Oddities, Goodness, & Harumphs. There Will Be Cake.

1 Recall that we had all three of our middle children get married within about a 19 month period: end of May, 2020 through early January 2022. 10 months ago, we welcomed our first granddaughter – The Cuteness, who I, who have seen a lot of babies and who am totally unbiased, think is quite possibly the cutest child ever born. No, really!

Now, over an 18 month period starting with the birth of The Cuteness, we will welcome our first grandson – due early November – AND our third grandchild (sex TBD) in early April, 2023.

Life is good. Three marriages followed by three babies – one each! – to three happy couples. God willing, I may still live to see my children’s children chasing chickens in the yard of our hobby farm.

2. Second week as a headmaster just completed. School was good, but reminded me of the old joke: I spent a month in Cleveland last weekend. These have been the longest two weeks I’ve had in a looooong time.

3. So, these days of light posting: write about some gripping education history book, something grueling and essential, and I’m lucky if 30 people look at it. Write about dropping a piece of avocado toast, and get 100+. Both way down from peak traffic of a couple years ago, but still.

4. I don’t know if I’m being overcautious, but I’m wary of posting anything too political or potentially controversial here these day, thinking I have an image to uphold as a headmaster of a joyful, Catholic, classical high school. ot hiding anything, just not broadcasting it here. But it’s not like there isn’t 15 years and a couple of million words of my thoughts already out there, if anyone cared to look. Thoughts?

5. Here’s a cake one of my daughters made:

The Most Californian Minor Tragedy Ever

This morning, getting ready to go to work, I had made some toast and a cup of coffee, then realized I was running a little late. I put the toast on a plate, then headed for the car, figuring I’d eat it on the 15 minute drive.

At the car, fiddling with my keys, I dropped a piece of toast. A piece of homemade whole wheat sourdough topped with slices of perfectly ripe avocado. A nice, dense, chewy slice of homemade whole wheat sourdough, nicely toasted, with a spot of butter, and just the best, creamy avocado on top.

Yes, I dropped my avocado toast. Tragic.

I suppose it could have been a slightly greater minor tragedy if I’d had a bit of brie or, better, sharp coastal cheddar, under the avocado. Even so, it hardly gets any more Californian and minorly tragic than this.

Pictured: a recreation of the victim, except, this time, I did add a little bit of sharp coastal cheddar. It was good.

Update: School, Lake Tahoe

1 Just finished our first week of school. It was good.

2 California has more natural beauty in greater variety than any place else I’ve ever been. America is beautiful, yes, and every state I’ve ever been to (all but a handful) has places of great natural beauty. But no other state has as much variety: the Mendocino Coast, the redwood forests, the SoCal beaches, the high deserts, the low deserts, Yosemite, the Sierra foothills, Mt. Shasta, San Francisco Bay – all very beautiful, all very different.

Then there’s Lake Tahoe:

Sunset from the South Lake Tahoe harbor
Emerald Bay
Clouds over the Tahoe and the High Sierra

My pictures don’t do it justice, as from the ground or surface, one can only capture a very small part of the lake and landscape with any one picture. We spent a few days in Truckee, just east of Donner Summit of Donner party infamy, attending my wife’s family reunion. (She is oldest of 11, and so family reunions tend to run LARGE.) Several of her brothers kindly located and rented a couple cabins, so that everybody from Grandma down to my granddaughter – 4 generations! – could spend some time together. (The first such grand reunions happened 10 years ago, just a couple weeks after our eldest son’s death. This one was more fun.)

Driving from the Truckee at the north side of the lake to South Lake Tahoe, where the only real town on the lake is located, takes an hour – a beautiful hour, driving winding mountain roads through forests, with the lake popping in and out of view.

Tahoe is deceptively huge: 18 miles long, 12 miles wide may not sound that big, but it’s deep, with an average depth of 1,000 feet. People love to toss around Tahoe facts, like: there’s enough water in Tahoe to cover the entire state of California to a depth of 14″, and that the deepest parts of the lake, at over 1600 feet deep, are lower than the plains of Western Nevada just to the east.

So, if you get to visit Golden State, avoid the insanity of the cities and just see the natural wonders. For my top 3, I’d go Yosemite, Redwoods, Tahoe in order of preference, based on a combination of sheer beauty and you’re not going to see anything like it anywhere else. Then – the other stuff.