Friday, November 30, 2007

Assets Wanted

Another part of my training today covered The 40 Developmental Assets. It was an informative, quick review that allowed us to share asset-building strategies in use around the district. I have some new resources and contacts that will help build assets in AVAIL students. Woo-hoo!

Recovering Teen Addicts

Today I attended drug and alcohol prevention training and was totally blown away by the teenage presenters.

Recovering teen addicts shared their experiences with drugs and alcohol. They shared emotional and descriptive personal stories, too graphic for this family blog.

Stories of being stoned daily at age 4, physical abuse, incarceration, alcoholism and crack cocaine addictions. Family histories of alcoholism, early deaths, and jail time. Indoctrination into criminality by older siblings, routine beatings, violence, and being kicked out of the home.

They told heart-wrenchingly tragic stories with courage and strength. Theirs were terrible tales of decent into addiction and equally terrible determination to overcome it.

Here is a bit of their hard-earned wisdom.
  • "Low self esteem doesn't come from other people telling me I'm bad. Low self esteem comes from me pointing out the bad and focusing on the bad things in me."

  • Adults should be aware of the following warning signs for drug use: frequent bathroom breaks, routine absences & tardies, classroom conversations about drug use, missing after school activities, and a rapid drop in grade percentage.

  • One wished to to have been arrested sooner, another wanted, "someone to tell me that I was putting my parents through misery... to let me know that I was disrespecting my parents."

  • Detoxification was a physical and emotional battle. Detox from marijuana took up to 4 months. Crack cocaine detox made it impossible to sleep normally for 3 weeks. During that time, they were "pissed off", irritated, and unable to focus on school work.

  • They need to feel comfortable and accepted while in treatment. Talking about addiction requires a trust relationship.

  • Talking to people helps teens stay away from drugs and alcohol. It helps to have sober support people as well as recovering addicts with whom to share.

  • Strength comes from a higher power, from role models, or from family. It's important to follow the 12-step programs.

  • Addicts need to stay away from drug hangouts and drug friends after leaving treatment. One said, "I need to strengthen myself to say no to my old friends."

  • Teens can try to convince other teens not to use. One teen wants to "give them the lecture", to say "just because I did it doesn't mean you can do it."

  • The others try not to "preach", just "tell them what happened to me." To say, "I don't know what is going to happen to you, but, think about it, do you want to take that chance?"

Thursday, November 29, 2007

Dropouts drop off

The dropout rate is decreasing in the Anchorage School District.

It's no surprise that Natives dropout at the highest rate, currently 9.2%. But for Native Americans, that is a significant improvement. Nationally, the Native dropout rate was 25.4% only 15 years ago. Last year, the number was 16.9%.

Here's a quick thank you to the teachers and parents of Native American graduates. Give yourself a pat on the back. Your commitment does make a difference!

Monday, November 26, 2007

Natives in for big royalty boost

Now that Red Dog is in the black, the profits will trickle out to other corporations. Here's hoping that Bering Straits will be careful in choosing a banker for their money.

Sunday, November 25, 2007


$50 million will be paid to 110 Alaska Natives who were abused by 13 Roman Catholic Priests and 2 clerics. The abuse occurred over 30 years, mostly in Western Alaska and Yukon River villages. U.S. courts have assessed damages of $1.1 billion for antitrust violations and $8.5 million for a double-murder. But only after the plaintiff has a day in court.

Remember how Bush II started a war in Iraq to destroy Hussein's weapons of mass destruction? Well that was a lie. Saddam had no banned weapons prior to the U.S. invasion.

And remember when Joe Wilson told the truth about WMD, his wife Valerie Plame was put in mortal danger? Remember when our government blew the cover of our own CIA operative in order to discredit our own U.S. Ambassabor? Well even that has been exposed in court.

All of these facts are not in dispute. And the facts lead to Vice-President Dick Cheney as the man responsible. But only one congressman is actively seeking to impeach him. (Of course it's Dennis.)

One question though: When the citizens of Iraq get reparations, how much will we pay for over 1 million deaths?

Saturday, November 24, 2007

Villagers Unite! Or Not...

Economic development has long been a concern in rural Alaska. Now a group of village corporations is trying something new. The Alaska Native Village CEO Association is a way to build relationships between well-to-do corporations and smaller, less successful ones.

Other 'bootstrap' solutions exist. RurAL CAP has been trying to promote culturally relevant services and UAF's College of Rural and Community Development makes it possible for rural students to attend college in a culturally sensitive environment. Preference for Native hire has been tried in many industries and is now a focus in Anchorage construction trades. The CDQ program has generated $110 million on behalf of 25,000 Western Alaska residents since 1992. Of course, AFN has been addressing native issues for 41 years.

Here's the problem: Native groups are so diverse that one voice cannot speak for all. Television and political action committees often ignore both sides to the debate. Natural resource development (especially mining and drilling) screws up the environment. But it pays the bills and many Natives benefit from the economic boon.

Case #1, Upper Yukon Athabascans strongly oppose ANWR drilling. But the majority of native groups support drilling. AFN even passed a resolution saying so.

Case #2, Pebble Mine could be a huge economic success yet Bristol Bay Natives fall on both sides of the debate. Some pro and con.

Case #3, Red Dog Mine is the world's largest producer of Zinc and the largest polluter in the U.S. But does the major media expose Red Dog pollution? Not so much... because NANA is happy to get the money.

Destruction of subsistence economies is a hot-button topic whenever government supports ANWR or opposes the Pebble Mine. But we should be wary when media and politicians are so far out of touch with the local citizens.

Bionic women

Once there was a lady named Ruth who had powers to beat the bad. Ruth can't outrun a bullet from a pistol. Ruth can do a pull up with one hand! Bionic women can hold three People Mover busses - amazing!

Most kids would like to be bionic women. So kids started to lift heavy weights to be bionic women. Some people say she is not real.

But Ruth can run 1,000 miles per hour!

Friday, November 23, 2007

Did You Know 2.0

This video is a unique presentation of global trends in education and technology. The target audience is school staff and parents, but can be enjoyed by anyone.

An official update to the original "Shift Happens" video from Karl Fisch and Scott McLeod, this June 2007 update includes new and updated statistics, thought-provoking questions and a fresh design.

What does reading have to do with education?

A new reading study by the National Endowment for the Arts was released last Monday. The NEA found many academic, social, and economic implications of reading.

Statistics are broken down by age and reading habits. (e.g., reading for fun, time spent reading) Reading habits have remained essentially the same for nine year-olds and test scores have improved for that age group. Way to go pre-teens! Teenagers not so much. 13 and 17 year-olds are reading less and their test scores have declined.

A few of the not-too-surprising results: Reading for fun correlates with improved test scores in reading and writing. Kids with more than 100 books in their home scored better in History, Science, Civics, and Math. Good readers participate in more civic & cultural activities, make more money, and have more opportunities for career advancement.

Download the full report and executive summary. After reading the report, I bet you'll be reading more with your kids. And buying more books. I know I will.

Wednesday, November 21, 2007

Did a Comet Cause the Great Flood?

Bruce Masse thinks that a comet could be the basis for mythological flood stories.

Masse believes that he has uncovered evidence that a gigantic comet crashed into the Indian Ocean several thousand years ago and nearly wiped out all life on the planet. What’s more, he thinks that clues about the catastrophe are hiding in plain sight, embedded in the creation stories of cultural groups around the world.


Masse’s biggest idea is that some 5,000 years ago, a 3-mile-wide ball of rock and ice swung around the sun and smashed into the ocean off the coast of Madagascar. The ensuing cataclysm sent a series of 600-foot-high tsunamis crashing against the world’s coastlines and injected plumes of superheated water vapor and aerosol particulates into the atmosphere.


All told, up to 80 percent of the world’s population may have perished, making it the single most lethal event in history.

I bet that guy won't be doing any college talks with Bill Nye.

Silly Americans

It's well documented that Americans don't score as well as other developed nations on math and science tests. But David Warlick found a publication that ilustrates just how silly we can be. Among other inanities, 25% of all Americans don't know that the earth orbits the sun.

The metric system is taught by science teachers everywhere. But the U.S. government still can't follow the Metric Conversion Act of 1975. Thirty-two years ago and our street signs are still marked in miles! Our silly government amended the Act three times (as recently as 2004) but still can't get on the SI.

American social policy is at odds with most western nations too. With our laudable freedoms and economic opportunity comes a government of the silly people, by the silly people, and for the silly people. Just this November 15, the U.S. voted against a U.N. resolution for a moratorium on executions. From Mary Shaw's OpEdNews story:

Want to guess who voted against the resolution? Yep, the good ol' United States of America, along with Afghanistan, China, North Korea, Saudi Arabia, Zimbabwe, and a handful of other countries known for their systematic violations of human rights.

Want one more bit of silliness? Read the That Was Then, This Is Now by Californian Daniel Miessler. Best comment was this one:

Hi, I’m from Europe, I just realized reading the comments that, in your culture, a) you find it normal to go to school with a shotgun in your truck b) you find it normal to put children on psychotic drugs Boy, how pervert your culture is when it comes to this kind of things. I’m glad I always turned off all job offers I received from there.

Comment by db — 11/18/2007 @ 10:57 pm

Based on his grammar, I believe db is actually an American. Probably from Alaska.

Democratic Ideal

This is a promo spot for my candidate, Kucinich. Someone who is savvy and experienced.

Check out his plans to address global climate change. Americans (especially in Alaska) need a President to initiate serious reforms before it is too late. Here is an optimistic man who is not afraid to lead by example and stand behind his words.

Kucinich has pragmatic, long-term solutions. Oh yeah, and he won 47 states in the latest Democracy for America pulse poll.

Monday, November 19, 2007

I'm eating crow for Thanksgiving.

After talking smack, Gibbs' Comeback had a tie this week.

Playing Frank Gore (6 points) ahead of Chester Taylor (38) and Edgerrin James (11) was my worst move all year. Terrible call - I blew it big time.

Ayn Rand on racism in 1963

Racism, writes Ayn Rand, is the lowest, most crudely primitive form of collectivism.

In 1963, Rand denounced conservatives, liberals, Soviets, and Negro leaders in one fell swoop. She finds them all guilty of various forms of collectivism and advocates for complete freedom of the individual.

It is not a man's ancestors or relatives or genes or body chemistry that count in a free market, but only one human attribute: productive ability. It is by his own individual ability and ambition that capitalism judges a man and rewards him accordingly.

I've been reading a few Ayn Rand books and appreciate her objectivist philosophy. Someday our society will be truly color blind. Someday the U.S. government will be, in the words of Harold Washington, "equitable and fair". Someday our free market economy will not trample the rights of individuals halfway around the globe.

But the fact is that someday will never come if we don't address the needs of people today. Scientific reason makes progress in each generation, but we are still an unreasonably impetuous and foolhardy species. Technology has advanced to the point where the next global war could annihilate our entire race. Scary, but true.

It's in our own best interest to help the less educated and less skilled to improve. Why? Because doing so increases the chance that Homo Sapiens will survive another half-million years. It's not low-rent housing by Howard Roark, but Bill Gates is making significant contributions.

And I can't help thinking that John Galt's Twentieth Century Motor could have been Zefram Cochrane's warp drive.

Am I an optimistic hippie or what?

What Do Teachers Really Make? Taylor Mali Explains...

YouTube - What Do Teachers Really Make? Taylor Mali Explains...

What Teachers Make, or
Objection Overruled, or
If things don't work out, you can always go to law school

By Taylor Mali

He says the problem with teachers is, "What's a kid going to learn
from someone who decided his best option in life was to become a teacher?"
He reminds the other dinner guests that it's true what they say about
Those who can, do; those who can't, teach.

I decide to bite my tongue instead of his
and resist the temptation to remind the other dinner guests
that it's also true what they say about lawyers.

Because we're eating, after all, and this is polite company.

"I mean, you're a teacher, Taylor," he says.
"Be honest. What do you make?"

And I wish he hadn't done that
(asked me to be honest)
because, you see, I have a policy
about honesty and ass-kicking:
if you ask for it, I have to let you have it.

You want to know what I make?

I make kids work harder than they ever thought they could.
I can make a C+ feel like a Congressional medal of honor
and an A- feel like a slap in the face.
How dare you waste my time with anything less than your very best.

I make kids sit through 40 minutes of study hall
in absolute silence. No, you may not work in groups.
No, you may not ask a question.
Why won't I let you get a drink of water?
Because you're not thirsty, you're bored, that's why.

I make parents tremble in fear when I call home:
I hope I haven't called at a bad time,
I just wanted to talk to you about something Billy said today.
Billy said, "Leave the kid alone. I still cry sometimes, don't you?"
And it was the noblest act of courage I have ever seen.

I make parents see their children for who they are
and what they can be.

You want to know what I make?

I make kids wonder,
I make them question.
I make them criticize.
I make them apologize and mean it.
I make them write, write, write.
And then I make them read.
I make them spell definitely beautiful, definitely beautiful, definitely
over and over and over again until they will never misspell
either one of those words again.
I make them show all their work in math.
And hide it on their final drafts in English.
I make them understand that if you got this (brains)
then you follow this (heart) and if someone ever tries to judge you
by what you make, you give them this (the finger).

Let me break it down for you, so you know what I say is true:
I make a goddamn difference! What about you?

Sunday, November 18, 2007

Sometimes teaching is a shot in the dark

Brett Stirling tells a story of hunting for rabid fox as a principal in rural Alaska. Can't say I have ever hunted fox but the story brings to mind the one time my wife shot a moose.

Fall moose season in the Bush can be a major event. Most men in our village take a boat ride up the main Shaktoolik River, hoping to cross paths with Bullwinkle. Not me - I stay indoors, teaching school.

Well one early morning in September, just after first bell, my students spotted a moose only 500 yards away from our classroom window. He was a big bull, ambling slowly across the shallow Tagoominik River.

No sooner had the bull been spotted, than my wife excitedly entered the classroom. She was carrying our infant daughter and a diaper bag. "Hold Ruth," she said, "there is a moose across the river!"

Skipping over the gory parts... My wife and her friend Isabelle later radioed into town that they needed a a little help butchering the kill. Well, as luck would have it, an officer with the U.S. Fish and Game was listening to the radio from the village police office.

Now hunting without a license is not uncommon in Shaktoolik, but when a Fins-n-Fur Cop is nearby, it is best to comply with the State regulations. And sure as my wife can shoot, she didn't have a hunting license.

Fortunately my niece was listening in the police office, too. She quickly and surreptitiously came into the school and apprised me of the situation. Handing Baby Ruth to my niece, and telling her to watch my 3rd period class as well, I headed out the door.

I borrowed the school's four-wheeler and drove over to purchase a couple of permits for the lucky lady hunters. Buzzing through town on the Honda, I made back in time for 4th period.

Baby Ruth taught school the rest of the day, taking turns going from one junior high student to the next. Just cooing away in swaddling clothes as her babysitter-of-the-moment solved algebraic equations and read about the civil war.

Connectivism: A Learning Theory for the Digital Age

Connectivism, more than cognitivism and behaviorism, places emphasis on the ability to locate and access external sources of information. As George Siemens states it:

The pipe is more important than the content within the pipe. Our ability to learn what we need for tomorrow is more important than what we know today. A real challenge for any learning theory is to actuate known knowledge at the point of application. When knowledge, however, is needed, but not known, the ability to plug into sources to meet the requirements becomes a vital skill. As knowledge continues to grow and evolve, access to what is needed is more important than what the learner currently possesses.

Connectivism presents a model of learning that acknowledges the tectonic shifts in society where learning is no longer an internal, individualistic activity.

Lifelong learning and accessing collective intelligence is important in nearly all professional careers. Connectivism is certainly important in research and problem solving. But how does connectivism apply to the profession of teaching?

Here's my take:

I'll take an old-fashioned behaviorist in the elementary classroom anytime. The behaviorist excels in teaching phonemes, oral reading, handwriting practice, and most importantly... hardwiring the brain's ability to retain information. The stimuli-response-level learning lays the foundation for other teachers to build upon.

Cognitive theory provides a solid framework for understanding and conceptualizing mathematics but I still need the behaviorist to teach the times tables and division algorithm. Heck, I'll take the behaviorist for math and reading strategies up to age 12.

It is about the age of 11 or 12 when students become aware of the social framework of society and of their own internal (pubescent) development. At this point, I can see the importance of a cognitive or connectivist approach to learning. By puberty, students should have a firm foundation to begin the study of abstract concepts.

As children develop physically, they become more aware of themselves and their surroundings. From Algebra to Shakespeare, students must create new connections from self to culture. Cognitive theory helps the teacher make the accumulated wisdom of society "stick" in the brains of our future generation.

Technology is developing so quickly that accessing external sources of information (hello Google) is sometimes more effective than taking time to memorize something. Why bother to learn xyz fact that will change in a year? Yes, the connectivist has a place in high school and college education. But don't expect to use Google on your GRE exams.

You know what else would help improve our schools?

Administrators need to be free to recruit (pay) great teachers. On the flip side, schools must be free to cut and burn the standing dead wood in America's classrooms.

Free market economics again. Free the administrators to make personnel decisions based on who gets the job done. Some teachers simply get better results than others. And some teachers have expertise in subjects that are in great demand. Let's pay them!

Teacher unions and the federal government share the responsibility for fixing this problem. It will take a courageous reform effort with a strong leader. Obviously, I'm more Ron Paul than Kucinich on this issue.

But that is mainly due to the fact that teacher unions have become so successful that they have no incentive to improve. The government must provide that incentive in the form of free school choice for all students. I still think Dennis is the man!

"Stupid In America" on 20/20

Warning: Tabloid TV. This 'aint PBS. Yet...

The portrayal of high academic standards and school choice in European nations is sensationalized but makes a few valid arguments. It seems that America is so absorbed with equal education for the masses that we have neglected to provide a rigorous, competitive school system.

Don't get me wrong, compulsory education is in the public interest. But why are students compelled to attend inadequate and ineffective schools?

Students that have the freedom to choose which school will not attend poor schools. Simple market economics. The worst schools in America simply would not exist if we didn't force students to attend them.

How about opening up all public schools to lottery admission? What do you think?

Tuesday, November 13, 2007

Teacher won't be punished for killing raccoon with a nail gun

I found this hilarious story on The Obscure Store and Reading Room. But the comments are even better. Soo's comment just became be my new email sig:

oh sure, they let the teacher get away with killing a racoon with a nail gun. but we all know that if he had killed a nail gun with a racoon he would be getting fired. this is obviously a case of nail gunism.

Maybe I've been spending too much time over on History Is A Weapon this week. Or maybe it's because I listened to This American Life's story on Harold Washington this afternoon. But that 'racoon' comment killed me.

Friday, November 9, 2007

How to Improve No Child Left Behind

Sean Gonsalves offers an opinion on How to Improve No Child Left Behind.

Here's my code (idea): before any new fill-in-the-bubble crazy NCLB legislation is considered, let's develop a test that measures multiple intelligences and think up a way to identify teachers’ teaching styles. Then, parents and teachers would have a better way to assess and adjust long-term learning plans that should be required for every student entering elementary school, matching them with the appropriate teaching styles along the way.

I think Mr. Gonsalves is saying that success is not defined by a paper-pencil test. He is saying that we need to be aware of teaching and learning styles and adapt the curriculum to the diverse needs of students.

Sure, almost every student can be trained to pass a paper-pencil test. The tests are not difficult so what is the big deal? Shouldn't all students meet a minimum level of proficiency?

The problem arises when school districts emphasize paper-pencil skills to the exclusion of a well-rounded education. Too many schools have let the NCLB tests cloud their vision and narrow their focus.

Multiple intelligences have been well-studied, but not well-funded in schools. Do we have money for extra physical education teachers? How about music? Foreign language? Industrial arts? Counselors? How can we teach all children if we don't allow for all of their differences?

Matching students to their areas of interest will stimulate and engage them in all classes. Numerous studies and research support addressing multiple intelligences as a means to improving academic achievement. Don't take my word for it, just go to Google Scholar and type "multiple intelligences" "improve academic achievement" with quotes.

Now go out and support a presidential candidate who supports equal education opportunities for all students.

Alaska Youth for Environmental Action (AYEA)

Cheryl Lockwood testified before congress and drew the ire of Rush Limbaugh last Monday. The Anchorage Daily News reported the story and the Fairbanks Daily News Miner followed with this report. The Alaskan newspapers found several inaccuracies in Rush's radio commentary.

As a side note, the AYEA Youth Employment in Parks program provided two of my students with summer jobs. They maintained trails and parks in Anchorage, earning money and learning to care for the environment. So I'm biased because AYEA is doing good things for youth.

But that's not all. I'm also biased because I live in Alaska and study global warming issues. And because oil emissions erode my beach and melt my permafrost. And oil wars kill my friends. And oil spills bankrupt Alaskan fishermen.

Yes, Alaskan oil is fills my bank account with a PFD every year. That is great! But oil won't last forever. Rising gas prices (and increased electricity and heating costs) are outpacing my wage increases and lowering my standard of living. What will the future hold?

Alaskans live with the effects of a changing climate. So we see the importance of transitioning to cleaner energy and making that energy profitable. Longterm. As in the next hundred years plus.

The Geophysical Institute at UAF is researching these issues and more. Scientists and students are paid to be objective. They are dedicated to open-minded examination of the facts and identifying solutions to the problem.

But Rush Limbaugh, not so much. I think he's blinded by his own short-term popularity. He only sees the Republican side of issues and takes every opportunity to belittle those that disagree.

Rush ignores scientific research and ridicules environmental activists. With no room for intelligent conversation or scientific objectivism.

No doubt, this is a good way for Rush to sell airtime. Rush even responded to ADN's report on his radio show.

The sad thing is that America buys it. And the cost is our great grand-children's environment. Such a travesty. It's no wonder that some people are moved to tears.

The 2007 Weblog Awards

The 2007 Weblog Award winners were posted this morning. I spent about 2 hours surfing around and added a few more URLs to my RSS reader.

Most of the winners got thousands of votes by virtue of their popularity. But the lesser-known runners up write great blogs too.

So don't forget to check out some of the finalists in each category. You are sure to find something that strikes your fancy.

Wednesday, November 7, 2007

We're 64!

Anchorage comes in at 64 on the list of Top 101 biggest cities of 2006.

By way of comparison, our population is greater than Buffalo NY, St. Petersburg MN, Norfolk VA, New Orleans LA, Baton Rouge LA, or Birmingham AL to name a few.

Anchorage seems so much smaller than the DC Metro area in which I was raised. It was surprising to find that we outrank other major metropolitan areas, some of which support professional sports teams.

I also found 4 Alaskan cities among the 100 shortest commuting times and 2 cities among the 100 longest commutes.

Of course, Alaska is large, but looking at the list of largest land area puts that fact in perspective. 24 cities in Alaska are in the top 100. And Alaska has the 3 largest cities in terms of land area.

Another interesting fact, Eielson AFB (near Fairbanks) is on the list of youngest cities and highest percentage of renters.

You can check out the Top 100 and Top 101 lists at Perusing the lists certainly piqued my interest.

Know any good websites with demographic maps, graphs or statistics?

Monday, November 5, 2007


Today I started sending boosts to students in my advisory group.

BoostUp provides positive encouragement for young people to graduate from high school. The site follows ten seniors on their path to graduation. Each student contributes videos and stories to encourage others. They even make TV commercials like this one.

Do you know any high school students? Why not send him or her a boost?

Sunday, November 4, 2007

All about Hannah my BFF

Today my BFF Hannah is coming. BFF means best friend for ever! Do you like Halloween? I do! Is it fun?

To Hannah: Choclate kiss to comfort you when you are sad. A sticker to remind you that we will all stick together and help each other. The penny to remind you that you are valuable and special. A band-aid to heal hurt feelings in your friends and yourself. An eraser to remind you that everybody makes mistakes and that's okay. Finally, a pencil so you can do things like explore your mind.

The Boy With The Incredible Brain

The Boy With The Incredible Brain is a fascinating documentary of Daniel Trammet. Ever heard of him?

Mr. Trammet is a savant who sees numbers as colored shapes and emotions. He is amazing for his mathematical and linguistic talents; he does huge calculations, performs feats of memory, and learns a language in 7 days.

Equally remarkable is that Mr. Trammet is willing and able to share himself with science. Some scientists believe that, by research, they can unlock similar abilities in everyone.

Mr. Trammet's ability developed after experiencing childhood seizures. What happened in his brain that made him so different from the rest of us? Is he a Hero?

But seriously, what would the world be like if humans developed super-intelligence? Would there be a race of ruling elite? Would greater intelligence serve the greater good?

Friday, November 2, 2007

Teacher's test protest leads to reprimand

On Tuesday, a Wisconsin teacher refused to administer a test mandated by the No Child Left Behind Act. David Wasserman received a letter of reprimand and will be fired if he refuses to administer the test again.

Now I don't know if Mr. Wasserman was standing on principle or just slacking off. But his actions set a terrible example for students.

Civil disobedience and intelligent discourse have their place in society. But Mr. Wasserman didn't have the moral high ground. His protest ended quickly and he was back to proctoring a test on Thursday. This was a mere publicity stunt, at best.

If you decide to make a protest, PLEASE do it with positive actions and words. Do NOT let your protest be one of inaction and insubordination. Choose your cause wisely and be willing to follow through.

Thursday, November 1, 2007

Undefeated football teams in week 9

Time to talk smack.

Sure the Pats and Colts are unbeaten but one of them will lose. My fantasy football team is also undefeated and going to stay that way.

Gibbs' Comeback is looking great for the rest of the season and into the playoffs. I love this roster! I like my chances with Romo, MJD, Edwards, and Edgerrin racking up 15-20 points each. And the SD defense has been HUGE lately.

The supporting cast of Evans and Davis is coming on strong and Santonio makes a big play every couple weeks. Brown is a good kicker with a weak schedule and no-touchdown Alexander in the backfield. In all, GC is a consistent, well-balanced squad. No holes in the stat sheet at all.

I'm keeping Gore, Johnson, and Favre on the bench for insurance. They can fill in for injuries or if the matchup is right. Driver, Muhsin, and Skins D are just an afterthought. But their spots might be useful if someone else shows up on the waiver wire.

No matter what happens, GC will win 'em all this year!

How's that for smack?