Thursday, November 15, 2018

A Must Watch Video on Corporate Welfare

Definitely worth your time to watch this 21 minute discussion about Amazon on Democracy Now!

#ExtractionEconomy (Very interesting listening to New York State Assembly member Ron Kim talk about this.)

Further reading: "Amazon Doesn’t Just Want to Dominate the Market—It Wants to Become the Market" by Stacy Mitchell

Further reading: "New York Should Say No to Amazon" by Ron Kim

Thursday, November 8, 2018

Always Be Annotating (Your Syllabus)

I'm working on my course syllabi for next semester. I usually don't work on spring semester courses until late December, once the fall semester ends. But, being on sabbatical right now, I can prep ahead.

When it's time to refresh a course I've already taught, the first thing I do is review a hard copy of the syllabus from the last time I taught the course. I'm always happy to see how much I've marked up the syllabus. It's not rocket science, as they say. Simple notes like "this worked well," "this ended up taking two sessions," "change this up," "they liked this reading," etc. Sometimes I write "this could have gone better (see notes)" which directs me to my hard copy of the class notes with ideas of how the session can be improved. We know how badly it feels when a class session doesn't go the way we hoped. Sometimes we don't have to scrap the session. It can be a matter of minor adjustments. So I try to leave myself notes for ways to make a session better the next time. Same goes for paper assignments and other course requirements. Leave yourself notes after students submit papers and you've graded them. Were you happy with the paper length? Did you include a rubric (if so, was it effective)? Did you give students precise instructions? And so on.

The next thing I do is check a document in my electronic course folder. The document name is "New course ideas". I can work with these ideas to replace things that didn't work well in the previous semester. 

Then, I check my email file for the course. That's the way I bookmark articles and videos. I have email files for all my courses. So when a friend or student sends something (or I send myself something) that I don't have time to read, watch, or process, I put it in the relevant course folder. That way I keep course materials fresh and interesting for myself and students.

Okay, time to get back to revising my syllabi.

Saturday, November 3, 2018

Capital One Tries To Ruin Michael Jackson Song

A Saturday morning spent making eggs and pancakes, reading, messing around with the kids, minding my own business. TV on in the background. You hear a classic song, Michael Jackson's "Don't Stop 'Til You Get Enough." And you find out corporate America is at it again, using it in a bad credit card commercial. Really bad. It's painful to watch. But to watch is to feel just how awful it is. But even a terrible commercial can't ruin this excellent song. Posted below is Michael Jackson's video for "Don't Stop 'Til You Get Enough." 1979, baby, two years before MTV hit the air.

Friday, November 2, 2018

Sun Deprived

I miss the sun.

A weather person on the local TV news in Buffalo made a graphic showing there were 4 days of sun in October. October is usually beautiful here in the 716 but the last many weeks have been filled with gloom and rain. The first two days of November have given us more rain. It looked for a moment as if the sun was ready to make an appearance when I was doing some drive-thru banking this morning. The mere thought of sun made me blast the song playing on my radio, windows down.

I'm still waiting for the sun to shine. Meanwhile, I'll rely on music to break the doldrums. Here's the song I tried to share with my fellow motorists. It's "Talking Straight" by Rolling Blackouts Coastal Fever.

"I'm hopeless/No embrace/I wanna know/I wanna know where the silence comes from/Where space originates"....

Tuesday, October 30, 2018

Tweet of the Day (Don't Stick to Sports Edition)

I like this tweet by Jeremy White, co-host host of a morning sports talk show on WGR 550 in the Buffalo market. Jeremy ventures into politics on his Twitter feed, and stiff arms criticism that people who work in the sports radio format should only talk about sports, and nothing else. Here, his peer group shows support for Nate McMurray, who is running for a seat in Congress against Chris Collins, who is under indictment for insider trading. Jeremy's group was tailgating before last night's game between the Buffalo Bills and New England Patriots. As I blogged about recently at Everyday Sociology Blog, the Bills tailgates may be famous for shenanigans, but there's much more to Bills fans than partying and breaking tables!

Tuesday, October 23, 2018

Song of the Day - "Cool" by Soccer Mommy

Heard this song for the first time today. It came on Sirius XMU this morning while I was dropping off my kid at school. Then I heard it on the station again in the afternoon.
On a different note, I was just reading a good article about Idaho and how voters have taken a liking to Paulette Jordan, who is running for governor. Very interested to see what happens. I just wanted to bookmark the article.