* It's always a good thing when people can laugh during a meeting. Board meeting was last night. Over the years I've been on the Board (way too long, but it's hard to get people to volunteer to do stuff, so I just keep plugging away and "succeeding myself" in whatever role as long as the bylaws allow), there have been some tense and sad meetings. (My tenure on the board even goes back 10 years, to the time of the church split.) Lately, there's been some concern - we're VERY small, we always have financial troubles, and a lot of services are not well-attended. Well, attendance has been up a bit, the last couple months we haven't been in the red as badly as we were in the past, and then this month we found out we have someone willing to at least try at being a permanent choir director (we have someone doing it on a volunteer basis, but it's hard for her). So it's kind of a relief, to think "Well, looks like we'll keep going a while yet." (I don't know what I'd do if the congregation folded. I really love the people in it and the theology of this particular denomination works well for me. I suppose I'd try to find out where the people I was closest to were going over to, and follow them. I will say the Presbyterians are probably our next-closest relatives, theologically speaking. But I hope I never have to figure out where to go "next.")
* The News Outrage Item Of The Day: some school somewhere is recommending (or perhaps requiring) that kindergarteners give valentine's cards to ALL the kids in the class, if they give them at all. Some commentators are aghast: how can they do that? How can they force kids to give cards to kids they might not like?
I don't know. Probably the same reason that they can force group-work on kids who'd rather not do it, I say cynically. (I had bad experiences with group-work as a schoolkid, including an instance of the rest of my group going "You know, you CARE about your grade. And we all get the same grade for the work. So you can do all the work if you want a decent grade")
But the thing is: these are kindergarteners. Five and six years old. They have the rest of their freakin' lives to learn just how cold and indifferent people can be. I don't see anything so wrong with them continuing for one more year to hold on to the idea that maybe people love and value them. Popularity contests are a harsh thing to deal with at that young of an age. (And yeah: probably some of the kids have twigged to the fact that they're not popular, if they aren't. I don't think I really realized it until 3rd grade, but whatever).
When I was a kid, I think the suggestion was (I don't think they enforced it) that you gave valentine's to all in the class. Even the kids you disliked. And yeah, maybe that's being a little "inauthentic" or "not-real" in the Real World sense. But I also think that tact is a valuable lesson - perhaps even more valuable than the later lesson that "most people are actually pretty indifferent to your existence." And not rubbing the unpopular kid's face in their unpopularity quite that early is a form of tact.
* Crud, my work computer (which runs XP) is asking me to "restart so updates can be installed." It's Windows 7 updates (apparently) that bricked several of my colleagues' Dell boxes (my chair STILL does not have a computer that works in her office) but I am VERY suspicious of these, even though, as I said, I'm running XP. I guess I will shut down (without installing the updates) before I go to class, and just do that every time I have to leave the office. (It gives me the "Unless you tell me no, I'm going to restart in 15 minutes" message on a semi-regular basis)
No one seems to know what it is about the update and the Dell 780 series that seems to have caused bad juju, but it seems like the people whose computers are screwed up are just out of luck....there's been no move to get them NEW computers, and it seems like whenever Computer Services undoes the problem, it happens again.
I STILL don't have my new home computer yet (it's SUPPOSED to come in this week; they have two more days...) and I'd have huge problems with no easy computer access. (This is also by way of saying: if I go a couple days without updates, you know what happened - my work box died thanks to some rogue MS update and I still have no computer at home).
Likely there would be no problem installing the updates seeing as I don't run Windows 7 on this, and my work machine is a Dell 755, but I'm still nervous.
OF COURSE there's no "I don't want an automatic update, thanks" and my computer has gone into Nag Mode, where it periodically throws up a "Hey, I'm'a gonna update in 15 minutes unless you expressly tell me that's not OK" which is really annoying and I'd love to make it go away. I'd love to tell it "NO. I am the user, you are the computer. You will only install updates when I expressly tell you to install updates" but as far as I can tell, that's not an option. (I found a way, but because I don't have "full administrative privileges," I can't turn off the auto-download. Dang.)
UPDATE: I had to go out and move my car (long story but it involves surprise stump grinding and workers who'd rather tell the secretary "Tell everyone to move their cars" rather than put out cones to block the parking spaces they will be occupying), so I shut the computer down (without installing updates) The little "I NEED TO INSTALL UPDATES" icon is gone, and it's not asked me since I've had it back on....so maybe it forgot about it. Or maybe they weren't real updates, seeing as this is XP which allegedly is no longer supported....