Tuesday, December 18, 2007

Big Families

A friend recently introduced me to the quiverfull lifestyle. She's been researching religion and read about these families during her research. If you don't know, this is a Christian based philosophy for child-bearing and life. They believe that every child is a gift from God, hence any type of birth control or family planning is shunned and against the will of God.

According to wikipedia, the movement was sparked most fully after the 1985 publication of Mary Pride’s book The Way Home: Beyond Feminism, Back to Reality. In her book, Pride chronicled her journey away from what she stated were feminist and anti-natal ideas of happiness, within which she had lived as an activist before her conversion to conservative evangelical Christianity in 1977, toward her discovery of happiness surrounding what she said was the Biblically mandated role of wives and mothers as bearers of children and workers in the home under the authority of a husband. Pride wrote that such a lifestyle was generally Biblically required of all married Christian women but that most Christian women had been unknowingly duped by feminism, importantly in their acceptance of birth control.

As the basis for her arguments, Pride selected numerous Bible verses to lay out what she felt was the Biblical role of women. These included verses she saw as containing her ideas of childbearing and non-usage of birth control, which she argued were opposed to what she called "the feminist agenda" by which she had formerly lived. Pride's explanations became a spearheading basis of Quiverfull.

Families following these practices are inclined to practice homeschooling, homesteading in a rural area, and homechurching (or whatever it's called).

If you do some research on the internet you can find many historically transfixed large families. The smiling faces disregard the potential pitfalls and dangers to women in these families. What happens when you give birth to 8, 12, or 17 children? Andrea Yates, the mother who drowned her five children in the bathtub allegedly followed the quiverfull teachings.

However horrible the Yates story, there seems to be many happy quiverfull families. Jim Bob and Michelle Duggar have been featured multiple times on television. They have 17 children, the first born in 1988, the last this summer. The Crank family have six children and a magazine. They discuss important issues in each installment, like the importance of girls wearing long dresses and whether it's a parent's role to begin the courtship/marriage process for the child.

I think it's interesting reading, but I'm not going to start popping out babies like PEZ anytime soon.

Wednesday, November 28, 2007

Would you do this?

Given that a team of professional make-up artists, photo airbrushers, and stylists would be at your disposal, would you strip down and say cheese?

Sunday, November 11, 2007

Guess we should start saving now

Tonight Scarlett told me she was getting married.

"Really?" I asked. "Who will you marry?"

"Caroline," she said. "We got married last night."

I have no idea where "married" came from, but it sure caught me off guard. I suppose it's not the time to explain that our government doesn't allow same sex marriages.

Tuesday, November 6, 2007

Halloween Trick or Treating

Scarlett hit the streets as a beautiful Tinker Bell with her friends.

Halloween Party

This year we made a trip through the looking glass and worked the wonderland.

AESA Pictures

Thanks for the fun conference Ladies!

SC and Browntown

Here are some pictures from our trip to South Carolina.

Pumpkin Farm

In late September we visited the pumpkin farm. Check out the difference a year makes.

Nana and Papaw visit

Scarlett took her Nana and Papaw to the Museum of Life and Science for a day of fun.

First Day of School

Just loaded some pictures on to the computer and though I would share. This was Scarlett's first day at school.

Sunday, November 4, 2007

Wednesday, October 31, 2007

Some people are mean

and that's about it.

For those of you on the border, check out some of the writings of Nel Noddings. She does work in the "ethic of caring". Although I don't agree with some of her major points, her respect for humanity and the earth is astounding.

Also, I want to take a moment to urge you to also consider the concept of democratic schooling. Michael Apple, Henry Giroux, and Paulo Freire would ask you to question your blind acceptance in the current structure of schooling.


1. Epistemological.What should count as knowledge? As knowing? Should we take a behavioral position and one that divides knowledge and knowing into cognitive, affective, and psycho-motor areas, or do we need a less reductive and more integrated picture of knowledge and the mind, one that stresses knowledge as process?

2. Political. Who shall control the selection and distribution of knowledge? Through what institutions?

3. Economic. How is the control of knowledge linked to the existing and unequal distribution of power, goods, and services in society?

4. Ideological. What knowledge is of most worth? Whose knowledge is it?

5. Technical. How shall curricular knowledge be made accessible to students?

6. Aesthetics. How do we link the curriculum knowledge to the biography and person meanings of the student? How do we act "artfully" as curriculum designers and teachers in doing this?

7. Ethical. How shall we treat others responsibly and justly in education? What ideas of moral conduct and community serve as the underpinnings of the ways students and teachers are treated?

8. Historical. What traditions in the field already exist to help us answer these questions? What other resources do we need to go further?

It's funny that some of the rudest, selfish, narrow minded people are those that are the least informed. Is your ability to diagram sentences really a reflection of your abilities? If that's all you've got, you're fucked.

One more thing, if Ann Coulter would become a scientologist, I think my fantasy baseball team would be complete.

Monday, October 29, 2007

Conference presentation

I just returned from the American Educational Studies Association conference in Cleveland, Ohio. While I attended other academic conferences last year, this was my first conference as a presenter. To say that I was anxious, nervous, and scared is the tip of my emotional iceberg prior to my presentation. My session started at 8:30AM on Friday morning. Consequently, the UNC social (bar crawl) began at 8PM on Thursday. My roommates wandered back to the room around 1AM, but I was in bed early. I just couldn’t party and network on an anxious stomach.

The presentation went better than I expected. If I may, I rocked socks! Attendees requested my paper and I received many compliments on my work and presentation style.

I’m looking forward to my next foray into the academy. My article is being published in a book edited by Paula Groves Price at Washington State University.

Here’s my article abstract:

Anna Todd, “Nice white teacher: The role of racial representations in popular culture and teacher education” University of North Carolina at Chapel Hill, 2007.

This article examines the impact of the film Freedom Writers on the racial identities of white female teachers. By using Critical Race Theory, I examine the place of “white allies” and “colorblindness” (Cochran-Smith, 1995) in the film. Using Stuart Hall’s definitions of preferred, negotiated, and oppositional readings, I will analyze the figure of the “white female teacher” (1980). Henry Giroux conceptualizes popular culture texts as “public pedagogies” (2003), meaning that they “work pedagogically to legitimate some meanings, invite particular desires, and exclude others“ (pp.78). Freedom Writers is a recent popular culture text that constructs a representation of a young white female teacher. By analyzing scenes from the film and using a critical race lens, I examine how popular culture can be used to address race in teacher education, and the potential pitfalls. This article considers the power of media texts in the formation of teacher identity and race roles in education. I propose that this critique can be used as a pedagogical strategy for engaging pre-service teachers of all teaching levels in critical discussions of race and identity.

So hey now

Warning Statistics rant:

If you're in my statistics class and you talk through the majority of the class, do me a favor and zip it. I don't really care about your favorite cartoon as a child or what you did over the weekend. Couldn't you just text message each other? We already know you're not paying attention, you could do it silently. It's not just me. Don't you notice the ladies in the front that turn around and beam you with their cold eyes? Someone three rows over was ready to throw a shoe at you today.

You better wake up...I'd hate to have to pull off my size nine.

Tuesday, October 16, 2007

Seriously Utah?

Utah, our spike is bigger than yours. A state that envies Florida's phallic grandeur.

Monday, October 15, 2007

Motorcycle airbag jacket

Read this article in Stats...this jacket is pretty neato. Buy one for your favorite motorcycle rider.

Thursday, October 11, 2007

If you're reading this

tell me again why I'm busting my eyeballs reading? I estimate that I need to read my weight in articles in order to get caught up for Grossberg and ready for Cleveland. There must be a young, perhaps in the blastocyst stage, cynic out there waiting for my future wisdom.

Oh, one other thing...

Hey Dude-in-the-Oversized-Red-Truck-

When I'm enjoying my vintage Stevie Wonder with his sweet electric funk, don't turn up your weak ass psuedo country in competition. You cannot compete with the Wonder! Suck it.

Wish I had seriously never

learned about split infinitives. It's like this splinter that keeps me from enjoying life. I want to really forget. Perhaps I can forever protest that prescriptive grammar.

Thursday, October 4, 2007

Ann Coulter is a crazy fucktard

as if you didn't already know. Here's a recent quote...

“If we took away women’s right to vote, we’d never have to worry about another Democrat president. It’s kind of a pipe dream, it’s a personal fantasy of mine, but I don’t think it’s going to happen. And it is a good way of making the point that women are voting so stupidly, at least single women. It also makes the point, it is kind of embarrassing, the Democratic Party ought to be hanging its head in shame, that it has so much difficulty getting men to vote for it. I mean, you do see it’s the party of women and ‘We’ll pay for health care and tuition and day care — and here, what else can we give you, soccer moms?’”

Tuesday, October 2, 2007

Absurd moments of joy

You may not realize it, but I'm a happy person. However, don't call me out or make me prove my happiness to you. In a recent conversation about moments of joy, someone asked "what makes you happy?" and "where do you find joy?" My innate response to this line of questioning is resistance. I have answers to these questions, but how can I share my joys with a group of strangers?

The knotty oak outside my office window makes me happy. I gaze into the craggy bark and fantasize about the scholar seeking respite by the trunk and the lovers sheltered from the sun. The tree has a history a life...it's beautiful.

This morning I was attacked by a gang of two year-olds pretending to be lady bugs. As I tickled my way free from the miniature bandits, I seized upon their joy. This made me happy. Even more so, my own daughter sat back and worked on a puzzle while I played with the others. She seemed content to let them play with her mom. Her self-reliance makes me happy.

Climbing the stairs to my office, I pass a guy carrying a book bag, a diaper bag, and a baby in a sling. WOW! That was great. He said hi and I remarked, "Oh, hey baby," in my best happy mommy tone.

And yes, if you must have one more...bunnies make me happy. Will knows. I see a bunny and chirp, "ahh, a bunny!" Here's a conversation from today with an undisclosed person...

me: on the upside, bunnies make me happy

person: why you hatin'

me: bunnies are fun.

person: i like carrying their feet on my keys

me: no, bunnies really do make me happy
k and I were discussing it this morning
i like rabbits
they seem so happy, but i think they're really french
they smoke cigarettes when you aren't looking
and scoff at your art and sense of style

person: damn rabbits

I've got so much joy, you just don't know. I'm fortunate and happy, a little crazy, but that makes me fun.

I like

bad dancing
petty theft
drunken laughter
my daughter
& that guy I live with
happy babies
polite men
watering plants
falling leaves
blooming trees
cop clothes
teacher glasses
friends that know what you're thinking
& friends that know when to leave you alone
that show californication
david duchovny
military uniforms
celebrity magazines
personalized stuff
bike riding
warm water
being pregnant
the smell of books
my daughter's hair
crying at movies
french onion soup
moose tracks ice cream
making pizza
road trips
the zoo
the silence of snow
making people laugh
will's beard
reading the newspaper
shopping at thrift stores
refinishing furniture
mowing the grass
the upper west side
the fact that Will and I can spend every minute of the day together and still smile
walking across campus
the cafe in the Met
pepper on my poppykash
that every year gets better than the last.

Thursday, September 27, 2007

Movies for a laugh and a cry

I'm catching up on some movies and here are two I recently watched...Pan's Labyrinth and Knocked Up. Two very different different films, but I loved both of them.

Pan's Labyrinth unfolds in Franco's Spain and depicts the life of a dreamy little girl, Ofelia. Her mother has recently remarried a captain in the army and relocated them to an isolated mountain fort. Ofelia encounters a wealth of frightening characters in her gothic fairy tale world and her unfortunate reality. Like previous fantasy political stories, i.e. Alice in Wonderland, Pan's Labyrinth offers a critique of humanity through a child's eye. Ofelia retreats to her fantasy world to cope with the horror of her reality. I love this movie. Caution: the film is grotesque and cruel at times

On the lighter side

I think I wrote some of the scenes in Knocked Up. Tina, Will, and Scarlett were all in this film. One scene has the two female leads, Allison (preggers) and her sister going out to a club.

Tina...this ones for you.... As the ladies strike up a conversation with some fellas, Allison quickly points out that her sister is married and has two kids. It's funny if you cruised on the fun ship.

Me...um, well. Excuse me if I want to protect our child from pedophiles and ... mercury. Does that make me a bitch?

Will... I know it's not you saying all this crazy shit, I know it's your hormones. So I just want to say, "fuck you hormones, fuck you".

The movie is so funny...you're not god, you're just a doorman, doorman. With the follow up of "Don't get me wrong, I would tap that fine ass. I would bust it up, but you're old as shit and she's pregnant. I can't go around letting old bitches and pregnant women into the club."

I love this movie. I laughed through the beginning and cried at the end. Funny.

Monday, September 24, 2007

Are you there God? It's me, Anna.

Dear Diary-


Today I
made an ass of myself, every 15 minutes.



-took me 15
minutes to figure out with 6 year old shirt to wear…only to end up looking like
a 1978 Denny’s server

-left too
late to serve myself coffee

my boundaries at a conference with some students (note to self: don’t
contradict the professor)

to my car make strange noises and called to get an appointment at the dealer

through stats with a blank look and sweated through my Denny’s uniform

-found out
I did the first question of the homework incorrectly, yet another reason not to
hand it in



-ordered a
beautiful bowl of soup (height of my day, really)

reprimanded for ordering office furniture…furniture that I listed and approved
to my coordinator prior to ordering…go figure, perhaps its nothing but sticker

-met with
reading group and fumbled my way through a big steaming pile of crap

-I’m sorry
if I was a little too frazzled to recount Hall’s definition of articulation,
seriously sir



sat through class disgusted by my muffin top… Will calls it a pizza crust

through Grossberg’s three hour lecture and cursed the lack of a toilet on the 3rd

-decided my
demeanor and physical being were not ready to Stone’s class and emailed her to
let her know I would be heading home early

to car…started car…no air conditioning

-turned by
AC on and of, on and of, until  it
finally started to blow cold

-drove to
one stoplight away from Scarlett’s school and my car stopped working (really,
it just woudn’t go, still ran, air blowing HOT, gas pedal doing nothing)

-sat there
in amazement…called VW and Will

passes, car starts and make it to the school parking lot and dies again



-watched my
beautiful car get towed

dropped me off by the mailbox at the bottom of the driveway

around the truck and got run over (ok, so he only bumped me with the SUV)


I laughed
halfway up the driveway and then busted up.  Tears and big ugly cry for all the neighbors to see.style="mso-spacerun: yes"> 
What a strange day!style="mso-spacerun: yes"> 


To make it
up for me my hubby pulled out my yoga pants (for the pizza crust), a beer, and
shoulder rub.  Perhaps I can get a
pedicure out of it too.


Sunday, September 23, 2007

Halloween costume countdown...

Scarlett and I are debating halloween costumes. She wants me to be a kitty cat and she wants to be a fairy...like Tinkerbell. Here's a review of her past two years.

Monday, September 17, 2007


makes me want to be a bartender. I spend my mornings with Dr. W reinforcing that there's pure truth out there and my afternoons with the exceptionally brilliant Dr. G announcing that post modernism allows no purity. Yikes.

Sunday, September 16, 2007

MoBo fun

This is interesting. I stumbled upon a beefcake calendar full of Mormon Boys. You can also buy tshirts...with your favorite Mormon logos.

Friday, September 7, 2007

The terror of tiny town

Aunt Marjorie passed away this week. I miss her wit...and her cackle. I'll never forget the Terror of Tiny Town (age 9), the rumble seat story (age 13), and the time she took me to a bar (age 16).

Make them laugh lady, make them laugh.

**Oh...don't smoke!

free chicken sandwich

and a coke


oh, Monster coming!

View...thanks Amy

Stealing an idea from my fellow mafia member Amy, here's the view from my office.

Thursday, September 6, 2007

Regina Spektor

I feel better, bettah, beddah, bettah, betah, beddaaaaaaahhhhhhhhhh.


Does Tom Cruise sell vitamins?

Today is not a good day.

It’s sunny and warm, but I have to admit, I yearn for rain. Even better would a nice thick rolling layer of fog. I can’t shake this funk, but let’s face it, I’m not trying to, either. Scarlett is in school, an expensive daily retreat, and she’s doing fine. Perhaps this is my way of not worrying about her. I don’t know, I’m indecisive and I hate it. Sometimes I wonder if these short moments of clarity, moments when I realize how much I suck, present themselves because the cloud of medication thins. I don’t want this…I don’t want to take medication to only sometimes feel worthy of natural resources. What’s the point? Dulling my wits doesn’t do much except piss me off and make me feel dumb. Perhaps it’s graduate school. I’m not sure I could have more to do in a week. Of the 500 pages I’m supposed to read for ONE of my classes, I currently on page 10. I could vomit thinking about my shortcomings in academia. I’m a phony, I can’t produce, I’m not a capable writer. I know why Hemingway drinks. I don’t compare mine to his salty text. I’m eating sushi with my fingers because I forgot a fork or chopsticks, of which I probably couldn’t decide. I hate myself for not flying. My doctor prescribes meds, again, to ease the anxiety produced by that thin metal tube of death, but I probably still won’t fly. I can’t be medicated for a month until the trip. I want to tell you not to read this, but who am I kidding? I’m disgusted with myself and my inadequacies so why shouldn’t you know? You hate me because I seem so cynical, sarcastic, snobby, and whatever else, but who are you kidding? You don’t really know me, how I feel, what I do, how my daughter looks at me. I wonder if she thinks I’m a phony? I hate that I obsess. I’m sick of critiquing my choices, second guessing myself. I spent thirty minutes today wandering the aisles of the bookstore choosing between two different calendars that I don’t really need because I have a pda. I have to see my schedule, write it, list my to-dos and obsess. There is no possible way I can spend the rest of my life like this. At some point this relentless list of what I NEED to do has got to stop. I’m tired of it. I just want to be able to go out and work and learn and play and be without all of this garbage that continually pops up in my head. I am so tired of NEEDING to get things done. I write this with the full realization that I have the inability to have nothing to do. Perhaps I’m destined to be unhappy…except where Scarlett is concerned. She makes me happy. She is my sanity, but that’s too much to ask from a child. She needs to be able to live her life for herself and not because I need her to be happy. If that makes sense. You’re judging me, I know you are. Is that what I have to look forward to the rest of my life? Being judged? I know people don’t care whether I buy the weekly planner or the monthly planner, but I know there is a tally. Someone sees the chipped nail polish, the roots. Someone reads the weak writing, hears the mispronunciation. Why can’t I just let this shit go? Now you’re lost in the rambling. The punctuation cluster fuck that is this writing. You’re going to hold me to this. Look at me with those eyes that read my pain and see me as a forlorn self-obsessed loon. When I’m happy tomorrow, you won’t understand.

Sunday, August 19, 2007

So nevermind the witches, vampires, and whips

Anne Rice, the prolific occult writing, is a born again Christian. She explains why she won't denounce her previous novels on her website, but she fails to address the naughtiest of them all, the Sleeping Beauty series...interesting. I suppose it's difficult to put a Christian spin on S&M.


Got offered an assistantship with the RTSP. Now I'm eating crow for being so bitter, but happy as a clam that I'm working again.

Friday, August 17, 2007

Yo gabba gabba

Jen made a comment about a character on the show...this is the guy. HHmmm, what does he look like to you?

Wednesday, August 15, 2007

The kids are not all right

Um, what were they thinking? I have found my new profession...creating craptastic shows for kids.

It's called Yo Gabba Gabba, in case you didn't guess from the song. Warning, the second clip with stay with you for days.

Tuesday, August 14, 2007

Back from Block Island and Manhattan

What a fantastic trip! Will, Scarlett, and I drove to Connecticut and then on to Rhode Island where we met up with our friends Ryan and Berkeley. We hit the ferry and cruised to Block Island for a fabulous week of beach, bicycle, fog, and New England island life. It was definitely different than the island life from my past. The island has cliffs, lighthouses, and creepy/beautiful old homes and hotels.

Scarlett threw rocks into the ocean (a favorite pasttime), swam in cold water, and buried Ryan in the sand. I think we managed to eat ice cream every night...hello tummy. Oh, and I saw

We left Rhode Island on Friday and headed to see Tina in New York. Our stay at Le Parker Meridien was great. The hotel is just south of the park...before all the Times Square hustle. We spent an entire morning playing in central park with Tina. Paul and Sterling, friends from NC, recently moved to NYC and we met up for dinner. I also had a chance to meet Tina's Chicago friend Luke...what a character. He knows so any bartenders...lucky us.

Here's a link to all the photos...including the ugly naked guy. Looking forward to our next adventure.