A Compliment from An Astonished Woman and When Will I Use This In Real Life?

While the kids are in their karate lessons, the parents hang out in the waiting room sitting on The Most Uncomfortable Chairs Ever Made and chit chat.  Some of the parents are starting a capital campaign so we can outfit the waiting room with new chairs.  I hope mine is a leather recliner with cup holders.

One of the other parents, Judi, has learned of my obsession with photography and she wished aloud that she knew how to use her camera.  I told her, “Bring it to karate one day and I’ll show you how to use it.”

So, today she did.  When she handed the camera to me, I saw that the poor little dear had a dirty lens.  Seriously, Judi—how could you let that happen?  I whipped out my lens cleaner spray and cleaned  the lens.  Which made the other woman in the waiting room react with astonishment and say, “You keep camera lens cleaner on you?”

What?  You don’t?

I changed all the settings and crouched down to take shots of the plants in the waiting room.  After about 10 minutes of playing with Judi’s camera, it dawned on me that she was hoping for a lesson.

Astonished Woman said, “I have that same camera,” and so she joined in the lesson.  Astonished Woman (no, I can’t remember her name, leave me alone) was impressed with my teaching skills.

Sigh.  I remember when I was a corporate trainer and used to get compliments on my teaching skills.  I really love compliments.  Astonished Woman might just be my new best friend.  It’s so gratifying to teach people who thank me and tell me how amazing I am and don’t flounce into their seats, cross their arms and scowl in the middle of the lesson (more on that later.)

Astonished Woman also seemed very interested in Photo Club.  “What?  You go to a real Photo Club?  Can anyone join?”  She might just show up.  But I kind of hope not, because then I’d have to introduce her as “Astonished Woman” and that might be awkward.

I’ll have to mumble instead.

“Everyone, this is mmmbthmlmm.”

And Everyone will say, “Hi—uh, I didn’t catch your name…what is it again?” and then I’ll be off the hook.


The next exciting thing that happened today is that Boy9 is fighting me about learning grammar.  He flounced on the couch, folded his arms, scowled and said, “I’m not going to do it!”

These minor rebellions are a snap to crush.  I reminded my little minion that not doing schoolwork = not getting screen time, so…he did the work.  But before he did the work, he made one last ditch attempt to deliver what he was sure would be the killing blow, “Fine.  I’ll do it.  But when will I ever use this in real life?”

So, I said, “Wait!  You know, you’re right!  When will you ever use this in real life?  Never!  Throw that book away!  Ice cream party time!”

No, not really.

We’re learning how to diagram sentences, which means we have to find the subject and predicate of each sentence–basically, the noun and verb, for anyone foggy about those terms.  And you probably are foggy about those terms.  Because you’ve never had to use them in real life.

Ahem.  Don’t tell Boy9 that.

Fortunately, I assessed an essay today.  One of the sentences didn’t have a verb (simple predicate) in it.  Now, I’m pretty sure it was actually a typo, but Boy9 didn’t necessarily need to know that.

I showed Boy9 the sentence and said, “Boy9.  A man sent me a lot of money so I could assess his essay and teach him how to write better.  If he can’t learn how to write a decent essay in the next month, he could fail his certification test and lose his job.  He could lose his house and his family could go hungry, all because he can’t write an essay.  Now, Boy9, take a look at this essay and tell me the simple predicate of this sentence.”

Boy9 was able to figure out that there was none.   I told Boy9, “This man might fail his test because his sentence doesn’t have a subject and a predicate.  Now do you see why grammar is important?”

I’m glad I assessed that essay today because I, too, was kinda wondering when knowing about simple predicates would come in handy in real life.


Picture of the Day:

Dinner at a Mexican restaurant in Gettysburg (Montezuma) with Gerhard and Janet.  Boy9 was concerned that he’d be bored at dinner until I told him Gerhard would be there.  He brightened up and said, “Ooooo!  I love Gerhard’s stories!”


8 thoughts on “A Compliment from An Astonished Woman and When Will I Use This In Real Life?

  1. You’re not fooling anyone, you know. We know you are just training the kids to evaluate the essays for you as “practice” so you can crawl around the backyard with Alex for hours taking pictures.

    • Thanks. It was 6:30 and the light was coming in the window at a lovely slant. Great for picture taking, but it was blinding Janet. Fortunately, Charlie and Dianne happened to be at Montezuma’s last night. They were sitting at the table with the offending window and closed the blinds for Janet.

  2. How hard is it to teach someone to use their camera long-distance, do you think? Ever since I got that Nikon D5100 for my lab, I LOVE taking pictures of bloodied tubing sets and leaky connectors and cracked stopcocks, but when I get my own for Christmas (I’ve already made it clear to hubs that’s what he’s getting me) I’m going to need to figure out how to photo much more than used medical devices…

    • Well, after this Year in Pictures challenge is over, on Dec 31st, I’m sure I’ll drop my blogging down to only 2 or 3 times a week, so maybe I can make a training video for you. Wouldn’t that be fun!

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