Wallpaper

The paint and paper look as if a boys‘ school had used it. It is stripped off—the paper—in great patches all around the head of the bed, about as far as I can reach, and in a great place on the other side of the room low down. I never saw a worse paper in my life. ..” (from The Yellow Wallpaper, by Charlotte P. Gilman, 1892)

Growing Pains

My daughter came home from the gym and said, “I saw a truck with a large Confederate flag and Trump signs all over it. Why do we have to live here? Why did you move us from San Francisco?”

I chuckled. “Actually, Mesa, AZ is more like most of the country than not. In San Francisco, we lived in a bubble. And even that place has changed a ton in the past 15 years.”

“I want to live in a bubble!” She whined.

I get it.

It reminded me of the time I came home crying after a particularly grueling day of racial taunts in elementary school. As a 100% ethnically Korean-American girl growing up in Davenport, Iowa in the 70s, life could be challenging. Each day, someone called me chink or told me to go back where I came from.

My father reacted sternly to my tears: “Caroline, life is going to show you much harder times. Don’t be weak and cry.” His jaw grew hard and his face turned red.

“Go. Wash your face.”

And we never spoke of racism again.

And I’ve yet to find the answer to the question I had: “How do you convert racists into kind human beings?”

Presents

A student made this for me a long time ago.

I mentioned that I love to roller skate. I don’t even remember telling my students that about myself. Teaching is demanding and the parts that I don’t enjoy: “paperwork/grading,” meetings, and (now) wearing a mask while talking all day and handling parent frustrations with online work…are growing.

We just went on break. I intend to refresh. Reflect. Re-energize. I love my job. I have the rest of the year to be better.

Great Sustainability News*

Mapua University student Carvey Ehren Maigue has won the first ever James Dyson Sustainability Award for his invention of solar panels made from food waste. His solar panels not only use food waste, but also make the process of converting solar energy more efficient: “Maigue’s AuREUS system is designed to continue harvesting light even during cloudy weather.”

From MyModernMet.com

His observations of the Aurora Borealis and the food waste caused by global warming inspired him to solve these issues. You can read more here.

*From MyModernMet.com