Thursday, September 30, 2010

our trip to Pudong campus

with apologies for the Blair Witch quality of the filming...

Tuesday, September 28, 2010

"I Hate School" and other lies kids tell

So the school year is in full swing, and we are now less than 48 hours from the start of October break. Good timing, too, as the boys and the adults in this house need a break. Especially Emmett. Of late he has been grousing about the following:
teachers tell him what to do

they haven't even taught him how to read and write yet

he has to go swimming during PE

he has to eat home lunch instead of school lunch

Ignore for a moment the contradiction between the first two gripes. Focus instead on the fact he loves to swim. Or that home lunch is classic stuff like PB&J and school lunch is usually some variant of chicken in brown sauce with rice.

Enough with the whining. Both boys clearly love their teachers and what they are learning so far this year. Desi is doing subtraction and urban planning (I'm not kidding). E can count to 39 (he thinks 50 is next) and knows all his letters and numbers and sings in Chinese.

Break will start early as the Shanghai govt. just announced road closures that force SAS buses to get on the road sooner. So 2:30 tomorrow, we are homeward bound. No work til some meetings next Thursday. Kids no school til a week from Monday. God Bless the People's Republic of China (and its vanilla suburbs)!

In other news, JV baseball is over. FInished the season with a tournament last weekend, full of drama. Friday game vs. Beijing ended 6-6 when our runner was thrown out at home trying to score on a wild pitch. After that, it was too dark to continue (JV field has no lights). Beat our cross-town rival Sat. morning, no shock there. Then had a comeback against Hong Kong fizzle out when Jason hit a bases-loaded smash that the 3rd baseman snared. He stepped on 3rd for the double play and that was that. Sunday was rained out, and now he long wait begins. Next season is more than 6 months away. Oh well, at least we have Ken Burns to tide us over.

Books I've been reading: Angels and Demons (kept me up for a couple nights). Factory Girls (gotta re-read whatever I am teaching in Anthro--my memory is terrible). Up next, some Nick Hornby.

Sarah has been reading Drive, Philip Roth's American Pastoral, and our hero Martin Seligman's Learned Optimism.

And even though it seems that the proper place for this is our facebook status update, we just started watching True Blood. Vampires make for great TV. We will finish the last handful of episodes of The Wire over break, after a hiatus of several months. (It got too intense to watch at bedtime, and really, when else can parents watch TV for a solid hour?)

Surely the blogging will be more frequent over break. Pics soon of our latest shenanigans. In the meantime, here are pictures of our friends.

Thursday, September 16, 2010

a shopping spree well done

Sunday we hit the furniture stores. pretty hard. 2 hours, get in, get stuff, get out, get it delivered.

here it is:

Wednesday, September 15, 2010

Another year of fun with JV baseball

Well, fall has arrived in Shanghai and that means it's baseball season. Why play for months and months in the hot summer like major leaguers when you can just dive right in to the pennant race and the playoffs?

I chose to be assistant coach, what with my new class I am teaching (going great, thanks for asking). A new teacher, Luke, is head coach. (No, I haven't made any Star Wars jokes about his name). After a competitive tryout, we have 11 guys: six returning players from last year's 1-win squad, and five raw rookies. I am happy to report that in our first weekend of competition, we surpassed last year's win total, beating our sister campus' team 19-3 and eeking out a win against local team The Fingers (don't ask), see score below.

In our final at-bat, Kevin's 2-out single knocked in the winning run. Unfortunately for Kevin, the next week he was at bat at the end of the game and things didn't end so magically. We had been down 11-0 in the 1st inning, and 18-12 going into the final at-bat. Kevin stepped up with the score 18-17, runner or 1st. Soon the runner had made it to 3rd, and Kevin had 2 strikes on him. And the pitch...Kevin swings and hits a soft liner toward short.

Aww, I don't need to finish. Needless to say, we are now 2-1. Big rematch on Saturday at our sister campus. They will be hungry for revenge and hoping to impress the home crowd there for their big campus BBQ. Expect their dreams to be crushed when the (other) Eagles swoop down on them like they were field mice. Caw!! Caw!!

In other news, just bought some furniture, including an opium bed. Our first drug paraphernalia! Pics soon.

Friday, September 10, 2010

more fun with statues, minus the rudeness

notice emmy's hips in this next 1:

and here he is, impersonating a school psych:

Wednesday, September 8, 2010

Wednesday, September 1, 2010