‘Tis the season to be punchy…

When I was in graduate school at the University of Pittsburgh, I had quite a few classes in the building that we called Forbes Quad (it was renamed to Posvar Hall in 1999). It was built alongside of the former Forbes Field, home of the Pittsburgh Pirates – among other teams – from 1909 to 1971. Parts of the original ballpark are preserved in various spots, either on their original spots, or close by. Home plate is preserved in the floor of Forbes Quad, and I walked by it – or over it – many times over the course of four years.

Another part of Forbes Field that was preserved was a daily ritual of a group of friends who used to enjoy baseball games at the ballpark. Each day around lunchtime, anyone going through Forbes Quad would hear the sound of Italian being spoken from a group of men sitting on some benches near the entrance. Continue reading

Wait, who just died?

It’s been all over the news: the death of controversial, feared, despised, admired Libyan leader MumMuamMoamm

Let’s just say M., shall we? Right then. Libyan leader M. GhadQuadKadhGahd

Crap. Just how the heck to you spell that guy’s name? According to one article I read many moons ago, there have been a recorded 112 different ways his name has been spelled. And that’s apparently not the only strange thing about him.

How about I just refer to him as Gene for the moment until we get this sorted out, eh? Continue reading


I’m getting bolder as I age. Because of this, there will be several things happening in today’s blog that are completely uncharacteristic of me. The first is launching myself into a current ‘hot topic’ while it’s still…you know…hot. It’s not because I am against bandwagons or jumping upon them. Sure, I often ignore them, but if it’s a nice bandwagon, I’ll jump. The problem with me is that I am so often unaware of these hot topics until they are long gone. Elvis has not only left the building, but he’s already played three other venues and had a week off by the time I realize that he’s not coming back for another encore.

So, in a rare turn of events, I may have caught this one while I still have a chance to grab a handle and swing myself into the baggage car. And what is this hot topic? It’s a video blog about accents. I first saw it at Renee’s blog, Lessons for Teachers and Twits. She got it from Jessica at Meet the Buttrams, who in turn heard it from Jamie’s Rabbits. The chain continues but I’ll stop there. The videos that I did mention are fantastic and you really should go have a look-see. Continue reading