Dissent

Recently I was at a pumpkin patch.  My kid and husb were in the corn maze, and for a bit I sat on a bench and watched people. One guy, a young fella, had a hoodie with a nameless face of an old lady.  Eventually I asked him, “Whose the old lady on your sweatshirt?” …

The Highway Disease of 2018

In 1966 Lyndon B. Johnson delivered a speech during the passage of the HIghway Safety Act that included this: Over the Labor Day weekend, 29 American servicemen died in Vietnam. During the same Labor Day weekend, 614 Americans died on our highways in automobile accidents. Twenty-nine on the battlefield. Six hundred and fourteen on the…

Dual Language Immersion done correctly answers real questions about 21st century education.

It doesn’t take an extensive literature review or an exhaustive tour of programs to see that dual language immersion programs exponentially improve educational outcomes when implemented correctly… So why doesn’t every district in the nation turn to dual language immersion?  Why doesn’t every University have a rich Middle Eastern Studies department?  One could get the wrong idea.

Pivoting

ChezWhat? is an old site.  I have been writing here now for 12 years. Most of what fills this space has been an exercise of writing as a personal endeavor.  Gratitude, controversy, art or talking about things that have happened recently or long ago has been the realm of ChezWhat? But I am going to…

Toshiko Takaezu: Closed forms & Vocation

Recently a friend sent out the lovely idea to spend some time learning something about an artist rather than feeling mad, bad or sad about our country’s current leadership. Agreed. And so in my lap was placed the work of Toshiko Takaezu.  She may have chosen Toshiko because Hawaii was my current location, and that […]

Toshiko Takaezu: Closed forms & Vocation

Recently a friend sent out the lovely idea to spend some time learning something about an artist rather than feeling mad, bad or sad about our country’s current leadership. Agreed. And so in my lap was placed the work of Toshiko Takaezu.  She may have chosen Toshiko because Hawaii was my current location, and that…

Political Correctness (a repost from 2005)

Published in 2005, long before Portlandia… If you have ever listened to Dandy Warhols or listened to Damali Ayo talk about Portland types, it’s clear that I am not alone in noticing Portland types are often a sort of..different. I say this with love, I am a Portlander and I work with Portland “types”.  Recently…

Giving it away

So anyone who has ever walked outside their home may have come across a beggar. And in some places, like here in Oregon, the beggars have learned that perching themselves at freeway exits or near where alot of cars have to stop and then start can be a good place to beg, because people give…

Spot on.

One of the great failings of the American education system, in our view, is that young people can graduate from university without any understanding of poverty at home or abroad.  Study-abroad programs tend to consist of herds of students visiting Oxford or Florence or Paris.  We believe that universities should make it a requirement that…

Some thoughts on being a language teacher: linguistic imperialism

I have been since I decided what I wanted to do, a language teacher.  I didn’t end up here by mistake. The first place I went was Russia with Peace Corps.  Peace Corps had in high (sarcastic) comedy brought all these “teachers” to one of the most educated countries on the planet to teach the…

Sex and controversy

Thanks Sherry for letting me hijack your link to Donald Miller’s writing. I read Blue Like Jazz long ago enough that I have kind of forgotten what it said, except that I was glad at the time that he said it and I read it.  And it became a Bestseller.  And it was nice to…