1. Starbucks Drive-Thrus.
If I didn't have the option of a Starbucks drive-thru each morning, there really would be no Starbucks in my life. I'm way too lazy to get out of my car in the morning. With the drive-thru, it feels as if I make no stops -- it's all part of the commute to work. Granted, thanks to this drive-thru "enabling", I'm out about ten bucks a day, but have you tried a coffee frappuccino lately? So worth living paycheck to paycheck.
2. Dan Brown's latest.
The man gives good hook. I'm a fan of Angels and Demons and The Da Vinci Code, and this book seems to be on par with his usual style. Sadly, the movies have made an impact on my imagination -- I am seeing Tom Hanks instead of Harrison Ford whenever I picture Robert Langdon. Call it the Harry Potter Effect. Bummer.
Regardless, Brown does a great job of keeping the story moving while also somehow teaching along the way. I love the details that he works into his stories, illuminating his plots with historical and scientific facts. Somehow he's able to make even the wildest concepts seem grounded. I'm only a few chapters in, but so far, it's a good read.
3. Teaching Poe.
Every October I do a Poe unit with my students, beginning with "The Tell-Tale Heart." Once the students hit the word "acute," they tend to jump to conclusions about the accessibility of the text. We persist, though, reading the text aloud together, stopping along the way to ensure that everyone is following along. By the time they get to the word "dismember", each and every one of them gets the genius that is Poe.
This week, we made our way through poems such as "A Dream Within a Dream," "The Raven," "The Haunted Palace," and "Annabel Lee." With every new poem, the students seem to become more excited and enthralled. Today, upon hearing the line "For the moon never beams without bringing me dreams/Of the beautiful Annabel Lee," one of the girls exclaimed, "Oh!" We're talking swooning here. I get it. For me, that swoon comes with the preceding lines:
Neither the angels in heaven above,Nor the demons down under the sea,Can ever dissever my soul from the soulOf the beautiful Annabel Lee.
The students also loved the Simpsonized version of "The Raven" that I shared with them today. It never gets old.
4. Zombieland. We saw this last weekend, and it was definitely worth watching. If you're a fan of "Shaun of the Dead" (and who, worth knowing, isn't?), then you'll love this flick.
5. Friday. Can I just say how LONG I've been waiting for the weekend this week? The only thing that makes me more excited than the thought of Friday is Saturday. Have a good one.