1. In a speech exercise, I had asked the students to ask each other: "Who is the best band?" And to answer "I think___ is the best band" and then to write down _____ thinks _____ is the best band. Well anyway I was writing some bands on the board, English and Thai, and a couple students said "Big S." So I wrote that, but they said "No no no. Big S! Big S! B. I. G. A. S. S." and I said hold up? big ass? "Yes! Yes!" "What do you think that means?" no idea. So I explained big with my hands, and then said "ass-" and pointed to mine. They were very surprised. Turns out, they're a real band, not named for the related medical condition.
2. I wasn't sure about sharing this one,but here goes. In the same exercise with a different class, I was writing a girl's name on the board, and our conversation went like this:
Me: "What is your name?"
Student: "T. I. T. I."
at which point I'm suppressing a smile: "Yes?"
Me (thinking "no way. no way. she's not going to say it")
Student: R. N.
Student: "Yes, Titipawn."
I honestly couldn't keep a straight face at that one. it's probably the best name ever.
Right now, I'm reading Portrait of the Artist as a Young man, and it's pretty good, although it's going a bit slowly. I read Portnoy's Complaint last week over two afternoons, finding it an extremely fun read, but I'm honestly surprised it's considered such a classic. It was a very straightforward book. I can't imagine doing much interpretation or analysis, or finding new meanings a second read through. It was interesting to see how far obscenity standards had changed, though between 1969, when Complaint was published, and Rabbit, Run in 1960. I thought Rabbit, Run was better. It stayed with me longer emotionally. Rabbit was, I think, a more "unforgettable character" than Portnoy.
I'm really enjoying Jamie of the XX's remixing of Gil-Scott Heron's "I'm New Here." Two tracks I especially like right now are My Cloud and "NY is killing me." There's a lot of music about New York, isn't there.