to give her up'. Probably because she got tired of stepping in dog piss.

I've always heard you can't teach an old dog new tricks, but I really have to teach her this one. Only pee outside. No pooping, and no peeing in the house. It's not like I never take her out. I take her out at regular times, three times a day, and let her out the back door whenever she gets that far away look in her eyes. Today it was the rain. She stepped out front and as soon as the first drop of moisture fell out of the sky onto her face, she put on the brakes. I tried dragging her, coaxing her, and carrying her to the grass, but she refused to do anything outside. She just stood there, all fours firmly planted, giving me that screw you look she's so good at.

I will never give her up. I couldn't do that to such a sweet little dog, but I need advice on how to house train her. The biggest problem with all this is that I have never, ever, seen her pee in the house. I can't seem to catch her doing it. Anyway, like I said, she has a home forever here, pee or no pee. After all, my mom kept me, and I pissed my pants for way too many years.

Tuesday, March 29, 2011

On The Left!

Earlier this month I hurt my knee painting the living room, and I've found that my dog Chandler, does not give a damn. In fact he likes it. He seems to have figured out that daddy isn't anchored very well anymore, and he's taken to chasing down just about anything that moves when we go walkies. I used to be able to dig in and give his leash a little yank when he would see a squirrel or a lizard darting up a tree. Now he knows that all he has to do is run for it, and I come crashing along after him, unable to lock my knees and pull him back.

The worst is when he sees a bicycle. I try to control Chandler by bending over him, repeating the words "No, no, no" and "Good dog", as the bicyclist rides by. Usually, if I have enough advance warning, that works just fine, and he just gives out a little snarl. What I can't control are the stupid assholes who come zipping out of nowhere, with their spandex shorts, alien shaped helmets, and healthier than thou attitudes. Usually they are going a good thirty miles per hour, and ride those very expensive bikes that make no sound other than the whoosh of air as they go by. In less than a nano-second Chandler is tearing after them. All I have time to do is bend my injured knee, and hope I don't get too much road rash when I hit the pavement.

I'm going back to the doctor tomorrow. The pills he gave me aren't working. I just hope I can get this knee problem taken care of soon, because I really don't want to end up a cripple. I talked to my mom on Sunday and she was telling me about her new Hoveround scooter. It sounds like fun, but I don't think that would be of much help for me. Chandler would just turn around and chase me. He hates those things too.

Monday, March 28, 2011

Tea for Two... and a Lot More.

I was moving stuff around, cleaning up the house for the visit of my niece and her new husband, when I came across a book under one of the tables in the living room.
'Divorce for Dummies', was the title.
Okay, Mark and I are two gay men living in a relationship, in a state that does not allow same sex marriage. Mark has never been married to a woman and neither have I. There is no plausible rationale that I can think of for Mark to go out and purchase that book. I'm pretty sure he didn't get it as a gift for my niece. So why in the hell did he get it? My guess is that it was on sale.

His big deal lately has been 'two for ones' at the grocery store. Mark just can't resist, so now our tiny kitchen is overflowing with two of everything. The cabinets are jammed full. Cans, bottles, and jars of various things that we possibly will need in the distant future, have migrated out onto the counters, and the floor. I suppose I could make more room, and throw out the food dryer that Mark bought. It's been sitting unused, taking up space in the kitchen for the last ten years. Or, I could sell it in that 'yard sale' that Mark has been talking about for the same ten years. In fact Saturday, Mark was supposed to do a yard sale with Richard, the guy down the street. This would sound like a good idea except that Mark has been telling Richard he would do that for over a year. Every few months Richard does his yard sale, and each time Saturday morning rolls around, and Mark 'oversleeps'.

Saturday I got up and walked the dogs in the early morning, and I got a good look at all the crap Richard had put out for his sale. None of it was Mark's. I've decided that our very own yard sale will be my single goal for the month of April. On April sixteenth I will drag as much shit as I can out to the front of the house. I will then sit there and sell it all. I figure I can make a few hundred dollars that day, and if Mark oversleeps again I won't even have to split it. In fact I just might spike his vodka with Ambien the night before.

Friday, March 25, 2011

Photo Friday

Porn House

This house, the one with the truck in the carport, is rumored
to be a place where porn videos are made, and live, on-line porn shows are done.
I always see very attractive people coming and going from there.
Needless to say I am shocked, and disgusted. Which is why I'm taking photos, and 
walking the dogs past it constantly, hoping one of the stars will walk out and say hello.

Wednesday, March 23, 2011

Lloyd of the Dance

I remember sitting in the kitchen of our old house on Ravinia Drive, the little Bakelite radio belting out the music of my mom's generation. I was not the smartest little kid back then, I actually thought there were tiny, little people inside that thing making the music. Every once in a while those little guys would play something my mom would particularly like, and that would trigger her dance impulse. Suddenly mom would be tap dancing around the kitchen, doing her best impression of Ginger Rogers. She was pretty damn good, or at least she looked good to a five year old kid. Unfortunately, I did not inherit that dancing gene. I have never been able to dance. Don't get me wrong, I went out on the dance floor quite often back when I was much younger. It's just that I had to be drunk or high, and calling it dancing was a stretch. More like uncoordinated gyrations, and rhythmic rocking in place.

Last night Mark was watching that god-awful show, Dancing With the Stars. When I walked into the room somebody named Wendy Williams, who has legs like tree stumps, was shuffling around the stage.
"So Mark who are these people?"
He proceeded to rattle off a list of names that I had never heard of before except for that fat girl from Cheers, and Ralph Macchio.
"I thought this was called Dancing With the Stars."

Obviously the threshold for stardom on this television show is quite low. In fact I think that if I managed to get my name in the news somehow, or got a part as an extra in some production here in Florida, I'd qualify as a star. Maybe if I became a You Tube star....
Hmmm, Alicia shuffling around on DWTS, she'd be at least as good as that Wendy Williams.

Tuesday, March 22, 2011

Crazy Old Bastard

I'm standing at the side of the road trying to coax a turd out of Sasha, when a large SUV comes speeding towards us. Now I used to scream at such people to slow down, but I was getting the reputation of being that crabby old guy, so now I just make the international hand gesture to slow down. By that I don't mean the middle finger, I save that for when they scream out the car window at me. I mean my hand held out flat, palm down, moving in a downward motion signaling for them to slow down. So I gave this guy in the SUV the signal, and he smiled and waved back at me as he sped by. He thought I was being a nice neighbor and waving hello.

I've bugged the city for years about the speeding through here. I've sent emails, talked to the city officials in person, and brought the subject up at neighborhood meetings, still the assholes come barreling down the road. If you are in the car it seems that five miles over the limit is reasonable, but if you are the guy wrestling with a dog who's spotted a squirrel, it can be scary. It would be different if we had sidewalks like in a civilized place, but we don't. We have to share the road with cars. It's like trying to walk your dog down the Indianapolis Speedway, while cars are qualifying for a race.

I've suggested stop signs at every corner.
"No good, people will just drive through without stopping." was the answer.
Speed bumps? "Too costly."
A cop with a radar gun? See previous answer.

So I think I might just return to the more confrontational method. Screaming at the morons to slow down. Florida just passed an open carry law, meaning you can strap on a gun like in the old wild west. I think a yelling, arm waving, crazy old bastard, walking down the street with a gun, just might do it.

Monday, March 21, 2011

Golden Showers

When I only had Chandler around the house life was easy. He was just one dog who was fed twice a day, walked three times a day, and he only barked when absolutely necessary. On that day Sasha walked into our life (because I left the back door open), I figured "What's another dog? I'll just do a little more, and it'll be fine." So I agreed to take her from my tenants, who were fostering her.

First of all there is the feeding. It didn't take me long to figure out that I needed to feed them in separate rooms secured by a strong latch, or Sasha would soon wither away. Chandler has a way of intimidating other animals into giving up their food. Then there was the question how much do I feed Sasha. I have never had a small dog before. My way of feeding Chandler was to throw a scoop of dog food into his bowl and let him have at it. Sasha, I found out, needed to be coaxed into eating actual dog food, so I started to mix in a little of whatever Mark had left on his dinner plate. This led to the realization that once Sasha started eating, she would not stop until she blew up like an over inflated football. I'm still working on how much to feed her. I hope I get it right soon, because it is a little embarrassing when people point out the rolls of fat on her back.

As for walking the two dogs, at first I tried walking them together. Sasha, it turned out was a barker and constantly was challenging other dogs she came upon. This in turn riled up Chandler, who would lunge at the offending dogs, dislocating my arm, and scaring the crap out of everyone else. So I now walk each dog separately, three times a day, one half a mile around the long block. That's six walks totaling three miles. It can be inconvenient, but it's worth it to save my arm, and assure peace among the neighborhood dogs. Besides, for some reason when I walked them together, Sasha would invariably end up standing under Chandler as he lifted his leg. Now I almost always get her home safe and dry.

Wednesday, March 16, 2011

It Seemed Like a Good Idea

Mark is relentless. No sooner had I finished putting up the ceiling fan, when he had another job for me to do. The mirror, he wanted me to take down the gigantic mirror on the living room wall. Now I have always disliked that mirror, but it was such a looming expanse of glass I never did try to remove it. Mark however, had the solution. He told me a friend of his had taken down such a mirror by covering the whole thing in tape, and then breaking it with a hammer. The whole thing would then roll gently down the wall into a nice bundle on the floor. That sounded plausible to me.

So yesterday I put tape all over the mirror, up and down, left to right. I then called my friend Russell over to stand by just in case I needed somebody to call 911 to come and stop the blood spurting from my leg. Armed with gloves, goggles, and a large rubber mallet, I took the first tentative swing at the mirror. Clang! Nothing happened, I was being too timid. "Here, let me do that.", Russell barked as he grabbed the mallet. Bang, bang, bang, and the mirror cracked. It then started slowly rolling down the wall. Bang, bang, bang, as Russell continued to smash the mirror we realized it was coming down faster, but not in a nice bundle.

As Russell and I jumped out of the way, the mirror fell forward smashing to the floor, tiny bits of glass flying out to all corners of the room. As dramatic as that was, most of the glass did stick to the tape, and it seemed that all we'd have to do is roll the mess up and carry it outside. Funny thing though, shattered glass is very sharp and heavy. It was way too heavy to pick up in one piece, and even with gloves I was worried about shards of glass slicing off body parts.

It took us thirty minutes working with two shovels, a large iron bar for leverage, and a tarpaulin to get that pile of glass out of the house, but we finally did it. Smashing the mirror like that really did sound like a good idea when it was presented to me, but it turns out that we had done it the hard way. If I had just taken out the four screws holding the mirror on the wall, had Russell taken one side, while I took the other, in one minute we could have carried it out in one piece. Now about that seven years of bad luck.

Tuesday, March 15, 2011

Son of Sam

Sam is the neighborhood handyman, and is constantly informing me of the various projects he has been hired to do around town. So it was an obvious choice on my part to hire him to put up our new living room ceiling fan. I know it isn't so hard to do, but I was beat from the last few weeks of renovating and redecorating. I figured I'd let some body else do it. It turns out a monkey could have done a better job than Sam.

The first obstacle was removing the old fan. It was installed in some kind of fashion where the pipe it hung on disappeared into a hole in the ceiling. From the other room I heard the whine of a tool. Stepping into the living room to see what was happening, I was greeted by a shower of sparks cascading down on our living room furniture.
"No problem Alan, I'm just cutting this thing out of here."

When I checked in a little while later, Sam had removed the old fan and was busy preparing the mounting hardware for the new one. I was amazed. Sam had laid a small piece of wood inside the hole in the ceiling, and was shooting screw after screw up through the plaster, trying to secure a solid place to hang the fan. The only problem was there were no rafters nearby, only plasterboard. He was shooting screws into nothing, into the air above the ceiling.

The thought went through my head that maybe he has some kind of grand plan that I just don't understand. He said he knew what he was doing, and I decided to let him continue. When I returned to check on his progress a little later I found that the fan was now mounted, and wired up. It looked awful, it wobbled when you touched it, and when I turned on the electricity nothing happened. The fan didn't turn, the light didn't light. I just wanted it to end.
"How about we call it a day, and get some rest. Come back tomorrow with a fresh perspective, and we'll get this thing done." Sam had been working on it for six solid hours by then, and I wanted him out of there.

Early the next morning I finished the job myself. I pulled the fan back down, I opened the ceiling, screwed a two by four between two rafters, and attached an electrical box to that. I then securely hung the fan from that box, and wired it correctly this time. I then closed up the hole I made in the ceiling, and finished putting the whole thing together. To Mark's amazement the thing worked. I was not so amazed. I always knew that I could do the job. I just didn't want to.

Monday, March 14, 2011

Right Now Mark is Watching QVC

I remember when I was a little kid, my dad fixing our little round screen television by giving it a solid whack. First on the top, and if that didn't do the trick he'd smack the thing on the side. Most often the picture would flash back on, albeit with some static and distortion. Dad didn't really give a shit if that thing worked or not until football season. Then if it even blinked once at him he'd call Mr. Zack, the television repair man. Mr. Zack spent many an evening with his head deep inside the guts of our TV while my sisters, brothers, and I sat on the sofa transfixed by the sight of his ass crack peeking out of his pants. The worst was when he'd pull his head out from behind the television, and announce, "I'll have to take it back to the shop". Nothing was sadder than that empty glass screen staring back at you, knowing that the insides of that TV wouldn't be back for days.

Saturday afternoon, after fulfilling most of Mark's lengthy list of chore requests, I sat down to watch some television. All comfy in my recliner with a Dr. Pepper, and a bag of Pretzel Goldfish within a short reach, and Sasha wedged between me and the arm of the chair, I flipped on the television. With a well trained thumb, I checked the program guide. Click..., click, click, click..., nothing was happening, no program guide. Maybe something was wrong with the remote, I slapped it against my other hand. Nothing. The satellite receiver seemed to be frozen, and the television was stuck on CNN. I figured I'd just reboot the receiver/DVR, and everything would reset.

It usually takes about five minutes for my receiver/DVR to come back on after it's powered down. This reboot seemed to be taking an extraordinary amount of time. Finally after fifteen minutes it stopped. On the screen was the message 'your receiver has experienced a fatal error', followed by a phone number to call and another message to tell customer support that I had 'error 14-106'.

It took a while for it to sink in, but I eventually realized that I would have no television for the entire weekend, and probably not until Tuesday or Wednesday. No Two and a Half Men, no How I Met Your Mother, no Top Gear (BBC version only), no House Hunters International, no Turner Classic Movies, I was screwed. Then the real horror set in, I had lost all my saved shows. I literally had a years worth of shows, and movies that I had saved for those horrible Saturday evenings when nothing but crap is on.

So now I have moved into the bedroom with Mark, but Mark insists that even though I pay for the satellite service, his television is his. If any of my shows interfere with the Real Housewives, Top Chef, Ru Paul's Drag Race, or any other thing on Bravo, I can't watch them. I'm so goddamned spoiled. That old round screen television that my dad used to slap around could only get five channels, and they went off the air for eight or nine hours every day. We seemed to do just fine with that. Goddamn it.

Friday, March 11, 2011

Photo Friday




It has been suggested that these be photoshopped.
No sooner said than done.
Thanks to my nephew, Steven.

 

Wednesday, March 9, 2011

The Carrot Diet

Forty years ago, on the hippie commune, we were vegetarians. Not vegans, I had a very nice leather jacket, but vegetarians. Of course as the money would become scarce, certain animals would find their way into our diet. Fish from the nearby Wapsipinicon River would end up on the table, and once we even ate a pheasant grabbed out of midair by one of the dogs. Myself, I often enjoyed a delicious Big Mac when I was off to the big city of Davenport, even while extolling the virtues of a veggie diet back at the commune. Besides tofu, grits, and home grown vegetables, baked goods were always a big part of our meals. We made them with whole grains, honey, and sometimes we would throw in a little extra herbal ingredient. We even made vegetarian deserts. One of my favorites was carrot cake, which was filled with good things like buckwheat, honey, and shredded carrots.

To this day I associate carrot cake with healthy eating. What could be so bad? It has carrots in it, and as I remember, the way we made it, it was full of goodness. That's why yesterday, when Mark brought home a little package from the supermarket with the words 'Carrot Cake' emblazoned on it, I figured the huge slice I plunged into my pie-hole was like eating a salad. A delicious way to get your vitamins, and fiber. As I sat there, smug in my knowledge that I had chosen the correct snack over the horribly fattening ice cream in the freezer, I started reading the box.

It's no wonder I can't seem to lose any weight. I absolutely believe Mark sabotages every attempt I make at losing my fat ass. It turns out that I could have eaten half the carton of ice cream, and still not had as much fat, calories, and cholesterol, as was in that slice of carrot cake I shoved in my face. Goddamned carrots. I knew they were no good for you.

Tuesday, March 8, 2011

The Enforcer, and Early Warning

When we were kids you could leave your doors unlocked, leave your windows wide open, and know that when you came back home everything would be just as you left it. That's not so easy to do any more. Here in our neighborhood somebody has been breaking into cars, and a couple of my neighbors have had their homes broken into. Even though they had alarms, the burglars still got in. Yet here at our house, most of the time the back door is unlocked, windows are left open, and on some occasions even the front door is an open invitation to walk right in. Usually it's because Mark is lax with security, but sometimes I knowingly leave windows open when I go out. It's cheaper than running the air-conditioning. How do I have the temerity to do this? Sasha, and Chandler.

Sasha has a nickname. It's 'Early Warning'. Her ears can pick up the click of the front gate before the latch has cleared the stop. That's when the high pitched yelping begins, warning any intruder that he has been detected. If the burglar still tries to come, Sasha's yaps will have awakened Chandler, 'The Enforcer'. When he hears the early warning, he will start with his deep, throaty barking. Both dogs together are a formidable deterrent to anyone looking to break into this house. They are scary, I know. I've had the piss scared out of me on more than one occasion as they both burst into their repertoire, barking madly at a tenant on his way to the laundry room. Of course the fact that one of the tenants, Russell, teases them every time they start barking at him doesn't help. In fact last night Russell mooned them through my lovely new living room window. It took five minutes for me to calm Sasha down, and a whole bottle of artificial tears to wash out my eyes.

Monday, March 7, 2011

Nail Biter

Floating lazily through the neighborhood on the evening breeze, the vulgar, and filthy curses signaled that something had gone horribly wrong at Alan and Mark's house again. The disturbance this time involved our re-decorating of the living/dining room, and was the direct result of my attempt to put wainscoting on the dining room wall. I was trying to nail the bottom trim rail to the wall. The first nail went in almost all the way before it hit something so solid that the head bent over. No problem, I can beat it into the wood, and later slap some spackle over it. The second nail started bending halfway in. As I banged away at it, trying to knock it back straight again, I slammed the hammer down on my thumb. That was when I let loose, treating everyone within earshot to the longest string of shits, fucks, and motherfucks on record.

I don't know why I have resisted getting a nail gun all these years. Mark has suggested I buy one on numerous occasions as we traipsed through Home Depot.
"Just get a nail gun. It'll really be a big help."
"There's no room for any more crap in the house. I'd have to get a air compressor too. They're too expensive. Blah, blah, blah.", the list of excuses was long. I don't know why I resisted it so much. I guess I wanted to cling to my old fashioned claw hammer because I thought the sight of a guy with a hammer strapped to his belt was manly, or maybe I enjoy the release of beating the shit out of something. Whatever it is, I just couldn't bring myself to buy one. That is until I bent that last nail, and mashed my thumb. Now, after a quick trip to Home Depot, I have a nifty setup. A lovely little nail gun with an air compressor.

Wasting no time, I loaded the gun and started slapping up that wainscoting. Bang, bang, bang, bang. I got so carried away Mark had to stop me, "Enough! That's enough nailing already."
"Are you sure? I don't want it to come off the wall."
There is no way that wainscoting is coming off, nor is the crown molding that I put up in a matter of minutes. In fact I am now looking for projects that will require lots of nailing, like maybe matching dog houses for Chandler and Sasha. Maybe even a cute new poopy litter box for the cat. Who would have thought shooting nails into things would be so addicting? It really helps me understand the motivation of all those gun nuts out there. In fact I might even want to upgrade to a bigger gauge nail gun in the future. Maybe even an automatic one that can shoot the nails from across the room.

Friday, March 4, 2011

Photo Friday

You Betcha'
 Alicia got herself a gun. It only shoots nails, but she's like Annie Oakley with it.
.

Wednesday, March 2, 2011

White Noise

Mark tends to have a somewhat confused sense of what it takes to do things around here. In his delusional mind, painting the living room is a one day affair. Besides painting, we will be doing wainscoting around the dining area, crown molding throughout the entire space, a new ceiling fan, and a new dining room light fixture. Mark honestly thought this would all be done by bedtime Tuesday.

The sheer scope of the job has been something I've feared for a long time. I would sit there in my big fluffy chair, and see the gigantic entertainment center Mark had bought, the china cabinet stuffed full of various crapola, and the bookcases jammed with hundreds of pounds of books, and think, 'I have to move that shit if I paint'. Mark is of no help, he can barely move his own self, much less a piece of furniture. I did ask him to remove as much crap as possible from the various tables, cabinets, and bookcases before I started. He removed a couple of vases from on top of the china cabinet and called it a day.

Anyway, I have started the job with the painting of the ceiling. Damn I hate painting ceilings. Besides the fact that your arm turns into mush halfway through it, and paint spatters in your face, I have a problem seeing where I have painted already and where I haven't. It's all white! I've tried to keep tabs on where I left off, but when I get off the ladder to move it, I look back up and I'm lost. I just know that when I'm all done, I'll be sitting there in my chair, staring at that ceiling, and counting the missed spots. I have the cure for that though, lower wattage light bulbs.

Tuesday, March 1, 2011

Cheese Head

I've been watching the shenanigans of the Wisconsin governor over the last few weeks, and I don't understand why he and quite a few other people have targeted teachers as the enemy in this economy. All they are doing is trying to teach your kids, while at the big banks, and in Washington D.C., the guys who are truly responsible for our troubles are walking around free with spectacular amounts of cash in the bank. I don't know how it is in a classroom today, but I don't think it's a very easy job. I do know that teachers had a rather unsavory job at times when I was going to school.

1965, and in the freshman math class of Mrs. Foster are four uncaring, unruly, and mouthy little bastards who made her life miserable. The quartet consisted of three gay boys, and their overweight, big haired, female friend named Cathy. My most vivid memory of Cathy, besides the fat and the big hair, was the aroma of chewing gum and cigarettes that always surrounded her.

Boy number one was a swishy Puerto Rican kid named Pablo, whose running commentary on Mrs. Foster's wardrobe kept us in stitches.
"Oh no Miss Ting! You not wearing that pink sweater again. Doan you have anyting else at home beside that?"
And then there was Tom, gay boy number two, who would fling spit balls at the back of Mrs. Foster's head. If he managed to get one to stick to her pink angora sweater, the four would roar with laughter. Boy number three was me. I was the little asshole that rounded out our group, and my mouth was as foul and offensive as any of them.

I'm amazed that Mrs. Foster put up with us as long as she did. She wasn't a very assertive person, and her basic defense against our vile ways was to ignore us. That is until one day Pablo started up with his usual banter about the pink sweater, "Honey, you need to wash that ting. It so dirty." To our surprise, our quiet, and restrained teacher turned around, and slammed her pointer on Pablo's desk, narrowly missing him.
"Stop this craziness, stop it, stop it! This is just insane, stop this craziness right now!", her face had turned bright red as she screamed at us in as loud a voice as she could muster.

That was the day we were kicked out of her class, and sequestered in a separate room. It didn't stop our 'craziness'. We continued to create a problem for the caretaker assigned to watch us, resulting in our being separated, and put in empty rooms for the rest of the year. We also flunked that class and had to retake it in summer school.

We expect a lot from teachers. They must be well educated at their own expense. They are expected to turn brainless little brats into geniuses, and do so while keeping them safe in a disciplined environment. We expect them to do this for the least amount of money we can get them to accept, and look for every excuse to vilify them as bad teachers when they want a little more. I haven't always felt bad about how we treated Mrs. Foster. That sort of shame didn't manifest itself until I was well on in my life, and it was too late to go back and apologize. I suppose I could look her up now, and if she is still alive tell her I'm sorry. Of course if I were her, I'd never want to see one of those little jackasses ever again.