Friday, February 26, 2010

Slammed Again...and This Time a Good One

Good morning, everyone.  We've got about 18 inches out there already.  Last night I played like a little girl and ventured out into my back yard.  the wind was blowing frighfully and the snow was swirling all around, but it was wonderful.   It's a beautiful storm...even more beautiful since I am home.  I'd planned on being home today one way or another.  So yesterday, when my sinuses were acting up, I allowed them all to think it was a nasty cold, thereby setting up a sick day in motion.  But then, when the weatherman said it was best to stay home, he didn't have to tell me twice. Sadly, yesterday a man died in the park when the snow became too heavy and a branch broke off and fell, killing him as he made his way home through the park...and this morning I saw on the news that many of our beautiful trees could not withstand the storm.

 Today would have been a really long day for me.  There's a party for the graduates of the program tonight, and we are all expected to stay overtime to set up, serve, and clean usually on graduation day, which happens twice a year, it is a 8:30 am to 7:30 pm day.  And usually, it is quite enjoyable, but this time, not only do I have no graduates, but I also don't totally agree with their choices of graduates.

To me, graduation should be based on a certain set of criteria; of course, good attendance and remaining drug and alcohol free are the biggies, but the graduate should also be in the process of doing something to better his/her lifestyle...i.e. GED classes, vocational training, internship, job or even job search.  This is why I have no graduates.  Although I have clients who satisfy the first criteria, they are doing nothing else with their life.  Two of tonight's graduates come to mind.  One is a young man, 21 years old, with his entire life ahead of him.  His attendance was 'okay', his urines clean, but he has done nothing else.  He was disruptive in groups and hasn't even taken the first steps to obtain his GED.  Instead, he got involvd with an older women, got her pregnant, and is now crying the blues that he made a mistake.  You know what that says to me? Relapse mode, not graduation.  But, because he has been so disruptive, they are graduating him to get him out of the program.  Another client has done absolutely NOTHING and I mean nothing.  He's never even once shared in any of my groups.  He has done no work on himself, but because he and his counselor have had a few words, they are graduating him. 

Somehow this speaks to me of the old social promotions of the New York City school system when students were passed from grade to grade and graduated, receiving high school diplomas, just because of their ages. And what are the results of that? Today we have thousands of adult men and women who cannot read and write. 

By the way, that photo isn't from me.  The battery went in our camera.  But, that is a photo of another snowstorm that hit Brooklyn a few years back, and it gives you some idea of what it is like here today.  And, with that, it's been awhile since I have posted any poetry, so I will leave you with the following'


Jove descends in sleet and snow,
Howls the vexed and angry deep;
Every storm forgets to flow
Bound in Winter's icy sleep,
Ocean waves and forest hoar,
To the blast responsive roar.

Drive the tempest from your door,
Blaze on blaze your heartstone piling,
And unmeasured goblets pour,
Brimful high, with nectar smiling;
Then, beneath your poet's head
Be a downy pillow spread.

--Alcaeus (7th-6th century B.C.)


  1. So Alcaeus's advice about how to cope with winter is basically get hammered and pass out? Poets! They're all the same!

  2. We got slammed here in Jersey too and I'm beginning to feel all "here's Johnny" from being stuck in this house with my family (love them, but ENOUGH IS ENOUGH ALREADY!). I saw the story about the old man in the park on the news yesterday, it made me very sad. What a tragedy.

  3. enjoy your day off... you all have been getting battered with the snow this year... hope it ends soon...

  4. This kind of reaffirms my belief that the education system in America is designed around the purpose of producing sheep, and less about educating and nurturing original thinkers. =(

    Hope you enjoy your "sick" day ;)

  5. That storm picked up momentum after it left the midwest. Watched on the news last night as they showed your city and talked about the man who was crushed by that limb. There must have been a lot of ice as well as snow to cause so many limbs to fail. Enjoy your day off. X.

  6. It started out as slush yesterday then turned into one of those real heavy snows that are hard to shovel. Guess that's why the trees couldn't hold the weight.

  7. Mary you tickle me playing outside last night. Enjoy you long weekend, you deserve it! How did hubby's first week go? Any better by Friday than the first day? You sound like your stomach is better. Do something fun for yourself this weekend.


  8. I figured you'd stay home today/Fri.

    Take care.

    Btw, we got "like nothing." We seem to be in a little patch of not-doing-much-ness. I said to my husband, that maybe we have a lot of Earth Witches here, and that's why we seem to be "protected."

  9. Debra She Who Seeks....... "So Alcaeus's advice about how to cope with winter is basically get hammered and pass out?"

    Hey, sounds good to me! >,-))))

  10. Eeew on the snow. I had been hearing it was bad. A blessing indeed that you did not have to go out in it to do battle to get to work!

    As far as the graduations go...I see more and more why you are so frustrated with the entire process. That is a shame and is serving no one's good, but most of all not the clients, even though they most likely do not really the diservice being done.

  11. Do enjoy being tucked safe and warm inside. I wouldn't be going anywhere either.

    It's sad when people get an 'out' withough any effort, because the system doesn't want them. I'm glad you didn't go to the graduation. It's hard to fake happiness for someone who you don't believe deserved their rewards.