Wednesday, January 26, 2011

You Say You Want a Revolution?

I'm calling it my New Years Revolution: I'm going to play in a mariachi band! Just kidding, sort of. What I am doing is learning Spanish.

I'm devoting 2011 to it. I have a multifaceted strategy, so far so good, I think. First, I got Rosetta Stone for Christmas. It really is fantastic. I passed Unit 1 last week with a 74% on the final test. I can't say much. However, I am sitting on a silla as I type this. And my computer is on a mesa. And earlier, yo comiendo un sandwich.

Part 2 of the strategy is to juega some pick up soccer (or futbol) this spring.

3 is we are going to begin, probably in early summer, a weekly Spanish only dinner. I have high hopes for this: first of all, for some excellent comida; second of all, for some multi-cultural flavor; third of all, for fun and new amigos.

The big test will be in June when we go to Mexico on vacation.

It's going to be a challenge. One thing I've dropped is reading. Spanish takes up too much brain power. Between it and the books (there are currently 3 in different phases) I'm working on, my brain is already on overload. So I apologize if my reading list for 2011 is minimal. I'll pick it up again in 2012.


Friday, January 14, 2011

The Meaning of Words

When it comes to words and their meanings, there are two words in particular that have changed dramatically over the course of years. What two words am I talking about? snow day of course.

Snow day used to mean vacation. Sledding down Barry's hill. Making snow forts in the front yard. Throwing snowballs at objects both animate and inanimate. It meant hot chocolate. It meant watching movies in the day time. It meant wearing pajamas all day. It used to be the best combination of words in the English language.

It doesn't mean that anymore. Snow day now means "what the heck am I going to do with these kids?" It means cabin fever. It means your house being trashed and puddles in the foyer, kids having to pee pee as soon as you get that third layer fastened. It means not getting a thing on your list done. It means torture.

It astounds me that two little words could have such drastically different connotations. My children - they don't see snow days the way I do - they see them the way I did. The question I'm asking myself is why? What happened to me? When did snow day become a bad word? When did I turn into my parents? The secondary question is what am I going to do about it? Barring unforeseen grade-skippage or accidental pregnancy, I'll be dealing with snow days for the next sixteen years! It's time I come to terms with these words.

What are they going to mean to me?

Frankly, I want them back. I want the old meaning back. I'm claiming it. Right now. I'm writing it here for all five of you who read this blog. Snow day is no longer a bad word. Snow day is my new happy place. Bring them on.