Saturday, December 3, 2011

How not to sell a car

Today I went car shopping (btw, the weather was cold and rainy so yes, not only am I crazy but my DH is as well).  I have done my research and have settled on a Chevy Malibu or Cruze.  But, sometimes when I get to the dealership, I see something shiny that is not one of the two sensible cars I have chosen.  Like today, I instantaneously fell in love (although I didn't gush as it is not good for the negotiations if you show your hand) with a cherry red VW bug with only 30,000 miles on it.  It was so, so, cute.  It had black leather interior.  Did I mention it was cute?  So the salesman asked me if I wanted to try it out as I have test driven Malibu and ridden in the Cruze already.  I was reluctant at first because of the rain, but decided that I had better drive it.  So, I got in all ready for a spin.  I put the key in the ignition, turned it and nothing.  I tried it again thinking maybe I was doing it wrong.  Still nothing.  The salesman came back and I told him, the car wasn't starting.  He thought maybe it was the battery.  Although he couldn't find where to charge it.  Another salesman guy came out and tried to jumpstart it to no avail.  The salesmen apologized profusely.  So, I didn't get to drive it which is just as well, because the size really wouldn't be practical for my family.  But it was so cute, and I really did like it.  No farfegnugen for me today (nor dollars for the salesman) :(

Friday, December 2, 2011

Let me tell you

about a time when I was tired, said the unkind woman at the registration desk.  Many moons ago, when I was in grad school, the new semester was starting and I had to go pick up my textbook for said course.  I worked about 30 minutes from the university, it was August, I had no air conditioning in my building where I had taught 29 fifth graders all day long, and I was pregnant.  I rushed (by rushed, I mean careened down the hwy toward the university) to the bookstore and made it in the nick of time.   However, when I got to the bookstore, the woman asked to see my schedule.  I looked at her with question marks in my eyes (soon to turn into ampersands) and said, "I only have one class and it's graduate."  She said, "That's the rule."  I said, "Please just let me pick go get it, the book is for EDAD 2100)."  She said, "No."  I said, "UGH, I am soo tired."  To which she replied, "Let me tell you about a time when I was tired."  In retrospect, I shouldn't have been so whiny, but really.  For one class?  I also should have made a snarky comment.  That's what makes me, on days like today (Fridays in December) think I should go find that woman and tell her, "Let ME tell YOU about a time when I was tired because whatever you were going to tell me 10 years ago can't be anywhere even close to beating what I could tell you."  So there.

Thursday, December 1, 2011

Dr. Phil once said,

"Every child has a currency."  I remember watching that episode thinking, "When I have kids, they'll just do what they are supposed to do and I won't have to figure out their currency because I won't have to remove privileges nor will I 'bribe' my children with rewards."  Riiiiiight.  Those are clearly the words of someone who isn't a mother.  Perfect children who are intrinsically motivated?  Not mine.  The best way to get a bedroom clean around here is the offering up of anything dinosaur (the Cubscout just wrote a power paragraph about becoming a paleontologist) or for the Clover, Hello Kitty.  When bad choices are made, gone are those things they love the most (Fossil Fighters for DS, I'm lookin' at you). 

In the same way, each of my students has their own area of interest/expertise/currency that can be used as a great motivator.  At school, I'm not looking to get a bedroom clean or laundry put away, but rather planners filled out and assignments turned in or "kind talk" used.  So out comes Mario, Angry Birds, or even the Solar System to help me, help my guys get the hard job of school done for one more day.