Monday, February 28, 2011


Have you seen the polls today?????

I could not be happier. March is going to be a good month for basketball.

Saturday, February 26, 2011

I think my friends like having me around.

I present to you, FOR LIKE EVER VALENTINE'S PARTY 2011.

Hosted by the legendary partiers of Banbridge 12.

I wasn't there is person, but I was very obviously there in Popsicle stick and blow-up picture form. And I'm not positive, but I think Lene was responsible for this awesomeness.

This is why I love my friends so much.

Thanks guys.

(PS, I also made a cameo appearance at the BYU game right after Valentines day):

Wednesday, February 23, 2011

the changing of ways.

caution: if you haven't seen The Social Network don't read this.

I watched The Social Network last night. I was captivated in like the first minute. I loved it.

here's why:
1. It captures the selfishness and arrogance of man. There isn't a good guy. I wasn't sure who to root for the whole time... which is frustrating... but also terribly thought-provoking. (It's like Ayn Rand style, which is fascinating).
2. Because of the exposure of the ill-intentioned beginnings of "The Facebook" I find it remarkable how much of our lives run on the internet-particularly on Facebook. We spend hours and hours (over time, of course) on this website that put our social lives online, for the world to see. But it was created in such a shady way-- by people who were quite power hungry, arrogant, and snotty. That Mark Zuckerberg guy just wanted glory. His friend was loyal and kind, but he just wanted money. Sean Parker, the Napster guy, manipulated the whole thing to turn the tables in his favor. And those deep-voiced extremely good-looking twins were scammed but then came back with a vengeance. And we worship this.... idea. We depend on Facebook for a lot of social interaction.
3. These manipulative, selfish people created something that could possibly do- and does- a lot of good. It helps us keep in touch with people. It helps us wish our friends happy birthday. Share pictures. Brighten someone's day with a "hello." It is a mode of research-- you can contact thousands of people in an afternoon, and a large portion of them will respond. It can help us spread the gospel-- share our religion. So much good can come from this... idea.

Oh the dichotomy.

In the after-moving-watching-research that I performed, I learned all about social culture and clubs at Harvard (a particularly interesting point in the movie), and I read a bit about Mark Zuckerberg. I found a poll on Facebook that asked, "will Mark Zuckerberg watch The Social Network at the premiere?" Surprisingly, most people said he wouldn't bother to see it. After watching the movie, if his person is represented correctly, I can understand that perspective. Someone else wrote, "he'll probably watch the movie and then say it's fiction."

I think that reaction is more likely. The guy is a weasel.

And PS, I'm still kind of sickened by Justin Timberlake because of the character that he plays in the movie. I hate that guy. But I love Justin.

Saturday, February 19, 2011


1. What if I just changed my major? Started over again? I don't want to be done. I like school too much. There are just so many more things I want to learn. Students are lucky because they have the opportunity to spend all their time learning new things. I was a stupid student. I focused on one major WAY too early, and never even took fun classes where I could learn extra cool stuff. I always wanted to take a creative writing class. I never did. I always wanted to take sailing. and piano. and English language classes where you talk about phonetics and grammar. And I always had this secret desire to take Calculus. Just so I could say that I knew it. I always liked math. And Pre-calc was a blast. And I should have taken a language. Like what if I would have stuck with either Spanish or Sign Language? Both would be cool to know. And I loved taking BOTH of those languages.

I don't know what I want to be. Right now being a teacher sounds 100% like the worst idea ever. I just want to go to school. All the time. And not work. And I don't want to be at the front of the classroom. I want to blend in as the student who gets to learn things. And not history. I'm currently sick of history. I don't care. I makes me sick to think about it, actually. Yes, I know that's dramatic. But it's true.

2. I just got finished watching a movie on Netflix called "One Crazy Summer." It combined five of my favorite things of all time:
  • the 80's teenager movie
  • John Cusack
  • Summer
  • Sailing (yep, still never been. But I'm in love with the idea of it.)
  • The Beach Boys (seriously like half the soundtrack)
can you get any better than this? Maybe if you add Duckie's character from Pretty in Pink and some Michael Jackson.

3. I'm obsessed with Justin Bieber lately. I heard some girls at school talking about Never Say Never. I told them that I've seen it. One of the girls goes, "Are you a Beleiber??!!?" Yes, I proudly replied. Yes. I loved the movie, and I bought both of his CDs when I got home. And I want to see the movie again SO bad. SO BAD.

4. I bought myself a present yesterday. It was my 3rd trip to American Eagle to look at it and try it on again, so I finally just bought it. And you know what? I think it SCREAMS Audrey. Like anyone who walked into American Eagle and saw it (who knows me) would think, "Audrey should own that windbreaker." Here it is. It's actually kind of a khaki green even though it looks gray in the picture. But picture me wearing navy blue bermudas, little white keds (or the Sperrys that I want), and a white t-shirt underneath. Perfect summer night Audrey outfit. I love it.

Thursday, February 17, 2011

The Constitution say WHAT?!

We did a Constitutional Convention in my government class last week. I played George Washington and led the convention. It was nothing short of an adventure.

Each student was given a specific role- a real person who had been at the convention. They were required to adopt that person's perspective and make arguments for certain things.

We used proper parliamentary procedure, the debates were fair, and the voting only happened after everyone had agreed that it was time to vote. There were equal delegates from each perspective, so the point was for each group to come to a compromise, and then the class-made Constitution would turn out similar to the REAL U.S. Constitution.

But this is what happened:

Not only will our country allow slavery for eternity, but we will elect a president who will remain in office HIS ENTIRE LIFE. 

So, let's enslave human beings and elect a dictator. Nice. Did anyone say Nazi Germany?
This is what happens when the most talented and forward debaters of the class are assigned similar perspectives. oops. They overpower the weaker, more reasonable delegates.

But seriously, is this how bad government happens? Is this what comes of dominant personalities who all share the same idea? They can easily overpower those who are not willing to speak up. The weak are crushed. Inequality reigns. Imagine if this had been the case at the REAL Constitutional Convention. What would we have ended up with? What if there hadn't been compromise? This is why the Constitution and the organization of our unique federal government is such a miracle-- and further evidence of providential inspiration in its framing.

 But isn't the ease of corruption a scary thought? It is just that easy to get off track.


Other randoms about student teaching and Washington DC in general:
1. The wind is so cold that it eats your face. Well, chews it up and then leaves the exposed flesh as it moves by.
2. When I woke up at 6:15 on Monday morning this week, one word went through my mind repeatedly: WHY?
3. My students think they are liberal because they live in DC and their parents are liberal. However, they are actually quite conservative. This lends credibility to my theory that the human being is conservative in its natural state.
4. We watched "Pleasantville" in one of the other government classes. Two things about that: 1) this movie would never be shown in Utah schools without a permission slip. I felt awkward. 2) The movie-- and the cooperating teacher for that class-- paint conservatism like it is INSANE and inhibits freedom and individual liberties. It made conservative values seem backward and old fashioned. It made me sick a little bit. At least that's the way the discussion went.
5. Quoted by a student in the AP US class that I observed today: "Yeah, flappers were definitely the first hipsters." Said boy is accused of being a hipster at least once a day.
6. I went to the DC temple last night. It's my second time going since I've been here. The ward schedules temple nights, but they are only endowment sessions. But I went with the ward anyway. I needed the feeling of it. The peace and security. So while everyone was in a session, I went down to the baptistry and asked if I could walk in. They let me, and I joined a youth group. It was such a blessing, I can't even say. I finished in about an hour, and had lots of time to kill before the session would be over. So I went to the visitor's center. I think the DC visitor's center might be my favorite of all time. I just sat in front of the Christus and gathered strength. Teaching is hard. Being at that school is hard and stressful, and I needed to just sit there and soak in the Spirit. Unfortunately, by the time I sat down the visitor's center was closing. They let me stay while they cleaned, though. I felt like the whole evening was a series of tender mercies- people at the temple making things work even though I was kind of an inconvenience to everyone. It was such a blessing. I feel so much better about life in general.
7. My US history students are awesome. I really like them. They are funny-- and so polite. They do their homework, and I need to stop being surprised about it. We talked about WW2 propaganda and the Zoot Suit Riots this week. Next week I'm covering the War in the Pacific and the end to the war-- the United Nations and the Atomic Bomb. But I have a really hard time planning for these kids. They are smart and I feel like just telling them what happened in a fun way won't challenge them and then I will be a failure. It's harder than I ever imagined to find ways to bring in higher order thinking and get a good discussion while delivering information at the same time. There is just so much to think about all the time, and it can be very discouraging.

I think that's all I have to say.

I'm really looking forward to the 3 day weekend.

Yep. And after tomorrow I will only have 7 weeks left. And 3 of those weeks are only 4-day weeks. And one of the other ones has an assembly. And another one has an early dismissal. So really only TWO of them are full with no interruptions. Man I'm excited to be done. Monday was the 2-months-left mark. Hip hip hooray!

Monday, February 7, 2011

Soup. Or Bowl.

Have you ever thought about the Super Bowl, like, conceptually?

Consider it for a moment.

We have about five months of NFL football season. Each team plays like once a week, they have stats and rankings and records, and then there's the playoffs. And everyone- but mostly men- pay attention a little bit, mostly to their favorite team, but generally to the whole league. Interest varies among people-- some really, really care for most of the season. Some lose interest when their team is losing. Some pick up interest when an underdog (aka the Packer's as the wildcard this year) starts doing well.

BUT. Then there is the Super Bowl. The Championship game that virtually everyone in the country suddenly cares about. It generally doesn't matter which teams are playing. Everyone watches the game anyway. Suddenly football is not just about a modern-day gladiatorial game, but about commercials and halftime shows. About chips and dip and various game foods. About community and hanging out with friends-- all to enjoy a game whose players that a couple weeks before were yet to be undetermined.

It's just a strange concept. A unifier among Americans.

A couple months ago I got into an argument with two sports crazed young men-- Michael Everton and Seth Frischknecht-- about what was more influential and binding and inspirational in the world throughout history, music or sports. I obviously argued for the music side. Both sides are arguable, but I think a single song can be more far reaching than a single sporting event (they had a really good point with the Olympics. I had a good point with the tribal African songs that bound African American slaves to their homeland culture while working the fields). The argument got rather fierce, and I'm pretty sure they said some things that they [should] regret.

But to prove that I see the validity of their argument, and even support them in a big way, I present the phenomenon of the Super Bowl. Rarely is there a single sporting event that unifies the country in such a way. The Super Bowl really is a unique and special event- if only because it brings the country together.

(PS, the title of this post comes from the Boy Meets World episode when Shawn has to get super bowl tickets to get a passing grade in Mr. Feeny's class. This is where Shawn utters the famous words, "I try so hard to do everything. But there is always an Eskimo standing in my way." In this particular episode,  Shawn pushes past that Eskimo standing in his way and makes it to the Super Bowl. Life lesson learned.)