I’m in the doghouse

I’m in the doghouse with Google – they’ve taken my site off for 30 days because it was hacked and so I don’t meet their standards. My personal Lent – at least it’s not 40 days :-)

Englisch lernen/ BC: animated explanation of the idiom “I’m in the doghouse” here.

Why are poor outsiders called “dogs”? “Slumdog Millionaire” is causing anger in India because of the word “dog”. Maybe over there a dog has a real “dog’s life”. But all of the dogs I know have it really good.

Moodle

For over a year now my dear host Christian has put up with my Moodle platform. You’ll remember, I ran a few courses on it and did something for the LMU and for the VHS, and I was intending to run a train-the-trainer session for MELTA. But being hacked has come as a shock and is just really the last straw in a process that has turned me off to Moodle.

The problem with my Moodle is, frankly, that my business clients will always get in touch with me using their preferred means, their messaging systems, not following some unique rules that a Moodle course sets up for them. Moodle is good for schools and universities that need to manage complicated distance learning setups, because teachers need to impose discipline to manage the large number of people and tasks involved. That’s why Open University and the Fachhochschule für angewandtes Management use it successfully. But in adult education as a platform for blended learning providing space for projects? I think using other applications, such as a proper wiki, is probably better.

It’s been kind of cool to be able to show my Moodle site to people. It used to frustrate me at teachers’ conferences, when techie teachers talked about what they were doing and how they were doing it, to notice that they knew how, theoretically, but they weren’t really applying it because there wasn’t much demand, or because, frankly, it didn’t work all that well and the content and didactics were slave to the technology. I’m a very practical person, and the only way to find out whether something is good is to work with it, intensively and extensively, with different types of users or learners.  Since I’m not afraid to make a fool of myself, I was able to show my Moodle stuff for what it really was.

Right now there is other work to be done, so I don’t know how the saga will continue. Maybe this is the final curtain for my Moodle. Christian has offered to have a second look. So maybe not. But as far as my interest in online learning is concerned, this is most definitely not, as the Germans say, das Ende vom Lied :-) !

Blue Thunderbird

Rod sent me this: “BTW — the gold Cadillac is beautiful and there are an amazing number of wonderfully restored US vintage cars around Munich. They show up at various shows from time to time. The blue T-Bird was on Theresienwiese last June along with hundreds of other wonderful pieces. Got a bit nostalgic.” Wow, gorgeous! What was the event?

thunderbird

One trick pony

We were thinking of a few people we love as we watched “The Wrestler” tonight. Bruce Springsteen wrote the touching title song for Mickey Rourke. The Oscar? Who cares, said Mickey. “You can’t eat it, you can’t fuck it, and it won’t get me into heaven.”

Have you ever seen a one trick pony in the field so happy and free?
If you’ve ever seen a one trick pony then you’ve seen me
Have you ever seen a one-legged dog making his way down the street?
If you’ve ever seen a one-legged dog then you’ve seen me

Then you’ve seen me, I come and stand at every door
Then you’ve seen me, I always leave with less than I had before
Then you’ve seen me, bet I can make you smile when the blood, it hits the floor
Tell me, friend, can you ask for anything more?
Tell me can you ask for anything more?

Have you ever seen a scarecrow filled with nothing but dust and wheat?
If you’ve ever seen that scarecrow then you’ve seen me
Have you ever seen a one-armed man punching at nothing but the breeze?
If you’ve ever seen a one-armed man then you’ve seen me

Then you’ve seen me, I come and stand at every door
Then you’ve seen me, I always leave with less than I had before
Then you’ve seen me, bet I can make you smile when the blood, it hits the floor
Tell me, friend, can you ask for anything more?
Tell me can you ask for anything more?

These things that have comforted me, I drive away
This place that is my home I cannot stay
My only faith’s in the broken bones and bruises I display

Have you ever seen a one-legged man trying to dance his way free?
If you’ve ever seen a one-legged man then you’ve seen me

englischlernen mit liedern :-) learning english with songs

Gold Cadillac

Detroit is going down. The whole rescue package is just so hopeless. I remember when American cars were still attractive. Cadillacs were the family car, my dad’s one life-long fetish, bought used for second-hand glamor. That was until the oil crises hit, when he got sensible and we got a VW beetle and then later a Toyota.

My favorite car was a gold-colored 1966 Cadillac convertible with light seats. I loved the hugeness and sleekness and majesty of it and used to take my dolls and stuffed animals along for rides in the back seat, the wind blowing through my hair as my dad chauffeured us around. That’s about as good as it gets. Today? Forget it. Sinking fast.

1966_cadillac_eldorado_convertible