Monday, January 18, 2010


Y'all aren't tired of my MarioKart analogies, right? And y'all aren't tired of hearing how much I love teaching again, right? And y'all aren't tired of hearing me say y'all, right? I thought not!

Well, not only did I have coffee recently with one of my favorite y'all-ers, but I've been watching episode after episode of Friday Night Lights with STM each night after I put Rojo to bed (and check on him every eight minutes). We are nothing short of addicted to that show and have Netflix sending us the next disk faster than you can say, "OMG we're almost on Season Three and then what?" Well, on "Friday Night Lights" there's a y'all approximately every four seconds. It kind of rubs off an y'all after awhile!

ANYWAY, today all the on-line students posted their latest pieces and all I wanted to do was read and respond to them. Alas, today is a holiday, as you may have noticed, and instead of doing what I wanted, I played MarioKart pretty much the whole day. I would make deals with Rojo that after every ten games, I could have 30 minutes off to work. That ensured that I could read one person's piece and respond before he came to remind me of the remaining time until my 30 minutes were up. And so it went all day, this push and pull between what I wanted to do, and what I was actually doing.

A problem I never saw coming was that I am actually starting to really kick some MarioKart butt, and as a result, Rojo's butt. He, not in the least bit competitive ordinarily, has noticed. And it's bugging him. And he wants me to keep pulling over and waiting for him. And so I do.

As I pull Little Peach, Diddy Kong, or Baby Mario over to the side, I watch as all the others pass me by. Some actually crash right into me as I sit there, minding my own business, as if they need to not only pass me, but destroy me, as well. Some throw banana peels at me, some try to bump me over the cliffs. None take a moment to pause and really look at me over there on the side, they are too busy getting ahead. They are too busy "winning."

One could say that "Friday Night Lights" is all about a winning football team, but that would be missing the point, I think. It's about playing. It's about the challenges and rising to them. It's about teamwork. It's about commitment. It's about effort. It's about respect. It's about a lot of things, all of which I find refreshing.

Before games the team meets in the locker room and one of their star players shouts, "Clear eyes!" The team responds, "Full hearts!" then they all shout, "Can't lose!" They do it faster and faster, louder and louder until they're raising the roof with, CLEAR EYES, FULL HEARTS, CAN'T LOSE!"

I love that, and as I sit on the sidelines of MarioKart watching myself get beat, it only takes one look over at Rojo, his eyes so clear, his heart so full, and I know there's no possible way I am losing.

14 comments: said...

You are a good mom. That is something I'd most definitly turf onto "daddy."

Anonymous said...

I agree with the last comment I would say this is a "blue" job. I watched Friday Night Lights the movie but I never knew there was a series.

drama mama said...


We are playing the HELL out of Mario Kart too.

I know EXACTLY what it must mean to sit on the side, getting your ass beat.

I tend to be a little more dramatic; I crash into walls and pretend that I can't get out.

I'll be damned.

I thought I was the only one.


Jerri said...

COL here, Carrie. Major COLing.

Tanya @ TeenAutism said...

That's what we do. We pull over and wait for them. I love everything about this post - especially the "Clear eyes, full hearts, can't lose" - brilliant!

Tabitha Bird said...

Oh. that is so cool. Clear eyes. Full hearts. Can't lose. LOve it.

And spending time together is always a winner too. :)

Wanda said...

And have clear eyes and a full heart. Rojo can't lose.

jess wilson said...

All the good stuff is on the side of the road anyway.

Ask Me Anything said...

Great post. Next up "Freaks and Geeks". We are enthralled with every episode.

Chloe's Mommy said...

What a great sentiment. It takes a lot to be able to stop and smell the roses (or pull over and have banana peels thrown at you, whatever the case may be).

Rojo is a lucky kid to have a mom like you.

Jenny said...

'member when I tried to get you to watch FNL a few years ago...I knew you'd like it!

Anonymous said...


I got a Remember the Titans feeling reading this post. Going to have to check out Mariokart now.

Deb Shucka said...

What deft weaving you did here! You are aware that you're speaking not only in y'alls, but also in MarioKart, right? You are clear eyes and a full heart and a winner by any definition I might apply.

kario said...

Love that coach on FNL! And I can sense your frustration at not being able to get your work done, but I love that you put it aside for this one day and know that you'll get back to it.

Love you.