Schools Need to Teach Common Sense Along with Math and English.


Say What You Want... These Guys Are Go Getters.Public education has changed in the last 5 years.

Government has done a good (please feel free to replace good with poor, less than adequate, terrible, dreadful, completely appalling, or pathetic) job at dictating what curriculum schools must teach.

I believe that educators need guidelines in the area of curriculum, but there is something that we should be mandated to teach; yet it continues to be overlooked.

Common sense.

English, math, and science are important areas for students to master. But isn’t common sense an even more important skill to learn before graduates head off into the world?

I believe that most people think you are either born with common sense or you are not. You have the gift or you don’t. It is not something that can be learned.

I disagree.

I think it is time that schools recognize the importance of teaching this skill. We must do a better job of preparing our students for the future.

Why is this so important?

We are teaching a generation that is going to take care of me in a nursing home one day in the near future, and their poor judgment frightens me. I want to make sure the person changing my diaper has a good head on their shoulders.

We have to find the time in school schedules to teach common sense.

Our country can’t continue to parade students through graduation ceremonies who lack this basic skill.

Examples of our societies pathetic mastery of common sense is all around us.

We live in a world where people buy bottled water. Why? Walk over to the sink and turn on the faucet. It is the same water. And it’s free (basically free, don’t email).

Just because they put a mountain on the label doesn’t mean the water is from some mystical mountain spring.

It doesn’t come from Colorado; it comes from a garden hose in a factory in New Jersey. And I am willing to bet the guy running the hose hasn’t even washed his hands.

If more people had common sense they would notice that EVIAN spelled backwards is NAIVE.

If that isn’t enough to convince you to join my movement to add a Common Sense Class to every school curriculum, I have more.

My truck’s service manual says to change the oil every 5,000 miles. So why is it that I change it every 3,000 miles? The answer is that I have no common sense.

Actually, I do this because some 17 year old kid with grease all over his shirt (with his name above the pocket) puts a sticker on my windshield. I must follow his directions, or my truck engine will blow up. I have no common sense.

Lack of common sense mistakes are all around us.

Neck tattoos. Why do people think these will stand the test of time? My ties look out of style in 9 months. A tattoo of Bugs Bunny on the side of your head doesn’t show much common sense (or fashion sense).

The buying of houses that are too big and unaffordable is yet another example. Who needs 5 bathrooms, and more importantly who is going to clean them? Just because your friends have a brand new house doesn’t mean you need one. Use some common sense.

Americans are not taking care of their health. We spend trillions of dollars fighting illnesses. Why don’t we spend that money on prevention instead of trying to cure what has already happened? No common sense.

As soon as you’re done reading this, put down the donut and take a walk.

People are making more and more mistakes that prove our lack of common sense skills.

We don’t save enough of our paychecks for a rainy day. We put what should be embarrassing pictures of ourselves on MySpace. We spend time watching Brittany Spears’s life go into the dumpster instead of reading a book.

We buy permanent life insurance when term life is what we need. We supersize our fast food meals, simply because it seems cheaper (with no regard to its effect on our impending death).

We waste time watching TV or reading blogs instead of something more productive (okay bad example… I do love that Mike Rowe).

Schools have to step forward and save us from ourselves. We can be taught common sense and we can’t afford to wait.

In education we feed kids twice a day, look after their health, teach them to drive, help them get into college, provide extracurricular opportunities, discipline them, and test them and then test them some more.

Surely, we have time to teach common sense. We have to do this for the good of society.

And more importantly we must do this for my sake.

I am not getting any younger. Every day I am inching closer to that nursing home.

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Skiing Part III: Everytime I Drive by Dairy Queen, I Flinch.


This is My Normal Order at Dairy Queen.  And a Small Diet Coke.Skiing is over for the winter. And possibly forever.

I have had enough. Actually, that is a lie. I love it. My body has had enough.

This includes most of the important parts such as; my back, my knees, my hips, and whatever else hits the ground when the rest of me goes airborne (actually, the flying through the air isn’t that bad, but I do dread the landings).

Crashing isn’t fun. Thankfully, the blows to the head have pretty much ruined my short term memory.

Thankfully, the blows to the head have pretty much ruined my short term memory (did I just say that, I can’t remember).

The trip got off to a shaky start and then went downhill from there (sorry, I couldn’t resist).

The in-laws having luggage troubles was the least of our problems.

You ask, what could possibly be worse than lost luggage? Well lots of things including; world hunger, the polar ice caps melting, too many TV shows about tattoos, but let’s focus on my troubles.

Halfway through our trip we ended up in a blizzard. And not the kind from Dairy Queen that is never as thick as advertised (they should have a money back guarantee).

Let’s be honest, I am not a young administrator anymore, so I have seen a few things over the course of my career. In theory, being out in a blizzard should be a piece of cake compared to a Monday morning at school (only thing worse… a full-moon Monday).

The question is why was I outside during a blizzard?

I wish I had a good answer. I wish I had any answer.

The ice storm that preceded the blizzard should have been a subtle hint to stay off the slopes.

Actually, my first clue should have come the night before when the local weatherman said, “Anyone going outside during the blizzard is a total and complete moron”.

This may not be exactly what he said, but it was definitely implied.

I heard his advice, I just didn’t take it (and this was when I still liked weathermen).

Overnight we got 19 inches of ice and another 35 feet of snow (I am guesstimating here, work with me), so naturally we decided to go outside and ski.

By we, I mean me and my father-in-law. Every other intelligent human being within 106 miles made the decision to stay indoors (you may say they were smart, I prefer the term soft).

This group included my wife, unemployed child, and always hungry mother-in-law who all felt that skiing in a blizzard was a bad idea.

My father-in-law who had no luggage, clothes, books to read, swim trunks, underwear, or… you get the point, was more than happy to brave the elements. The man didn’t latch the tailgate… he had nothing to do…let’s not judge… it is time to move on.

So, we headed out into the glorious and beautiful day. By glorious and beautiful, I mean crappy and life endangering.

We headed straight into the mouth of the blizzard, but what could possibly go wrong.

Well, in retrospect a couple of things. One, ski lift seats get slick when covered with ice. This little tid bit of information sure would have come in handy a few seconds before I sat down.

Or tried to sit down. I fell right on my… never mind. At least I didn’t take my daughter (which I would have, but the court order says I can’t).

Two, it is hard to see while skiing in a blizzard. Again, another bit of information I could have used in advance.

I first realized this when I couldn’t see. I mean not at all. As in I couldn’t see my feet or hands. I wish I were kidding.

Going down the hill was like being in a human version of the game Frogger.

Lucky for me I didn’t run anyone over. Of course that would have been difficult because everyone else was inside.

So there you have it. No more skiing. No more dropping my daughter off the lift. No more falling. No more risking life and limb just to slide down a mountain with metal slats tied to me feet. No more taking a chance that I will spend the next 6 weeks in a cast and on crutches.

I am going to stick to what is safe. School. Parent conferences. Mandated testing. IEP meetings. Supervising games.

What could possibly go wrong with these?

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The School Administrators Arch Nemisis.


You Know I Heard Every Snowflake is Different.  Just Saying...If you work in a school it is very likely that you have enemies. I am sorry you had to hear this from me, but it is better than getting this kind of bad news from a total stranger on the street.

Principals and Superintendents seem especially likely to attract people or things that don’t like them.

It may be as simple as a parent who respectfully disagrees with you (I will give you a moment until the laughter subsides… I must admit that it wasn’t easy typing respectfully with a straight face).

Maybe it is a student to whom you have had to give a detention, or maybe you took their hat because they wore it in the building, or possibly you banished them for life from parking on school grounds because they still feel the need to drive 105 miles an hour past the little kids’ playground (you know who you are and I am watching).

It could even be a disgruntled employee that you have to “encourage” to work a little harder (I have none of these problems as I am beloved by everyone with whome I come into contact; it is purely an example).

Other enemies may include; the nice lady at the State Board of Education you got short with, or the cockroaches in the Seniors’ lockers (if I have told them once, I have told them a thousand times… no food in the lockers), or the people who sell schools 12 trillion dollars in insurance yet never seem to want to pay a claim.

The list of possible enemies goes on and on and I haven’t even mentioned; fans, bus drivers, snow removal people, cooks, lawyers, politicians, stray dogs, or strangers at the post office.

Just for the record, the PrincipalsPage.com legal department has advised me to include the following statement. I (or anyone I have ever met) have never, or will ever be involved in any of the situations written about in the first 6 paragraphs of this blog. Also, I am sorry I hung up on you lady at the State Board.

That being said, most people love their Principal or Superintendent (again, please take a moment to regain your composure… sometimes I even crack myself up).

I think it is a big part of our jobs to try and get along with everyone. We are the Switzerland of school employees (I was going to write that we are the statue in the park and the rest of the world is made up of pigeons… but that seemed a little harsh… and again the PrincipalsPage.com legal department is throwing their weight around).

Administrators can and should get along with all kinds of people. We should treat others as we want to be treated (that is kind of catchy, I am thinking about calling it the Golden Rule).

As I was telling my daughter as I walked her to Sunday School… “you shouldn’t hate anyone.”

Unless it is the weatherman. I can’t stand that guy.

Why the harsh feelings you ask?

Because of his total inability to predict snow. He has no idea if we are getting flurries or 27 feet of snow.

Now, don’t get me wrong. I looooooove a SNOW DAY as much as the next person, but as an administrator the weatherman has become Enemy #1.

Last night on the 10 o’clock news he announces that we are getting between 4 and 6 inches of snow overnight. That is only half the story. He also adds that we will have 45 mile an hour winds causing untold drifting and mayhem for the next 24 hours.

Then he said it. I still can believe the words came out of his mouth. He was like Ralphie spewing obscenities on the Christmas Story.

He says, “Kids, make sure you watch the Early News tomorrow as we will have what I expect to be a large number of school closings.”

How does he know? At best he has a 50/50 chance of predicting the sun will come up tomorrow. I don’t think he has a clue what wind chill is (just for the record, it is the temperature of windless air that would have the same effect on exposed human skin as a given combination of wind speed and air temperature… that little bit of trivia comes from taking Weather and Climate class… Spring semester 1986).

Needless to say, I slept a total of 12 minutes last night. I looked out the window about 87 times, so that I could see the snow and the wind and then cancel school.

Guess what. No snow. No wind. And as I type this the sun just came out.

Luckily, I didn’t cancel school in advance. This morning all staff members and students managed to make it to school on time (despite the sunshine in their eyes).

The kids looked as tired as I feel. It was almost like they stayed up until 3:00 a.m. playing video games. They must have anticipated a SNOW DAY.

I wonder where they got that idea.

I hate that guy.

Maybe I should look on the bright side. The students and I now have something in common, an enemy.

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School Administrators Shouldn’t Leave the Office. Ever.


Wal-mart... You Can Never Find One When You Need One.I just spent a month in Wisconsin this past weekend.

The trip started off poorly and then went downhill (skiing reference). We should have gone to the beach, or better yet, just stayed home and I could have worked 18 hour days at school (not really, I am just being dramatic… I hate the beach).

On Friday afternoon, we left on time (3:30 pm for a 5 hour trip). Our punctuality turned out to be one of the highlights of the entire weekend.

My in-laws went with us. Many of you are probably thinking this is where the trip went horribly awry, but you would be sadly mistaken (on occasion the in-laws read this blog and I don’t want to jeopardize my 1/128th of the will, so I will steer clear of insulting them in print).

We drove separately from them and the trip went smoothly for us. Things did not go quite as well for the in-laws.

About an hour into the trip, my unemployed daughter called her grandparents on the cell phone to see how things were going (she is 6, so she prefers texting if you need to get in touch with her). About a minute into the call her grandmother hung up on her.

Everyone loves their grandma, kindergarten teacher, and best friend’s mom, so getting hung up on was a shock to my daughter.

The conversation was so short, we immediately asked what happened.

My daughter said she could barely hear grandma, but she did say something about the tailgate not being latched.

This couldn’t be good.

You see, their luggage was in the back of the truck. And by was, I mean was.

Turns out grandpa didn’t put the tailgate up which resulted in their luggage flying out along the side of the road. This is what we call “bad news”.

On a positive note, they recognized this little fun fact about the luggage not being secure. Unfortunately, they realized it about 50 miles too late. This is what we call “more bad news”.

If you see a suitcase in a ditch, please send me an email (or text my work-avoiding spawn).

If you are married, you know that at this point they had only two choices.

One, a quickie divorce, preferably in Mexico where it is warmer and the matrimony laws are a little looser. Or two, find a Wal-mart ASAP to replace everything in their luggage (if you live in the 1% of the country that doesn’t have Wal-marts, I pity you and please substitute your gigantic retail store here).

As we continued on our drive, we passed a minimum of 27 Wal-marts, 14 K-marts, 11 Wal-greens, and 7 malls.

The in-laws, traveling the very same road, noticed exactly zero stores of any kind.

That’s right; they traveled 300 miles on a major interstate through roughly a bazillion towns and cities and didn’t notice any of these stores which were all located within 200 feet of the highway (I could also mention that these stores had big neon signs on top of them, but I don’t want to rub salt in their wounds… see inheritance comment earlier).

This led me to believe that they may be legally blind, or one of them desperately wants to go to Mexico.

This lack of vision concerns me because we allow them to babysit. If they can’t locate a Wal-mart, would they notice if my daughter sticks her head into the microwave and hits defrost?

Agh…who am I kidding, cheap babysitters are worth the risk (if this kid breaks, we can always go buy another one).

The in-laws did finally arrive at the ski resort after getting lost in the mountains for a couple of hours (a little travel tip… if you own a GPS, make sure you take it with you when you travel… that is what they are for).

There was some good news. After they arrived, it didn’t take long for them to unpack. They certainly didn’t have to bother the baggage handler.

Actually, my wife told me this because by 1:30 in the morning I was fast asleep.

So the trip was off to a rousing start. I haven’t even got to the part where we all got caught in the blizzard.

I really should have just stayed in the safety of the office.

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Being a School Principal can be Wrought with Danger.


It Looks Good.  And It's a Danger.There are a lot of good things about being a school administrator. Unfortunately, with the good there must be some bad.

This kind of symmetry makes the world of education go round. First hour and last hour. Teachers and students. Homework and recess. Boys and girls. Math class and recess. Junior high students and detentions. School days and vacation. And the good and the bad.

If this highly organized system breaks down, our schools will be overtaken by mass confusion and total mayhem (alright… more than we have now).

I love the structure of the school day. Everything happens at a certain time.

School starts at 8:00 and dismisses at 3:30. Lunch is the same time every day. The work week is Monday through Friday. Pay day comes once a month whether I need it or not.

Structure and lots of it.

Nothing ever changes, until something goes horribly wrong. Which happens by my estimation about 113 times a day, if it has been a good and unusually peaceful day.

Last week I had one of those days. By late afternoon, things had almost been going too well. It had been almost too easy. It was quiet, maybe a little too quiet.

No crisis. No excitement. Nothing out of the ordinary. Until…

….I felt a sharp pain around my neck. Apparently I was being choked.

A variety of things ran through my mind. Who could it be? So little time and so many suspects. I quickly came up with a lengthy list of possible attackers.

Was it an angry parent? Had I upset a student or possibly a teacher? Someone in the community who was not happy with me? Maybe even the home school mom who keeps emailing me, or a soccer parent, or even the chocolate milk kid who haunts my dreams.

It could be one of a thousand people I had dealt with over the years.

One’s mind races in a time like this. My entire life flashed before me.

The highlights and, as it turns out, a lot of boring parts. If I survived this vicious attack, I really need to turn up the excitement a bit (alright… a lot).

My run as a school administrator was coming to an end in about 90 seconds if I didn’t act quickly.

Then it occurred to me.

I wasn’t being choked. I had just closed the file drawer on my tie. Sad but true. At least no one will ever know.

The moral of this story is I hate ties.

The good is I survived my attacking myself with a file cabinet. The bad is I am an idiot and still a target for about a thousand people (a guesstimate… there may be more).

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Skiing Part II: Am I the Only Parent to Drop Their Kid Off a Ski Lift?


Ski Lifts are Both... Pretty and Scary.It is time to go skiing again. Unfortunately that is only part of the story.

Since the last time we skied, it has been casually mentioned around my house that my parenting skills need to be reviewed.

We visited Wisconsin shortly after the holidays and I wrote Skiing Part I. Days turned into weeks and I never got around to writing Part II. I could say it was because I was so busy, but that wouldn’t be the whole truth.

It was primarily because I was laying low. And I got a little distracted.

Distracted by the “incident”.

While I wasn’t told directly to keep my mouth shut, it was implied. I got the definite feeling that I should remain quiet about what happened (and possibly read a book or 12 on parenting).

Some people may consider the “incident” a big deal, but I think it was all blown out of proportion.

In life, things often happen that our beyond our control. Certain situations occur for which we can’t possibly prepare.

Life is complicated and never as simple as we would like.

I am here to make the case that I did nothing wrong.

I deserve the benefit of the doubt.

Before you judge me, please hear me out.

I think the following question needs to be asked; who among us hasn’t dropped their only child off a ski lift?

What?

I am the only one. Really? Are you sure?

Well, this is awkward.

Who knew.

Okay, maybe you do need to judge me. This isn’t going as well as I had hoped.

In my defense, I didn’t mean to drop her off the moving ski lift that was at the most 30 feet in the air. It wasn’t like it was premeditated.

To make a long story short, I thought I had her on the ski lift chair… turns out I didn’t… she slid forward and almost fell off… but she didn’t… her mom was standing 10 feet away watching… and not happy.

When I say not happy, I don’t just mean not happy. I mean reeeeeally not happy.

Thank goodness that the carney worker running the lift saw the horror (me dropping her and the look on mom’s face).

If a lawyer had been around, I think mom would have grabbed him, chased me down, and then beaten me to a pulp by slamming our skulls together. If I survived, I am pretty sure she would have sued what was left of my mangled body.

I don’t know what would have become of the lawyer, but who really cares (this example is hypothetical and after all he is just a lawyer).

Although mom didn’t chase me down, or beat me up, it was very evident that she is quite fond of her daughter (and not that happy with me).

After an ugly incident like this, I think it is important to put it behind us and move forward.

So, we are going skiing again and I will try to be a better father. If I don’t endanger my child’s life, the trip will be considered a rousing success.

Raising a child is complicated and I have discovered they don’t come with an instruction manual.

No one mentioned in parenting class that my daughter might slip off the ski lift if I didn’t hold on to her tightly enough.

This isn’t completely true (or true at all).

I didn’t take a parenting class (I was busy coaching… this isn’t helping my case is it?). I had a choice… games or class.

As I look back, the class might have been the better choice. Hindsight is 20/20.

Wish me luck this weekend as I play in the snow.

If you happen to see a guy on the ski lift with his child dangling below, don’t wave.

You see… I can’t wave back. Who says there isn’t humor in difficult situations?

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Life has a Funny Way of Choosing a Career for You.


I'm Still Searching for My Career.Every winter, I find myself asking our juniors and seniors what their plans are after (if, in some cases) they graduate.

Generally, I get the same answers; college, work, the military, get married, or the #1 most popular response… I don’t know.

As adults, whether we are administrators, guidance counselors, teachers, or parents; we all want a specific answer and an even more detailed plan on how students will accomplish their goals and become productive members of society.

We don’t want to send them into the future and have them change their mind 27 times (that being said, you know a lot of people go to college for 7 years… they are called doctors- Google it).

We want young people to pick a path in life and then stick to it.

This is well-intentioned advice, but how often does anyone pick a career in high school, and then actually stay with it for 40 years?

When I was in high school, my plan was… well I didn’t actually have a plan.

Come to think about it, I still don’t (mental note… come up with a career goal so that I can stop flopping around through life like a newly caught bluegill thrown onto the shore).

By the way, I think that was my first fishing reference (you have to admit…it was just a matter of time).

One of my greatest achievements in life is that I have never really looked for a job. Opportunities just seem to find me. If you are thinking that makes me kind of pathetic and extremely lucky… I would have to agree.

It does bring some excitement to my life. My anticipation builds as I wait until my next job finds me. Keep your fingers crossed, I am hoping for greens-keeper, neurosurgeon, typewriter repairman, or Mike Rowe’s sidekick.

Regrettably, I spend more time reading about career advice, then actually doing anything about it (pick a career blog… there are about a 1,000 of them).

As educators, we seem to push kids towards getting a four year college education. I think maybe because that was our plan (those of you who actually had one).

This is good advice, but lots of people are successful without graduating from college.

It doesn’t concern me if my plumber, mechanic, or cable guy didn’t do that well in high school Chemistry or English 4 class, or have a college education.

They have skills that I don’t. Sadly, they also probably did better than me in Chemistry and English, but that is not my point.

I often wonder if it is unrealistic to expect a 17 year old to have a plan. Most of them think the future is what will happen at lunch or right after school.

To expect them to map out a long term career goal while still a teenager seems like wishful thinking on our part.

I meet people everyday who are great at their jobs, but I don’t think they are necessarily working in a career that they considered in high school.

They probably had some idea of what they wanted to do after graduating, but life has a way of pushing us towards what we are meant to do.

Everyone’s career choice is much more complicated than meeting with the guidance counselor 3rd period and choosing one out of a book.

Money, relationships, children, health, etc. often send people into a career that they hadn’t thought of at the time of their high school graduation.

I think we might be better off having a system that has kids work in different vocational areas during high school which would give them options and ideas.

Then we could send them all to college for a year or two without having them declare a major.

That should be enough time and life experience to allow them to make educated decisions on their career paths.

Now that I have this educational problem solved, I think I will search the internet for a new car.

I’ve heard that neurosurgeons make really good money.

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School Makes Me Sleepy.


This Picture is Both Funny.... and Disturbing.It is that time of year. I am tired.

I first realized that I was tired when I wanted to eat dinner at 4:30 pm and then go directly to bed (I may well be morphing into my parents… another example of why I believe God has a sense of humor).

My second clue was when I woke up yesterday and felt like I would rather have a junior high study hall of 97 boys with ADHD and no homework while it is the last hour of the day after they all drank a five gallon bucket of soda and just recently broke up with their life long loves (of 4 days) then crawl out from under the covers.

If you have ever had a junior high study hall, or met a 12 year boy with a broken heart, you realize how serious of a funk that I am in.

It is February and just like every year, I am questioning my decision to go into education. It happens like clockwork about this time. Sometime between January 1st and Valentine’s Day, I begin to question my career choice.

I wonder if it is too late to change my major.

Don’t get me wrong, it is not the kids, or teachers, or anything about school… it is me.

We are in the middle of the school year and the end seems so far away. It is cold, wet, and windy outside and spring seems like it will never get here.

I think I would feel better if I could just see the sun for 4 minutes. I faintly remember the sun shining sometime around Halloween, but since then my only choices have been snow, rain, sleet, ice, wind, more wind, and lots of clouds.

It would be in my best interest to spend $600 dollars on a plane ticket, fly to Aruba, get out and walk around for 30 minutes in the sunshine and then fly right back. I would feel a lot better and that sunlight would get me through the hard times.

The beginning of school brings excitement and possibilities. The end of the school year is even more exciting and brings even larger possibilities. Those include in no particular order; no school, golf, vacation, and no school.

The middle of school just brings… grey. My yard, the sky, the streets, and my psyche.
But don’t worry about me. One of these days it will warm up to 60 degrees and everything will be right in the world and back to normal.

Until then I will trudge along and make the best of things.

I just need to focus on the good things happening at school.

Like it being too cold to go outside for recess and the smell of that stuff that janitors use to cover the smell of other bad stuff (why can’t scientist invent something that will make it smell like strawberries instead of smelling like feet?)

Soon spring will show up and that means junior high love will soon be in the air. And at the lockers, in classes, at lunch, on the bus, and everywhere else 12 year olds congregate.

Now that I think of it, maybe winter at school isn’t so bad.

P.S. This isn’t about me, it is about my wife. If you find any errors in grammar that is because she didn’t proof read it before she went to bed. Coincidently, that was around 4:30, right after dinner.

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School on Monday Would be Better if Super Bowl Sunday Was on Saturday.


NFL-SBMy longest title, for one of my shortest blogs.

I don’t have time to write because I have to get ready for a Super Bowl Party like the rest of the 301,139,947 people in America (Google it). This isn’t even counting our new friends from Canada.

My theory is that school and businesses suffer greatly on the Monday following the Super Bowl. If you don’t know why, you are attending the wrong Super Bowl party.

This coming week I can guarantee that every newspaper and news website will have a story on the lost amount of work hours and money that is directly related to people being tired (it is a family blog after all) from the effects of a Super Bowl Party.

I think I have a solution to this that will save everyone a lot of wasted time and money.

Make Super Bowl Sunday, Super Bowl Saturday.

Its genius lies in its simplicity.

I am surprised that corporations haven’t forced this on the NFL. If they have the game on Saturday, everyone is still going to watch and have a party. Who wants to miss a new million dollar commercial involving monkeys, Clydesdales, or Justin Timberlake?

Having the game one day earlier will help curtail people from calling in sick on Monday (no subs please), or showing up to work and accomplishing nothing but taking Advil and drinking coffee.

Schools will accomplish more with more focused employees, less sick days being used, and students who are not as tired.

So when the NFL finally makes the change to Saturday, remember you heard it here first.

Better yet, maybe schools could make Monday the official Super Bowl Holiday and I could have a four day weekend (I haven’t forgotten you Snow Day).

The fact that in America, we arbitrarily move holidays to ensure longer weekends drives me crazy. If it is important enough to celebrate, it is important enough to keep on the actual date (thanks for letting me get that off my chest). Enjoy the Super Bowl and cross your fingers for a commercial with talking monkeys. The best commercial will be posted on the front page of www.PrincipalsPage.com (where currently there is one about monkeys).

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I Will Always Cherish Our Time Together, Snow Day.


Love the Snow Day.  Not a Big Fan of Shoveling.The SNOW DAY has come and gone. This most special of all school days comes so infrequently, and the thrill is enormous. Yet, I come crashing down when it is all over (I may need rehab; only time will tell).

SNOW DAYS are indeed extraordinary and should be treated with the greatest respect.

They are on the same level as Christmas morning, the Super Bowl, the birth of my first child, and the return of Paige Davis to Trading Spaces (simply put, WOW!).

Does it make me a terrible father if I say the actual birth of my child was a little disturbing? Oh, it does? Then it was the most amazing moment of my life, and I will always cherish that wonderful experience.

Moving on.

The first SNOW DAY of the year had an unexpected benefit. And I am not talking about me being able to sleep in, do what I want all day, and nap several times during and in between me doing what I wanted all day.

The most surprising part of the day came when The Best School Day of the Year easily became my most read blog (to date, I am sure there are hundreds of lonely, dysfunctional, evidently extremely bored educators who will stumble upon my blog in the months to come).

Because so many people took the time to read the blog, I can only assume a couple of things.

One, educators love SNOW DAYS more than prep periods or pay days, and two, people across the country continue to amaze me with their commitment to wasting time on the internet (i.e. reading blogs; more specifically… mine).

My email was overflowing (not really, just play along… it is called creative license), with readers commenting and asking questions about my SNOW DAY.

The #1 question (okay, only one) was,” What did I do on my SNOW DAY?” If you have to ask, you don’t truly understand the power of the SNOW DAY.

A SNOW DAY specialness lies in not what you do, but more significantly in what you don’t do.

My day was special because I didn’t do any of the following; get up at 5:00 a.m., iron my clothes, wear a tie, take phone calls from salespeople, read 147 emails with “Just Wanted to Give You a Heads Up” in the subject line, ask every student in the hallway if they have a pass, tell junior high boys to keep their hands to themselves, pick up trash, close lockers, or the 98 other things that need to be done 10 minutes ago.

That is the true beauty of the SNOW DAY. It comes out of nowhere and forces you to take a day off and slow down.

No meetings. No schedule. No anything. Just the entire day to do whatever you want.

It is exactly like being a kid on one of those never ending summer days. When you are so busy playing that you didn’t even want to take time to stop and eat.

That is exactly what a SNOW DAY is like, except now I am old and, of course, it is not summer, and I didn’t forget to eat.

In fact, I ate a lot. This may explain the marathon of naps.

But now the SNOW DAY has come and gone. I am not going to lie, a big part of me feels overwhelmed by sadness. I will soon be facing another school day.

Back to the day-to-day grind. It makes me think that maybe I should find another career.

I just need to find a job where I have the same schedule every day, get summers off, not have to come in on holidays, receive a raise every year, can be home by 4:30 several times a week, not have to work in the heat or cold, and get to sleep in a couple of times a year because there is too much SNOW on the roads.

On second thought, I do love my job. Thanks SNOW DAY. Hopefully, we will meet again.

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While this site operates with the knowledge and awareness of the Tuscola CUSD #301 School Board, Tuscola, Illinois, the content and opinions posted here may or may not represent their views personally or collectively, nor does it attempt to represent the official viewpoint of Tuscola CUSD #301 administrators or employees.