Thursday, January 21, 2010

Can we please take SHIT off the menu?

I know that I stood on my fancy, probably LUSH brand soap box a few blogs ago and preached that this will not be a technologically advanced complaint department. I want to point out that I was talking directly about not bitching about work related topics. As usual, teen age kids are shitty in a general way,so I can now complain about neighborhood ragamuffins and not my own students.

I was walking my one, very large, wolfish dog as my boyfriend walked his very wiener shaped dog, I am aware that it seems mismatched but that is another blog. As we discussed the days uneventful events, a red laser dot appeared on the side of my big girl dog's body. I am Sicilian so, I of course start to scout the area for snipers. The only possible culprits around are two shitbag preteens who have no business skulking around the neighborhood after dark on a school night. I am not only the "Niceness Police" but also the "Curfew Cop of Queens". These little fools proceed to ring about 4 doorbells of dining old folks and hide behind parked cars to dodge the unsuspecting aged. I am at this time fuming, that friggen red laser beam hits us again. Although he is just curmudgeon enough to be sexy, my boyfriend is much calmer then I. At this point even he wants to kick the asses of these kid's parents. I calmly state that I would love to shove that laser up there arses and light up their eyelids from the inside!"
We walked on and talked about how we would be very upset if our "make believe" kids ever had the Gaul to bother innocent people or be out this late. We talk of these things I think to quell the fears that all non parents have about the competence of their ability to parent in the future. Well, I'll be damned, that red laser appeared again, we were being followed. We are so boring, why follow us? "Damn, if I were your parents, I would not want to hang out with you either!" I guess I am mean and boring.
It is just that after a while, you get tired of eating shit. I know that in my profession I am always subjected to nasty comments and absurd tests from students. These kids engaged me, this means my involvement is different. So, technically, I DO NOT HAVE TO EAT THEIR SHIT, SHIT IS OFF THE MENU!
As I calmed down, I just hoped that those kids get an internal makeover of their own.
The sad thing is that these kids should not have to be hanging out on the streets of Queens on a January evening. They are bored. They are not being paid attention too enough or I can only assume that they have not found a "thing" that interests them enough to keep them home and doing it. They do not have a passion yet. I probably would have been reading magazines and listening to Janet Jackson's Rhythm Nation, my first Cd, at their age. I would have been twelve and as plump as a young Ricki Lake, looking at the difference between one purple lined eye and one attempted smokey one. I would have been reading Bukowski poems and hating my parents from the safety of their home where their company and attention was in a doorbells reach, the doorbell of my own home and I would not have had to have hidden behind a parked car either.

Sunday, January 17, 2010

My students think I am stupid.

When you become a teacher there is a part of you that must leave your pride, ego and you ability to be embarrassed at the classroom door. It just goes with the territory. Kids are not who they were ten years ago, they are dealing with a very different world, different families and standards of behavior but the old adage that "kids are vicious," still rings true. It is what it is, they are judgmental and quick with attitude and misdirected anger at the drop of a hat, and many times the person with the biggest bulls-eye is standing at the front of the room pointing out to them that they are not the center of the universe and that indeed many of the behaviors that they are exhibiting are not acceptable.

I am an adult I understand that being a kid is a stinky mixture of feeling that you do not understand. I battle it with being beyond embarrassment. Usually I accomplish rising above blushing by being just over the top enough to be able to get them to see that it is not always so serious and being silly can be fun. I have been known to wear a mustache necklace to work. So, today I will dedicate this blog to us all being able to see something silly, doing something harmless and funny and during these times of real worldly sadness to be slightly ridiculous in the name of celebrating life. I however, cannot stand when something is hilarious and does not acknowledge itself as such.

On that note I want to mention something that was brought to my attention that is indeed silly. It is something that may be worthy of infomercial status. Actually, it is not even infomercial worthy because I would not want to insult my leopard snuggie. It is the L'Oreal True Match Roller I thought that I was reading the Onion when I the advertisement but alas it was no joke. Please, let this be a makeup companies attempt at a joke to lift our spirits. I am not a lier so I will admidt that I have not tried it and I will promise you that I will as soon as they are back in stock on the L'Oreal website. That alone made me giggle.

I am not a brand snob, I think that great beauty products come from multiple sources, even your own kitchen. I just hate what the ad for this product promises,"an ultimate airbrush finish". It just seems absurd to me. First of all, how does something that rolls on give the same effect as something that is airbrushed on. When you paint a strip of wall with a roller it indeed does not look like a path that has been spray painted, it is not supposed to. The claims that it will adjust to the contours of your face is silly sounding. Secondly, an airbrushed look is not something a woman even needs everyday or for many woman there will not be a day it is needed. After all, thankfully for me, most people do not have HD eyesight. I would rather a company come up with a mini airbrush system for everyday use. Then it would be fine to suggest an airbrushed finish because, well, it is an airbrush.

I understand that the makeup industry is looking to introduce new products in order to keep people buying. I am asking my modest yet wonderful reader base to share the silliest or stupidest products they have seen or tried.

Tuesday, January 12, 2010

I am not here to make your dreams come true!

This journey is not about complaining about what is but deciding to reach for what I would like to be. I have decided that this will not be a forum to complain till exhaustion about the things I dislike about my job and present situation. Everyone has complaints and things they wish they could change about where they are. Bitching and moaning is too easy and in all honesty an insult to you as readers, my profession, other educators and myself. It would be easy to sit and recite to myself all of the pitfalls that could be lurking in the wings of my plan. Shit like that can keep you up at night, I mean it did keep me up at night, o.k., last night. Instead, I will take some of the offbeat things that I find myself saying to my own students and apply it to myself.

Yeah, I did it. I told my class that I was not here to make all their dreams come true. Well, I am not. I am here merely as a person who can tell them where to find the resources to do that for themselves. At the time I blurted it out may have been a statement I uttered to get them to be less needy and to stop pulling me in a million directions at once but it became much more in conversation. They must take on the responsabilety and develope that hunger for something they love on their own despite what others may say,even what I may say unless someone is being maimed. At times I feel that my real job is to just expose them to as much as I can, to step back and then see what sticks. I have finally found what sticks for me.

Just as my students must learn that they are the only person who can in all actuality move, motivate, convince and accept what gets them going, I am the sole provider of doing that same thing for myself. I feel like a madwoman now that I have finally gotten this very simple idea. I can both generate and distroy this whole journey all by myself by listening to nay sayers who often say "nays" out of love and true concern and my own negative head.

So, here we go, my mom wants me to be a psychologist, not the worst thing to want for your kid but I will make simulated bullet holes and zombies instead. Dad, he would like me to tutor kids, it is good work and meaningful too but so is making a bride feel like her most beautiful self on her day. The two Grannies, they want me to cook and clean and be a good Italian wife, I will be, first, let me make you both up to look like the most fantastic of Drag Queens. I have been let loose. Join the journey.

Saturday, January 9, 2010

You may want to smudge that a bit

There has been a change in my mindset. I am unsure when it exactly occurred but I have been looking at things very differently. The focus I now have while watching movies and TV has become less about plot and more on visual technique. I have been more interested in the makeup and visual aspects that are used in film making then anything else. I love when things are not what they seem.

I had not noticed how much my focus had changed until I was at dinner with a friend I have had consistently from high school. There was a female waitstaff who was applying eyeliner to a male staffer while hovering over our table. My normal reaction would have been, "Can you get me some water please and get a room!" Instead I stood up as a surprise even to myself said, "You may wanna smudge that a bit, the line is to defined to be considered smokey, it is a bit more Elvira then you may want." As the two waiters looked at me like I was sent by Rue Paul in a makeup mission from Fabulous Land, the female worker handed me over her brushes. I smudged that man's liner in the middle of the restaurant. Against some health code, probably, but the impact it had on my journey, fantastic. That "drive by makeup-ing" reminded me of when I began teaching and I became the niceness police for the neighborhood. I protected the publicly shunned from neighborhood bullies and told kids I did not even know, to check their Halloween candy for razors. It was natural to me at that time. Smudging the eyes of unsuspecting could be makeup victims is natural for me now. The journey begins.