Friday, January 14, 2011


This one actually gave me a headache this morning. We discussed the Vietnam Veterans Memorial in Washington, D.C. and its designer, Maya Lin, in class today. Reflecting on the fact that the United States lost over 57,000 young soldiers in that 'conflict' and the cruel irony that I discovered that my recently-purchased digital guitar tuner was made in that evil, communist country, I decided to access my students' prior knowledge about the Vietnam war, which we all know in the teacher biz is a very important teaching strategy. I asked my 3D Design class if they knew why the United States was fighting in Vietnam during the 60s and 70s. One young lady, and soon-to-be-graduating senior, took the plunge and answered, "Because the Vietnamese bombed Pearl Harbor!"

Ouch! This is gonna be a five-Tylenol day, I just know it!

Tora, Tora, Tora Anyone? Anyone? Bueller?

Thursday, January 6, 2011


It's a bitterly-cold day here at Camp Nickleby. As I look out my window, I can see at least three feet of snow on the ground. I have a few pieces of seasoned oak in my Jotul wood stove crackling away. I'm in my cabin, begrudgingly grading campers' finals and other work from last semester. Grades must be in by Monday and I've been in full procrastination mode since the semester ended on December 17th. But at least the campers did not disappoint.

While grading their slide identification finals, I came across a few answers that brought a smile to my face. The correct answer for #4 is Buckminster Fuller, visionary credited with the invention of the geodesic dome. Several students, however, seemed to think that he was also involved with the country music scene in Bakersfield! They identified the person in the slide not as Mr. Fuller, but as Buck Owens! They never cease to amaze!