One Love

I had another post planned for today, but in light of what is going on in our country right now, I thought I’d postpone it and write this one instead.

In California “Today and tomorrow, the Supreme Court will hear two cases challenging the constitutionality of Proposition 8 and the so-called Defense of Marriage Act (DOMA).” (HRC.org). If you are not familiar or want more specifics on what is at stake, please click here 🙂 . In the simplest, layman’s terms, the Supreme Court is about to make a giant step for or against marriage equality.

I want to share why this is an issue that I hold very dear to me. The issue of marriage equality is something that should be important to everyone in this country, but for me, it doesn’t hit close to home, it is my home.

My godfather, Tim, who is also my first cousin, is gay. Tim has been a profound influence on my life since day 1. He is on my mom’s side of the family and has told me that my mother, Lois, felt more like a 2nd mom to him than an aunt. Tim and my mom were actually relatively close in age because there is a 16 year gap between my mom and her older sister. I believe my mom was about 15 or so when Tim was born, so not exactly the same age as most aunts. Mom tells stories of how she would babysit Tim and his siblings and the time the spent just pulled them closer together. I cannot remember a time in my life that Tim was not a part of. He has been there to celebrate all of my accomplishments, has never missed a birthday, and I have always known that I can rely on him for anything.

I vaguely remember the day that Mom told me Tim is gay. Just as I can remember Tim always being around, I can remember Ken just as much. There is not one memory I have of Tim that Ken is not a part of as well. But, as a young child, and not knowing that gay was a thing, I just assumed Ken was Tim’s best friend. And I was right. But he is so much more. I don’t know how old I was, I’d guess between 5-10 years old. I was out to dinner with my family, including Tim & Ken. I’m not sure what spurred this revelation on, but all I can remember is being in the lobby of some restaurant and my mom explained to me that Ken was Tim’s boyfriend and that they are in love, just like Mommy & Daddy are in love. I don’t recall this disclosure being life altering. I just remembering thinking, Ok, cool! I like Ken! He always plays with me when he’s around, so he can stay! (And this remains true to this day! Ken is definitely the sillier of the two, often receiving an, “Ohmygawd! Ken!” from Tim.) From then on, that’s just how it was. There was no mention of Tim without Ken. I swear their names have merged into one: TimNKen. When are TimNKen getting here? TimNKen have invited us for dinner! I get to go to New York City with TimNKen! I never thought anything of this, right or wrong, normal or strange….it’s just how it was.

In 2005, Tim & Ken traveled to Massachusetts to be married. I was a sophomore in college. If I am being honest, I can remember being a little off-put by the idea of them getting married. If they wanted to live together, have a civil union, and love one another…GREAT! I had absolutely no qualms with that. I really hadn’t explored in my own faith and in my own heart, how I felt about gay people being married in a Christian setting. I was stuck in my literal translation of the Bible. I never said anything to anyone because didn’t want to hurt any feelings, but that was my opinion: Civil Union?? GREAT! Congrats! Christian Marriage?? Woah woah woah…the Bible says “No.” Sooo….WTF are you doing?!? It was a mindless and underdeveloped opinion.

I’m not sure what influenced me to rethink my opinion on gay marriage. Maybe it was the fact that as my college years went on, I began making more and more gay friends and realizing that I wanted them to be able to have the same happiness in marriage that I hoped (and still hope!) to have one day.

In my more recent years, I have become what some refer to as a “Fruit Fly!” Now, this is different from what may people think is a “Fag Hag.” Hags try to change their gay friends and turn them into a constant shopping partner, gossip girl and Dear Mr. Abby. Granted, some people are like that, but not all gays. The Fruit Fly on the other hand, loves the gay man for who and what he is and just wants to soak up their fabulousness. I try to subscribe to the fruit fly religion. I’m not sure what it is that draws me to gay men like a sorority girl to flip cup (I speak from experience on that one. It’s RIDICULOUS how quickly we flock to a competitive game of flip cup!). Perhaps it is their passion for life. Maybe it’s their ability to cook (I certainly can’t!). Maybe it’s their fierce fashion sense. Maybe it’s their quick wit with a snarky comment. Or maybe…it’s their bravery and conviction that it will get better.

Whatever it is that draws me to the gay community, I have been blessed to have each and every one of my gay friends in my life. I am fiercely loyal to my people and anything or anyone that tries to harm them better keep an eye out for my Madonna-Arms 😉 just kidding…but in all seriousness, I just don’t understand how our country can legitimize denying legal citizens the same rights as everyone else in this country just because of who they choose to love. I tried to explain this to one of my students today, and on the spot, the best simile I could come up with was, “It’s like if I fell in love with a black man and was told that I am unable to marry him simply based on the color of his skin. Or a Jewish man. Or someone from a different state.” The student hasn’t quite grasped the idea yet, but it’s a work in progress.

Say what you want about gay marriage in religion. My opinion has personally changed. God’s greatest commandment for us was to love one another. Do I know if partaking in a gay relationship is a sin? No, I don’t. But I also know that I sin daily and my sins are no less than anyone else’s. I also know that it’s not my job to judge, thank God (literally). I don’t have to choose who gets into Heaven and who doesn’t. I seriously pray that I will be in Heaven, glorifying God with all my brothers & sisters, gay and straight. But judgment not my job. My job is to love my neighbor and love my enemies. I know I fall short in loving people the way God asks me to, but I try.

Speaking of love, back to Tim & Ken. These men are two of the kindest, most loving people I have ever met. Since Tim and my mom were so close, when she died, Tim felt as though he had lost a mother as well. Tim was there was Mom died and didn’t leave my side for days afterwards. He helped me pick out dresses to wear to her services (I never thought I would hate shopping!), worked with me to write her obituary, and did his best to answer my most unanswerable questions. But most importantly, When I just needed to cry, Tim held me close. And Ken was right by Tim’s side, holding him when he needed to cry and supporting him when God just seemed cruel and unfair.

This past summer, Tim & Ken celebrated 25 years of unity. They have only been married for 8 of those years, but they have persevered, celebrated, cried, laughed, and loved through all of them. Tim & Ken are a beautiful example of the loving relationship I hope to have one day.

So you’re telling me that two men that capable and filled with love to spill out all over the world…don’t deserve the same political rights as heterosexual citizens? I have seen love in many of its forms and I have been blessed to feel love in many ways. No one love is greater than another. We are all equal under the law and in God’s eyes.

I look forward to telling future generations of the day when “Aunt A’s gay friends could all get married, no matter the state, and all of Auntie A’s friends had open bars at their receptions because they knew she’d be there!” I just hope you will join me in our fight for equality and stand tall on the right side of history.

ps…today’s post is red because, in support of marriage equality, people all over social media sites have turned their profiles red!

NOTE: Right before publishing this post, a friend shared this article, in which the author argues that simply changing your Facebook picture red for a day or 2 does not make one a moral crusader, and is actually, useless. At first I was offended, Hey! I’m supporting the gay community! Don’t take that away from me! But the more I thought about, the more I realized that he’s right! Sure, it’s nice to show our support, but that’s not enough. It doesn’t change people’s ignorance and it doesn’t change the 9 justices opinions. I should have done something more so that this didn’t end up in front of the Supreme Court in the first place! But now is better than never. I am going to take author Brian Moylan’s advice and donate money to the Human Rights Campaign so that they can fight on my behalf. I seem to be a pretty good writer, maybe I’ll write a letter to my senator demanding equality for my gay peers. The tangible options are many.

What will you do?

Tim & I at his 25th Anniversary with Ken.

Tim & I at his 25th Anniversary with Ken.

Ken, me & Tim at their 25th Anniversary

Ken, me & Tim at their 25th Anniversary

My college graduation in 2007 from Ohio University!

My college graduation in 2007 from Ohio University!

TIm's brother, Bill, my dad, Mom & Tim at Human Rights banquet

TIm’s brother, Matt, my dad, Mom & Tim at Human Rights Cleveland Dinner, 2000/2001. Mom was gorgeous!

Tim, age 8 or 9, Mom, age 23 or 24

Tim, age 8 or 9, Mom, age 23 or 24

Mom & tim undoubtedly sharing a Dewars on the rocks with a twist.

Mom & tim undoubtedly sharing a Dewars on the rocks with a twist.

Search Instagram #noh8 for some fabulous marriage equality creations!

Search Instagram #noh8 for some fabulous marriage equality creations!

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Life, According to my iPhone: Photo-a-Day Edition, Vol. 6

Ohh Fah! I have sucked at writing lately! I am so sorry. Life is crazy busy and this past week has been filled with friends new and old! But I have kept up with my Photo-a-Day Challenge!

My Photo-a-Day Challenge goes on! Click here for a bit of an explanation of what this whole thing’s about. Some of these photo prompts could have been very straight forward, but I tried to think outside the box to be more abstract with my photos.

As a reminder, I also post my photos to flickr, tumblr, and Instagram. To follow me on Instagram, please leave a comment with your username so that I can approve you. Being a teacher, I keep my personal life as locked away from my students as possible, so my Instagram account is private. Also because for some odd reason, I was acquiring an unusual amount of unsavory types following my photos. Ain’t nobody got time for that!

Thanks for perusing! Enjoy!

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Daily Prompts:

March 9: Faceless Self-Portrait. You can tell a lot about a person based on their bookshelf!

March 10: I want… I want Sunday Fundays like this every weekend! Beautiful weather, beautiful people and a smorgasbord of delicious food!

March 11: Important. It was super important to me tonight that I get my blog on! It may be almost 2am, but I kept my promise and we go to press at 6:30 tomorrow morning!

March 12: In the Distance. Morning run!

March 13: Sound. The sound of silence on a cold winter’s night.

March 14: Tasty. Mmmmmm….crack dip!

March 15: Explore. Oops!!!

March 16: 9 o’clock. Sunday night means another hot yoga in the bag and walkers.

Throwback Thursday, 3.14.13

Two days ago, I stayed home from work because I was sick. Legit sick. This wasn’t one of those, I need a day to work on my masters or I need a day to catch up on rest or I need a day to work on my tan days. This was disgusting, no-one-should-ever-see-me-like-this sick. I won’t go into details (because you might never come back!), but just rest assure that I. Was. Sick.

Well, being that I’m a single girl living alone in the big city (okay fine, it’s suburbia. Whatever.), the only living soul I have to take care of me in my time of need is my dog. And as helpful as Dewey is when it comes to cuddling, he hasn’t quite mastered doorknobs, so there’s no way he’s gonna make it to the store to get me medicine and soup. My mom passed away 2 years ago, so that leaves Dad.

My dad, the superhero.

If there’s one thing my dad is good at, it’s care-taking. He took care of my mother throughout her entire battle with cancer, better than one of Queen Elizabeth’s butlers. Sure, sometimes he goes overboard and can stumble into over-care-taking, but it comes from a wonderful, loving place.

So I called Dad the morning I was sick. Right away, he knew that something was wrong. “You sound off…” “That’s because I am! I stayed home from school because I’ve got the flu or something!”

“What can I do? What do you need? Do you want me to take Dewey for the day? Do you need medicine? What about Ginger Ale? Do you have clear liquids? Sprite? Cherry 7-Up?”

He didn’t skip a beat when jumping into Dad-Mode. He told me he would be over around lunchtime with chicken noodle soup from Panera and some Ginger Ale and Sprite. When he arrived, he came toting a care kit filled with Tylenol, 3 cans of Sprite, 3 cans of Cherry 7-Up, 3 bottles of Ginger Ale, and what looked to be a pint of chicken noodle soup. But most importantly, even though I was sick and he really shouldn’t have risked it, most importantly, he came with a hug.

So today’s Throwback Thursday is dedicated to the #1 man in my life, my dad the superhero.

Thanks Dad, I love you.

This photo was taken, if not the morning after Mom & Dad brought me home from Catholic Social Services, a few days after.From this moment on, I would forever be a Daddy's Girl.

This photo was taken, if not the morning after Mom & Dad brought me home from Catholic Social Services, a few days after.
From this moment on, I would forever be a Daddy’s Girl.

The beach and Disney World have always been 2 of my family's favorite vacation spots.The picture on the right is for giggles! Check out that fanny pack and neon!

The beach and Disney World have always been 2 of my family’s favorite vacation spots.
The picture on the right is for giggles! Check out that fanny pack and neon! And I’m pretty sure those sunglasses clipped onto my actual glasses. Oh, and please disregard my Urkel-high elastic band shorts…

I’M BAAAACKKK!!!

{Every time I say that, I’ envisioning a little blonde, Poltergeist-ey girl}

Well it’s true!  I’ve been gone for a bit from the blog that I love so much, but I’m back! Thanks for sticking with me and not running away {…yet}!

A lot has happened since I’ve last written to you! I will try to tell you as much as I can without being too long-winded!

First off, some super duper exciting news! But first, a back story. A few weeks ago, a girl sends me and some guy, Josh Weiker, a Facebook message. She is trying to connect with me for Josh because he wants to use my badass photos from Pecha Kucha on his blog. Of course I say yes, because getting my name as a new blogger out there, in any way possible, is awesome. I only ask that he links back to my blog along with my photos. Josh graciously obliged and that was that. Well, a day or so later, Josh messaged me again saying that he had a chance to read my blog, really liked what he read and that I had a voice that would fit in with a new website he’s working on. The project is called Columbus Avenue. It is a new and upcoming website that highlights Columbus’ local music, nightlife and general fun-ness. The articles and stories are written by a small handful of Columbians, Columbusians, Columboans, people from Columbus; people whose hearts beat for the city. After explaining this venture to me, Josh asked if I would like to be one of the elite few that gets to write for this thing.

Ummmm….obvi!

I said yes really before even asking what would be expected of me. The idea of writing with a group of people who are not only brilliant writers themselves, but love the CBus, excites me to no end. Plus, anything I write for Columbus Avenue is still my property and can be put on here too! So I’m still getting to promote and do the blog thing, which is a top priority for me right now. When Josh and I began discussing what exactly I would be writing, I confessed to him that, as much as I truly love local music, my knowledge base is only about this much: |___| and I just wouldn’t feel comfortable starting out writing about it when there are so many other knowledgeable passionate people who would love the opportunity. So we started brainstorming ideas of what I would write. “Well, you are obviously motivated, so my question is what interests you?”

Hmmm…happiness. friends. music. fun. art. parties. columbus. dogs. rainbows. glitter. makeup.fashion. friends. teaching. teenagers. books. hot chocolate. photography. iphones. pink….and that’s just a 10 second brainstorming list!

So we settled on me writing about local icons, and general events & entertainment. Something that could be called “Columbus VIP’s – Very Interesting People, Places, and Parties.” BAM. If that isn’t a column I should be contributing to, I don’t know what is. I haven’t started writing yet, but now that I’m back, it’s on like Donkey Kong. My first article is going to be a spotlight on one of Columbus’ most badass babes and one of my best friends FOR LIFE. Any guesses who she is??

So there’s that freaking amazing news. Onto more Happiness Moments!

I have been getting to spend a lot of time with some new-er and kickass ladies in my life. I just feel supremely blessed to be surrounded by women that are doing great things and have great, big, ole hearts in their chests. So there’s that 🙂

Me, Rebecca, Amee & Amanda

Me, Rebecca, Amee & Amanda

This past Friday night, one of my favorite local bands (okay, maybe I am a weeee bit biased 😉 ), Black Eyed Betty played a rockin’ show after a short hiatus. I love going to their shows because I know (almost!) all the words and can sing along with some of my best friends. And, yeah…they’re music is pretty great too! But the best part about this show in particular is that Noodles was back! Huh??Noodles?? What that…?! Yeah! Noods! The original drummer for Betty is a bat-shit crazy, good drummer who goes by the nickname Noodles. He no longer drums with them because he has been on some crazy life adventures! After he left for a life of escapades, Betty had a few drummers fill in and has now settled on the rockin’ T.Bart. He does a fabulous job and fits in just nicely with what the band has become after so many years of defining itself. Back to Friday night – Noodles is now back home in CBus and came to the show. As a little thrill to both their fans and Noodles himself, he got to sit in as drummer for a few songs. I have to admit, it literally brought tears to my eyes to see the gang back together again. Don’t get me wrong, I love T.Bart, but there’s just something about seeing the original crew play together one more time.  And I think Noodles thoroughly enjoyed himself as well!

{click photo to enlarge!}Click here to see photo gallery!

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{Click here to see photo gallery!}              (Hey! There’s more of those kickass chicks I was talking about!^^^)

So that was Friday night. Saturday was even better. I got to have lunch with the always sweet and effortlessly fashionable Allie. I swear, even wearing simple jeans, t-shirt and statement necklace, that woman is flawless. She’s such an inspiration! The evening was filled with fabulous shenanigans as well! “The Broads” (Amee, Rebecca, Amanda, Liz & I…and sometimes a token gay) hit up the Olde Towne East Roving party and invaded the local gay bar for a night of laughter and dancing. It was just what I needed. Being surrounded by people I love and dancing the night away has an effect on me that nothing else in the world does. It makes me infinitely happy.

Oh. And drag queens. Drag queens make me really happy too. Especially ones dressed like Taylor Hanson.

This was the most internet appropriate photo from the evening...

This was the most internet appropriate photo from the evening…
{Tim, me, Amee, Amanda}

The ONLY bad thing about Saturday night was looking at the clock and expecting it to say 2:15am. Oh no. It was 3:15am. Ouch. (Amee!!! We actually time traveled!)

And then Sunday. Oh, Sunday was just PERFECT! It was sunny and 70 FREAKING DEGREES!!! I can’t remember the last time it was that warm, and OH! how I miss it! I am a sunshine girl! Winter just really gets me down and I needed some sunshine to brighten my life! I woke up early and went to church (yeah, after my 3:45am bedtime, getting up at 9:30am for church was ROUGH! Needless to say, I was late…oops! Sorry, Jesus!) After church, I rounded up Tim and Amanda and we rode our bikes (OMG! BIKES! One of the best parts of warm weather Ohio!) to Our friend Brenton’s house for a brunch of all brunches. There were mimosas. There were bloody mary’s. There was fruit in my mimosa. There was a salad in my bloody mary. There were omelettes. There was homemade bread. There was at least 5 pounds of bacon. I can even remember everything there was! Even better than the food were the people. I met a profusion of new and fabulous people at this sunny, Sunday soirée! Everyone was so kind, funny and eager to help. We got to sit outside on Brenton’s patio and soak up the day’s perfection. And of course, after such a large meal, one needs to exercise! So out came the tandem bicycle! Let me say this. Brenton makes it look SO easy! Amanda and I tried to ride this thing and…oh.wow. Let’s just say I wish there was video of the hilarity that ensued. And then Tim and Stacy hopped on and cruised on by us with no problems. Some Broads just aren’t meant to tandem. It was an all-in-all perfect day, and I haven’t been able to say that in quite some time.

{click photo to enlarge!}Click here to see photo gallery!

{click photo to enlarge!}
Click here to see photo gallery!

{click photo to enlarge!}Click here to see photo galler of hilariousness!

{click photo to enlarge!}
Click here to see photo gallery of hilariousness!

And just for kicks & giggles:

I biked in pants and got hot, so Brenton loaned me some shorts! I call it Lesbian Chic.

I biked in pants and got hot, so Brenton loaned me some shorts! I call it Lesbian Chic.

Okay, if you’re still here after all that, I’ve got just a little more for you! As if the weekend wasn’t great enough, I came home to photos from the AntiLabel shoot with photographer Taryn Lindsey! The group photo I bought at the Alternative Fashion Mob Art Show, the one of me leaning I bought from Taryn, and the one with my hand on my face was a gift! One can never have enough photos of yourself! 😉 AAANNNDDD! A friend sent a picture of another AntiLabel photo shoot for GO Magazine. The magazine is in every AirTran airplane! How cool is that?!?

I want everyone who visits to see it, so I figured the bathroom was the best option!

I want everyone who visits to see it, so I figured the bathroom was the best option!

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So yeah. I’m pretty happy right now. Life is good. And I’m back. That’s even better.

Life, According to my iPhone: Photo-a-Day Edition, Vol. 5

Hey, dolls! I know, I know, life can’t all be iPhone photos! I promise I’m coming back, first thing tomorrow morning with a new, in-depth post. There. I wrote (typed?) it down, so I have to do it.

But to whet your appetite for now, I give you the first week of March’s Photo-a-Day Challenges!

My Photo-a-Day Challenge goes on! Click here for a bit of an explanation of what this whole thing’s about. Some of these photo prompts could have been very straight forward, but I tried to think outside the box to be more abstract with my photos.

As a reminder, I also post my photos to flickr, tumblr, and Instagram. To follow me on Instagram, please leave a comment with your username so that I can approve you. Being a teacher, I keep my personal life as locked away from my students as possible, so my Instagram account is private. Also because for some odd reason, I was acquiring an unusual amount of unsavory types following my photos. Ain’t nobody got time for that!

Thanks for perusing! Enjoy!

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Daily Prompts:

March 1: L is for… I got to dress up for my students today and they thought it was hilarious! Introducing Calpurnia Twinklebottom!

March 2: I made this! Well, since I don’t cook, I mixed drinks for brunch!

March 3: Key. My school-keys lanyard! Buttons include: Waffle Stompers, Pecha Kucha, Independent’s Day, Skashank Redemption, Columbus Local Music, Pirate Mickey, the US Air Force and…WALKING DEAD!!!

March 4: Lucky. I suppose I should consider myself lucky that I have a job I love and brains in my head to earn my masters…even if it means being at school til 8pm.

March 5: Under. So this is where Dewey sleeps every night…UNDER the covers!! Rough life…

March 6: Chair. When you’re DewDog, the world is your chair.

March 7: Fear. None.

March 8: Favorite. My favorite local band, Black Eyed Betty!

Life, According to my iPhone: Photo-a-Day Edition, Vol. 4

I’M ALLLIIIIVVVEEEE!!!!

I know I’ve been away for a few days, but not because of a lack of love for you, dolls! I have been super busy with socializing (so much I have to tell you!), work (a day in the life of Calpurnia Twinklebottom is exhausting!), and finishing my masters (soon, I shall be a master educator!). So unfortunately, blogging has gone to the wayside! But I am here! Don’t leave me!

My Photo-a-Day Challenge goes on! Click here for a bit of an explanation of what this whole thing’s about. Some of these photo prompts could have been very straight forward, but I tried to think outside the box to be more abstract with my photos.

As a reminder, I also post my photos to flickr, tumblr, and Instagram. To follow me on Instagram, please leave a comment with your username so that I can approve you. Being a teacher, I keep my personal life as locked away from my students as possible, so my Instagram account is private. Also because for some odd reason, I was acquiring an unusual amount of unsavory types following my photos. Ain’t nobody got time for that!

Thanks for perusing! Enjoy!

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Daily Prompts:

Feb. 25: Bedside Table. This photo prompt forced me to do a little dusting & organization!

Feb. 26: Quiet. Sneaking in a little quiet time in the morning before the day’s requirements consume me.

Feb. 27: Fun! This is how we celebrate & play! A lil hot yoga and a little birthday fun!

Feb. 28: Upside-Down! Now, if only I could turn this into a full-on headstand!

 

{EXTRA PHOTOS}

Don't you wish your shoes were hot like mine?? AHHH!!! Louboutin Red Bottoms!!!

Don’t you wish your shoes were hot like mine?? AHHH!!! Louboutin Red Bottoms!!!

F&CK YEAH, MARCH!! Consider this my checklist for the month.

F&CK YEAH, MARCH!! Consider this my checklist for the month.

So. Much. Food! Perfect start to my weekend! I finally got my brunch!

So. Much. Food! Perfect start to my weekend! I finally got my brunch!

The Calpurnia Twinklebottom Show!

It’s not everyday that I get to play dress-up with my Junior English classes.

But today was one of those days!!

My Juniors are reading The Hunger Games by Suzanne Collins. Right?? I wish we had cool books like The Hunger Games to read when I was in high school! Oh well, at least kids have them now. I digress…as we read the story, I have been trying to come up with fun activities the students can do, creating our own Hunger Games. First of all, each student has been assigned a district. As we read and each character is killed, the students will have a red line drawn through their name. Obviously, we can’t have the kids bringing in bows & arrows and shooting one another, or throwing random heavy objects around, so I have to tweak things a bit. For our classroom “Demonstrations,” (in the book, the Tributes have to show The Gamemakers what they can do with various weapons) I had the students put on a sort of talent show. I told them they could perform any trick, skill or talent, as long as it was school appropriate (always key reminder when working with high schoolers!). They could even perform a “stupid human trick” if they pleased. I regaled them with stories of my adolescent when I would delight in embarrassing my parents when we went out to dinner by putting one end of a straw in my armpit and blowing on the other. It made the most atrocious (and hilarious!) farting noise. Go on, give it a shot! It takes some practice, but one you get it down, you’ll be showing all your friends just how classy you are!

Our next classroom activity centered around the Tribute Interviews (again, in case you’ve been living under a rock and haven’t read the book or seen the movie, each Hunger Games Tribute, or competitor, is required to partake in an interview aired on live TV around the country, as a means to win the favor of the people). Yesterday, each student wrote 3 questions on a sheet of paper. These could be hypothetical Hunger Games questions (If you were a tribute, who would you kill first?) or just generic questions that they would want to hear the answers from their peers (Do you have a crush on anyone, if so who and why?). Once they wrote their questions and had them approved by me, they cut each questions out and put it in a bag.

So that brings us to today. Today, I became the female counterpart to the book’s character, Caesar Flickerman, hostess of the 1st Annual Downtown High School Hunger Games. In the movie and in the book, Caesar is a flamboyant character, full of TV personality and energy. He has blue hair and is always dressed to the nines. My attempt to emulate him using only what I already had at home was not difficult. True, I could not copy his blue hair, but I do own an old Amy Winehouse beehive wig. My fake hair along with a bright blue sequin top, gold sequin jacket, jeans, neon pink heels and some gaudy accessories worked quite nicely to transform me from Miss A into Calpurnia Twinklebottom. (Bonus points if you know why I picked the name Calpurnia!)

I looked up The Caesar Show theme song from the movie, and as students entered my classroom, they found someone quite different from their usual teacher, dancing to her own music. Literally. The would walk in, drop their jaws and say something to the tune of, “Miss, you is CRAZY!” A few even asked to take pictures with me, so look out for me on the internet! One student even asked for an autograph! Ok…she needed me to sign a recommendation form, but whatever…it was an autograph!

I had practiced my Capitol accent and perfected my Caesar-esque laugh. Once the bell rang, I began introducing the “show” and held character the entire class. Students were impressed, entertained, and yes, some were even embarrassed to be seen next to me. (I consider that last response the sign of a job well done!) One-by-one, students came to the front of the class and were asked 3 questions chosen at random and written by their peers yesterday. Do you see what I did there? I tricked the kids into practicing public speaking by masking it in a silly and fun activity! MUHAHAHAHA! Even the reallllly shy kids got up and answered questions, all to the sound of applause from their classmates.

No matter the students’ reaction to my unusual Friday garb and the insistence that they must be interviewed, I think they were all engaged and actually learned a thing or two about speaking extemporaneously (now THERE’S a word!) in public…

…whether they know it or not!

The Calpurnia Show! promotional poster

The Calpurnia Show! promotional poster