01 November 2010

And mustard! Honey mustard, at that!

Dynamic Duo!
Yes, Brock Lesnar lost. I still had a great time at UFC 121, though. There are lots of fighters that I will always pay money to see, Brock Lesnar chief among them, but I'm really a huge fan of the sport. The show demonstrated the sport pretty well, both good and bad but more the former than the latter. Even though Jake Shields stunk up the joint and should write a thank you card to the two judges that gave him the win, the rest of the fights were entertaining enough that I still had a great time despite my guy losing.

The night also served as a welcome distraction from the previous two days as things with the dog we adopted did not work out. My wife and I were very disappointed and saddened by the turn of events but feel we made the right decision for us and, hopefully, for her.

Halloween was also pretty fun, and I enjoyed seeing the costumes of the folks who decided to dress up. I included a picture of my wife and I as Batman and Robin. And before I get any snarky remarks (he says as he laughs at the idea of actually getting any kind of comments on the blog), there was a female Robin at one point in the Batman mythos. Her name is Stephanie Brown who started her career under the alias of Spoiler and served as the fourth Robin (there have been five total) for a brief period of time before Batman fired her. She died, came back to life and now has taken on the mantle of Batgirl. Comics are awesome and confusing. A hearty high-five to the person who can name the other four Robins by their secret identities.

By the by, my Xbox came back from its repair trip today and I promptly fired up the Netflix to find that Batman: Under the Red Hood, a direct to DVD animated release from last August, is now available in their Watch Instantly section. If you're a fan of Batman or good (animated) action with an intriguing and at times heart-wrenching story, I'd definitely recommend checking it out. To my mind, it's the best DC animated release so far, even edging out Justice League: New Frontier.

Now it's time to play catch up.

On Friday, October 22, I was gone and you moved forward.

Monday, October 25, you took the Elements of Lit test and turned in those notes, which took up most of the period. I've since added those tests to the gradebook. It's definitely a more difficult test than you may have anticipated because there were no multiple choice options and instead relies on your ability to remember your notes. But keep in mind, there was nothing on the test that wasn't also in your notes. That's how I like to operate for your tests so you know how best to prepare for them.

On Tuesday and Wednesday, October 26 and 27, you worked on the Root Words vocabulary worksheet. We went over why root words are important (what with them allowing folks to more easily define new words if able to correctly identify the root) and turned our focus to how many of the roots find their origins in Greek mythology (e.g. narcissist, herculean, titanic).

I collected the assignment on Thursday, October 28, which is when we began our mythology introduction. If you take away nothing else from this beginning portion of our unit, at the very least understand that myth does not automatically equate to something that is untrue. Keep in mind that myths merely explain that which is unexplainable in an attempt to get a better understanding of the world or universe at large.

After moving forward once again last Friday, we concluded the mythology introduction notes today by defining and discussing a few key terms:
  • fairy tale
  • parable
  • legend
  • myth (It's kind of redundant, I know...)
  • epic
  • folk tale
We will be reading some of these in class, and others may or may not show up on a test. (Hint: that usually means they WILL show up on a test.)

You need your student ID cards tomorrow and have an ORU due Friday with a section four that includes a theme statement.

Last Friday, October 22, I was gone and you worked on completing the Anglo Saxon laws worksheet in anticipation of our Beowulf reading.

We shifted gears slightly on Monday and Tuesday (October 25 and 26) when we examined the hero journey and hero archetypes, respectively. However, the concept still applies to Beowulf because he's an epic hero. When we start reading the actual (translated) poem this week, it'll make some more sense, but understand that he's the manliest man up to that point in the history of storytelling. If there were a way for me to finagle a reference to The Rock as a manlier man right now, I'd do so, but every attempt I made sounded really weak. Also, neither of these guys stand a chance of losing to Cain Velasquez, so there's no way I would have to eat crow later. Additionally on Monday, you were assigned the theme worksheet which was due today, but I pushed it back one more day so that I could continue checking your theme statements. But more on that in a second.

Wednesday and Thursday, October 27 and 28, we explored evil and all that entails. See, Grendel is the living embodiment of evil and an all around jerk. We're looking at both sides here, but, spoiler alert, the good guy is going to win in the end. At the same time, too often we (in the big picture, humanity sense of we) tend to define things by what they aren't when it comes to difficult concepts like evil. You are all to be commended for attempting to define it on your own, and I look forward to reading the varied definitions you wrote.

Friday, October 29, I began checking your theme statements and continued to do so today. This took a lot longer than I thought and will continue into tomorrow when I plan to really finish checking them. The important idea to keep in mind is that a theme statement needs to be universal and not tied to the text in any way. Remember that just because we framed theme statements as the main idea (or lesson, as some put it) of a story doesn't mean that it needs to be positive. Too many of the theme statements I'm seeing refer to what characters should do or labeling actions as evil. Some of your books are dark and have pessimistic views of the world. The theme needs to reflect that.

I'll collect the theme worksheet tomorrow. On Thursday, November 4, you have your fourth annotation check and Article Selection 4 both due. Don't forget that next Wednesday, November 10, is the due date for your CD Creation project. Finally, your annotations need to be complete by Tuesday, November 16. This is a lot of work, but if you've paced yourself out well, it should be manageable.


  1. Anonymous11:53 PM

    But...why,"And mustard! Honey mustard, at that!"?!

  2. Because I am playing catch up. See what I did there?

  3. Anonymous12:44 AM

    Oooohhhhh, you clever man!