The Life of Bon: What I know about some teenagers

Tuesday, April 16, 2013

What I know about some teenagers


Sweater: F21, Skirt: Downeast Basics, Bracelet: Threads, Shoes: Forever Young (similar)

I'm kind of half in love with my sixth period class.

I am doing my best right now to not think that in 7 weeks sixth period will be history and we'll never have the same chemistry and the same laughs and the same "Oh my gosh, what's going to happen to Gatsby?!?" that we have now.

(P.S.  Book Club on The Great Gatsby is next Thursday, April 25.  Eight days away.  If you start it now you can totally finish it on time.  It is in my top three favorite books ever so READ IT!)

I love all my classes, but there is something a tad different about sixth period.  There is a feeling of camaraderie and unity that is rare for self conscious hormonal teenagers.  Sixth period likes each other.  They like the class.  They want each other to do well.

Case in point:  I told the class I would give them a pizza party if every single person passed the class.  Every quarter the same one boy has failed.  The first day of fourth quarter when he wasn't there, someone yelled out, "Where's Adam!?!"
"I think I saw him in the gym!" Someone else yelled.
"I could go check if you want.  He needs to be here..." volunteered another someone.
"Yes.  Go check."  I said.  So the student ran down in search of Adam, begging him to come to class so he wouldn't fail.

When Adam showed up to class the next day, Brad asked him if he had handed in his final poems.  "Not yet," said Adam.  "Well, you better!  They're worth 100 points, you know!" replied Brad.

Yesterday when Adam was absent again, Sam told me that he had texted Adam demanding to know why he wasn't in class.  "I think everyone should text him!" yelled out Gail.  I agreed completely.  So Sam gave me his number and I wrote it on the board real big and clear and I said, "Class!  You have my permission to use your phone for exactly two minutes so you can text Adam and ask him why he's not here right now!"

And so they all pulled out their phones.  Thirty eight texts sent to Adam telling him to get his butt to class so he can pass fourth quarter.

Suddenly I realized, "This goes beyond a slice of pizza.  These kids aren't just going to all this effort to have one piece of crappy pizza from their English teacher."

Teenagers kind of get a bad rap these days.  And some teenagers deserve the bad rap.  But I guess I know something about some other teenagers.  Some other teenagers really do care whether or not Adam passes the class.  Some other teenagers do their reading assignment and come prepared for class and do all their homework.  Some other teenagers try hard to please their teachers and are respectful and kind.  Some other teenagers are nice to all their peers no matter what they look like.

That's what I know about some teenagers.

Now.

I'm excited to introduce Bonnie to you.  Yep, that's right.  Bonnie.  It is a cold day in hell when I meet another Bonnie so I was pretty stoked to get an email from old Bonnie.  Especially because Bonnie is a man and that, my friends, is rarer than a blue pig.  And yes, I made that one up myself!

I love Bonnie's advice on working from home and his insightful pieces of motivation.  I especially love this piece on using Pinterest to promote your home based business or blog.  Bonnie's blog isn't the run of the mill blog that I follow, but I think that's why I enjoy it so much.  He gives mostly business and practical advice, and it offers a man's voice in this very much so woman dominated field.

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When I first saw "The Life of Bon" I instantly knew I wanted be a sponsor on her blog. The name alone did it for me! With my name being Bonnie (and yes, I am a guy named Bonnie), I think it's fun when I run across another Bonnie. It's a rare thing! I blog over at Beach Money CEO and tweet at @boatingbonniec and typically post business tips, work from home tips, motivational pieces, skin care tips and information about my Rodan + Fields business (and how you can have one too). I tweet motivational quotes, happy thoughts, positivity and talk about food a lot... For this guest post, that the fabulous Bonnie is allowing me to write, I want to share one of my experiences from a trip I had to Disney World. My first blog was about my dining and restaurant experiences as I traveled around the country. I was a guy constantly traveling on an expense account, so I enjoyed every night of travel I had to be away from home. The blog was not restaurant reviews, but rather my experiences surrounding my dining experiences. So here is my goofy post:

A Goofy Good Time

I've never professed to know a whole lot about too many things. I think I have decent intelligence, I think I have a good education, I believe I make wise choices for the most part, and I find myself always wanting to know more - at least on subjects I'm interested in. I'm curious by nature and do like to discover new experiences. One of the things I do pride myself on is the vast amount of Disney knowledge I have accumulated over the years....especially for one who is not employed by Disney. I can thank my brother Justin for this. He worked for Disney as the director of Fairy Tale Weddings for many years and he always answered all of my curiosity questions and gave me opportunities to visit Disney World (for free) more than any person could ever dream. Now people come to me for help in planning their Disney trips, and I love to make suggestions about all things Disney. I love Disney World. Matter of fact, I am at Disney as I type this. One of the things I have done for the past five or six trips in order to keep things new and magical is to do something new during each stay. This trip I've even beefed that up a little and I am trying something new every single day. It's still so easy to find new things to do! For the particular experience that I'm writing about, I decided to eat at the steakhouse at the Contemporary Resort that has been suggested to me several times. It fit with the theme of my blog, it was a steakhouse & I love steak and it was something new....it sounded like a perfect combination to me! I had spent the early part of the day with my lazy butt on the lazy river (and a couple of water slides) at Typhoon Lagoon and then the mid afternoon and early evening at Magic Kingdom. This steakhouse was at the Contemporary and I had plans to go to EPCOT for IllumiNations that evening. So a quick Monorail ride over to the Contemporary had me walking up to the podium to ask for a table. As a side note, I'd like to say this is typically not a wise thing to do...to just show up without reservations. The Disney restaurants book up early and my suggestion is to always book your reservations well in advance. But I've found with a party of one and a "pretty please" and kind smile the cast members will typically try to accommodate. ...but there I was at the podium and was told it would be about an hour and a half wait. I pondered the wait for a second and thought "Let's do it!" So I grabbed my buzzer and went and visited the gift shop and then snuggled into a big soft chair in the lounge. Time actually went by pretty fast, but it was every bit of an hour and a half. I caught up on some phone calls, watched the Monorail zip through the concourse, got to watch the sunset and the full moon rise over Bay Lake all the while thinking about the exceptional steak I was about to sink my teeth into. My mouth was watering.



Always observant of my surroundings, I noticed that there were a lot of kids at this steakhouse...but it is Disney World. This place didn't have the same class and dignity as Le Cellier over at EPCOT in Canada or as the Yachtsman's Steakhouse at the Yacht and Beach Club. But it is Disney and they theme things well, and it certainly looked like something one would find at the Contemporary Resort. I was just getting hungrier by the minute. I had steak on my mind. My Buzzer finally lights up!! So I go to the podium, turn it in and they take me for the grand tour. I opted out of the "family picture" they were giving most families and the hostess showed me the buffet and then the dessert buffet. Hmmmmm....something just doesn't seem right. A buffet at a steakhouse? So I asked the hostess if this was the steakhouse. She chuckled and said "we have some roast beef on the buffet, but the steakhouse is on the 15th floor." Instead of the Concourse Steakhouse....I got Chef Mickey's (which is actually located on the concourse right next to the monorail track.) What is "Chef Mickey's" I asked. It's a Character Dining experience. I had waited an hour and a half for a Character Dining Experience??? Not a steakhouse??? It was a new experience....so I just went with it! I met MICKEY MOUSE!!! And Donald! And Minnie! And Goofy!! They all stopped by my table for a visit! I totally loved it! I felt like an idiot, and a bit Goofy sitting in a character dining experience....a grown man...sitting by himself...but I just went with it and enjoyed the moment.! If you pay for it, you may as well enjoy it! It was sheer joy to see the kids around me look at the characters with such joy and excitement. It was truly sweet. I even got to see some teens totally loose it when they saw Minnie. Teen Boys...not faking it...they were loving seeing the Characters. Disney truly gives people the freedom to be a kid again.



The food was good. Very good. The Carved Roast Beef was seasoned to perfection and the ham was Christmas Day worthy. They had some stir fry veggies and some green beans....and a salad bar.....and some Turkey Pot Pie. If it's going to have Mickey's name attached to it at Disney World, you know it's going to be better than just good! It may have actually been the healthiest meal I had eaten while here.... until the dessert. They have a buffet full of all of these miniature cheesecakes and key lime pies and Chocolate Mousse Mickey's and brownies that all tasted heavenly. Disney knows how to do food, and especially sweets! Oh yeah, did I mention a build your own Sundae bar?? Genius!! This wasn't a Golden Corral buffet - this was incredibly good food with an incredibly fun atmosphere. Did I mention I met Mickey Mouse?? If you are going to Disney and you have kids (or don't have kids) make it to one of the Character Dining Experiences. And if you want fine dining and a great steak, get the name of the restaurant correct....

26 comments:

  1. Bonnie - you have the makings of a fabulous teacher. In fact, you already are. You think on your feet and that's an essential skill for a secondary ed teacher. You're a creative problem solver. I love the 38 texts going out simultaneously. Have fun with the pizza party, but you're right. It's not about the pizza at all for those kids. It's about having found a teacher that cares for them and about them. P.S. F. Scott Fitzgerald is one of my favorites, also. Have you read his "Tender Is The Night?" Amazing, wonderful, gifted, one-of-a-kind writer. Good luck, Bonnie!

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    1. Betty you are so sweet and I love when you comment! I love F. Scott Fitzgerald too... I read Tender is the Night when I was 18 or 19 and I think it must've went way over my head. I am hoping to re read it this summer because I have heard it is absolutely fabulous. I would also like to read The Beautiful and the Damned but I am worried it is too depressing. Have you read that one?

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  2. I wish I had you has a teacher when I was younger!! I love teachers that truly care about their students and it's clear you do!!

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  3. I love the teenage kids story, that is awesome!!!

    Amberly
    http://amberlyandjoe.blogspot.com

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  4. I LOVE this post :). And your outfit!

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  5. That is all true. But there is something that I now know about teachers. They're not all boring authorities! :)

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  6. love your outfit!
    That is such a sweet story! It's so touching when kids actually decide to care for their peers. :)

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  7. I love the fact that the kids pushed Adam to come to class and pass what a great way to actually use peer pressure! :) I LOVE IT!

    OH MY I LOVE DISNEY!! Such a great guest post from the second Bonnie. :)

    Laura @ MiceInTheKitchen

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    1. Well, there you go making my day! Thanks Laura! I am so crazy about Disney... You definitely need to follow my "It's A Disney World" Pinterest board - http://pinterest.com/beachmoneyceo/its-a-disney-world/

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  8. This is possibly the best guest post you've hosted. Rock on, Bonnie & Bonnie. (Omg, side blog co-authored?! What?! Do it!). This post is reflective and funny, and it stands out for its unusual setting. The voice is authentic, and I don't feel like I'm reading a sales pitch.

    To all current and future sponsors of Bon: this is how you write a guest post that gets people interested!

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    1. Belle, thank you so much for your very very very kind words!

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  9. Please mail me your sweater. :)

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  10. Belle & Laura, thank you so much! Y'all totally made my day!

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  11. You should like such a fabulous teacher! Love that story!

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  12. Yay! Yay! Yay! That is the stuff teachers' dreams are made of!
    Also, I'm hungry and would love some pizza. :)

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    1. Oh, and you'll be happy to know I checked Gatsby out from the library and my hubs and I will be reading it together in preparation for your book club (only I will be involved in that part, I guess), and then we are going to go see the movie. I remember next to nothing about Gatsby, except that I read it in high school and I liked it ... so here we go for round 2.

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    2. Yea! So excited for you to be rocking Gatsby. I can't wait to hear what you think about it- and so great that you are going to read it with your husband. I don't think that Greg would ever fly for something like that!

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  13. YOU are the coolest teacher ever! And I love how your students used peer pressure and were all supporting him. Awesome.

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  14. As frustrated as I get with the teenagers I work with, I know they can do some amazing things. This past weekend I had a retreat with a bunch of jr. high kids, and our church takes high school students as counselors. Those high school youth blow me away ALL THE TIME. Their big hearts, how kind they are, acting as role models for those younger ones... it's amazing.

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    1. YES! Exactly! That is the thing that you have to remember that they have the biggest hearts and they take their responsibility over others so seriously! Love your comments because I know you are right there on the front lines!

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  15. Fun post! in high school, my fifth and sixth period classes were like that - we were so tight! We even took the most adventurous field trip three hours away & it was a bit of a disaster, but having everyone there just made it so much more comforting. Glad you have a good crop!

    I'm giving away some favorite goodies on my blog - would really love to have you join! :)

    http://perpetuallycaroline.blogspot.com

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  16. Must you be so cute at all times? Hahaha but seriously you seem like a wonderful teacher!
    xxoo,
    Jordyn

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  17. I feel the same way with my 7th period. They all love each other and, on their own, choose different partners and groups to work with every time! It's amazing! Last term, I didn't have anyone fail in the period, whereas I did every other period.

    morrellfairytale.blogspot.com

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  18. You sound like a cool teacher I didn't have many cool teachers myself and to be honest most of mine where either so so or terrible assholes...........

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  19. Thanks for sharing such positive things about your students! It is always helpful to hear other teachers who love their kids especially when the school year is almost over!

    So Much Sunshine

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  20. I decided to start following you because you are a high school English teacher like myself. I kept reading because you are totally funny! I'm old, and I've only been teaching for three years. I love this job like I've never loved a job in my life! Thanks for your insight and humor!

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