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All posts by Algonad
Jason Isbell – Brothers in Arms
I think Isbell can play guitar. That's it for my week!
Brandi Carlile – Babe, I’m Gonna Leave You
I was there! Nice way to break up a country/folk concert.
Rolling Stones – Dead Flowers
I know the song was played here in 2011 but that was a long time ago.
Josh Ritter – All Some Kind Of Dream
There is still protest music out there. We just never hear it on the radio.
John Prine – When I Get To Heaven
Aerosmith – Chip Away The Stone
I know they've become movie ballad sell-outs, but they used to be a poor man's Rolling Stones.
Tyler Childers – All Your’n
He's (hopefully) opening for Sturgill at The Armory. Red Rocks is on my bucket list.
Girl on the Run
Our kids have gone to Catholic school from K-8. Our oldest (now a senior) played travel soccer so she had some friends going into high school. Our middle child (now a sophomore) has never been to into sports. We were pretty concerned with her friend situation going into high school. Of her friend group, only a couple kids were going to the public school. We suggested (strongly) that she join some type of fall activity that started before school was in session so she could meet some people.
She ended up doing both marching band and cross country. Marching band was a given since she decided to do band and they require all members of the band to also do marching band.
We encouraged her to run during the summer but she really didn't run too much. We knew that cross country would be a pretty rude awakening for her. It started worse than we could imagine.
The first couple weeks of practice, she complained that she was so slow that she was essentially all alone out on the runs. She also didn't really know anyone else so it was a tough way to try to meet people.
After the second week, they do time trials at a park along with a breakfast for families. It's a nice way to meet the other parents and coaches. The kids had a 2-mile timed run to get an idea where everyone was at that point of the season.
The girls all went out on their run. The parents gathered around the finish line to cheer them on. The first girl came in. Then another and another. Based on what she told me, I figured she'd be last.
Finally, there was a long gap after one of the girls came in. The coaches all looked at each other and walked away with the other parents. But my kid wasn't back yet! I wasn't sure what to do. Do I start yelling, "There's one still out there!" and have all the parents and coaches come back? I'm pretty sure she'd be mortified by that. Instead, I just stood there alone at the finish line.
I waited another minute or so and then I saw her running towards me from the wrong direction. She was so far behind that she got lost. And then the coaches and teammates forgot she was out there. She jumped into my arms and was sobbing and telling me that she was going to quit cross country. I just tried to comfort her and told her she could do whatever she wanted. We went straight to the car and didn't join the team or families for breakfast.
My instinct is to try to do too much and say too much with the kids. This time I didn't say anything. I was pretty pissed at the coaches for forgetting she was out there. I don't care if she's good but the least you can do as a coach is know how many runners leave and how many come back. What if she had been hurt? I was writing the email in my mind but I have a 24-hour rule so it would never get sent. (Her coach was also my other daughter's track coach and teacher, so going full burn-the-house-down could have had some negative repercussions.)
I said nothing about what happened on Saturday and Sunday. I didn't comfort her. I didn't give her advice. I just went on like nothing happened.
Sunday night, she comes downstairs to tell us she'd gotten a text from our neighbor (and one of the top runners on the team) offering her a ride to 6 a.m. practice on Monday morning so we don't need to drive her to practice. It's amazing what just a little bit of kindness can do when someone is down. All she wanted was someone to notice she was on the team.
She went on to finish last in JV in the first 4 races of the year but improved every race. This year, she's continued to improve and is a middle-of-the-pack JV runner. She's made a couple friends on the team and plans on trying Nordic skiing this winter to stay in shape for track.
She deserves all the credit in the world. I know how tough that was for her to go through. We knew there would be some growing pains, but I couldn't have imagined what she went through and how far she's come.
I've always said my favorite thing about cross country and track is that you can compete with yourself and success is measurable. I was just glad this story had a happy ending.
Father Knows Best – College
My oldest starts her junior year in two weeks. As of a couple years ago, she had said she wanted to go to a small college in a small town within 4 hours of the Twin Cities. Easy! We were already down to under a dozen schools.
Well, since she started attending high school, she's decided she doesn't want to go to a college that isn't much bigger than her high school. Now she really isn't sure what she wants.
The more I learn about college, the more frustrating it gets. Each school has a net price calculator but it isn't easy to find on their website. And you need to go to each school to find that net price. As far as I know, there isn't a website where you can put in the student's information and it splits out the cost of dozens of schools. Why not? Why not have even more transparency in the cost? The college board has the net price calculator of over 200 schools but you still have to enter information one school at a time.
One other thing that isn't real clear - does it even matter which school she chooses? There can be a huge difference in price but is there really a huge difference in outcomes? Articles like this say it doesn't really matter. I know that it does matter for some specific areas - finance, consulting, some technology areas, etc., but I see a lot of people taking on huge debt that would be better served just getting a degree in the most affordable way.
It will be an interesting couple years. And then we'll start again with the freshman.