Friday, December 2, 2016


Thank The Avatars It's Friday!

"Need Christmas gift ideas? We know the perfect thing!"

What Century Is This Again?

Having spent 30 years in American K-12 education, I'm no stranger to parental objections to curricular content for the silliest
of reasons.

There's a reason the American Library Association still sponsors the annual Banned Books Week every fall, after all.

That said, it is more than a little dispiriting whenever some halfwitted parent convinces
a pusillanimous school board to ban a book, as recently happened in Virginia. I had held out some hope that this kind of nonsense was something that would eventually die out in the 21st century, but there has been no sign of such progress so far...

"Remember, you're talking about a country that just did this."
A fair point...

Ain't That a Kick?

"Yeah, I doinked it in just to add a little drama!"
The month of November was very, very good for K Cairo Santos of my beloved Kansas City Chiefs, who was named AFC Special Teams Player of the Month yesterday.

Cairo was 11-for-11 on field goal attempts during the month, including walk-off kicks as time expired against the Panthers and the Broncos, both on the road. He was also 5-for-5 on PATs, which as recent events have shown can no longer be taken for granted.

"Wait, what? The Chiefs only scored five touchdowns total in four November games?"

Seven, actually...we went for two on a couple of those...

Does Obamacare Cover This?

From the indispensable comic strip Dilbert, by Scott Adams, which you should read every day, as I do.

Until Next Time...

I first saw and heard a Christmas season "flash mob" performance by the United States Air Force Band in December of 2014, when someone shared this magnificent video with me via Twitter. I never get tired of watching that video (even though it makes me weep almost uncontrollably near the end), and I have shared it here and elsewhere on many occasions, including with my classes at TJ on the last day of school before Christmas vacation that year.

I soon learned that the 2014 performance was their second such "flash mob," and that
it is now a traditional holiday season event the band uses to kick off their Christmas concert schedule. This year's show took place on November 29, at the usual venue: the Smithsonian National Air and Space Museum in Washington, D.C.

Col. Larry H. Lang conducting
This year's performance had a French flavor,
as the band performed the 18th century French carol "Patapan" and
the George Ratcliffe Woodward favorite "Ding Dong Merrily on High," which is based on a 16th century French dance melody.

Today's send-off is the video of the band's charming performance, filmed live on November 29, from their YouTube channel. Enjoy...

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