Tag Archive for school

Stuff from School

I went through the Rugrats’ stuff after school today, and they came home with a few interesting items.

First, the Squirt had this in his homework:

Poor Pluto

Poor Pluto

I asked him why he crossed out Pluto, and he said “Because it’s not a planet anymore.”

Then it hit me: Pluto hasn’t been a planet since 2006. That means his teacher hasn’t bothered to update her worksheets for over six years.

*facepalm*

Look, I like his teacher. She’s great. In fact, she’s also a co-worker. But it’s a sign of what we see far too often in schools these days: the same old things being taught with the same old methods. There is a plethora of astronomy content on the Internet, and we’re still using worksheets with outdated information on them. I guess paper and pencil trumps Neil deGrasse Tyson.

On a lighter note, Little Bird came home with this:

Afraid to Find Out

I’m afraid to find out

I saw Se7en. I know how this works.

Of course it could be much, much worse…

About Mike Oliveri

Mike Oliveri is a writer, martial artist, cigar aficionado, motorcyclist, and family man, but not necessarily in that order. He is currently hard at work on the werewolf noir series The Pack for Evileye Books.

Paging Dr Freud

I have to wonder about teachers sometimes.

First, every year the testicle turkeys show up:

The Testicle Turkeys are Back

This Thanksgiving, will you have white meat or dark meat?

Then late last year I found the phallic chicken:

Freudian Chicken

Turn your head to the side. You'll see it.

Today I walked down the hall and discovered this:

Chicka what now?

So tempting to put "wow wow" at the bottom.

It’s just another beat for boom chicka wow wow. Cheesy ’70s porn soundtracks. Makes me wonder whether teachers keep themselves sane via inside jokes or if there’s some deep-rooted Freudian stuff going on.

Don’t think that’s the sound? Check it out. But, uh, don’t turn your speakers up too loud if you’re still at work.

I wonder if I shouldn’t be looking closer at the content of those posters…

About Mike Oliveri

Mike Oliveri is a writer, martial artist, cigar aficionado, motorcyclist, and family man, but not necessarily in that order. He is currently hard at work on the werewolf noir series The Pack for Evileye Books.

The Secret Lives of Teachers

Most people don’t think of teachers as bikers, but as it happens five of us at the school district I work for ride. We’ve been talking about getting a picture since the school year started, and today we finally made it happen.

The Rocket Riders

The Rocket Riders MC

The Rocket is our school’s mascot, so we thought it would be fitting to take the picture in front of it. We have three of the major bike manufacturers covered: Yamaha, Honda, and Harley. Honda dominates with a Rebel (Jessica forgot to ride it in so it’s not pictured) and two Shadows.

My 250cc Virago felt a little wimpy next to these guys, but it’s cool. It’s a fun picture, and it may even show up in the yearbook.

Now you know who the principal calls when he needs to lay down extra discipline in the halls.

About Mike Oliveri

Mike Oliveri is a writer, martial artist, cigar aficionado, motorcyclist, and family man, but not necessarily in that order. He is currently hard at work on the werewolf noir series The Pack for Evileye Books.

They Can't Kill Halloween

I’ve been bummed for the last couple of weeks leading up to Halloween. While I’m not a big holiday guy, I think Halloween is the last truly fun holiday left. Plus I’m a horror writer, so I’m kinda obligated. It may be watered down some and I’m still disappointed more kids don’t dress up as something scary, but they get to get out there, collect a buttload of candy, and generally have a good time.

This year, however, I found out why our school doesn’t celebrate Halloween. I live in a fairly religious community, and a very vocal minority played up the Satanic connotations of Halloween and got it squashed. Our students can pray around a flagpole out front, but God forbid they go the opposite direction and put on a costume. Halloween became the Fall Festival, and the closest it came to anything horror were the spiders the kids built in the Midget’s kindergarten class and the spider he got painted on his face at the festival itself (most kids chose flowers and flags — I wonder if the art teacher would even know who Cthulhu is?).

There was a dress-up theme all week, with each day carrying a different theme. But the themes were simple, like Spirit Day where they wear the school colors, or Sports Day where they wear team uniforms or clothing. Today was dress-up day, and they dressed up as what they want to be when they grow up. The Midget happily wore his gi and said he wanted to be “a karate guy,” but not one theme was remotely Halloween related. They tied in an anti-drug theme, which is certainly respectable, but still not as much fun.

I had a brief respite on Saturday when I discovered our karate school did it up right. The kids all showed up at the main dojo wearing costumes, and a lot of them were horrific. Sure, there were pirates and princesses, but there were also zombies, witches, undead soldiers, Draculas, and monsters. The staff converted their aerobic kickboxing school in the storefront next door to a haunted house, and it kicked all form of ass. So much ass, in fact, that I’ll be blogging about it later.

Then it was back to school on Monday, and Ho-Hum Halloween. I looked forward to taking the boys trick-or-treating tonight, but I didn’t expect much.

To my surprise, it really was a great Halloween. We walked down an out-of-the-way street and discovered two houses all dressed up in actual Halloween gear (as opposed to a giant inflatable pirate Spongebob), one of which the Midget was afraid to approach because of the mechanical ghost on the porch. A couple houses gave out candy shaped and packaged like toes, ears and eyeballs, and there people dishing out the candy from cauldrons and pumpkins.

It was especially refreshing to see kids dressed in scary costumes after the bland dress-up week. I saw a killer werewolf costume, a kid dressed as the reaper with giant red LED eyes, kids wearing skulls and demon masks, kids with scythes and axes and swords, and a dude who looked like a psycho in a Krusty mask. I even heard several people complimenting the scary costumes, and acting appropriately scared when one of them shouted “boo!” or waved some implement of destruction in a threatening manner.

Halloween was suddenly fun again, and after an hour and a half walking door-to-door, the boys’ treat bags were filled to the brim. We did find that one house that’s in every neighborhood, the one that gives out healthy treats like raisins, but I was in such a good mood I didn’t bother throwing that little red Sun-Maid box back at the old lady behind the door. Nope. Nothing was ruining this Halloween rush.

So bitch all you want, ya commies. You can’t kill Halloween!

About Mike Oliveri

Mike Oliveri is a writer, martial artist, cigar aficionado, motorcyclist, and family man, but not necessarily in that order. He is currently hard at work on the werewolf noir series The Pack for Evileye Books.

Fleeting Moment

The mandatory moment of silence established in Illinois schools as part of the Silent Reflection and Student Prayer Act has now been formally challenged. I’ve already said my piece on the act, so I’ll only repeat that it was only a matter of time before this happened.

And the waste of time, money, and resources continues.

On a side note, according to a Pantagraph article, there isn’t even a penalty for failing to observe the moment of silence. Doesn’t that make the law pointless anyway?

About Mike Oliveri

Mike Oliveri is a writer, martial artist, cigar aficionado, motorcyclist, and family man, but not necessarily in that order. He is currently hard at work on the werewolf noir series The Pack for Evileye Books.

I'm Good Like That

“Used-to-be” Key

Originally uploaded by MikeOliveri.


Would you believe I still recovered data off of this thing?

Our high school guidance counselor came to me with the remains of her USB flash drive in a plastic Zip-Lock bag. She said she’d accidentally sucked it into the vacuum (the brush caught the lanyard flash drive was attached to) and of course there was a lot of data on there she really, really needed. Specifically, pictures her daughter had taken for graduation and were not backed up anywhere else.

I was skeptical, but I told her I’d give it a shot (I’m good like that). When I first hooked it up, I got a green light but there was no reading the data. I took a closer look, and found that one of the components had been knocked off. It had corresponding contact points on the circuit board, so I held it on there and pinched the two pieces together between my thumb and forefinger.

Then I held my breath, hoped I wouldn’t get zapped, and plugged it back in.

Voila, the drive was back in business. I copied the files off it, burned them to a CD, and made the counselor very happy. I have a feeling her daughter wouldn’t have been too happy with her if this hadn’t worked. Good thing for her I’m a curious (and stubborn) SOB.

It amazes me what these things can survive. Freezing cold, high drops, car tires, and now vacuum cleaners. Makes me feel a lot better about some of the newer laptops moving to flash-based storage.

About Mike Oliveri

Mike Oliveri is a writer, martial artist, cigar aficionado, motorcyclist, and family man, but not necessarily in that order. He is currently hard at work on the werewolf noir series The Pack for Evileye Books.