Small minority

crowd reflection color toy

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Why should a small minority dictate to the majority what is appropriate and acceptable, or what is not?

Case in point: schools are closed in WA and they are trying to figure out how to go forward as this corona virus thing continues. It was communicated out from OSPI (our state superintendent’s office) that districts couldn’t continue to educate their students if they couldn’t guarantee “equity” for all students it serves. Or, at least, they couldn’t require students to attend because of equity (lack of internet, ELL, SpEd, etc.).

OK, on the surface, that makes sense and it looks great on the PR side of things. However, it doesn’t make sense when you start looking at the numbers. That closer look ends up making the policy a complete “F” in my book.

The closer look:

So, we’re not going to educate 90% of the students because 10% can’t participate because of various challenges?

What if it was 50/50? Is that still too low to continue offering education to those who can participate? You can play with the numbers however you like, but at just about any point you can’t justify depriving a larger group of people from something because of a smaller group. It just doesn’t make any sense.

Do you scuttle the sailboat because there is no wind?

Do you throw out the baby with the bathwater?

Do you cut off your hand because you got a splinter in your little finger?

Do you cut off your foot because you broke a toe?

Do you demolish an entire building because a couple rooms in it aren’t or can’t be occupied?

Catch my drift?

Why do we let small groups of people dictate what happens with the larger groups? Seems a bit backwards, doesn’t it?

Remember the saying, “Greatest good for the greatest number“? Why doesn’t that apply these days? Or any day? How did we get so far away from an idea that mostly works?Sure, I know we have to make sure the “minority” group doesn’t get abused by those who are more powerful or has the most resources, but there is still something true about this thought:

What is the greater good when it comes to educating our students?

 

Serial “like”r

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Are you a serial LIKEr?

You’re probably asking, “What does that even mean?”

Urban Dictionary

It’s not a perfect definition though. I think it should be adjusted to mean “people on social media platforms who ‘like’ posts or blogs to generate interest in their own accounts, never actually reading or interacting with the ‘liked’ post or account.”

Does that make more sense?

You have probably noticed it too. People who “like” your blog often but have never left a comment of any sort in the past, nor do they intend to in the future. I am not saying I haven’t been known to leave a like or two without comment, but I try to interact with every blog at some point. It might not be on a regular basis, but leaving a comment now and then (one that actually demonstrates that you read the blog) goes a long way for building loyal readers and followers.

If you just “like” with the hopes that someone visits your blog, well, your “like” is disingenuous and you didn’t really “like” it at all.

Leave a comment. Spark a conversation between you and the blogger, or other readers of the blog. Create some interaction. Then those “likes” at other times might be appropriate and actually considered genuine.

Otherwise you’re just a fake “like”r. Don’t be a fake.

Without notification

airline flight schedules on flat screen televisions

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Someone left town to visit family this weekend. Flying in these times is a rather curious endeavor now and there was already anticipation that some flexibility would be needed. The thought was that returning home might end up being a problem (that still remains to be seen). So…

Night before flight, 11:23pm: Flight is on time for an 8:00am departure.

Morning of flight, 4:11a.m: Flight cancelled and booked to another flight at 10:21am.

If I hadn’t checked of my own volition, the change would not have been known until arriving at the airport.

Did you catch that, “of my own volition”?

That’s right. Not a single notification from the airline that the flight details had changed. No text. No email. No call. That last one I didn’t really expect, but not even an email? Is that how they handle flight changes now?

Really disappointed in Alaska Airlines.

Granted, for the first leg of the trip the flight is not on their actual airline, but the trip was booked through them and they are the “confirmation number issuer” so you would think they were the ones responsible for notification.

I have always liked flying with them. They take pretty good care of you and they fly to most places I want to go for a fair price (most of the time). But, this taints the relationship a little. She luster is now gone. Oh, I’ll still probably fly with them but there is a little love lost now.

I may have a wandering eye, checking out the other options available. Fair warning Alaska, fair warning.

 

Expenses and new adulthood

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Here’s a TOUGH question for you?

At what point do you have your adult children fend for themselves?

Specifically, a child has graduated from high school almost a year ago and is now 19. Oh, and I’ll add that the child is not currently living in your home. Said child has college expenses covered already (tuition and housing), but has no job.

What do you think?

What do you continue to support/provide and what do you not? What would you consider “extra” versus necessary?

There are some difficult discussions coming up and I am curious how you see this topic. I realize this is a bit of an open ended question and can be taken in a lot of different directions, so I am open to any and all responses.

Power(less)

people wall blur inside

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Traveling in the electronic age is rather interesting, or frustrating, depending on your point of view and experience.

On my vacation last week, I had the opportunity to visit four different airport concourses. All were Southwest Airlines concourses, but I am not actually sure who is responsible for setting them up. Obviously the airport maintains them (cleaning, etc.), but as far as designing and then implementing the design, as I understand, that is up to the airline.

The interesting thing is that all four airports had vastly different designs and amenities. Seattle’s hub, surprisingly, was the most comfortable and there were AMPLE places to plug in the electronic devices. Between a bar looking setup with plugs to all the chairs having plugs and USB ports, there was no fighting over access. As such, there was no possibility of running short on power, but I was just starting my trip so everything was fully powered already.

San Jose’s Southwest concourse was rather dinky and probably the least comfortable of all four, but again the chairs all had plugs and USB ports available so now finding a place to top off the devices wasn’t difficult. Find an open seat (maybe more difficult since it was a small place) and plug in.

Phoenix’s Southwest concourse was actually comfortable, but access to power was rather sparse. Again, I was fully charged so I didn’t need a place to power-up, but if I had there seemed to be a few “bar” looking places spaced throughout the concourse, but the plugs available at these were limited. The seating had no charging capability at all, at least not at the gate I was at and it didn’t look any different any place else.

Finally, Southwest’s Sacramento concourse was a decent size but again the power options were really limited. Again, there were a few of those “bar” options, but again nothing in the chairs. Fortunately, there wasn’t anything that needed topped off for me at this point in my trip. I was conserving power fairly well.

The return trip home was rather eye-opening. I fully expected that what I had available to me on my trip down would be available to me on the way home. That was not the case. I was a little surprised that the airline didn’t have the same amenities available in all of it’s concourses, at least as far as access to power goes. Yes, I know size of the airport and what other comforts available depend highly on the design of the building, but the easiest and most effective way to offer power options to your flyers is to add the chairs with power access right in them. The last two airports, not so much.

So, if you haven’t flown in a while, be prepared to be “powerless” on some legs of your trip. You may have to supply your own as the battle for outlets continues to increase in our electronics driven lives.

Morning flight

man walking on the road holding black luggage during sunset

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Travel day has arrived! To say that I am excited might be an understatement. Sun, baseball, buddies, beer, food,…yeah, it’s gonna be a blast.

Unfortunately, the start hasn’t been completely smooth.

I left the house one time and got the the airport exactly as anticipated. Grabbed the small suitcase, pulled up the handle for better handling while rolling, and headed to check in for my flight. I was checking the bag (it’s free) so I didn’t bother to check in early.

I got to the kiosk, checked in, and went to put the handle down on the suitcase and it won’t go down…like not move, at all….I pushed. I shoved. I pulled. I pounded. I tried finessing it. NOTHING. It isn’t moving. Great.

I am not unpacking this thing to see if I can get the bars for the handle to move from the inside. Oh, and I didn’t happen to bring my hacksaw with me so I can’t cut the dang thing off.

I asked the luggage people what I should do. They said, “We’ll still check it.” REALLY? Thank goodness!

Stress melted away.

Coffee is being consumed and I am waiting to board my flight. Let’s hope that is the only challenge faced during this trip.

 

Blind bat

close up photo of bat

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Along with a visit to the regular doc yesterday, I also made a 4th trip to the eye doctor for an original appointment that was back in January.

Why the 4th? Well, it’s partially because I seeming as blind as a bat (I am still developing my echo location skills) and partially due to their incompetence. The outcome of this last appointment? A possible 5th visit…

Due to the power needed for my eyes, I haven’t had the clearest of vision in one eye because technology in the soft contact industry just hadn’t caught up my needed power. So, when I found out that clearer vision was now a possibility for the worst of my two eyes I was kinda happy about that. They ordered trials and I went upon my Piss and Moan way.

When I went back to try on the trials they discovered they ordered the wrong ones and only one that I actually needed was available. So, I tried that one in my eye and it was a significant improvement over the years of partially blurry vision! But, that was only one eye. And while the better of my two eyes didn’t need as extreme an amount of correction, I didn’t have two matching brands in my eyes. So, I left knowing I would have to go back again to pick up the correct lens when it arrived.

I went back, picked it up, and with the trials I noticed that my vision was improved but comfort was down – my eyes felt dry and tired at the end of the day. Hmmm…back to the drawing board.

I also had trials of my current brand in the correct powers, so I put them in. Comfort was fine. But, I really felt the sharpness wasn’t there like the other trial and so I wondered if the prescription was actually correct. If it was, would I have to sacrifice some better vision for comfort?

So, my follow-up yesterday…sacrificing comfort wasn’t an option as I wear my contacts around 16 hours a day. I can’t spend my evenings rubbing my eyes and feeling like I need to take them out the minute I get home in the evening. The comfortable pair, the ones I felt weren’t quite strong enough, well I was right. They weren’t the right prescription. One eye was correct and the other was not.

Seriously.

My Piss and Moan level went up four notches. I know it wasn’t the gal’s fault that was helping me. But I seriously has some issues with the fact that it was the fourth time I had to take time off work, drive 20 minutes one way, just to see if they could get it correct.

I think we have it sorted out now, but I think I may visit a different doctor and office in two years when I have to go through this again.