Tuesday, August 17, 2010

Life's Grand Adventures

My dear friend, Brooke, sent this quote to me as hubby, daughter and I are a day away from embarking on a new journey in a new town. It is the perfect expression of what I need to remember:

"Your problem is how you are going to spend this one and precious life you have been issued. Whether you're going to spend it trying to look good and creating the illusion that you have power over circumstances, or whether you are going to taste it, enjoy it and find out the truth about who you are.

From her graduation commencement address to Berkeley."
— Anne Lamott

At what time have you ventured into something, not at all certain of its outcome and left behind what was certain, comfortable and good in the hopes of something life altering?

Friday, August 13, 2010

Customer Service Angst

At dinner tonight hubby and I were discussing the Jet Blue flight attendant who recently made headlines for his response to a difficult passenger. As I've read, the flight attendant got on the loudspeaker of a flight, said some choice words, grabbed 2 beers and exited the plane via the emergency chute.

Hubby and I chatted with our server a bit about dealing with difficult customers and I was impressed by his response. Our server stated that he represents the restaurant and doesn't express his frustration. He is there to make sure customers come back, but should a person, even if it is their job, be expected to take some of the abuse that is doled out to them? What is the appropriate response when you are there to provide customer service to someone who is treating you, you a person, poorly?

Also, I was dismayed to hear that this server often receives tips of only 10%. That is insulting.

Wednesday, August 11, 2010

Marriage Styles

Oscar Wilde is one of my favorite authors, so here goes the first of what I'm sure will be many quotes of his: People who love only once in their lives are. . . shallow people. What they call their loyalty, and their fidelity, I call either the lethargy of custom or their lack of imagination. Oscar Wilde

I finished the book, Lost Boy, yesterday, about the author's experience growing up in a polygamous family on a compound in Utah. Unfortunately, he suffered severe abuse by the leader of the fundamentalist religion, as did other members of his family. Horrible.

However, it makes me wonder if polygamy can ever work. This question is also spawned by the recent discussions of allowing same-sex couples to legally marry, which some say will lead to the legalization of polygamous marriages in the U.S.

Regarding polygamy, the biggest problem with it seems to be the issue of underage girls being involved and whether or not choosing a polygamous lifestyle is really a choice. If those factors were not an issue, if the persons marrying were consenting with their full capacities and not having more children than can be provided for financially, emotionally and physically, I'd be fine with it.

However, our idea of plural marriage usually exists of one man with multiple wives. Plural marriage could be one woman with multiple husbands or same-sex couples (multiple men/women married to one another).

If I am open to marriages that differ from my own in the circumstance of same-sex marriage, shouldn't I be open to the possibility that a polygamous marriage could work as well?

*Again, I do not condone any marriage of any person who is forced or coerced into the relationship and not fully aware of the choice they are making - although, really, who knows EXACTLY what they are doing when they take the plunge?

Tuesday, August 10, 2010

New Blog - New School Year

I'm going to jump right in and get this blog going. Today's quote:

If a child can't learn the way we teach, maybe we should teach the way they learn. Ignacio Estrada

As the new school year approaches I'm thinking about education, teachers, students and of course my own child who will soon be entering 5th grade.

We are in the process of moving from Utah to Michigan (hence the new blog as my previous one was based on my observations of life in "The Beehive State"). When we arrive in Michigan, our daughter will have the opportunity to visit a few schools and as a family, we will decide which school seems like the best fit for her - emphasis on those last two words.

I do not expect a teacher to teach a lesson 30 different ways, but I do expect a teacher to be willing to adjust their expectations based on their students' abilities. I expect teachers to have the freedom to teach in a way that demonstrates their gifts and personal style, while realizing that not all students will respond positively to their methods.

I hope teachers and parents will weigh in. What do you value in your current school (teachers) or your child's current school? What is your biggest frustration in education?