NECC is Over; Just as My Two Worlds Came Crashing Together.


Two Worlds Colliding... an Asteroid... Whatever...If you are not an avid reader of this blog (like there are any), this entry may make more sense if you first read TRAVEL DOES STINK, BUT ALAN NOVEMBER WAS GREAT and FAMOUS PEOPLE READ THIS BLOG. OR MORE LIKELY; HE LOST A BET.

Please keep in mind that I said it may make more sense. I wouldn’t get your hopes up that any of them make complete sense.

The National Education Computing Conference, which I sort of attended, has now concluded. Our time in San Antonio, Texas has come to an end.

And I almost made it out of town before something bad happened. Almost is the operative word here.

It was a good trip other than one terribly awkward incident.

We enjoyed the city, Sea World, the zoo, the movies, the Riverwalk, and our 27 trips to and by The Alamo/Mall. Oh, I nearly forgot. The conference was great (so I have been told).

It was an enjoyable few days. The chance to visit a new city and not be at work is always appreciated.

Things were going smoothly until my two worlds clashed.

Note to self (and everyone): always, and I mean always, keep your worlds separate. This means work from home life; spouse’s family from yours; old prison friends from your kids; and especially your wife from the man who claims not to be your father.

Sadly, I was unable to do this.

You see, my wife decided it would be a good idea to walk right up to Mr. Alan November and introduce herself to the man who claims not to be my father.

She did this right before a presentation by Mr. November (as you can see, I still refuse to call him “Dad”). In the past, I have highly recommended that she (and everyone) attend one of his sessions on technology.

But, I had no idea she would make it personal.

She walked right up to him and said (and I am paraphrasing), “I am your daughter-in-law. Are you rich?” (Note from wife…I did not say that!).

Note from me: it was implied.

When she told me this story, I was mortified.

Not with her asking him if he is rich because that is a given (good speakers don’t come cheap).

It was more the fact that she made contact with a man who refuses to accept the responsibility that comes with being a parent.

Sure, he “claims” he was in junior high when I was conceived and that he has never met my mother. In addition to this web of lies, he says he was several states away in 1967 (like his 7th grade report card won’t tell a different story… your permanent record always contains a detailed list of unexcused absences).

Of course, he continues to deny any responsibility, but I am still waiting on the tests to come back from the lab.

I see this all of the time at school, especially with young men. They struggle when their fathers won’t step up and take responsibility. With proper guidance, some will put their shattered lives back together.

But worst case, they end up like me. Spending their free time writing slightly angry and incoherent blogs.

It’s sad.

The good news out of this most tragic situation is that my wife and mother-in-law thoroughly enjoyed his presentation. They said it was the best one at the entire conference.

They should know because they went to roughly 167 different ones over the course of 3 days (they are overachievers).

You would think they would be everything Mr. November would want out of a second family, but I guess not.

He was kind enough to take a picture with my wife and record a message for me on her camera.

Unfortunately, I can’t show their faces or share what he said in the message because of the possibility that this may become evidence in a future court case (the legal department at PrincipalsPage.com is top notch… especially for what I pay them).

But until then, I am going to take the high road and thank Mr. November for the excellent presentation (so I heard… I was at Sea World trying to get my daughter’s life on the right track).

I would also like to thank him for taking the time to visit with his daughter-in-law (or alleged daughter-in-law… depends which side of the courtroom you are sitting).

Although it is a shame he hasn’t met his granddaughter (next time you visit a theme park where fish are doing tricks, Mr. November, just think that it could be her training them… or more likely she was the cab driver who got you there).

I also appreciate the fact that he hasn’t filed the paperwork for that restraining order (as of yet).

Maybe one day, he and I can meet and put this ugliness behind us.

Let’s just hope it is at a technology conference and not in front of a judge.

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Famous People Read This Blog. Or More Likely; He Lost a Bet.


Another Opportunity to Post About Mike Rowe.Today, I am proud to announce that the PrincipalsPage.com Blog had its most famous visitor (that I know of… there could be others… but probably not).

Alan November was kind enough to stop by and leave a comment on “Travel Does Stink, But Alan November Was Great” (and no, I didn’t pay him… not that I wouldn’t, I just can’t afford it).

He qualifies as our most famous visitor because he has his own website, people pay to hear him speak, and it’s my blog so I get to decide who is famous and who isn’t. Please don’t confuse Mr. November with Alan Rickman, Alan Thicke, Alan Keyes, Alan Arkin or Alan Jackson (pretty much all of the famous people with the first name of Alan that I could think of).

As I mentioned before, if you get a chance to hear him speak; run don’t walk. You will learn more about technology in education than you could have ever imagined.

I have no idea why he picked that particular blog on which to leave a omment, but I am assuming he lost some sort of bet and was forced to read it (and possibly because his name was in the title).

You would think that he would be too busy to read this meaningless drivel, but life continues to surprise me.

Since I have officially named Mr. November our most famous guest, I want to thank him. And just as importantly, whoever forced him to read the blog.

Hopefully, he has opened the floodgates and the blog will be flooded by even more famous people.

Actually, I have never understood the fascination with famous people. Aren’t they just like us; only with nicer cars and better hair?

I have always been dumbfounded by the paparazzi following them and taking their picture coming out of Starbucks; or people hounding them for their autograph; and especially the fact that they need to thank God for their latest award (isn’t God too busy to worry about this year’s Best Supporting Actress?).

I usually find famous people odd and a little sad.

But if Mike Rowe stopped by and left a comment, that’s another story. Quick, someone bet him.

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Travel Does Stink, but Alan November was Great.


Mr. Alan November.I survived my first business related travel experience. Barely. There were a couple of bumps in the road (get it… travel… bumps in the road… you don’t get this type of 5th grade humor just anywhere… well, maybe from a 5th grader), but for the most part the trip was okay.

And by okay, I mean just okay. As in I didn’t die or cry myself to sleep. Not that I slept well in a strange place.

I still don’t understand how people do this all of the time. The hotels, finding someplace to eat, the hotels, the messed up routine, and the hotels. Did I mention the hotels?

It is just not natural to sleep in someone else’s bed. Especially if 1,237 “someone’s” have slept in that same bed before you. And by sleep, I mean… well, never mind because if I say it you will never go back to a hotel (and I could open myself up to legal proceedings in Alabama…. so says the PrincipalsPage.com legal department).

So, I will keep these thoughts to myself, much like I try not to think about how many students and parents touch the door handle of the school office on a daily basis.

While I was at the conference, I decided to ask salespeople (did you know salespeople in Latin means; evil bloodsucking devil children? I’m serious… Google it) who were there how they liked traveling for their job.

They all had the same attitude when I asked them questions about business travel (I not only have a Blog; I am a miniature Ron Burgundy).

The nice salespeople (not really… see devil children) got a glazed look in their eyes, cocked their heads to the side, and mumbled something to the effect of, “Travel is okay and I never get tired of breakfast at McDonald’s, dinner at Applebee’s, cold showers, and sleeping in a disgusting hotel bed.”

The glazed look told me they would rather be home with their families.

I felt the same way after only a couple of days. I missed my wife, my unemployed daughter, my pillow, my bed, my shower, my computer, my refrigerator, my TV, and my routine. I even missed school (any chance that changes by about 8:27 on Monday morning?).

But the important thing is I survived.

One good thing that came out of the week was attending a conference presentation that was actually good. And not just good, but great.

I listened to Alan November for 2 hours. It seemed like 12 minutes and 14 seconds (I have a stopwatch in my head).

He talked about the future of education, technology, and how as administrators we need to change the way we think about teaching our students.

This includes classroom technology, the internet, teacher evaluations, testing, length of class periods, etc. He has a strong belief that educators should be using resources that allow them to interact with teachers and students from all over the world; not just down the hall.

As an administrator who has the opportunity to sit through 37 meetings a week; this was the best presentation that I have had the pleasure of hearing.

He had just the right amount of information, sprinkled with a little sarcasm and just a hint of anger.

Who am I kidding? He may be my biological father (I wonder if he has an alibi for New Year’s of 1967?).

Anyways, he was excellent. After sitting through 14 sessions, this was a welcome and much needed surprise.

Our school district won’t be able to implement everything he talked about at once, but we can work towards it slowly but surely.

I was so excited after listening to him, that I briefly considered flying to Boston to thank him. Then I remembered the hotel bed thing.

Maybe I will just call. Or Skype. Or maybe, he can just read this blog.

He is correct about one thing; the world is getting smaller. And the people that understand this best are our students.

I wonder if they understand the hotel bed thing.

If you get a chance to hear Mr. November present, run don’t walk. You won’t be sorry. Unless you have to stay in a hotel.

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