I woke up on Monday and started getting ready for school. Then I made the mistake of opening my window... it was GORGEOUS outside. All of a sudden I felt a little sick ***cough***
Kelsey: "Mom, look how beautiful it is outside! I don't feel very good..." (grinning)
Mom: "You look pretty perky to me"
Senioritus is the worst. For those of you who aren't familiar with the disorder Wikepedia defines it as follows: Senioritis is a term used colloquially in the United States and Canada to describe the decreased motivation toward studies displayed by students who are nearing the end of their high school or college careers. It is typically said to include slowness, procrastination, apathy regarding school work, and a tendency toward truancy.
DISCLAIMER: I'm really not a terrible student! This post and the "Day in My Life" post both make it seem like I don't do very much school work. It's just that I have an easy "senior" schedule after getting all the hard stuff out of the way last year. I'm actually graduating with honors :)
We decided that the best cure for my illness would be a picnic. It was so relaxing! It was amazing to be outside and feel the sun again, and I loved having lots time to just enjoy Aaron and Tekle.
My mom found a note later in the day that said:
Since Kelsey skipped school today, can I stay home tomorrow?
Last year Tekle told us that when kids in Ethiopia lose a tooth, they throw it up on the roof and a bird comes and takes it away. He also said that you were supposed to sing a song, but couldn't remember the words. It was really bothering him that he couldn't remember, so I told him that I would ask my friend Yebralem (who's from ET) if she knew it. I was so excited to find out that she did, and she was even sweet enough to sing it over the phone for him!
I asked him today if he would like to go throw his tooth on the roof, but Tekle opted for the American tooth-fairy tradition instead because "birds don't give you money".
On Wednesday my school played a suburban school in one of the final rounds of the girl's state basketball tournament. It was an intense game, and (as is typical in highschool basketball) the fans from both sides began yelling insults back and forth.
Guess what the other school was chanting?
"We Speak English!"
(An anti-immigrant motivated cheer) and "Where's your daddy?"
(directed at the African American kids in the crowd, implying that they all have absent fathers).
I was disgusted. It was wasn't just a few "bad apples" that were saying it. Their entire fan section was yelling it in unison. I wonder how the few (very few) kids of color in the other crowd felt as they heard their classmates being so blatantly racist.
There is a lot of hostility between suburban and inner city schools. A few months ago a reporter from our school paper switched places with a reporter from a school about 15 minutes South of us for a day. They observed the similarities and differences and then they each wrote articles about their experience.
Guess what the suburban school had to say about us?
First of all, they plastered a big picture of our "S*@#* High Bans Guns on these Premises" sign on the front page. The reporter proceeded to write pages full of lies and exagerations. She wrote that the man at our front desk can barely speak English. He actually speaks English very well, but has an accent since he's from Ethiopia. Her observation seemed to have an anti-immigrant undertone. Don't people realize that we are a country of immigrants?? I wonder when her family immigrated here, and whether or not her grandparents (or great grandparents) had anyone making fun of their accents.
The reporter also wrote that our school was "dangerous" and that we had 12 fights a day. That was a complete exageration. We have petty little girl fights once in awhile (no where near 12 times a day), but they are never serious, and I have always felt safe at school.
I'm not even going to write about what the rest of the article said. Just think of every sterotype there is about inner-city schools and you'll have a pretty good idea of what she wrote.
All I can say is that I'm so grateful to have grown up in an environment where I could build relationships with people from a broad range of economic, racial, and cultural backgrounds. I'm glad I'm prepared for a world outside of middle class America. I feel sorry for those kids whose ignorance is keeping them from seeing so much of the beauty in this world.
My brother is 20 and his really weird name is Jesse, my mom had to find a good name but she did not. He lives in my cool house. He eats all my wonderful food. My brother is weird, really weird.
One day my really odd weird brother was going on a dumb date. He smells super bad he would get dumped and I would not be laughing. It would be sad to be dumped (well I do not really know how it feels) so I have to help him. I got sad. Oh my goodness! He is acting weird. And I will say it again and again and never stop saying it. Wow he is sounding funny too. My brother is looking like a weirdhead. I need to help my weird brother to look good so he doesn't get dumped, but I would keep on laughing. "Hey brother, come here" I called. "I need to help you so you don't get dumped." When I was done he looked like a king. A cool King. I helped my brother so much. That's what brothers and sisters are for. At least that's what they should be for.
My brother is so messy. I wish he would be neater and I have been trying and trying to help him. First I told him to be neater, but he never listens to me. He listened to me about the date because he liked the girl and he needed some tips. Now he is not listening because he does not like cleaning up. My brother never cleans his room and he should be dumped in a second. I can't even walk in my brother's room to put his clothes away.
I tried to punish my brother but it did not work. I told him that if he did not clean his room he would have to do 100 push-ups. I tried and tried to punish my brother abd I kept on trying and trying and he still did not clean his room because he never listens to me. He is getting on my last nerves and I got soooooooooooooooooow mad at my brother. My brother drives me crazy. That's how mad I am at my brother. I am sooooooo frustrated. Super super frustrated at my brother.
I told him I will give him two dollars if he cleans his room but he still does not listen to me.
Now I know that when you have a brother he will always bother his sister and the sister will get angry, but I will always Love my brother.
Finally he started to clean up his clothes because he was getting married. He got married to his girlfriend and they lived happily ever after.
**Yet Tafesh means "where have you been?" in Amharic
Life has been pretty busy lately, and I haven't had very much time to blog...
I started a new job at a coffee shop near my house. Despite missing my FIRST day (don't ask!), it's been going pretty well.
I've also started learning Amharic! A friend in my sixth hour class has been tutoring me. He speaks 4 languages--Amharic, Oromo, Swahili, and English. Other students who speak Amharic have offered to help too, so I have a lot of "teachers". I feel like I'm making progress... I can read the script(slowly), and I've learned greetings, numbers (up to 100), and a bunch of "small talk" phrases. Ha, and I can sing "Head, Shoulders, Knees, and Toes" :) I'm starting to understand sentence structure, but it will probably be awhile before I can consistently form sentences. It's definitely challenging, but since I have a pretty easy schedule at school (gotta love senior year), my brain welcomes the stimulation.
Tekle has suddenly become interested in Amharic again. The other day he was rewinding an Ethiopian movie over and over again in an effort to memorize the words.Even though he can't understand it anymore, I can tell it's comforting for him to hear the language. Up until this point he would always insist "I can only talk like that in Ethiopia! I talk like you now.".
I gave him a little quiz the in the car yesterday:
"What does Mekina mean?" "Car" "What does bandira mean?" "flag" "What does mastika mean?" "gum" "What does mooz mean?" "Deer!"
I started cracking up because "mooz" means banana. I can definitely see the relationship though. Mooz sounds like Moose, which basically means deer. Ah language...