Today, two friends gave me notebooks from the early 1900s that have notes and observations written in the most sloppy handwriting ever. I am going to attempt to decipher the notes and see if there is a story there. Suppose that this is some sort of major invention that came to make life easier. I’m guessing without having started that the chemist was working on something for transportation or the military because one of the only words I recognized right away was “rubber.” I have no idea, though, only curiosity and my own notebook and observations to figure it out.


Anonymity in sloppy handwriting
Has confounded my search
For what you were developing.

Hard rubber, grinders
Chemicals for exothermic reactions,
Some parts for a weapon?

Why didn’t you have better penmanship?
It would have made this project much easier.
Your p’s rarely loop,
You printed E and B with little regard for their difference.

I guess Lieban will be your name,
The first part looks like Chris,
But that Ch could be a U, and
Who knows what the rest of those letters are,
They trail off into some engineer’s hieroglyphic,
Of mystery.

Is this what I went to school for?

Practice time,
Year round workouts,
Hours of homework,
Is that what they come to school for?

That’s my favorite one,
It’s called graduation,

To serve is to know
Unless you work in a service industry
Which I’m pretty sure the last twenty plus years have been
For me in education
Except that when I act as a parent and
Experience bullshit runarounds from people I know,
I understand how little we educators understand about service.

Quality control people will soon be asking,
“What can we change?”
I might answer, “Don’t ignore me because I’m over 18.
I pay your salary,” technically mine too,
“So you will answer to me the adult.
My kid didn’t email you, I asked you for information.”
Answer the question asked to the person asking.

Change that.

Remember when age was supposed to be full of wisdom. The idea that life experiences help people make wise decisions has been accepted throughout history. Tonight another old and supposedly wise person started shooting rockets into the sky. He was avenging the death of his boy at the hands of another country. The trigger happy leader will cost many people their lives, just the same as the equally egotistical leader who started the mess by ordering the initial hit. Anymore wars are eternal pissing contests that never end. When will people learn that ego exposes their worst? I’m guessing never.

colorful clown toy

There were a few minutes left in the longest school day of the year. My students were deep into a battle of kickball when the emergency lights around the gym started blinking. The calm and panic-inducing voice commanding everyone to leave the building. We went out into the blinding sun and winter’s wind. Luckily, the sun was winning and it wasn’t too cold. The students walked to the safe zone and we waited to hear what could have caused the unexpected building evacuation. Fortunately, nothing was too wrong. A bag of microwavable popcorn burned. The smoke ended the day.