Thursday, December 21, 2006


As I said yesterday, my computer and internet has been a mess. I don’t really know what the problem is, but it makes me crazy. I think it is my dial-up connection because I get an error message about not connecting to remote computer. Sometimes I get a message about no answer. Pretty much the message is clear – Go find something else to do, because this ain’t working today. When I am able to get connected, I get bumped off immediately. The kbps at one point yesterday was 2. I have also had trouble going to Blogger. Iiiee, I think I could throw the whole computer out the door. With a patience, I can eventually get connected and stay on, but I keep waiting for the bump.

It would not have been so bad yesterday, but I had procrastinated and needed to look something up on the internet for my art class with Mr. F. Mr. F and his wife are ranchers who live near by. He is retired Army, and he is a blacksmith. A few months ago, he asked me if I would give him drawing lessons to help him with his blacksmithing. Mr. and Mrs. F are very interesting people – the kind of people who seem to love learning. Mr. F soaked up all my knowledge on drawing, practiced on his own, and was a great student. Actually, I thought he drew pretty well without my help. Because he was not really interested in painting or color, after a few months, my lessons were pretty much over. I did not want to take up his time without having something to teach. I wanted to talk to him about design elements and composition principles, which are not so easy to teach, and I needed to look up some teaching ideas on the internet. Here is where the procrastination set in. I waited until Monday to start looking, and my class is on Wed. morning. You already know how my Monday went. Then the computer gave me fits. Finally, the internet stayed connected and I was able to find some lessons. I was running late, but my time with Mr. F went well. We decided that he now “had the tools” to draw and just needed to practice. Lessons are over. It is a relief that I do not have to do "lesson plans", but I will miss my time with Mr. F because he taught me about blacksmithing - very interesting stuff!

On my way to Mr. F’s house, which is across Hwy 7, police were stopping vehicles. Several hours later, they were still stopping vehicles. It turns out that yesterday morning a school bus from Velma was taking a bus load of very young children to the movies to see “Santa Clause 3”. The bus apparently hit the guardrail on one side of the highway, overcorrected, rolled once, and went through the guardrail on the opposite side of the road. It went down a steep embankment (bar ditch) and hit some trees crunching the front of the bus. Out of the forty-plus children on the bus, only one was hurt critically. The others were treated and released – that was pretty incredible considering the wreck.

All of the kids were taken to the Duncan hospital where doctors checked them out. Bubba, a young man from our church, told me that he had driven one of the ambulances to the hospital. Then a school bus brought the rest of the kids. He said he was standing at the hospital when the bus pulled in and the kids unloaded. Bubba said there was a little boy from Loco, whom he had seen a few times, but did not know at all. When the little boy saw Bubba standing there, he came running, threw his arms around Bubba, and said, “I knew you would be here!” Bubba said, “He just hugged me and cried. He was really scared.”

I can just see Bubba, who is a really cool dude, standing there holding this little boy. It is funny how a familiar face can be so comforting. Good for you, Bubba!


Buck Pennington said...

my computer and internet has been a mess. I don’t really know what the problem is, but it makes me crazy.

Oh, My, but I DO relate. When my connection goes belly-up I'm fit to be tied. My 'net connection is the third-most important utility, after running water and electricity. I just can't imagine life without the 'net...

Becky said...

Me, too. Your problems sound just like the problems I was having several months ago. It was enough to make me switch ISP--and upgrade to DSL in the process.

Why don't they have seatbelts on busses? I saw on the news that the state schoolboard wouldn't put seatbelts on our busses because they would be more dangerous than not having them. If a student got up and left the belt unbuckled, the buckle could become a flying object and hurt someone.

If they put retractible seatbelts in busses like they have in cars, they wouldn't have that problem. Not only that, a swinging buckle would be a lot less dangerous than flying students unrestrained in a rolling bus. I think it's a lot of hogwash. They just think their money is more important than our children.

All that came out a few months ago when we had a bus wreck near here and a couple of students were killed.

Can you tell this is a hot issue with me? As the parent of a student who rides the bus, it is important for me to know my child is safe on the way too and from school.

Bag Blog said...

Becky,it is a hot issue. I cannot imagine why they do not make busses more safe. It was a real miracle that only one child was seriously hurt.

Buck, and we only need the running water so that we can make the coffee.

Buck Pennington said...

I was curious, so I went to the NHTSA and found this paper on school bus safety. Here's a couple of quotes:

The record is impressive: American students are nearly eight times safer riding in a school bus than with their own parents and guardians in cars. The fatality rate for school buses is only 0.2 fatalities per 100 million vehicle miles traveled (VMT) compared to 1.5 fatalities per 100 million VMT for cars.

An analysis of test data by the National Highway Traffic Safety Administration (NHTSA) has concluded that lap belts appear to have little, if any, benefit in reducing serious-to-fatal injuries in severe frontal crashes. On the contrary, lap belts could increase the incidence of serious neck injuries and possibly abdominal injury among young passengers in severe frontal crashes.

There's more, of course. Those quotes were from the abstract. The full documents (dated 2002) are available there in pdf format.

And here I sit...cruising the 'net and drinking my coffee! :-)