Friday, February 8, 2008

Snippits of Randomness

Life has been generally hectic around here the last couple of days. James has been traveling all week, so the kids and I have been fending for ourselves. In the midst of the craziness that ensues when he's gone so much, I've had a Biology test and an Algebra test, and need to continue moving forward in both classes without so much as a break. I'm hoping to accomplish a lot in both today so that Saturday and Sunday can be restful. So, because I can think of little more right now than Nitrogen Cycles and Quadratic Functions, here's a list of randomness...

-- Gracie made the front of the line at the bus stop once again, and this time I let her stay in the spot close to the road. I know she won't run into the street, so she's safe in that regard. Plus, there was a car parked on the roadside in close proximity, and people racing by are more inclined to not hit other cars than they're inclined to mind children. I felt with the parked car at her side, she was pretty safe. Anyway, she did not budge from her spot, not even when the rest of the line clustered around another little child who had a glowing MP3 player. (She just craned her neck from her position to catch a glimpse of that which was so interesting.) That day, she boarded the bus with her head held high and hasn't vied for the primary position since. It makes me think something's been set right inside.

-- College Algebra isn't as bad as I anticipated. As a rule, I would say I'm horrible at math, though in my head I can price an item at a 66% discount, triple a coupon, and find the value of the sale item minus the coupon in nothing flat. I guess it's fair to say that I'm good at everyday math, but in honesty, I've struggled in nearly every formal math class I've ever taken (the single exception was Sophomore Geometry where I averaged a 99.8% all year). When I opted to retake College Algebra this semester after my first attempt 13 years ago, I was quite concerned I would be in way over my head. James swore he could help me and would tutor me at a very reasonable rate (hardy-har-har), but it turns out that I remember more about Algebra after 13 years than he does after 25. Though the thought of the class completely intimidates me, and though I know there's no chance I'll score better than a B, I have actually enjoyed the refiring of the neurons in that part of my brain, and am convincing myself the problems are no worse than a Sodoku puzzle -- a form of math torture I subject myself to on every vacation.

-- James was caught in a Microburst during the landing of his outbound flight on Wednesday, which is the second time since December that he's been in danger while flying for work. To right the plane, the pilot "popped a wheelie," according to James, and they were diverted to Louisville, KY. for a safer landing. James said an on-board basketball team screamed like a bunch of enormous girls, overhead bins dumped their contents, and the pilot was visibly shaken when they were finally allowed to disembark. Fortunately, they were only about midway through their original descent, otherwise, Wikipedia says this about what their fate may have been:

A microburst often causes aircraft to crash when they are attempting to land. The microburst is an extremely powerful gust of air that, once hitting the ground, spreads in all directions. As the aircraft is coming in to land, the pilots try to slow the plane to an appropriate speed. When the microburst hits, the pilots will see a large spike in their airspeed, caused by the force of the headwind created by the microburst. A pilot inexperienced with microbursts would try to decrease the speed. The plane would then travel through the microburst, and fly into the tailwind, causing a sudden decrease in the amount of air flowing across the wings. The sudden loss of air moving across the wings causes the aircraft to literally drop out of the air. The best way to deal with a microburst in an aircraft would be to increase speed as soon as the spike in airspeed is noticed. This will allow the aircraft to remain in the air when traveling through the tailwind portion of the microburst and also pass through the microburst with less difficulty, although it is possible that for light aircraft, the descent rate induced by the microburst will exceed their maximum climb rate, leading to an unavoidable crash.

-- Because of the pressure I feel right now to succeed in my classes, I actually turned down a weekend away. The kids are spending this weekend with their Nanny, so James mentioned renting a lake cabin as an early Valentine's gift to one another -- he'd even scoped some out online! While I was impressed with his thoughtfulness and would love to get away, I'm in a busy part of the semester building up to midterms. Since I'm not very science/math minded by nature, it's all very stressful for me, and I don't think I could just go away and truly disconnect, thus a wasted excursion. Also, he's been away from home all week and wants little more than a few nights in his own bed. So, instead of going away this weekend, we're going to stick close to home (so I can continue working on assignments) and are planning on some day outings: a trip back to the flea market (I believe they re-open this weekend, now that the rodeo is over), to The Kimball to see a Early Christian Art exhibit, and to the movies to watch 27 Dresses (or something equally sappy). Because of said assignments and all of these fun plans, I will resume blogging again next week (that is, if I can force myself to stay away). Have a super weekend!

6 comments:

  • Christy

    Would you believe with my total lack of math skills I actually scored an A in college Algebra while at ORU?! It was the combination of group projects and a very patient husband/tutor that pulled me through. I hope I never have to take another math class as long as I live!

  • Amy

    Please oh please... not a blogging break!

    Okay... if you must... have a restful weekend.

  • Elizabeth

    Wow, your husband has rotten luck at flying! :-)

  • Mommy

    You have alot on your plate girl! Wow, I never knew what a micro-burst was. You learn something new everyday. Of all the times I have flown, if I had known this, I would be a little paranoid!

    Good luck with your classes. Have a wonderful Valentines Day!

    I am stopping by from the Bloggy Giveaway. Thank you for entering my contest for the Motivated Moms. There was another winner, but I hope you'll stop by time to time. :)

  • Texas Gal of 2

    I have been on a break for 10 days now. Not on purpose just nothing to blah! blah! blah! about lately.

  • Amy

    Hellooo???? I am searching for my bloggy friend, Amanda. If you see her, let me know.

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