Saturday, November 29, 2008

Facebook Drama


This morning I opened my emails and saw that my first boyfriend (who my mom always called Opey Taylor) found me on Facebook. Memory overload. Seriously...laughing uncontrollably. So, I kind of went through this thought process: Wonder what he looks like? Is he bald, fat, or worse...miraculously HOT!!??!! Twenty-five years later, I flip to his profile...AND-
EXACTLY THE SAME. I MEAN EXACTLY THE SAME. How do you not change one little bit in 25years??? Same language-I read what he wrote to his friends, same hair, same style, same everything. He was always a really nice guy. We played rotissary baseball together, ate crabs and really good chinese food and made out on the benches of Camp Milldale in front of everyone. (My mom found out and called me a slut)

Anyway...that was the shock of the morning. Then, I went to visit Val on her blog and found out she thinks I have a foul mouth. Bullshit.

Moreover, my little students aren't so little anymore. The 12 year old girl who kicked my butt in Scrabble is so over Zac Effron, has a boyfriend, chats for 5 hours a day on MSN and has been spotted making out in front of her middle school by her best friend's father. Scandal in Grosseto.

Then, my adorable Middle School Group is now my freaking insane High School Group and one of the stallions has a cell phone that constantly beeps and vibrates during the lesson-annoys the hell out of me. So, I confiscate it every lesson, stick it under my butt and dance everytime it vibrates.

*Curious me*
Flips open his cellphone everytime it vibrates and I found something so completely revolutionary...
You see, in Italy, everyone has the same name-they are either Francesca, Irene, Alessandra, Benedetta, Claudia, Martina...etc- so, how is a hormonal High School teen supposed to keep all of his women straight???

He gives each one a nickname:
Irene Hot
Irene Big Boobs
Irene Homework
Martina Old
Martina New

My personal favorite: My Love
Get my point??? Do people do that in the States?? Categorize their women or men? Actually, the concept is rather interesting.

Hope y'all had a nice, long nap after the turkey....

Thursday, November 27, 2008

Turkey, Stuffing, Sweet Potato Pie...AHHHHHHHHH!

While Thanksgiving is a day to give thanks...some of us are used to giving thanks on a daily basis.

(love these boys!)




Enjoy your families...and the turkey!
HAPPY THANKSGIVING!

Wednesday, November 26, 2008

Re: Mishka...Deaf Culture-Deaf Community??


In Mishka's post Against ASL and Deaf Culture, Karen Mayes Says:

*whistle*
I really don’t have a problem with ASL (we use it predominately at home) and Deaf Culture. In fact, it is fun and comfortable, but I am not 100% involved due to having two children mainstreamed in public schools and my husband working at a hearing company. I just go on my life, not thinking about Deaf Culture, etc, just like most of people just living. Deaf culture is really part of Deaf community, nothing more, as well as oral deaf people, CI deaf people, Cued Speaking deaf, late deafened, etc, just being part of Deaf community.
It all comes down to finding one’s comfort zone and one’s journey to find a sense of belonging.


It's taken me a year, but I now understand the difference between Deaf Culture and Deaf Community....I think.


Can you have liberal views regarding CIs, oral methodologies and cued speech if you are a part of Deaf Culture??


Is Deaf Culture the radical, anti-anyone-who-doesn't-use-ASL branch of the Deaf Community?


If I make a statement that the Deaf Community is becoming more open-minded towards the CI Community, is that true or false?


PS. I gave a presentation on Saturday to a group of Speech Therapists at a Cochlear Implant Course, and I asked Jordan to help me by making a video. After about ten attempts we finally got one right...(okay, we are in the bathroom-no damn light in my house!)
Fly Attack
video
La Mosca


Take Two:
video


Finally...(In Italian)
video

Tuesday, November 25, 2008

BASTARDS CLONED MY CREDIT CARD!


I am SO PISSSSSSSSSSSSSSSSSSSSSED OFF!

Okay, I dropped Sofia off for school late as usual, sat down for a relaxing cup of cappuccino with my friends and turned on my cell phone. FFFFFFFFFFFFFFFf**********CK! My credit card company offers a feature where they send you a text message for every purchase you make over 50 euros, um, there was a text message for the amount of 1031.75 euros ON MY CELL PHONE. There was another attempt at a purchase for 576 euros that was denied one hour later- denied because my credit card works like a Most Card and I have a pre-established monthly limit on my card. IN YOUR FACE!

Both purchases were made at Best Buy- one in Compton and the other attempt, one hour later in Lakewood. Apparently the assholes were in the market for some ELECTRONICS!

Have I said that I'm PISSSSSSSSSSSSSSSSSSSSSSSSSED OFF!


So, as I was sleeping peacefully having sweet dreams as always right here in ITALY, some ASSHOLE was using my cloned credit card in the USA.


*Unbelievable*


What did I do this morning? I ran from the bank to the police, back to the bank, back to the police and back to the bank to deal with this situation, because in ITALY, you can't just make a freakin' phone call to resolve this shit, you have to do LEGWORK. This country is SO frustrating. I think it's been resolved, I'll let you know when I get my credit card statement.


I have no time to deal with this stuff, I have A THOUSAND things to do...


Hope y'all have a GREAT DAY!


BTW, had I received the message in the middle of the night, I could have blocked the credit card immediately, then when the ASSHOLES tried to make the second purchase...STOLEN CARD would have registered and they would have been ARRESTED!

Well, I do have the exact time and location they made the purchase in BOTH locations, if there are videocameras in the store-and I'm sure BEST BUY has video cameras, shouldn't they be able to NAIL THE ASSHOLES, anyway??????

Not if the info is coming from Italy, the USA will receive it the first of never.

Monday, November 24, 2008

Riddle...(Hey Candy-This One's For You!)


FYI, for those of you keeping score, this would be blog post number three of the day...but I HAD to post this...(my mom sent this one!)

Ok...HOW CAN YOU TELL THIS TABLE IS BEING SOLD BY A MAN??????























'I like Obama's tan - and Naomi Campbell's'


Kellyanne from Australia just sent me this article...yet another fine example of how Italy's Prime Minister Silvio Berlusconi, just DOESN'T GET IT! Slammed in Australia!

From correspondents in Rome
November 24, 2008 01:12am

ITALY'S Prime Minister Silvio Berlusconi has brushed aside international outrage from earlier this month to make reference once again to US president-elect Barack Obama's "suntan".

He told ANSA news agency his initial remark was intended as a "compliment", adding that he is equally "envious" of black supermodel Naomi Campbell.

"My compliment to Barack is a little envious," said Mr Berlusconi, who had what he described as a "long, cordial" telephone conversation with the new occupant of the White House - instigated by Obama - on November 7.

"We would all like to be tanned like Naomi Campbell and Obama," said the self-made billionaire, who sports a permanent tan, during a press conference in Pescara, Italy.

Italian-born French first lady Carla Bruni-Sarkozy was so outraged at Berlusconi's initial comment about Obama being "young, handsome and even tanned" she said she was "happy" to have "become French".

This video is a remix of Berlusconi's famous words regarding Obama..."Perchè è giovane, e bello e anche abbronzato."
"Because he's young, handsome and also TAN!!!" (Unbelievable.)


And...
in yet another fine example of political correctness, Berlusconi plays Peek-a-Boo with German Prime Minister Angela Merkel...(Crazy Italians!)

Rainy Day Here in Tuscany...

And it's cold as hell...

Sofia Madyson and her grandma went for a walk in the center a couple of days ago. They stopped in front of a jewelry store, because Sofia wanted to look at the Bling. Her grandmother said, "Sofia, these are diamonds and they aren't for little girls. One day, you will take your prince here and choose a beautiful ring together."
Sofia looked at her grandma and said, "No, Nonna, my prince will come here all by himself, choose the perfect ring for me...and SURPRISE me with it. Then, I will kiss him."
My daughter is so INTELLIGENT!
*Just like her Mamma*

Friday, November 21, 2008

Spoiled...Me????


I'm procrastinating. I'm giving a presentation tomorrow at a Cochlear Implant Course for Speech Therapists in Pisa- I need to study my presentation, and I'm procrastinating.

Ok. My husband called me spoiled. I don't think I'm spoiled. I hang clothes on a clothesline and come from Pikesville for crying out loud. My mom is still in shock over the whole thing...twelve years later.

My husband says I'm never satisfied with what I have.(or maybe it was my mom who said that...and I am conscious of the fact that I have a lot...I am surrounded by people who love me) In Italian there's a saying that goes, "Chi si accontenta...gode." Which translates into "Who is able to settle for whatever situation they may be in...enjoys it." Deep. Not me. I mean I'm deep, but I can't just "settle for anything."

Let's take SEX for example. Would you settle for mediocre sex? Even if you love your husband...would you settle for lame SEX? (Fortunately, this has never been an issue)

How about your job?
Sometimes we get so in a rutt that we don't even realize we are in a miserable situation until we wake up and decide to live...to change...to evolve.

What happens when we realize that we are unhappy in a given situation and are impotent to change that situation? How do we react?

Life is full of compromises and complications, but aboveall choices.

My dad decided he'd had enough. He worked over twenty-five years at the same job, and one fine day said STOP. He sold his home in Baltimore, organized his finances and moved to Florida...probably saved his life. (and I'm kind of happy having a place to stay in Florida)

Revolutionary move. He didn't settle for his daily grind...he evolved. I'm proud to say my Dad has balls.

We could have settled for the hearing aids and the input Jordan was getting. Had we settled for those hearing aids, my son would not be the calm, serene, affectionate child he has become.

And I am not spoiled, I have great expectations...every single day is an evolution.

Although...I do greatly appreciate being spoiled *smile*

Thursday, November 20, 2008

DEAFREAD: I'M...Umm...BACK??

Okay, I will admit I'm a little confused, but don't feel the need to get into details. Suffice it to say, I'm still here, which is good because I still have a lot to say.

Btw, to the person who left the comment: "Good Riddance!"...

DEFINE LOVE...

 

A phoenix is a mythical bird with a tail of beautiful gold and red plumage (or purple and blue, by some sources). It has a 600-800 year life-cycle, and near the end the phoenix builds itself a nest of cinnamon twigs that it then ignites; both nest and bird burn fiercely and are reduced to ashes, from which a new, young phoenix or phoenix egg arises, reborn anew to live again. The new phoenix is destined to live as long as its old self. In some stories, the new phoenix embalms the ashes of its old self in an egg made of myrrh and deposits it in the Egyptian city of Heliopolis (sun city in Greek). The bird was also said to regenerate when hurt or wounded by a foe, thus being almost immortal and invincible — it is also said that it can heal a person with a tear from its eyes and make them temporarily immune to death; It is a symbol of fire and divinity.

Wednesday, November 19, 2008

GOODBYE DEAFREAD:Rules are Rules-Bookmark Me


It is with great pride and nostalgia that I must bid a fond farewell to Deafread.com. I have recently been invited to collaborate with Cochlear, Italy to create a blog written in Italian (God help me) focusing on parent support regarding issues in Deafness. While I have been granted freedom in choosing topics, arguments and methodologies for creating this blog, there is a collaborative element, therefore I must go. There is a great need for support in Italy and based on my experience as Jordan's mom, yahoo support groups and the education I have received here on deafread.com, I embrace the opportunity to help other parents. I am obviously a cochlear implant advocate, but I appreciate the diversity of each and every family's approach and experience with Deafness.

Thank you to everyone who has welcomed me into the Deaf Community, enlightened me and shared personal experiences, I have appreciated every single interaction-positive or negative...they have all been learning moments.

One post in particular greatly affected my perceptions and increased my sensitivity with regard to the Deaf Community...I leave you with this:

Response inspired by Jodi’s comment re: her view that hearing aids / CI are essential to function in a hearing world and her view on the word “hopeful”

Just wanna let ya all know that Deaf folks who dont have CIs - even Deaf folks who dont talk can FUNCTION in a hearing world

shocking yes

i know you only catch fleeting glimpses of us on Dancing with the Stars and as sex objects, victims, or crazed men on TV and films but i wanna let u know that we go to the bank, we pump our own gas, we hold jobs, we raise children and we do all of this in WHAT?…
drum roll…. “THE HEARING WORLD”

we not only live in the hearing world, we not only function in the hearing world, we not only make love, give birth, shout, cry, laugh, pray, die, but we actually excel at many of the things we do in the hearing world
and guess what …we can do this with or without hearing aids or cochlear implants
and guess what …even though parents go to all the great length they do to ensure that their deaf child can live and FUNCTION in the hearing world - they will still at times experience discrimination, being left out, prejudice, misunderstanding, identity confusion etc
being able to TALK on the PHONE does not ensure full “functioning abilities” in the hearing world
being able to say - hey, im me. i may be different than the majority but i am NOT inferior, i am NOT helpless, i am NOT pitiful, i am NOT defective, i am NOT deficient, i am NOT an outcast - i am a full fledged member of society whether u like and/or can accept my difference or not - i really dont care what u think cuz i am ME
now the “Hopeful” part - underrepresented folks cling to hope that the Dominant WORLD will some day be able to FUNCTION in their world instead of trying to obliterate it, demean it, destroy it, minimize it, etc

The hopefulness is oriented toward u and what u can be - not towards me
The potential that the US might soon have its first African-American or female president is more a testiment to the US’s legacy of discrimination and a milestone for our society than the individual achievement of Obama or H. Clinton

We shall overcome is not about becoming worthy - its about shattering injustice
if u believe that it is foolish or futile to hope because u r cynical that our society will ever change so instead u invest everything possible in changing ur child to fit society - so be it - i wish u well. at the end of the day though there will be a moment when a cloud passes over your child’s face and it will be one that u have been dreading and one you have been denying and failing to see and it is best that u do not stare into ur child’s face to see what more you can change in his being to cast away that shadow - instead it may be best for u to turn and look over ur shoulder to see what is it that is casting this shadow and turn ur energy to combating the real foe - society’s perception of what is NORMAL, DESIRABLE, ACCEPTABLE and what is FUNCTIONING!
since the time that Spilman (you can google her jodi) was quoted as saying “Deaf people are not ready to FUNCTION in a hearing world”i have known that the essence of this message really is “Hearing people are not ready to FUNCTION in a Deaf world”

oh yeah - in case u didnt know - u totally insulted me and all my people by saying non-CI non-speaking people can’t function in a hearing world. This is audism plain and simply - “the belief that the ability to hear and speak are superior to being Deaf”
im doing a way lot more than just functioning sweetheart
re: hope - if u desire i have no hope that u will “get it” - that is fine with me
however i will continue to hope that the rest of society will - we have come a long way but it is slow going given the attitude that some hold so dearly
peace
patti
just saw these entries that seem to relate to this topic:
http://deafpagancrossroads.com/2008/03/06/a-simple-sign-but-it-means-so-much-more/Quote near bottom from Children of a Lesser G-d really relates to what is discussed abovehttp://randomthoughtsnmusings.blogspot.com/Discusses how to remain principled and passionate

Um...Thank you...
*I Fistsmack You*
Bookmark Me

Tuesday, November 18, 2008

Deaf School in Zambia Requests Assistance


I just received this email from Leeanne of Hands & Voices requesting materials for a school in Zambia. The letter in question involves the same individual that you may remember Josh Swiller contacted the Peace Corps to assist. Considering Christmas is just around the corner and many schools organize fundraisers during this period, this may be an excellent project to support...give it some thought.



I thought I would pass this email along to a few of you who might be willing to help Isaac Chungu of Zambia, Africa. He is a missionary in this very poor country who has tried to learn some sign language to communicate with a number of deaf people who started coming to his church. He has been very moved by their plight—no education = no livelihood. So he has decided to start a school. He describes this effort in his email that follows. We have been able to help connect him to some Peace Corp workers in Kenya, but resources and support are basically non-existent. If you care to send any gently used or new supplies, I know they would be very greatly appreciated. If you are an educator, any advice you could share would be humbly accepted.

Thanks for anything you can do to help him. His address is listed at the end of his email below.

Gratefully,

Leeanne


Leeanne Seaver, M.A., Executive Director
Hands & Voices National
www.handsandvoices.org
Toll Free 1 (866) 422-0422
Illinois (217) 357-3647


Hi Leeanne,
Hope you are doing fine. We discussed the issue with the parents and this is what we came up with: We need exercise/note books,mathematical sets, pens/pencils, reading/text books, wall charts/pictures, toys, learning aids, ASL Dictionary(book & DVD), ASL lessons on DVD?book. What is signed on our National Television is ASL. Some words are not found in ZSL Dictionary instead we use ASL.. We also need a Laptop for showing DVD's. Do not be frightened by the list of things, we will appreciate anything you can manage form the list or any other things not on the list. The age range at the moment is 5 to 22 years old and the number of students is 16. Thanks for the e-mail and your willingness to help. As a professional may be you can also enlight us on the basic things we need to start the program.


As for the address, it is:


Jen-Isaac Deaf School ,

P.O Box 21860

Kitwe Zambia .
Waiting anxiously to hear from you,
Isaac


If you or your organization would like to offer assistance, please contact Leeanne at the telephone numbers provided. Thank you.

Monday, November 17, 2008

Hot...VERY Hot Birthday!


(smile)





A little bit of this:

Florence by night...


With some of that:




Add a birthday present from my friend, Sonia (rotfl):



A touch of culture (Note: museums are sexy):



And...my dream of all dreams...OUTLET SHOPPING!!!!!!!!!!!!!

5* BIRTHDAY!!!!! My husband knows me so well.

Thank you so much to everyone who left Happy Birthdays on Facebook---SPECTACULAR!

Saturday, November 15, 2008

November 16, 2008


(Laughing to myself) Well, this has been one intense year and tomorrow I will be 30-freakin7 years old. I was at dinner the other night with my friend, Carla and seated at the table next to us was our hairdresser with his friend. Carla says, "Salvo, how old are you? I think you and Jodi are the same age."
Salvo says, "I'm 36, a year younger than Jodi."
I say, "Yeah, but you look much younger than I do."
He responds, "Well, you've had two kids and it isn't easy raising kids, it makes a big difference, and..."
I said, "Salvo, shut the f**k up."

What is wrong with men??? They NEVER know the right things to say to a woman. To make matters worse, he then started complimenting me on my...hands. (and he's never even seen them work a keyboard)

*WTF?*

Anyway, I strongly feel that I have seriously and totally earned my number 37 after the explosive past year lived...one of the most important years of my life...

Gotta go pack. *smile*

Friday, November 14, 2008

Are You as a Deaf Individual Represented in YOUR Public Library?


'I've learned that you can tell a lot about a person by the way he/she handles these three things: a rainy day, lost luggage, and tangled Christmas tree lights.'
Since posting this quote by Maya Angelou, I've been kind of chewing it over. Her writing inspires a good, long chew.

Rainy days: I ALWAYS wear sunglasses.

Lost luggage: This actually happens quite often to me when travelling to the USA-I borrow clothes from my parents or just sleep naked-wash the clothes on my back and concentrate on my family.

Tangled Christmas Lights:

See, now this is a tricky one. At one point in my life, I would have chucked them directly in the garb-ah-ge, at another point in my life I would have tried to untangle them, Luca would have seen me struggling and he would have untangled them for me...
However, I think at the next Christmas, when we pull down the box of decorations and indubitably find the proverbial tangled Christmas lights, I will make myself comfortable and spend as long as it takes to untangle those damn lights.

And I can be one stubborn bitch.

On the subject of stubborn bitch, I'd like to take a moment to go back to the little Long Island Library episode with Dani.
This was Dani's last letter on the subject...and it is NOT very satisfying:

Hi Jodi,

Hope all is well. Again, I wanted to thank you for going out of your way and calling my library to see if they could get your book. Today, I went there with my cousin who happens to be a part time worker there. We didn't see the person who I spoke to last week her name was Betty. She was off the day, but I went to the Children's Section and the woman gave both me and my cousin such a awful attitude. She said, "I'm busy right now helping someone,you'll have to wait."

We waited over 20 minutes and she refused to help. So, I then went with my cousin to the manager's office and that person wasn't there. I told my cousin that if this woman always has an attitude she shouldn't be around people. If she doesn't like to help me at all and especially Children because if she works in that area all the time... she's not doing a good enough job if she's treating the children the way she's speaking to adults. My cousin said this is how she acts all the time and there is nothing we can do about it.

I just got home and I'm going to write a letter to the person who is in charge of the entire library. I'm not happy at all and now I realize why a lot of people don't go there. I'm really surprised these people can't help me and how they speak to me. I just wanted to let you know that I bought your book on amazon and for now on I'll continue buying the books on there.

Trying to promote deaf/hh awareness over here isn't all that easy as you can see. I tried and it is a shame because a lot of people I'm sure would love to know about deaf and hard of hearing people. They only have 2 books on hearing loss my cousin found out for me.
I'm sorry when you called that woman wasn't pleasant to you.
I can't wait to read your book! I get in a few days.

Take care... all the best,
Danielle

*I'll be calling the West Hempstead Public Library again later today because like Dani, MY SON IS DEAF and should be represented in that damn library*

UPDAAAAAAAAAAAAAAATE: Just spoke to Mrs. Carter of the Children's Department of the West Hempstead Public Library who could not have been any nicer. She said that she had ordered RALLY CAPS for the library, and while she couldn't give me an exact date as to when the book would arrive (it was on backorder??), she did confirm that it had been ordered. Actually, she was so nice to me that I didn't recognize her voice.
Now, I am a satisfied international customer.

Go STORM your library and order YOUR favorite book.

Thursday, November 13, 2008

Fairy Tales and Prince Charming


"Mommy, how will I know when my prince arrives? I mean, will a prince come to kiss me like in Snow White? How will he find me?" asked Sofia Madyson with a heinous shade of fuschia lipstick smeared all over her little lips.

I looked Sofia straight in the eyes and said, "Only when you become an independent, self-sufficient gracious queen will your prince arrive...the right prince for the true you. Before you can find the true you, you will have to slay dragons, combat hairy monsters single-handedly and battle your way alone through a dark and scary forest where the land may be unfamiliar at first,
but when you have grown - you will make it your own. And if he doesn't find you, then you will find yourself."

Sofia looked me up and down, curtsied and said, "Mommy, you don't understand anything...Babbo!!!!!!!!!!"

Wednesday, November 12, 2008

Ok...

Bring it on...lol

And show me your stuff.

Tuesday, November 11, 2008

A Hairy Situation: 4 Paotie and the Ladies


I think Paotie considers himself a Ladies' Man, so he's invited to this post...I'll try to teach him a thing or two about women.


Btw, waxed men...not sexy.
That little patch of chest hair that escapes from a shirt...SO sexy.


And as for the rest of the women out there...I wonder if you feel the same way as I do about leg hair in the winter.

When summer ends, I breathe a sigh of relief and launch the cellulite cream and Nairy stuff from my terrace. Ahhhhhhhh, bikini free and leg hair blowin' in the autumn breeze. See, I'd love to be able to be a wax candidate but my legs are so long that I would have to literally spend two hours in strapping agony, and I am not that masochistic.
*Cringe*
So, I use the depilatory cream with the fake razor stuff-works miracles and leaves my legs feelin' oh so smooth.

I HIGHLY recommend this stuff.

When I was about seven, I was so fascinated watching my mom shave her legs that I picked up her disgusting razor in the bathtub and started shaving mine-yup, age seven. About a year later, my mom caught me and screamed for like twenty minutes about what an idiot I was for shaving. I didn't understand what the big deal was, and so that's when I stopped shaving for about ten years, then started again. I used a razor until I came to Italy, almost threw up after spending my first day on the beach with a bunch of underarm hair
*sorry, not even Julia Roberts can make that appeal to me*
and learned that waxing was the Italian way of life...and a lot better for your skin...although extremely painful.

I ran into a problem last week, see the cream stuff finished after one leg and half a bikini, so I was like half woman-half beast...note: the beast side was on Luca's side of the bed. I tried the depilation four days later and like an idiot started on the same leg and ran out again. What's a girl to do? I refuse to use the razor, because then I get the horrendous leg itch that leaves heinous red spots, so I am still half sexy-half hairier beast.

Note: I am aware that some women find leg hair sexy...much easier life and more power to ya.


Anyway, on the subject of my mom, she sent me one of those messages that works its way around the world, but this one is a little different...these are Maya Angelou's words. I took an African-American literature course in College and fell in love with Maya Angelou's life, writing style and poetry. She is a truly wise woman...wonder what she said about Obama - gotta go look for that.

In the meantime, enjoy:

In April, Maya Angelou was interviewed by Oprah on her 70+ birthday.. Oprah asked her what she thought of growing older.

And, there on television, she said it was 'exciting.'

Regarding body changes, she said there were many, occurring every day...like her breasts. They seem to be in a race to see which will reach her waist, first.

The audience laughed so hard they cried. She is such a simple and honest woman, with so much wisdom in her words!

Maya Angelou said this:

'I've learned that no matter what happens, or how bad it seems today, life does go on, and it will be better tomorrow.'

'I've learned that you can tell a lot about a person by the way he/she handles these three things: a rainy day, lost luggage, and tangled Christmas tree lights.'

'I've learned that regardless of your relationship with your parents, you'll miss them when they're gone from your life.'

'I've learned that making a 'living' is not the same thing as 'making a life.'

'I've learned that life sometimes gives you a second chance.'

'I've learned that you shouldn't go through life with a catcher's mitt on both hands; you need to be able to throw some things back..'

'I've learned that whenever I decide something with an open heart, I usually make the right decision.'

'I've learned that even when I have pains, I don't have to be one.'

'I've learned that every day you should reach out and touch someone. People love a warm hug, or just a friendly pat on the back.'

'I've learned that I still have a lot to learn.'

'I' ve learned that people will forget what you said, people will forget what you did, but people will never forget how you made them feel.'

Sunday, November 9, 2008

RALLY CAPS -The Movie...?


My dad is just as big of a pain in the ass as I am, so when he gets an idea in his head, he tries just about everything to reach that final destination. Although, this little idea was kind of cute, especially because Jordan's in the video. Thanks to the magic of computer graphics, Jordan's processor, which is normally on the left ear, was abracadabrad to the right ear. *Because* the character in the book has the processor on the right ear and my dad is a stickler for details. First of all here's the video...Please note that before Obama gave his speech, Curtis Pride (The new Head Baseball Coach of Gallaudet-Congratulations, Curtis!!!)stated: "Nothing is Impossible!" - I totally believe him:


Second of all, here's the letter, minus a chunk, that he sent to the official RALLY CAPS mailing list:

Dear Friends:

Thank you again for your continued interest and support of RALLY CAPS. It has been an exciting ride....far beyond our wildest dreams. It started with publication in the USA on April 16, 2007 (after 25 rejections!) and then exactly a year later on 4/16/08 RALLY CAPS was translated and published in Italy. We received endorsements from Cal Ripken, Jr, Brooks Robinson, Curtis Pride, and Tim Kurkjian. In July 2007, I traveled to the Baseball Hall of Fame Museum for a book signing and had VIP seats for Cal's induction ceremony - the experience was one of the biggest thrills of my life. ReaderViews honored RALLY CAPS with the 2007-8 Reviewer's Choice Award for the Best Children's 7 and Over Book.

*blah, blah, blah*

The RALLY CAPS website continues to receive over 400 hits a month. That brings you up-to-date and our announcement of the next exciting event for RALLY CAPS. We have taken our inspiring story a step further and developed a "Movie Trailer PreView." We are hoping that someone will see our 3 minute video and present us with a deal to make RALLY CAPS into a feature film or "Made-for-TV" movie. Networking is what it's all about, so if you know of a literary agent, film producer or representative of a movie company, anyone who you think might be interested....please pass on our short "PreView Video" of RALLY CAPS and my information below. Remember "Dream It, Believe It, Work It, Achieve It!" We've come this far, who knows what's in store next!?

The "PreView Video" couldn't have been possible without the unbelievable efforts of our producer, Chris Hatcher, of ReaderViews and also the contribution from Jason Siemer, www.jasonsiemerproductions.com. Jason permitted us to use his terrific song, "A World of Orioles Baseball."

Thanks again for your help and support! Enjoy your RALLY CAPS "PreView" Video!

Best Wishes for a Happy Holiday Season and a Successful and Healthy '09!

http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=nP56JPBcfv8
http://readerviewskids.com/reviews_previews.html
http://readerviewskids.com/ReviewCutlerRallyCaps.html
http://www.readerviews.com/reviews_PreViews.html

Stephen

Friday, November 7, 2008

O*B*A*M*A...







HAS CALLED EVERY WORLD LEADER EXCEPT...
B
E
R
L
U
S
C
O
N
I

IT IS SO SWEET TO BE AMERICAN

*AND*

BLACK IS BEAUTIFUL.

PS.
I PLEDGE ALLEGIANCE
TO THE FLAG
OF THE UNITED STATES OF AMERICA
AND TO THE REPUBLIC FOR WHICH IT STANDS
ONE NATION
UNDER GOD
WITH LIBERTY AND JUSTICE
FOR
ALL.

Thursday, November 6, 2008

Obama: Tall, Handsome and...Tan ???



*WTF??*
As an American Mom in Tuscany, I would like to officially state that I am profoundly humiliated, mortified and really pissed off by Italian Prime Minister Silvio Berlusconi's lame-ass comment to Russia's President...who then proceeded to laugh at the "off-color" joke.

Berlusconi said: "Obama ha tutto: è bello, alto e abbronzato ed ha quindi tutte le qualità per avere ottimi rapporti con la Russia".
Translation: "Obama has it all - he's handsome, tall and tan and therefore has all of the characteristics necessary to have an excellent relationship with Russia."

Berlusconi insisted and said, "E' una carineria assoluta, è un grande complimento", ha detto il premier, "Se scendono in campo gli imbecilli siamo fregati".
Translation: "It's absolutely a nice thing what I said, a huge compliment," said the Prime Minister, "If all of the imbeciles get together we're screwed."

Umm.
Berlusconi's an idiot. A very rich idiot. But wealth doesn't give you an excuse or permission to be an idiot.

The worst part...the Russian President laughed.

Here is this spectacular moment in Italian Diplomacy:

In Italian we say, "Non capisce un cazzo."
In English, I would like to request that the USA not use force to retaliate...we're kind of in direct proximity to Rome.
Unfreakingbelievable...

We Don't Advertise Deafness????


One of my friends who I met through facebook, who is Deaf, sent me the following message:

Dani wrote at 10:58pm:

Hey I went to the library to request your book (RALLY CAPS), and they said "We cannot order the book" I said, "Why?" and they said, "Because we don't advertise deafness." I'm like, "Well I need to speak with the mangaer because this happens to be a great book -I heard - and I would love to read it, because one of my buddies wrote it about her child." I'm so mad you have no idea...
... it's very hard over here.. bc in Long Island people don't really care about us deaf/hh people. I don't get it, but it would be a great book to have in the library...especially if it's a young adult book for young kids that are deaf/hh. Boy I tell you I'm so upset, so I'll order it through amazon. I had to tell you this.

Me: Confused and starting to get just a tiny bit pissed off:
Dani, give me the number of the library and I'll call, there must be some type of confusion...DON'T BUY THE BOOK, it's in other libraries, I don't see why this library shouldn't be able to order it...

Dani:
Hey thanks... I'll deafinitely buy the book, I don't have that problem just next week I can do it. It's West Hempstead Public Library. I was in the front where you logout the books.. and I just asked a general question. They didn't ask for my name, number - nothing...They aren't pleasant people. As of yesterday, it is a new library. Thanks for your help!

dani

Let me know what happens.

So, I call the library and speak to the director who was confused as to how such a thing could have happened. She wanted to know who Dani had spoken to, but I didn't have a name. I was then transferred to the woman working in the Children's Dept. who looked up the book and said she would look into ordering it. She then said, "I have to go now, I have another call." (Apparently the fact that I was calling from Italy was not enough for her to use proper manners.)

I told Dani to go back to speak to this woman. We'll see what happens- I'll keep you posted!

Wednesday, November 5, 2008

USA...USA...USA...USA!!!

And then...there are those moments in politics that are not construed or political in the least...

And THAT is what makes me so proud to be an American...

Congratulations Obama!!!

Tuesday, November 4, 2008

Ain't That AMERICA!


Sometimes, events are so construed and political that you just want to vomit up some Stars and Stripes...

 

That's okay...it's the AMERICAN WAY!!!

GO OBAMA!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!

Monday, November 3, 2008

Slick Jordan Speaking Italian


Well, yesterday Luca and I went to Florence to meet my cousin Aileen and her husband David. Their daughter Rebecca is spending a semester in Florence and since she was on a week-long break her parents came to visit. I had the best time. David is a gynecologist, so we talked vaginas and obviously...newborn hearing screening. He told me that they give pregnant women a brochure when they are five months pregnant that describes the nhs program and provides information that prepares new moms for the screening.
We get nothing here in Tuscany...workin' on that. *smile*

Rebecca showed us her place. She is living in an apartment just above THE market and has a HUGE terrace that overlooks the Duomo. Note: the terrace was lined with empty cheap wine bottles, cheap except for the last two that Luca picked up and said were "fine wines". David and Aileen said those were the bottles they had purchased and Rebecca had yelled at them when they told her how much they had spent for the wine: 8 euros a bottle. Her usual price: 2 euros a bottle. Gotta love college kids. Apparently there are 30 Americans in her apartment building and she shares an apartment with four other girls.
*The good old days*

She's coming to visit Grosseto one of these weekends...I have to figure out how to entertain a crazy 20 year old college kid with "that look in her eyes!"
I'm dead. I'll have to bring in the reinforcements- my crazy Italian students.

Anyway. My insane son,
, otherwise known as the inappropriate youtube film downloader-I-think-I'll-share-them-with-the-neighborhood-children pulled another fast one on his naive mother. We were in Pisa last week, sitting at an outdoor table, chowing down on some pizza, when he attacked.
"Mom, if you give me 3 euros 75 cents for a Mickey Mouse comic, I'll tell you the latest news about Alessia."
*Grrrr*
He's so slick. He knows I die to know these things and now he's making these little newsworthy items profittable. Kind of have to admire the sly profiteer. And I do, so I said, "Tell, and I'll decide if the info is worth the 3,50."
He proceeds to tell me that Alessia asked him to be her dance partner in some Phys. Ed. activity...he had that sh**-eating grin on his juvenile face that is dying to grow a mustache.

I smile, obviously, as Luca sits down and proceeds to tell me he already knew about the info. That really pisses me off as I demand exclusives, and the worst part-
hit Luca up for two comics before pulling the same maneuver on me! My son is a devil-child, but very, very intelligent. (Gets that from me)

I gave him 3,75 and told him I had just bought the blogging rights.
And
there
you
have
it!
Here's a video of
speaking Italian...

Saturday, November 1, 2008

Boo!

Sharon!!! Thanks for our teeth!


My little witches


Well, aside from a two hour Halloween party near our house, Halloween was a bust! It didn't just rain, it lashed (as they say in Dublin), so all little monsters stayed indoors. We had fun thanks to a serious Halloween package sent by SHARON!!!-that was filled with spider rings, glow-in-the-dark skeletons, monster fingerpuppets, gliders, and my ALL TIME FAVORITE HALLOWEEN CANDY...CANDY CORN!! I finished off the Autumn Mix and shared the regular ones with friends and students.

Hope everyone had a fun time! God I miss Halloween in the States!