Friday, July 30, 2021

7 Quick Takes about Paper Problems, College in Real Life, and Cantankerous Old Kindergartners

It's 7 Quick Takes Friday! How was your week?


I ordered the wrong size printer paper off Amazon. I didn't even notice the size difference at first, but after I printed a few things that didn't come out quite right, I compared it to a sheet in our recycling bin and sure enough:

Old paper on the left, new paper on the right.

When I showed Phillip, he said, "They're not even close to the same size!"

Okay, fine genius. When I put them side-by-side for you like that, I can see it, too.

Apparently, international A4 paper is ¼ inch shorter on one dimension and ½ inch longer in the other dimension than standard North American 8.5"x11" inch letter paper. #themoreyouknow

Until this pack runs out, I guess I'll just be cutting off the extra ½ inch when I print stuff I need to look normal and hope no one notices.


I just rewatched The Secret Life of Walter Mitty  with my kids. We watched it because it was partially set in and filmed in Iceland, and we talked about Iceland last week for The Educational Summer Vacation. (Bonus: I'd completely forgotten the main character also goes to Afghanistan, which we're doing next week.)

I have to admit, I was underwhelmed the first time I saw this movie a few years ago. But I appreciated it a lot more the second time around. 

In that way it reminds me of Big Fish. The first time I saw it I just thought it was weird, but it's now one of my absolute favorites.


My teenager just told me about a duo of Russian conceptualist artists called Komar and Melamid. Back in the '90s, they polled people about their most-disliked features of music and mashed them all into one song called "The Most Unwanted Music in the World." 

According to Wikipedia, the song includes "bagpipes, cowboy music, an opera singer rapping, and a children's choir that urged listeners to go shopping at Walmart." I know, it's as delightful as it sounds. (You can listen to it here, but I suspect it's the kind of thing only 17-year-olds up way past their bedtime can truly appreciate.)

Komar and Melamid also did the most wanted and unwanted art, and I thought it was pretty funny. 


And the deluge of "come to my college" junk mail for my high school almost-senior continues. We've never gotten so much mail in our lives.

I usually just toss them without reading, but this one made me do a double take:

At first, I misread it as 'IRL School.' I stared at it for a minute, wondering if this was a new institution pitching itself to teens who've had enough of virtual learning during COVID: "Sick of going to class on your computer? Try college IRL: in real life!"

Which actually would be a great marketing strategy, in my opinion.


When was the last time you were stung by a bee? I got stung for the first time since childhood a couple of years back and was surprised at how much it hurt! 

A few weeks ago my 7-year-old somehow got a bee in his shoe during a hike, and yesterday my 9-year-old got some bees/wasps mad by accident while they were building a fort and got stung three times. She ran home crying for what had to have been half a mile through the woods with her brother, poor thing.

Luckily, I just found out about this product called Sting-Kill. I'm sure there are other brands out there, but it's a disposable anesthetic swab that really helped. 

Why did they not have this when I was a kid?? I'm now preaching about it on street corners and know for a fact that at least one person started shopping for it on Amazon while I was talking to her.


My 5-, 7-, 9-, and 13-year olds are taking swim lessons. The place I love was shut down for COVID last year, and is still  not doing lessons this year, so we got set up with the adult son of a friend who's home from school giving lessons in their pool this summer.

He's great, especially with my 5-year-old who is going through a serious curmudgeonly old man phase right now. Everything is "the worst" and whenever they're going to start learning something new, he groans loudly "oh, no.

He reminds me of Statler and Waldorf from the Muppets.


Thank you for everyone who's been keeping my 15-year-old in their thoughts and prayers. (She has a violin-induced repetitive stress injury to her wrist and can't play, although we were really hoping she would recover by fall to start with her new youth symphony.)

That's a bummer, but it's okay. Her teacher had to take 6 months off for an injury and delay her graduation from Juilliard, so it's not like it couldn't have come at a worse time.

One good thing about this is that she's in physical therapy now, learning how to heal better this time and hopefully prevent it next time. At her session this week, the therapist was playing 80's classic rock. 

Let me tell you, PT exercises aren't exciting (i.e: now do 3 sets of 15 squeezes on this rubber ball,) but they somehow seem more epic to Guns N' Roses.

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Unknown said...

I've never heard of that movie, but I will check it out. I will be praying for your daughter's recovery!

Peggy said...

Bee and other venom is a protein, to break it down use a paste of water and meat tenderizer ( which breaks down proteins, that’s why it works) I’ve done this for years ever since my pediatrician recommended it.

A couple years ago we used it on a grandson who had received multiple stings and it worked it’s magic in combination with Benadryl, which is an antihistamine.

jen said...

Which schools is your daughter considering?

Jenny Evans said...

Jen: Her #1 choice is Brigham Young University in Utah. It's a church school that both her dad and I attended (I transferred there halfway through my degree.)

I think it would be a really nice fit for her in a lot of ways. Plus, if she goes there she could graduate from BYU twice! (See the last picture in this post -