About Me

My photo
A concerned member of the human race

Friday, January 2, 2015

Some Reflections On the Year Past: Barking and Blogging

Given it is solidly 2015 now, let me make a few reflections on the year past, the homefront and the "schoolfront."  Last year was quite interesting, full of canine-related adventures for the first time as well as blog annihilation, followed by an ultimate rising from the ashes.

On the homefront, there were literally huge leaps in learning.  We gained two dogs.  On the first day of summer break, we found the energy to adopt a Sheprador puppy from North Shore Animal League.  We quickly dubbed him Midnight.  He has the most glossy black fur, but if you could look closely, you would spot a tuft of white on his underside seeming, at times, to be in the shape of a crescent moon.  When we welcomed 12 a.m., on New Year's Eve, I happily realized that "midnight" symbolized the break of a new day as well as of a new year.  Midnight is limitless.  It (and he) is full of possibilities. 

Midnight is now nine-months old.  Being teachers, of course, we had to  educate our puppy.  He graduated from his dog training last fall.  The funny thing is he performed in class to perfection, but sometimes at home, he fails to listen.  I'm guessing this is because, in human terms, he's verging on his teenage years.

"The Graduate"
Then, come early October, we gained a giant, old Retriever named Shadow with a wonderful personality, but a penchant to bark at strangers and occasionally growl at their dogs.  He has come to visit with his Aunty and her family for two years.  With all of his 115 lbs., if he could, he would charge across the street with me, terrorizing unsuspecting bystanders until they realize that all he really wants to do is sniff their dog in a most friendly manner.  Then, they are charmed.  I will not attempt to educate Shadow much.  He is already the equivalent of professor emiritus.  And, if you meet him, he'd probably be pleased to shake your paw.

Sister, Can You Spare a Dime?  How 'bout a Hamburger???
In 2014, I managed to balance home life, now including the two dogs plus the three kids, with teaching and blogging for public education.  (Past training for marathons probably helps here.)  In March of last year, following a short period of great blogging success given some kindly references from Dr. Diane Ravitch, I saw my first 95 pieces blown to cyber bits by my blog partner, regretfully done, as he told me, because word had passed down the Unity line advising members to stop expressing their independent views in expectation of the upcoming NYSUT conference.  God forbid any Unity member should favor scrapping the Core.  God forbid any Unity member should vocally express a view construed as contrary to the party line.  Unity must be unified, even at the cost of failing to represent its rank and file.  This was a major disappointment to me on several fronts.  

I then made the decision to reconstruct what was lost.  It seemed like it might take part of a year.  Then, it seemed it would take a month.  It took about three days.  I picked myself up and started again.  (Runners often do this.)  Such is my spirit, but it sure helped to get some encouragement along the way.  

It seemed I had a few more things to say in defense of public education and, in particular, NYC public-school teachers.  So, here I am for another year, somehow finding pockets of time to freely express what is on my mind--with allegiance to only my vision of the truth.  I doubt I'll blog 'til the end of time, but as long as I have things I feel must be said, I will say them.  Pardon me, if sometimes it might even sound like I'm barking!

No comments:

Post a Comment