Saturday, January 23, 2016

Coats and Classes

"Mom, did you ever make friends with someone just for the food?" Bigger Girl asked.

No, i can't say that i have, although your father did.


Yes, Frau Schroeder.  He mowed her lawn, she taught him German and fed him home cooked German food. 

"Speaking of German, I have a teacher from Germany.  When we started class, the first thing she said was, 'I vant you to know dat I have an accent'!" It was so funny!"

She does sound like she has a great sense of humor.

"She does.  She also said, 'The first person who compares me to Hitler, or compares this class to The Third Reich, will receive an F!' and she meant it!  It seems there have been a lot of people who have said things like that because she's such a tough teacher."

Well, she's a great teacher, then, but certainly not a Hitler.

"The best part is, she can pronounce German-derived first names properly!"

That sounds logical.  But what does this have to do with making friends just for food

"Oh, that was about Frieda.  When she was in boarding school, they served mostly beans or lentils with rice for most of the meals, so she made friends with the teacher from India just because he would cook curries and other great foods from back home and share them with her.  He knew she came to his office just for the food, but he did't care because he was so glad to be able to talk to someone as smart as him!"

That sounds like Frieda's speed.  How is she?

"She's cold.  Now that our weather has turned, she's sorry she left her heavy winter jackets back in Massachusetts.  She doesn't go back for another two weeks, and she's freezing down here."

Is that why you don't have a jacket right now?  You gave yours to her?

"You noticed that I don't have mine?"

It's a mom's job to notice.

"Well, yes, that's why."

Here, take this one.  It was Ms. R's, you know, one of my Friday ladies.  She loved the coat, but it got a small stain on it, so she gave it to me, and i have one.  You take it for Frieda.

"Thanks!  I will, and I'll get mine back."

And get some sleep, you stay up studying too late.

"Yes, mom!"

Today is:

Bounty Day -- Pitcairn Island (celebrates the burning of the HMS Bounty in 1790

Cold, Cold, Cold Day -- coldest temp ever recorded in the US, -79.8°F (-62.11°C), this day in 1971 at Prospect Creek Camp, Alaska

Day of Hathor -- Ancient Egyptian Calendar (date approximate)

Gasparilla Extravaganza -- Tampa, FL, US (the rum free version of the Pirate Festival celebration, with a kid's parade and lots of fun; the adult version is next Saturday)

IceFest -- Ligonier, PA, US (ice sculpture contest and lots of family fun; through tomorrow)

KidFilm Festival -- Dallas, TX (international children's film festival; through tomorrow)

Lenaia -- Ancient Greek Calendar (three day Dionysian festival to arouse the sleeping vegetation and bring spring; date approximate)

Measure Your Feet Day -- one can only ask...."Why!?!"

National Pie Day -- US, sponsored by the American Pie Council 

National Handwriting Day -- US, on the birth anniversary of John Hancock, to encourage the dying art of legible handwriting by the Writing Instrument Manufacturers Association 

National Rhubarb Pie Day

Netaji Subhas Chandra Bose Jayanti -- TR and WB, India (birth anniversary of Netaji Subhas Chandra Bose)

Orange City Blue Spring Manatee Festival -- Orange City, FL, US (learn about the manatee and have fun doing it; through tomorrow)

Ragwort Dance -- Fairy Calendar (Pixies only)

Snowplow Mailbox Hockey Day -- sponsored by Wellcat Holidays; plow drivers, see how far you can make those rural mailboxes go!

SOS Radio Week -- UK (The Royal National Lifeboat Institution keeps the seas safer, and Radio Amateurs help them raise funds)

St. John the Almoner's Day (Patron of Knights Hospitaller; known for his generosity to the poor, "If we are able to enter the church day and night and implore God to hear our prayers, how careful we should be to hear and grant the petitions of our neighbor in need.")

Wakakusa Yamayaki -- Nara, Japan (Grass Burning on Mt. Wakakusayama, and fireworks; an annual New Year tradition)

Women in Medicine Day -- Elizabeth Blackwell becomes the first woman awarded the degree of Medical Doctor in 1849

Zora Neale Hurston Festival of the Arts and Humanities -- Eatonville, FL, US (celebrating Hurston's work, hometown, and cultural contributions, and the contributions of all Africa-descended people; through the end of the month)

Anniversaries Today:

The founding of Georgetown University, the first US Catholic college, 1789

Birthdays Today:

Tito Ortiz, 1975
Tiffani Thiessen, 1974
Mariska Hargitay, 1964
Gail O'Grady, 1963
Princess Caroline of Monaco, 1957
Antonio Villaraigosa, 1953
Pat Haden, 1953
Richard Dean Anderson, 1950
Rutger Hauer, 1944
Gil Gerard, 1943
Chita Rivera, 1933
Jeanne Moreau, 1928
Ernie Kovacs, 1919
John M. Browning, 1855
Edouard Manet, 1832
Stendhal(Marie-Henri Beyle), 1783
John Hancock, 1737
Joseph Hewes, 1730

Debuting/Premiering Today:

"The A-Team"(TV), 1983
"Roots"(TV miniseries), 1977
"Barney Miller"(TV), 1975
"King Family Show"(TV), 1965
"After the Fall"(Miller's Play), 1964
The Treasure of the Sierra Madre(Film), 1948

Today in History:

Epoch (origin) of the Kali Yuga (Hindu Iron Age of the Gods), BC3102
In China, the war elephant corps of the Southern Han are soundly defeated at Shao by crossbow fire from Song Dynasty troops, 971
The first printing of Ramban's Sha'ar ha-Gemul, 1490
The first printing of the Pentateuch, 1492
The second version of Book of Common Prayer becomes mandatory in England, 1552
What is probably the most deadly earthquake in history kills 830,000 in Shensi Province, China, 1556
Queen Elizabeth I opens the Royal Exchange in London, 1571
Blaise Pascal publishes the first of his Lettres provinciales, 1656
Joseph Pease, a Quaker, is admitted to Parliament on his affirmation, 1833
Elizabeth Blackwell becomes the first female physician in the US, 1849
The first bridge over the Mississippi River opens in what is now Minneapolis, Minnesota, 1855
Alesund Fire: the Norwegian coastal town Alesund is devastated by fire, leaving 10,000 people homeless an one person dead, 1904
Charles Curtis of Kansas becomes the first Native American US senator, 1907
Pianist Ignaz Paderewski becomes premier of the Polish government in exile, 1940
Duke Ellington plays at Carnegie Hall in New York City for the first time, 1943
The bathyscaphe USS Trieste breaks a depth record by descending to 10,911 m (35,798 feet) in the Pacific Ocean, 1960
The Rock and Roll Hall of Fame inducts its first members: Little Richard, Chuck Berry, James Brown, Ray Charles, Fats Domino, the Everly Brothers, Buddy Holly, Jerry Lee Lewis and Elvis Presley, 1986
Final communication between Earth and Pioneer 10, 2003
Six Venezuelan cable television channels are taken off the air by the Venezuelan government after refusing to transmit government messages, 2010


  1. You are wonderful and so is Bigger Girl. And I think Frau Schroeder is, too. I took two years of German in high school. Frau Schmejkal was great. Tough, but great. Have a nice weekend, my friend.

  2. I love your family and I love all your conversations. Your kids rock. They also get their kindness from you. You know that right. I thought so.

    Have a fabulous day. ♥♥♥

  3. Heres's to all the wonderful teachers I know we all had.

  4. Bigger Girl has an even bigger heart.

  5. I enjoyed that heheh!

    Have a convotastic day :-)

  6. What a sweet gesture for her to do!! Bless her.
    I would love to learn German. My husband has some in his family tree, but no one seems to have ever learned the language. Their just all very tall and big!!