As I Was Saying…

Chatter, memories and rants. Please, don't stop me if you've heard this one before.





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Confessions from the new New Frontier

Here’s why English teachers are actually judging you

Tuesday, December 16, 2014 - 5:50 pm - It’s holiday party time, which means teachers are thrust into social situations with non-teachers and are reminded of how much the public at large misunderstands what we do and why we do it. Actually, teaching high school English is neither adorable nor terrifying. And you really don’t have to worry that I’m evaluating your grammar [...]

Artemis: a few years (not quite millenia) late

Sunday, July 21, 2013 - 4:38 am - I found this poem tucked in the diary I kept during my sophomore and junior year of college. I’m not sure when exactly I wrote it; in fact, I have no clear memory of writing, only of having written it. But it is definitely from sometime during those years. It owes a lot to Billy [...]

Seeing Red

Monday, July 8, 2013 - 8:42 pm - At the end of every school year, I spend a week or two at my parents’ in Portland as a reboot, and to that end, my mother and I got our nails done yesterday. It’s not the kind of thing I do often, since I never like to give the impression that I fuss over [...]

Accidents Will Happen

Monday, June 24, 2013 - 3:18 am - From: gregory hunter <hunterg166@xxxxx.com> To: Elizabeth Sampson <ebef12@yahoo.com> Sent: Friday, February 2, 2007 1:31 AM Subject: Re: God Only Knows sorry for the jaunty note. i (for some reason) figured the note would be returned to me. you were gone, i surmised, off writing some arresting novel elsewhere. teaching, studying… away. a different address. i [...]

The Morning After Pentecost

May 12, 2008

The Apostle Peter may have known a lot about spirituality and the teachings of Jesus, but he didn’t know jack about booze. If you’ve ever been close to an active alcoholic (yourself or someone you love) you may share my view that the Pentecost story contains one of the most hilarious statements in the entire Bible.

sundialYou know the story. A “mighty wind” comes upon a group of the faithful, and suddenly they’re rolling on the ground, speaking in tongues. A cold-eyed observer suggests that they’re drunk. Peter is shocked by this impiety and says, “[T]hese are not drunk, as you suppose, for it is only nine o’clock in the morning.”

How’s that again? Rolling around on the ground isn’t something you’d do because you had two drinks in you. It would take more than most people ever drink at any one time in their lives.

So trust me here. If you were a serious drinker in those days, the kind who would drink enough to end up rolling on the ground, you wouldn’t let some joker with sandals and a sundial tell you whether you could have a drink. That is to say, for an active alcoholic the time of day is pretty much irrelevant because it is always five o’clock somewhere.

It also occurs to me that there are at least two routes to drunkenness at 9:00 AM: the frat boy’s still-partying-from-the-night-before and the real drunk’s vodka “breakfast of champions.”

Don’t get me wrong here. I’m not saying the Pentecost gang was drunk. I’m just saying that if they weren’t drunk it probably had nothing to do with the time of day.

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