I’ve been slacking last few days on my blog. I had a hard deadline yesterday for some of the final chapters of this book I’m finishing up. So I had to tend to it. But I have a quick post here to make. I’m wondering what folks think of this Moment of Truth “game show.” It seems totally over the top to me and morally repugnant. But yet I tuned in.
Week Four (U2 exams) are up to the right. Note I’ve added two things to the spreadsheet: after a unit is completed, I shade your highest exam so you know which one is being used towards your grade. Also, at the bottom, I’ve added “average best score”. Since the U1s are completed, there is now a row showing what the average shaded test score was. The function of this row is just for you to compare yourself against everyone else, if you’re into that sort of thing.
I generally don’t like to make political blog posts that reveal in anyway my own political leanings, mostly because my students read this and I don’t consider myself an “advocacy” based teacher, even if I do have strongly held views (different topic, but I do prefer not to broadcast my views). Still, this subject annoys me so I want to say a few things about it.
Today I was listening to Sean Hannity in the car on the way home (he’s on during the time I head home, it’s a 50min commute, so I get an earful). He was ranting about Obama.
Let’s continue the “east-west” difference theme for another post. I was reading Austin Ramzy’s entry at Time Magazine’s “China Blog” and found his last entry interesting. Ramzy held a party at his Beijing apartment for Chinese New Year and had everyone at the party say, to his handheld camera, what they hoped for the new year.
CNN.com likes to put National Enquirer type stories on their front page (lately they are getting really carried away with this and it gets on my nerves as it makes CNN sleazy). Today, though, one caught my eye. Apparently, racy film and photos of a prominent Hong Kong actor (appearing in the photos with other well-known Hong Kong starlets) were released onto the web. The way this situation has played out is interesting to anyone interested in East-West differences.
I had lunch yesterday with a professor who is in residence at my college this term from Tsinghua University in Beijing. We had a great conversation, and as is expected the subject turned mostly to Confucianism and Taoism (he’s a Taoist). As most probably know, Taoism and Confucianism are different in some central ways. I’m not so much interested in that admittedly interesting topic here, though. Instead, what I want to take a peek at is a very speculative question: whether there are any connections between these two philosophies and the theory of Carl Rogers, a leading figure from the humanistic psychology movement.
A Wall Street Journal editorial today got me thinking. As you may or may not know, Stephen Spielberg resigned recently from his post as the ‘artistic director’ for the 2008 Beijing Olympics. He linked his resignation clearly to what he sees as China’s complicity in the Darfur problem. Apparently, Spielberg tried to talk with PRC officials about the issues privately, but saw no action whatsoever.
I saw this first over at Manyul’s, but now I see CNN has picked up the story from China Daily. In any event, Confucius has a lot of descendants. As I mentioned at Manyul’s, last summer I was in Confucius’ town and saw the “Confucian Forest” which is where direct descendants (there are further rules, I can’t remember them) are buried. A big place, and lots of graves as you might suspect. But still a lot of room for more! In addition, “authenticated” 15th generation descendants of the Kong family work in the Confucian Temple, creating wall paintings for visitors. I can’t trace my family back 15 generations, that’s for sure.
Updated week three exams (as of 2/15): see the links to the right.
A few months ago I had the chance to go see The Bodies Exhibit in Boston while I was visiting my sister. If you’ve seen it, you know it’s pretty weird. Real human bodies have been “plastisized” and displayed in some of the strangest and bizarre fashions. Some bodies have all the skin removed, some remove everything but the veins and arteries (yeah, seriously!), some bodies are split in half so you can see inside, and some sliced into 15 or more sections, so you can see a cross-section of each part. It’s really freaky. Pictures and controversy below.