Tuesday, May 15, 2007

Parkrose High

Yep. I may be breaking my 8-year homeschooling streak and take a stab at high school in September. i went and visited the local high school and everything seems cool there. By the way, that's the lobby in the picture. Best picture I could find.
I got there at 7:45 am (I don't think I've gotten up that early in years, heh heh). There was a freshman named Brandon there to show me around. I was "shadow" him all day and I couldn't help thinking of sneaking up behind this kid and whacking him with something heavy. They need to think of a better term. Anyways.
First was English. The teacher there seemed pretty cool, sort of laid back. He gave me a spare literature textbook to read, and while everyone else worked on a 1-page essay, I read a creepy story about a man who loves hunting more than anything else, but is so good at it no animal is anywhere near a match for him. So he hunts humans instead. The survivors of shipwrecks that wash up on his little island in the Caribbean. But eventually he makes the mistake of hunting someone who's an expert hunter himself. The man eventually shows up behind his window curtain after presumed dead, and apparently kills said creepy person-hunter. Rather grim...
After occupying most of the 1-hour English class with that, Brandon and I moved on to art. he art building is this awesome warehouse-like place, covered in paintings by the students. Cartoons, portraits, landscapes, manga, politically-oriented painitngs, you name it. The class itself was pretty cool, if a little obtuse. Something about color layering and contrast. It also didn't help that they decided to have a simulated earthquake in the middle of everything. When it came on over the intercom, there was much eye-rolling and "Oh, gawd." Fair enough. There was one kid who made some ridiculously funny joke about it, but I can't remember .
So now we were sitting under the tables. I was busy picking the gum out of my hair, Brandon was apologizing for how boring this was, and various others were listening to iPods. It was all very unenthusiastic. We eventually wasted 15 minutes after being told to go stand outside until it was "Safe to reenter the building".
After painting in the art class for 2 hours, we moved on to PE. I didn't have a uniform so I got to sit on the gym floor and be bored. The most exciting thing that happened was when I came close to being accidentally brained by a soccer ball kicked by Brandon's girlfriend. She could probably kick a ball through the gym ceiling if she wanted to.
Then there was lunch. I got my first ever sampling of cafeteria food. My options were: Greasy tater tots, greasier pizza, and cookies. I got the pizza. Yay.
The final class was Computers or Tech Literacy or whatever. This was the longest. It also kind of sucked because some annoying girl told me to get off the computer I was using. I figured there was some reason she had to be at that exact spot, so I moved, only to later be told by Brandon that she was generally annoying and just wanted to sit there because it was her favorite spot. There were plenty of other computers available, but I couldn't log in because I wasn't a student. So I was left with the funnies from today's paper. I made do with those for the next three hours.
I don't really understand the setup of that class. The teacher gave an assignment but mostly didn't care when only a few of the kids focused on it. Most were on Myspace, and the one closest to me was watching "Naruto" on Youtube. It wasn't very focused.
That was the last class. After that I said bye to Brandon and walked home. It was a pretty neat experience, though, and I think I'll enroll in September.

Tuesday, May 8, 2007

Crazy Weather

Man, the weather these days. Maybe it has something to do with global warming, but it's been all over the place. In Portland, "April showers bring May hailstorms". I was riding my bike to the library a couple days ago, and I started hearing plinking noises on my helmet. Five minutes later, I was hiding under a tree, soaked, probably bruised in a couple places, hoping this would only last another few minutes. I got lucky.
And now, like two days later, it's sunny, about seventy degrees, and I'm sitting on the patio, writing this post and listening to our little fountain bubbling away. What the heck. Yeah, I blame global warming, especially since it was 89 degrees in my room last night.

Wednesday, May 2, 2007

Definitely worth writing about!

Yes it is! We went to hear John Edwards today, 'cause he was in Portland. It was raining when we got there, and my mom an I were fighting over who got the umbrella. We ran, soaked, down the street and into the building. There must have been about 600 people there, and the room was only about 80ft. x 70ft. It was quite packed. We sat near the back, but still got a decent view.
When he came on, there was of course a lot of cheering. After things quieted down, he started talking. He had a lot to say about labor unions and what they could do (which made sense, I suppose, because all this was taking place in a union hall. Flatter your hosts).
Edwards also had an excellent college plan. If the kid is willing to work ten hours a week, then tuition and textbooks are free. Sounds great to people like me! On top of this, he said on the first day he was in office, he would close down Guantanamo. This got the biggest cheer 0f all.
I agreed with pretty much everything he said, except for one thing. He doesn't seem to be in defense of gay marriage. This is a flaw. However, the good news is he also doesn't think the government has any right to tell people who to marry. All in all, I agree, though.
On the way back we passed a warehouse with graffiti all over it. It's like the most I've ever seen in one place, so I took some pictures.