Sometimes work means getting to play with some really cool stuff, like sewable, wearable electronics. Every student I showed this to, from grades 4 through 12, immediately saw the possibilities.


This is just a little test kit with a watch battery and a simple on/off switch. I also bought an expanded set with a programmable controller, lights and 3 sensors (light, vibration, temperature).

I think we are going to have some fun with this!


We got some snow today, finally. The city was muffled and still, and the mundane was made beautiful.



My bus stop at 8 this morning was particularly cheerless. Sadly, it was the highlight of the day.



Went to a youth & tech brainstorming session at Mozilla where I got lots of ideas to take to the students tomorrow. Ran into friends unexpectedly. We went to the closest bar to find they had half price cocktails.

Yes, tonight has been full of win.



The parking lot pigeons kind of freak me out when they all head toward me like this.


tools – 9/366

I am a geek. I freely and joyfully admit it much to some students’ chagrin; they still look at it as a negative. They’ll learn.

And as a geek, digital is preferred over analog. Google calendar & RTM works for me where DayTimers and paper lists fail.

Knowing this, I’ve invested in some tools to assist in the lifestyle revamp. A FitBit to track activity (think of it as a pedometer on steroids) and an iPhone app, LoseIt, that tracks calories and syncs with it.  (what? A scone is how many calories?!)

Unnecessary? Maybe for most people. Geeky? Absolutely. Working? It’s only been a week so far, but I’m using it everyday.

Which is more than I can say for any other method I’ve tried.

taken after my workout which added 5000+ Ramones-fueled steps to my day.


They came back, the six pounds I had shed before he holidays. It’s all right; they won’t be staying long and about 15-20 more will be following them.


Yes, is time to change the lifestyle. Not because I want to, but I’ve realized that a half hour of exercise a day and watching my diet is the price to be paid for being able to walk up stairs, go hiking and eventually rollerblade again.

Yippee skippee.


There was a time when I didn’t swear very much. Instead, I had a good vocabulary and knew how to use it.  I looked at those people who curse as easily as breathing, and thought they were not only mentally lazy but seriously limiting themselves. Really, if you drop the f-bomb 3 times in every sentence, where do you go when you really need to let people know how pissed you are? My dad rarely said damn or hell around us; I remember clearly the shock I felt the first time I heard him say fuck (this was followed quickly by fear as I was the one who had made him that angry).

Then I started playing poker. Swearing like a sailor soon ensued.

While my cursing is not as easy or thoughtless as breathing, it is still lazy and limiting. And unprofessional. I’ve gotten a little too comfortable with it in the classroom which led to the eventual creation of the Fluffy Pink Bunny Fund (1) in last year’s grade 12 programming class.

It needs to stop. I am bad with quitting anything cold turkey, so I am going to make a concerted effort to wean myself off the habit by first substituting other words for it. Not the Ned Flanders namby-pamby ones though – those will never work for me.

I am turning to words brought to me by TV. Words like frack (2), goram (3), shazbot (4), and dagnabbit (5) mixed in with supercalifragalisticexpialidocious (6) and oh, bother (7).

Note: this is primarily for school. There will still be swearing here. What, did you think I was going to quit cussin’ completely? I’d likely asplode.


  1. Fluffy Pink Bunny Fund sounds better than Swear Jar, don’t you think? Innocuous even. I am not proud of the fact that there was enough in it at the end of year to take the 5 students out for lunch. In my defense, it was not a good year for technology doing what it’s supposed to!
  2. Battlestar Galactica
  3. Firefly
  4. Mork & Mindy
  5. Elmer Fudd, The Bugs Bunny & Road Runner Show
  6. Mary Poppins
  7. Winnie the Pooh