This is the website of Abulsme Noibatno Itramne (also known as Sam Minter). Comments here or emails to me at abulsme@abulsme.com are encouraged... or follow me on Twitter as @abulsme.

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June 2008
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Russert Dead

Wow, that one was out of the blue.

NBC’s Tim Russert dead at 58
(NBC News and MSNBC)

WASHINGTON – Tim Russert, NBC News’ Washington bureau chief and the moderator of “Meet the Press,” died Friday after collapsing in the bureau, NBC News said Friday. He was 58.

Russert was recording voiceovers for Sunday’s “Meet the Press” program when he collapsed, the network said. No details were immediately available.

ChChChChanges

A little over half an hour ago, I dropped Amy off at school for the last day of 7th grade. It is a short day. Brandy will pick her up and she will be home by noon. At will also be the last day at Eastside Prep. This makes me sad, but as I’ve talked about before this year was a rocky year. The school, which had been a wonderful place for us in 6th grade, had just not lived up to expectations in 7th grade. Too much of the time it felt like we (and Amy) were in conflict with the school rather than feeling like the school was really doing their best to act in the best interests of Amy. Conflict over things that should have been no-brainers and obvious or at least easily resolved, which instead became soul-sucking battles. Things got a lot better in the third trimester when we had Amy switched back to the advisor she had in 6th grade who we liked a lot, rather than the advisor Amy had most of the year who Amy just never really got along with. The little things make a huge difference. But it was too late. A lot of the trust and faith we had in the school was already gone. And Amy and Brandy had already fallen in love with a new school.

In the fall Amy will be attending Chrysalis. As is probably obvious just from the name, it is a much less traditional program than EPS. Lots of one on one classes. (All math classes for instance, are always one on one.) In general class size is much smaller than the 30 that is typical in a public school, or even the 15 or so that was normal at EPS. Classes tend to be more like 6 students. And they put an emphasis on matching the right students to the right teachers (and classmates) to ensure a good match in personality, learning style, etc. There is also a lot of emphasis on flexibility. In classes where the student is ahead and going quickly (in Amy’s case Math for instance) they enable that. In cases where the student needs some extra pushing (in Amy’s case study skills) they spend extra time on that. Things like that. There are some bits that I’m worried might be a bit wishy washy and allow the students to slack a bit in some cases, but we shall see.

In the mean time, we just got a call from Amy, extremely upset, because she hadn’t gotten her yearbook when they were handed out today. They say we never submitted the form and paid and all that. Of course we had in fact done those things. Brandy is now rushing to the school to try to resolve the issue and make sure Amy has a yearbook that her friends can sign and such.

As if we needed it, final proof we made the right decision.

Electoral College: MA, NJ go Strong for Obama

New polls push Obama’s leads in both Massachusetts and New Jersey to more than 10%. This basically means these states are not only not in play, but are probably not even worth McCain putting time, effort and money into trying to put them back in play.

Current Summary:

McCain Best Case – McCain 313, Obama 225
Obama Best Case – Obama 336, McCain 202

And if everybody gets their leans (and Obama gets DC) – Obama 277, McCain 261