I haven’t had time/desire/etc. to post one of my usual “new school year resolutions,” and to be honest, I don’t have any new resolutions this year. It’d be nice if I could actually manage to do some of the resolutions from last year. But I will mention two things that are kind of resolution-like that are not really school related (though they are not completely unrelated either) that might be worth working harder at this year.
First, there’s “Why your kids have such terrible handwriting and what to do about it,” which was posted to the WPA-L mailing list last week. Basically, it’s an article from Slate.com about the author, Emily Yoffe, and her eighth grade daughter both working through Nan Jay Barchowsky’s Fix it Write, a lesson plan/process for improving your handwriting– and Yoffe’s article is also about some various histories and issues of handwriting, too. Somewhat on impulse, I just decided to order this, and I’m hoping I can convince Will to give these lessons a try along with me. I have and have always had horrific handwriting, something I’ve learned to live with and also to blame on my left-handedness. But Will also has pretty bad handwriting, and he’s still at a place (in seventh grade) where a) bad handwriting can actually make a difference on things like essay tests and such, and b) where he could still do something about it. In any event, Will and I (or at least me) will try our hand at this during the school year. So to speak.
Second, there’s the news I learned via Facebook today about Eddie Izzard running through the UK (actually, it turns out he finished on September 14th), about the equivalent of 43 marathons in 51 days. As this BBC News article suggests, he started with almost no training, he’s pretty injured, and what he is doing is quite ill-advised. At the same time, he has made quite a bit of progress in his seven week. He started “running” a marathon distance is 10 hours (which, of course, isn’t really running at all– that’s walking a marathon, still an impressive enough feat as far as I’m concerned), and at the end, he was finishing his running in five hours. By the way, there is a seven part video diary series of this on YouTube here.
Now, I’m not going to do what he’s doing for all sorts of obvious reasons, and I don’t really see myself training for a marathon. But I took up “running” earlier in the year, “ran” in the Dexter-Ann Arbor 5 K this past spring, and have tried to keep “running” two or so miles three days a week. (And I should point out that I am extremely slow. I say “running” to mean that if you saw me, you would say “well, that’s not walking, so I guess it’s okay to call it ‘running,’ sort of.”) I’ve actually kind of come to enjoy it, and while I was originally planning on keeping my goals here modest, there’s something about seeing Izzard, who clearly has lost a lot of weight and is in much better shape at the end of this fund raising stunt than he was at the beginning, that wants me to extend my goals. So I dunno; maybe a 10K? Maybe a half-marathon at the Dexter-Ann Arbor run this year?