I bought a mumu!
I have now accomplished my most important task in the Marshall Islands.
This e-mail exchange makes me miss school so much.
Friend 1: A short while ago, I found myself sitting in my room, watching Cops on G4 (obviously, I have nothing better to do with my afternoons). Then, out of nowhere, the greatest scroll ever came across the bottom: “This Day in Gaming History: On January 28, 2005, Uwe Boll’s Alone in the Dark was released in theaters.” We are not alone. Friend 2: YES!! Friend 3: My...
Gospel choir + condoms = ?
Several of the other Dartmouth students on my trip have been singing with the Marshall Islands High School gospel choir. Yesterday, the gospel choir had their first performance since we’ve gotten here. The other Dartmouth students didn’t find out until they got to the event that they were singing at the launch of a new condom, the Defender. The launch is part of a campaign to reduce...
alexandra-ewing: Kristen Schaal, Dan Bakkedahl, Bill Hader, Peter Serafinowicz, Principal Onyx Blackman, and James Urbaniak all in one pilot? Why it could only be the never-brought-to-series Snake ‘N’ Bacon. Who can slither and hiss and squeeze? Who’s delicious on BLTs? Who’s a standing celebrity Snake! And Bacon! “Well, crumble me in a salad.” My brother made me watch the Snake...
The challenges of teaching
The vast majority of the stores on Majuro, the main atoll of the Marshall Islands, are owned by people from various Asian nations, particularly China. This has led to a lot of resentment and racism directed against the Chinese. One of the guys on my program is teaching 12th grade Social Studies. They’re studying Martin Luther King Jr. right now, so he had the students write their own...
The best part about re-organizing the MIHS Library...
Exhibit A: A Nice Fire and Some Moonpennies, by Dorris Heffron (1971) She was Maizie McComber and she was sixteen, a Canadian Indian, and new experiences were her bag. She went out of her way, if she had to, for a really good one. That was why she decided to try pot. But not at home. Not in Kingston. People knew her there. It had to be in Toronto. Maizie’s trip to Toronto was truly an...
We had an assembly today to warn us about the high waves that will be coming to the islands for the next 2 months. They’re expected to cause lots of flooding (not surprising, considering that the highest point on the island is a bridge that’s only 15 feet above sea level). I never thought I would be in a place where waves have such a major influence.
Maybe I can get some kind of a happy ending.” “Not only are there no happy...– American Gods, by Neil Gaiman
“An episode of Cheers began. Shadow had never watched Cheers. He had only ever seen one episode of it – the one where Coach’s daughter comes to the bar – although he had seen that several times. Shadow had noticed that you only ever catch one episode of shows you don’t watch, over and over, years apart; he though it must be some kind of cosmic law.” -American Gods, by Neil Gaiman
Questions from a Marshallese middle school Social...
Fill in the blank question: American pastimes include … Answer – model-making, playing with dolls, and quilting Multiple-choice question: A defining principle of the American experience is … A. Have fun B. Freedom of speech (the right answer is B)
In one of my classes, two kids were passing around a copy of Eclipse, one of the books in the Twilight series. In many ways the Marshalls seem very, very different from the US, but then something like that happens and they don’t seem quite so far away after all.
I’m working on re-organizing the Marshall Islands High School library, which is in dreadful shape. There are many good books in the library, but they are nearly all old and there are very, very few young adult books. I’m trying to think of young adult books to recommend for the library. They can be both genre classics (The Pigman, Judy Blume) and modern favorites (Twilight, Artemis Fowl). They...