More Pathetic

I got my first D on my first report card when I was six. It was at the end of the column of A’s. I did not know what Phys. Ed. was but I did know that D made my stomach feel weird. Now, fifty years later, as I squinted through the magnifying glass at the C on one of my first college tests, my stomach felt equally weird.  [pullquote]Maybe this Amish grandma would not survive college after all.[/pullquote]  Continue reading More Pathetic


Amish Logic

Work is primary in Amish life. If you want to eat, you raise your food. If you want clothing, you sew it. If you want to buy something, you make sure you have the money to pay for it. If you do not have, or cannot borrow, the money, you do not buy it. Everything is labor-intensive and involves everyone, from toddlers to great-grandparents.

The Amish are also literal and concrete, disregarding anything abstract or metaphysical. Even their religion is expressed in tangible ways, nothing is spiritualized.

Because that same Amish logic is innate in me, Continue reading Amish Logic


Crossing the Moat

“Well, if you’re the King of the Castle when it comes to blogs, I’m not even in the castle,” I said emphatically. “In fact, I don’t know where the castle is because I don’t know what a blog is.”

We, the twenty-plus students of English 015, were crowded into a computer lab instead of our usual spacious classroom because we were going to learn how to set up our own blogs. Michelle had just asked how many of us had ever done a blog before Continue reading Crossing the Moat


Do It Right for Goodness Sakes

You hear about quality control these days. My mother’s version of quality control was “doitrightforgoodnesssakes” and there were no gray areas. Something was either done right, or, it was not. And you guessed it, “right” was her way. [pullquote]I don’t have enough energy to do it twice[/pullquote].

If—excuse me—when a floor was worth sweeping—and of course it always was— Continue reading Do It Right for Goodness Sakes


Not Pathetic Enough

I thought I had grown up arguing but a college textbook told me otherwise. What I had experienced was merely yelling, bickering, and fighting. Pathetic arguing is very different, at least according to the textbook for English 015 Thank You for Arguing by Jay Heinrichs.

Fortunately, Heinrichs did not write a traditional, bore-students-outta-their-skulls textbook so I was not the only one who actually learned something in that class. Continue reading Not Pathetic Enough