The $425 Million Powerball is All Mine.


Don’t waste your money on buying a ticket.Winner, Winner, Chicken Dinner.

I’m winning.

Actually, the woman who I’m relegated to by marriage is winning.  All of "our" money goes in "her" account.

But don’t feel badly for me.  I have total access to "our" money.

Just as long as I don’t spend any of it.  In her defense, she doesn’t spend any of it either.

This explains the bumper sticker on her car "She Who Dies With the Most Wins!".

We decided to buy a Powerball ticket last night.  By we, I mean she said "Stop here, so "we" can buy a Powerball ticket."  I think it’s cute she includes me.

After we purchased the winning ticket (we didn’t win), the woman I’m related to by marriage and chauffeur around so she can gamble "our" money away ($20 for losing tickets) asked what "we" would do with the money when we won (again… for clarification… we are giant losers… so far).

She wants 2 vacation houses.  One on a beach.  One in the woods.

I think a lake house would be the answer, but it’s not "my" money now is it (again, we lost).

The Evil Spawn wants iEverything.  And $1,000,000 in Fun Money.

Seems excessive, but then again I’ve never had $425 million (and never will… even if "we" win) so who am I to judge.

If she is going to be spoiled, might as well go big.

Me, I want nothing.  But a nap.

My concern is if (when) "we" win, how much am I going to have to spend on security?

I have zero interest in getting kidnapped by members of the Mexican Drug Cartel.  I’m not sure why I’m afraid of them, but it just seems like the logical thing to be frightened by.

Actually, "we" decided after the vacation homes and iJunk to take the rest of the money and spend the rest of our lives (length will depend on Cartel) giving it away.

Our foundation will be called "Buddy’s Gift" after Buddy the Dog – the Patriarch of Our Family.

So don’t bother buying a Powerball ticket this week because "we" are winning.

And "we" have big plans to give away the money.

Actually, go ahead and buy a ticket.

It will just make "our" winning amount that much larger.

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Summer is a Waste of Time.


I’ve been working in schools for so long, I can’t even remember what drew me to this lifestyle.Just the Thought of This Makes Me Miss My Summer.

I know it wasn’t the money (is there anyone who became a teacher for the money?).

Truth be told, there were probably lots of reasons.

The chance to work with students.  Coaching.  The structured schedule. 

The day before Thanksgiving meal that consists of all white food (noodles, mashed potatoes, roll, and milk!)

And of course, the always popular "summer vacation".

I love summers.

I love the countdown to summer vacation.

I love the three months off.

I love not wearing pants (please don’t contact the authorities… I wear shorts).

I love getting paid and not working (I mean I REALLY love getting paid and not working).

I love anything and everything about summer.

Except.

Except the fact that after 18 years of this I am now convinced summer is a waste of time.

We put so much effort into shutting down school for the summer.

Then we put twice as much into starting school back up again in the fall.

This can’t be good for a student’s brain.

Maybe.

Just maybe.

We should go to year round school.

Yes, I said it.

Year round school.

And get rid of my summer.

A part of me just died as I typed that last sentence.

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Let Me Tell You a Little Story About the Grossest Hotel Room Ever.


Actually, it’s not a story about a seedy hotel, but that doesn’t matter.Much Cleaner.  I Mean Much Cleaner.

You are here for the gross part and I’m not about to disappoint.

Let me start at the beginning.

The Evil Spawn was wrapping up her summer season of softball, so we had one final trip. 

I say summer season, because next year starts in about 8 minutes because June 2013 is just around the corner and we’ve got to get these girls practicing (sarcasm alert!).

Since we had this one last tournament and we were tired of living in No Tell Motels, we had the ingenious idea to rent a house.

It would be fun.

It would be close to Lake Michigan.

The whole family together.

It would be like a vacation, except for the fact that 14 hours a day we would be sitting in lawn chairs at some faceless softball field in 197 degree heat.

Actually, it’s fun.  Except for the part where your underwear starts sweating.  I hate that.

One would think a person’s underwear would dry out in extreme heat, but it’s just the opposite.

But, I digress.  We rent this house and it seems like a great idea.

I probably wouldn’t have done this 10 years ago, but now with the interweb it’s just so simple.

Pictures online.  Reviews by other God fearing kind-hearted folks.

What could possibly go wrong?

Turns out a lot.

The pictures didn’t exactly reflect the level of disgusting that wrapped itself around the house like a thick winter coat on a chubby 4-year old.

Turns out people who rent their homes for money don’t use the word "filthy" or the phrase "should be condemened" when they are trying to make a buck.

I should have realized we had a problem when cockroaches met us at the front door.  And they were on their way out.

The look on my wife’s face as she was sentenced… I mean walked in to this rental property was disturbing.  She looked like a teenage girl in a horror movie when the phone rings and the call is coming from inside the house.

She was scared.  And rightfully so.

The highlights were as follows:  old food in the refrigerator, a mysterious hair attached to the TV remote, enough trash hidden under the raised cabinets to start your own dump, and a cat in the corner of the bedroom.

Actually, it wasn’t a cat.

It was a dust bunny in the shape of a 47 pound cat.  I swear it growled at me when I reached down to pet it.

I was afraid to turn on the lights.  Not because I didn’t want to see more dirt, but because I was frightened to touch the light switch.  There was a layer of something on it that reminded me of a petri dish.

I could go on and on, but it gives me the willies and I feel like I need to save part of this story for my therapist.

And as a favor to all of my loyal readers, I’m not even going to tell you my theory on the mystery hair.

My wife tried in vain to find a hotel room for us to stay in, but they were all booked.  Turns out Priceline and William Shatner couldn’t save me on this night.

So I went with Plan B.

I slept in my clothes.

I did survive the night, but then I had to use the restroom and shower.

Honestly, in my 44 years on this Earth, I don’t recall feeling dirtier after a shower than before.  And I grew up in an era where you showered after high school PE.

Something positive did come out of this experience (besides the partial refund).

I have a whole new respect for my wife’s fear of portapotties (she can’t be the only one who would rather explode than take one step into these plastic boxes of infection).

Actually, now that I think about it, I would have been better off sleeping in a portapotty.

As an added bonus it was our wedding anniversary.

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How Do You React When You See These 4 Words?


Happiness?It's Time.

Sadness?

Excitement?

Fear?

Relief?

Dread?

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Turns Out Following Directions is Important.


I write this blog for two reasons.

One, so people will stop contacting me to ask how my "vacation" is going.

And two, as an open apology to every student and teacher who I have accused of having no ability to follow directions.

You see, I haven’t yet experienced my "vacation".

I was ready.

I was prepared.

I was even hopped up on a handfull of valium (by the way, I think I’m hooked).

My lovely wife (as lovely as one can be considering she drove my to the butcher with a giant smile on her face… she looked sort of like the Joker from the last Batman movie) was even prepared to look after me and Buddy the Dog on our days off.

But it didn’t happen.

I got up early.

Popped the prescribed pills.

Which of course made me feel pretty good about the upcoming procedure (and if I’m honest… at that point I felt pretty good about everything from famine to communism).

I wobbled into the doctor’s office and only bumped into one person I knew (that wasn’t awkward).

I hopped (crawled) up on the table and waited to get gutted like a newly caught fish.

The very nice nurse (or two… since I was seeing double at that point) asked me if I had taken any aspirin lately.

Normally, I would have lied but since I was under the influence of so much free prescription happiness, I said yes.

They said come back in a week because if we cut you open you will bleed to death (I’m summarizing the official medical conversation).

They also mentioned maybe I should have read the directions they sent me a month ago (whoops).

So I went home.

And Buddy and I promptly slept for the next 19 hours (turns out free meds come with a price).

It’s the closet I’ve come to death.

If you are wondering, it’s peaceful.  Very peaceful.

I just closed my eyes and went towards the light.

Then I woke up in a pool of my own drool.  As an added bonus I couldn’t feel my left arm.  It had evidently got trapped under me during my coma.

I’m glad I didn’t experience any halucinations because I’m pretty sure I couldn’t have shoed away any monkees crawling up my legs without the use of both arms.

Actually, when I came to, I felt great.  It was like a mini vacation (no wonder Buddy is always so happy during those 14 minutes a day when he is awake).

Everything would have been great if I hadn’t remembered my real "vacation" is in a few days.

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Start School. Stop School. Start School. Stop School.


School is about to start.

It just ended.

But now it’s beginning again.

And soon, it will be over (time flies as I age at an unnatural pace).

The longer I’m in this business the more I realize this is a waste.

The amount of hours and effort we put towards opening and closing school borders on insane (crazy like Glenn Beck or Keith Olbermann).

This may come as a shock, but I’m a big fan of summer vacation.

Big fan.

Big.

Fan.

Maybe the biggest.

I’ve been this way, since… forever.

As a kid, who doesn’t love summertime?

No homework.  No structure. 

As a teacher, my love grew even stronger.

No homework.  No structure. 

As an administrator, I hate to admit it but I’ve had a falling out with sweet sweet summer.

No homework.  No structure.

I can no longer convince myself students need a long summer vacation (did I just type that?).

I could be talked into convincing myself I need a summer vacation.

But just this once, it’s not about me.

It’s about the kids.

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Summer and Little Girls Both Have an Expiration Date.


Summer is almost over.

By almost, I mean it’s over.asthon_laundry

Done.

Kaput.

Gone.

Finished.

I guess you get the point.

There are 3 major parts of summer.

The beginning, which everyone looks forward to and loves.

The second part which is July 4th.

And the end of summer, which if you’re in education begins promptly when the last firework falls from the sky.

When the sun rises on July 5th, it’s all over.

Time to get back in school.

No more summer for you.  Come back one year (this would be a random Seinfeld reference… which means I’m really starting to date myself with the kids).

I love summer vacation, but like with so many good things in life, it comes and goes far too quickly.

I’m starting to think The Evil Spawn is sneaking up on her childhood July 4th.

She’s grown up so much in the last year (in sarcasm and height… and I have no idea where she gets either).

It’s quite evident she’s no longer a little girl.

She’s not quite an adult, but you can tell it won’t be long.

There’s less carrying around stuffed animals and more time talking on the phone.

She spends more time outside of the house than inside.

She talks less about today and more about the future.

She’s even taken it upon her self to become more responsible about her chores (I hope I just didn’t jinx this).

All too soon, her mom and I will be seeing her go.

These days, it’s on her bike.  One day, it’s going to be in a car.

Eventually, it will be a plane.

In eight years, she will no longer be ours, but the world’s.

I’m looking forward to the next few years.  The opportunity to watch her go through school is a special one,  but I know from past experiences with other students, the time is going to fly.

Junior high goes fast.  High school is a blur.

As a dad, you might think this would be hard on me.

It isn’t.

All I can do is enjoy the days and weeks as they come.

I find a certain amount of peace in her telling me she doesn’t like boys, will never marry, and plans to live at home while she attends college.

I know it’s not true, but if she can have dreams, so can I.

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How Do You Hide in Plain Sight?


As I get ready to change jobs something has occurred to me.

No, it’s not the daily opportunity to shove the Evil Spawn into a locker (although this does sound enticing… and may just happen at some point).You Can't See Me.

It’s the fact, I will be living in the same town where I work.

This is unprecedented.

Not for normal school administrators.

For me.

I’ve always lived in a different town from where my school has been located.

This may seem odd to some, but it’s worked for me.

It was nice to drive away each night and leave my troubles behind.  At least until my cell phone rang.

Funny how trouble knows my number.

Now, I no longer have that advantage of anonymity.

But I do have the opportunity to go to school with the Spawn (the odds of her ever getting asked out on a date have just dropped dramatically).

Like so many things in life, there’s some good and some bad.

On the upside, I will be living within one mile of my schools.

On the downside, I will be living within one mile of my schools.

I’m not going to lie, I’m a little concerned.

Proximity may not be my best friend.

This makes me wonder how I will ever get away.

Disappearing is a possibility.

And I’m not above faking my own death.  Although it will be much harder once the authorities read this blog (like anyone reads this blog…).

Maybe it’s just me (but I’m guessing it’s not), but when we go on vacation I’m always struck by how easy it would be to just disappear.

Find a small town.  Find a job.  Live under the radar.

Stay out of bar fights (easier said than done).

Disappear.

Vanish.

I bet this happens more than we know.

But how does one do this in daily life?

How do you work as a superintendent and be a parent without being consumed by school every second of every day?

Is it possible?

Or am I setting myself up for another extended period of insanity?

Should I get my fake ID’s in order (I wish I had a dollar for every time I’ve had to do this)?

Should I ask to be put on the substitute teacher list in Jordan, Montana (see I just picked this off the map… I’m telling you it’s not that hard to disappear)?

Is this my only chance of peace and quiet?

Subbing in a town you’ve never heard of.

Or can you live and work and continuously bother the Evil Spawn in one town?

I guess time will tell.  And by then the spawn will be 30 years old and still single.

In the meantime, I’m not the only one who needs to hide.  I measured her locker this morning and I’m pretty sure the Evil Spawn will fit.

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Spring Break for Old People.


Spring Break is here.Sweet Sweet Spring Break.

Thank goodness.

About I week ago, I was contemplating changing careers to something easier if I didn’t get a few days off.

Jobs I was considering:  logger, coal miner, or human cannonball.

All would be safer than school administrator.

But as luck would have it, Spring Break has arrived!

I won’t be heading to Panama City.  Or Cancun.  Or South Padre Island.

Truth be told, I’m hoping I don’t even have to leave my yard.

I won’t be getting a sunburn.  A tattoo.  Or arrested (this one’s 50/50).

I’ve decided not to get any of my body parts pierced (I went with “body parts”… didn’t want to work blue in a family blog).

My version of Spring Break may sound boring to some.

But not to me.

I will be mowing the yard.  Napping.  Wondering how Buddy the Dog can sleep so much (does he do this EVERY day when I’m at work?).

I will watch bad television shows that are a complete waste of my time and serve no purpose other than to make all of mankind dumber.

Other than these few items on my to-do list, I’m not completely sure what I will be doing.

But I know what I won’t be doing.

And that’s what makes Spring Break so special.

For the record, if I did get a tattoo it would be a giant eagle with barbed wire in his mouth.  It would be on my back and would look like it was flying when I raised my arms up and down.  Or a small fairy on my ankle.  I can’t decide.

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The Monday of All Mondays.


The Monday after vacation has got to be the worst Monday of the year.Monday

So many emails.

So many messages.

So much paperwork.

So much to do.

So little time before school begins.

So many days until the next vacation.

And most importantly in today’s world… I’m thankful to have a job I can return to after vacationing from it. :)

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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.