Wednesday, August 23, 2006

Warping Young Minds Since 1993....

I've been teaching, in some capacity or other, since shortly after I graduated from college. Substitute high school teaching (resulting in the Great Math Test Debacle of 1994, and the Underpants Incident of 2003.) TAing for World History 101 (in which a booming Jesuit father informed the class that "An OCEAN is a BODY of WATER...surrounded by CONTINENTS!" If you didn't know what an ocean was, kids, maybe college wasn't such a great idea for you) and Art History 101-102, the highlight of which was test review with silly prizes from Archie McPhee for anyone who answered a question correctly. But today marks the first time I have had a class of my own--my syllabus, my grading standards, my ability to mold young minds. Though, this being IUPUI, a considerable # of the minds in the room are actually older than I am. I can live with that. They're mostly elementary education majors, which means I might well be warping two generations of learners for the price of one. It went ok today, I just went over the syllabus and then talked about "What is art?" for a few minutes before letting them go. Next Monday's topic is "Good Art, Bad Art, Not Art," and I have some choice pictures from the Museum of Bad Art for the powerpoint...

In a full circle sort of a thing, I got my diploma for my Master's Degree in the mail today. It's shiny, in the bright red folder favored by Indiana U, and will look lovely on my shelf. Next to the other 3 degrees. Which I'm also not really using. Woo hoo!

Sunday, August 20, 2006

It's a gun! It's a guitar! It's.....patriotism!!

There's Nothing Like The Fair.

Well, first of all, thanks to everyone who expressed their sympathies (in comments, email, and in person) about the zoo truck wreck. I'm happy to announce that I ran into one of the keepers I work with at the grocery the other day and got an update; contrary to initial reports, we had a near 100% survival rate on the fish. This despite the fact that they were being carried in foam picnic coolers, inside plastic baggies full of water. I'm amazed. We did lose 4 penguins--3 of the gentoos, which are my favorites, and 1 rockhopper. We also lost a couple anemones, but considering how many fish were on that truck I am utterly stunned by the minimal loss. In addition, I was relieved to learn that the dwarf caimans, the anaconda, and the giant amazon catfish were on the OTHER truck which didn't wreck. A good thing, as I'm sure if the 15' long anaconda had gotten free on the highway, a state trooper would have just shot it without thinking twice.

Did I mention I got to help hold her during the pre-ship vet exam? That officially qualifies as one of the coolest things I've ever done at the zoo; I was there helping bag up all those fish that Monday, and I got to be one of the 10 or so people who held onto the anaconda while the vet checked her for bumps and lumps before we put her in the crate. Have you ever held onto a snake with a nearly 12" diameter body? It was freakin' incredible.

Anyway, Gencon went quite well, and I'll post a blow by blow of True Dungeon on my other blog sometime soon. Suffice it to say it was glorious victory yet again. Pics are on my Flickr account. Then it was State Fair time again, and I hit it twice--once with Rat Girl and Duder, once with my coworkers. The winner of the "WTF is THAT?" contest in pro art for this year is seen above. The winner of the horrifying cake award is pictured HERE, and the winner of "most hilarious non-pro watercolor" is HERE. I think the sheer quantity of kitchy stuff in the Home and Family Arts building may have been one of the highlights of the fair for our overseas guests.... I didn't get a photo of the eyeless purple teddy bear. Maybe I can get a copy from them.

Tuesday, August 15, 2006


OK. I am almost human again.

First of all, yes, this was about my animals. I knew all of them. At last, an animal accident story from me that isn't funny. No, I don't want to talk about it.

Second, Gencon's over, I'm still alive, it had its good points and bad points, and now I have weapons with which to take out the frustrations of the day on the people I love.

Saturday, August 05, 2006

Brace For Impact

This week is GenCon, and my workplace is already becoming snappish and unpleasant. As always, I'm restraining myself from saying "The reason you've got 8 million things to do in four days is because you didn't do any of this shit back in June and July, when you had some time on your hands..." and am quietly going about the things I need to get done before the show. This includes:
1) Cleaning my house so my houseguest Charles doesn't see what a foul pit I normally live in.
2) Cleaning my shower, because I looked at it the other day and I was all like "holy crap, how long has it looked like that??" the light in there is busted, and I tend to shower in the dim twilight of the morning, so I hadn't really been fully aware of the scum-tacularness of the wall under the soap dish til yesterday.
3) mowing the lawn
4) Weeding my former advisor's garden for fun and profit
5) Making up a syllabus for the class I'm teaching this fall, which is approaching with uncomfortable rapidity
6) Going hiking
7) Packing miniatures
8) Eating a balanced diet
9) Painting the dining room
10) Blogging (not really.)
Obviously, not all this stuff has to do with Gencon itself, but it's all part of the not-having-a-moment-to-breathe experience that's going to suck away the next 7 days of my life.

Last year my car and I both had a breakdown right after the con. (The car cost me about $1500; the personal breakdown passed when I realized I wasn't going to have to buy a new car.) I'm hoping both of us can hold it together this year--but I suppose we'll see...

Tuesday, August 01, 2006


Originally uploaded by hamaker88.
Happy Shark Week!

In honor of Shark Week on the Discovery Channel, I offer you yet another thieving--this time from Fafblog's Friday Pie-Blog from a month or so back. I know I want to be a pieologist at the National Pie Institute of Pies, when I grow up.

And my wall is now plastered, but I'm not. Maybe I should remedy this.....