Sunday, November 11, 2012

Counting Crows & Things That Matter

Me & Counting Crows front man Adam Duritz
Like most folks, I keep a bucket list in my head of things I want to do.

Sadly, very few items get checked off, so I've resorted to two bucket lists. The first list I call my "champagne-pie-in-the-sky-this-will-only-happen-when pigs-fly-or-Oprah/Ellen DeGeneris-discovers-my-book" list. For brevity, let's just call it the "When-Pigs-Fly" or "WPF" list. My second list I've aptly named the "Ozarka-peanut-butter-and-jelly-this-could-possibly-happen-without-pigs-flying" list which we'll simply call the PB&J list.

Call me pathetic, I know, but I did manage to put two big checks on my PB&J list a few days ago. Both lists contained gamblin, and one day meeting Counting Crows front man Adam Duritz. My WPF list envisioned a James Bond sort of gambling excursion to exotic places like Monte-Carlo or even pseudo-exotic places like Las Vegas.

Now my bucket list thing only happened because there was a Counting Crows concert I wanted to attend at a casino. I managed to con Jennifer, my BFF, to go with me.  "We could kill two birds with one stone," I rationalized. (Don't you just love cliche humor?) "Not only will I finally get to gamble,  I'll get to see one of my favorite bands again."

Reluctantly she agreed, and we did have fun in a twisted sort of way as we made the 100 mile PB&J trek to the Chickasaw WinStar Casino in Oklahoma (which despite its claim that a "world of luxury" awaited us, this is the same destination that also offered an RV park in which to stay. (I don't think they offer those type of accommodations in Monte-Carlo. No siree, Missy.) We couldn't afford the hotel casino rates, but we could afford the level II accommodations located within walking distance.

Here's the ferrets-on-crack review of our trip:
  • Counting Crows Concert: fab-u-lous
  • Gambling: not
  • Wheel of Fortune spin: fun
  • Food: mediocre
  • People: odd
  • Best part: Snagged the nifty photo shown above with Adam Duritz outside the hotel casino Starbucks. (Who needs to gamble or win to have fun?  Just hand me a nonfat, three raw sugar latte and a photo op with Adam, and it's better than good.)

This gambling junket got me to thinking, though, which y'all know can be problematic for me. Initially, my foray into Chickasaw Country made me realize that I'm not really a gambling kind of gal. But the more I pondered that, the more I got to really thinking and realized that perhaps that's not really true.

I am a gambling gal, but not with chips or slots or cards.

I, like many other teachers, gamble every day. I gamble on kids, placing my chips there hoping for the best. Sometimes I win. Sometimes I lose.

When I lose, well, it just sucks the life right out of me.

But when I win? Oh how the lights flash, the bells clang and the adrenaline flows.

I think I'm ready for Monday morning again because it doesn't really matter if I win or lose.  As Adam would say, "It's the heart that matters more."

Friday, November 2, 2012

Reminders, Siri & Maggieisms

Sometimes I have so much to write about, I spend too much time thinking about what to write, and then it all slips away like rays of sunshine on a cloudy day.

Already my school is two grading periods into this academic year and I have yet to share any  interesting tidbits from my DIs (Darling Inspirations). It's not because I don't have some interesting items. Rather, the ones I do have are so off the charts or off the chain (depending upon your age demographics) that I would be embarrassed (for those DIs) to write anything about it.

I have been trying, though. I keep a list of items I find amusing hoping to fashion them into funny posts. I make my list with the help of my new pal Siri. Yep,  I finally joined the ranks of the rest of the planet with my recent purchase of my very, very first smart phone–the iPhone 5. I think it's the neatest thing since sliced bread and dark chocolate. 

But even my new pal Siri can't save me from all these cryptic notes she jots down for me in my "reminders." Things like "Maggie is to do homework" and "number 13."

"Siri," I ask just a tad exasperated, "what does all that mean?"
"Sorry, Richie," she says, "I don't understand what you mean. Shall I search the web for you?"

Sorry, Siri, not even an all out web search or a fancy, schmancy decoder ring can help me decipher those notes.

I finally did remember what that Maggie thing was all about. One of my good friends has a granddaughter who says the funniest things which, of course, my friend duly posts on Facebook. (She refers to them as "Maggieisms). 

One of her most recent Maggieism was a conversation Maggie had with her mom. It went like this…
Mom: "Maggie, did you do your homework?"
Maggie: "I don't have to. It's 'do' tomorrow."
Mom: "That means you need to do it tonight."
Maggie: "I thought that meant 'do' it tomorrow."
I think I'm on Team Maggie.