Monday, June 13, 2011

Random Bullets of Randomness

(1) I spent today watching the videos on the NEH Oaxaca web page and skimming through Chibnik's book on alebrijes. This was the perfect task since I'm on the tail end of a sinus infection that has had me woolly-headed for the last two weeks. The videos covered some of the same subjects I've blogged about -- Lila Downs, the Guelaguetza parades, Santo Domingo, alebrijes-- and introduced some new to me, especially the two by Luna Mar An on MAMAZ.

(2) I'm still all over the place with my lesson plan subjects and the areas I want to research personally. I've downloaded some info on the Common Core Standards that will be rolled out this fall and how they align with the standards that the American Association for School Librarians endorses and that I've been using in curriculum writing the last few years.

Fortunately, a lot of the NEH reading touches, either directly or tangentially, on the subject of tourism and its effects on the culture and life of Oaxaca, which is a thread I'd like to follow for my own gratification. And I should have a better idea of what path I want to take on my lesson plans once I finish the reading and organize my notes. All I know at the moment is that I want them to be multidiscipinary and include History, Art History, and Literature.

(3) I've gained so much weight in the year since I had surgery that I can't fit into any of my summer clothes, so I guess I'll be walking around Oaxaca in muu-muus or velvet track suits or something. I wish I could say this doesn't bother me, and I'm not losing sleep about it, but as the trip approaches, it's starting to irritate the hell out of me.

(4) Speaking of alebrijes, Mariela, our cleaning lady, has returned from a month-long trip to her home in Colombia. I mention it because she absolutely loathes our gato because it creeps her out. She doesn't even like to pick it up to dust, so I have to put it in a closet whenever she comes. She'd like to see us throw it out, and to that end, she brought us a wooden kitty from Cartagena to replace it.

(5) The Oaxaca teachers' strike seems to have ended last week. I expect Oaxaca will be relatively quiet politically this summer, at least on the surface.

(6) I was planning to spend a couple of our free weekends in Chiapas staying at a B&B run by a photographer who's a friend of a friend and visiting the papermaking workshop at Taller Lenateros and the research institute at Casa Na Bolom. But I've decided to avail myself of the Friday technology workshops and rest on the weekends. There are so many things in and around Oaxaca to keep me busy that this was a no brainer, and I still don't think all my engines are firing at top speed even though I feel a hundred times better than I did this time last year. So I'll have to plan a separate trip to Chiapas in the future.

(7) The Mexican national soccer team is playing in the semifinals of the Gold Cup at the Meadowlands of New Jersey Saturday, but I can't go -- wah, wah! Our plans for that night might be canceled, but I won't know until it's too late to score some tix.

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