Sunday, November 02, 2014


I like to get to work early, because there's a ton of stuff to do when you teach ... anywhere, but at small schools with small staffs, it's worse.
All of our Cedar Key School teachers teach about twice the topics that the average teacher teaches, just because of our size. 
When you teach 5 or 6 different courses each day, you better have your pelicans in a row by the first bell.
Early for me is anytime just before or after 7 am.
On the flipside, I also need to get home at a reasonable time to let Bear and Coquina out.

I did a poor job of being punctual last week, but it wasn't my fault.

Here are my excuse notes:
"Dear Cedar Key School,
Please excuse Mr. P. for his tardiness on Monday.
As he crossed the Number 4 bridge, the sunrise, which is usually worth a look on any old day, was so beautifully red, that he had to pull over and take a few pictures. only get so many sunrises after all."

"Dear Cedar Key School,
Please excuse Mr. P. for his tardiness on Tuesday.
As he again crossed the Number 4 bridge, a lone dolphin was herding mullet in water barely deep enough for it to swim in.
Mr. P. finds it hard to pass dolphins by, hence his later than desired arrival.
You only get so many dolphins after all."

"Dear Bear and Coquina,
Please excuse your master's later than desired arrival at PFHQ Wednesday. It is understood that your bladders need relief, but the shore birds were freaking awesome on the mudflats near the Number 4 bridge.
You only get so many swirling flocks of thousands of migratory shorebirds after all."

"Dear Bear and Coquina,
I know I was late getting home yesterday, and again on Thursday, but there were 7 ospreys hanging out at the Cedar Key water tower.
So, of course, I had to photograph them, especially with the 'fish in my talons' teaser osprey flying around driving the others bonky.
You only get so many clusters of ospreys after all."

And then there was Friday.
I'm not really sure Friday counts as a "tardy" since I was at school, parked, and out of my truck, when I met these two beauties.
They live near the school and were dropping off their humans at CKS.
I had to stop and say hello.
You only get so many Labrador chats after all.


threecollie said...

Freaking awesome says it all.

Julie Zickefoose said...

"Just to live in the country is a full-time job. You don't have to do anything. The idle pursuit of making a living is pushed to one side, where it belongs, in favor of living itself, a task of such immediacy, variety, beauty, and excitement that one is powerless to resist its wild embrace." E.B. White.

Let the world be Powersless for a bit while these things roll out.

Anonymous said...

Dear Mr. P,

Please accept this note and carry it with you at all times. It is verification that we have received your excuse notes. We have read them and seen the attached photos. In our opinion, and after much consideration, we say: THANK YOU. You have permission to stop and take as many photos as your heart desires. These are the true lessons you will teach your students- to observe and love the world around them.

Sincerely, The Administration

Anonymous said...

The truth is the truth and you, Mr P, and you, Julie Zickefoose have both found it !!
You are guiding lights.

Darlene Shamblin

R.Powers said...

For the record, I made it to work a half hour early today.

Marilyn Kircus said...

This may be your best post ever - or at least in the few years I've been following you.

The best teaching anyone can do is to help people learn to see nature and question everything. Teaching them to problem-solve is also good. You definitely get A's in all performances.

Wally Jones said...

You don't need any excuses for just being human. The hard part is teaching others how to do it properly.

You have our respect and admiration for attempting to do just that with each generation of new students you influence.

After all, we only get so many truly good teachers in a lifetime.....

Island Rider said...

Love JZ's quote, your excuse notes and photos and laughed out loud at Boycott American Women. Such foolishness in an otherwise perfect post. I shall have to use some of these excuses. Much better than the one I generally use, "I couldn't get out of bed on time!" Been thinking of you a lot lately. Have you been on the Greenway? it is really beautiful. I just found out you can walk, bike or horseback ride almost all the way across Florida on it. I plan to add that to my bucket list.

Pablo said...

I wish I had such a good list of excuses.

Julie Zickefoose said...

Anonymous, you may be motivated by a deep genetic imperative to diversify the gene pool for the betterment of all humanity. An imperative so deep and compelling that even you are unaware of it. Or you may be as dumb as a sack of hammers.

R.Powers said...

Anonymous is a dumbass and I am deleting his drivel.

Carol said...

Well done....I like the excuses with each picture...I'd have done the same. Life is too short.