Cloister Commentary, Day 353: A Room With A View

The fact that it was a slow day is best exemplified by how excited I was after cleaning up and rearranging my office. Smart humans would have, upon initially moving into it, immediately arranged it in the manner to which I changed it: I have a window view, yet I’ve had my back to it the entire time (it does look out onto a dormant chimney that is also reminiscent of a guard tower, so it is not exactly beauteous). Flipping my work station improved my Zoom appearance so much that, during our staff meeting, they thought I was in another location. Also, I swept the equivalent of a half-package of candy-coated fennel seeds off the floor. I don’t think my office had been swept since I moved into it in 2016.

One of the student teachers I supervise taught a lesson on Macbeth that I had the pleasure of observing. Her host teacher is a former student of mine to whom I taught that play; I do believe I forced the Scottish Play on students for almost 20 years, and about have it memorized. The intern did a very careful, thorough and enthusiastic job–in fact, made me miss it. That’s a by-product of supervising student teachers.

After a long walk, we settled in for an excellent dinner of grilled cheese sandwiches on Uprise Bakery Ancient Grain bread (Nicole made mine with pepper cheese), steamed spinach and taters, pickled beets, and chocolate coffee brownies made with Blue Plate mayonnaise. She bemoaned the boring nature of the meal, but what do you think? I thought I was damned lucky.

We fell asleep to the news that Columbia Public Schools will be fully in-seat April 5. Nicole should be fully vaccinated by then, and I hope all or most of the rest of the district’s staff will be.

Streaming for Strivers:

I can’t stand the rain, so I’m steeling myself for the end of the week.

Cloister Commentary, Day 284: Nasty Weather of All Kinds

Dismal weather was moving in to cruelly combine with the continued COVID wildfire, so we headed out for enough curbside provisions to get us a few days into 2021. Speaking of cruelty, our political leadership continues to find ways to withhold economic relief from struggling Americans; I had thought this time a winning combination had been found, but where do I get this optimism from?

We had a very nice evening, finishing the deeply powerful Wright Thompson book Pappyland (last time I will mention it, but I’m trying to hypnotize you into buying it), enjoying some butternut squash soup and some locally baked batard (courtesy of Uprise Bakery), toasted and garlicked, and spreading out in the living room for a few hours with books, cats, beer, and the intense, painful honky tonk music of Gary Stewart. We closed down the day with three episodes of TrueSouth, which focused on the terrific cultural cuisine of Nashville, Shreveport, and New Orleans. In all our trips to the Crescent City, how did we miss Mandina’s?!!

Streaming for Strivers:

Is there such a thing as a bad Bob Wills – Tommy Duncan album? I think not.