Tuesday, August 26, 2008

Vacation is coming

Day 6 without my laptop. I feel dehydrated. I don't know if I'm going to survive, but I just keep thinking about all that sweet, sweet electricity I'll be able to use if only I can wait one more day. But then one more day turns into yet another day and there is still no sign of the Mail Man. How much longer do I have to wait? I never knew when I started this journey just how difficult it would be. I hope I can hold out to the end.

In the meantime, today's a pretty sweet day at work. You know how people who work in big offices get retreats and stuff? Yeah we get a three hour retreat today. It's health day! There are all these classes to choose from - yoga, ballroom dancing, nutrition, weight lifting, child care, etc. I'm doing the nutrition class and the massage/manicure class. It's called "Self Care" and just about the entire faculty signed up for it so we'll all be in there together getting our nails done and our backs rubbed. I'm going to call all the dudes in there gay.

I have three more days before vacation. Yay! I'm completely exhausted so vacation is like a lifeline for my spirit.

One of the things I'm going to do this vacation is plan for the Maltese Falcon thing. We've been ordered to teach The Maltese Falcon to our 11th graders. Now, I probably would have chosen to join this program anyway, but I take major issue with the fact that we've been FORCED to teach it. One of my biggest problem with LAUSD is how little autonomy we're given in the classroom. They tell us what to teach and how. Almost every lesson is pre-written, which is terrific for new teachers with no imagination, not so great for anyone who has ideas of their own.

So being required to teach The Maltese Falcon is seriously pissing some people off. I agree with them, but I'm still kind of excited about teaching it. I would have volunteered to teach this anyway because it comes with field trips and stuff. We're going to take a tour bus around LA and visit sites from the novel, and we're going to a screening of the film at one of the major theaters. You can sure as hell count me in on that shit. Plus an opportunity to explain film noir? Hell yeah.

But first I have to read the book, so that's item #1 for vacation. I hope it's good because I already got the kids all jazzed about it.


  1. But isn't The Maltese Falcon set in San Francisco? That'll be one great field trip. And if that doesn't work out I'm sure it'll be fun anyway because there's a lot to explore with noir.

    Here's hoping you get the laptop situation dealt with very soon. And as somebody who just got back from vacation, I envy anyone who gets to leave for vacation. Have a great time.

  2. Was it filmed in LA? I don't know - I only saw the film once so I didn't remember the setting. Maybe the guy who told me all that was full of shit. That would make me sad.

  3. It was probably filmed in L.A., maybe on the Warner lot. I think a lot of it may actually be set indoors. It's possible that the guy wasn't full of shit, but that he was just confusing Hammett with Chandler. His books are set all over L.A.

  4. The last line of the movie is "Huh?", humorously undercutting the theme spoken in the previous line.

  5. Anonymous5:18 PM

    Considered by many to be the greatest detective novel ever written...

    John Huston's first film...

    Sydney Greenstreet's first film...

    Joel Cairo (played by Peter Lorre) is gay...

    Wilmer (played by Elisha Cook Jr.) might have also been homosexual... Spade calls him a "gunsel" which back then meant a young homosexual male involved in a relationship with an older man.

    If this is true, then wouldn't that mean The Fat Man, Kasper Gutman was also gay?

    Nominated for three Oscars but didn't win any...

    Interesting links:

    The Maltese Falcon by Dashiell Hammett




    Maltese Falcon Quiz

    Maltese Falcon trivia

    Maltese Falcon: The Essentials

    The Maltese Falcon screenplay

    Sorry for the overkill but I love the book and the film... LOL.


  6. Anonymous9:24 PM

    The book and movie versions (the 1941 version anyway) are virtually identical. In almost every way, it is as Bogart said about it, "...a masterpiece."

    I wonder how close to the book and the 1941 Maltese Falcon is to the 1931 film.

    PS: Filming locations - Warner Brothers Lot and the Golden Gate Bridge (and a couple of other SF locales--I've heard that Burlingame was also a location).

  7. Thanks, everybody! That's a lot of helpful information to get me started. It will help me look like a genius in front of the kids.

  8. If I had a manicure now, the person would scream.

    ...all this surgery has turned me into a nail-biting machine. It's bad. Bbbaaadddd.

    Thanks for your kind words, dude.

  9. Bogey's version was in Los Angeles. You can occasionally see things that show this in the background. If you look at this, you see a Baily's Cinema in the background. That's a single-screener, and the only one in California was in Los Angeles.
    And here, the helmets are marked LAFD.

  10. Man. Scott's blog got pretty heated. I got your back, worry not.

  11. Oh that's all taken care of now. Matt and I are old friends who hold hands and sing songs together.

    No really, I just neglected to check the date that thing was posted, that's all. From now on before I comment I'll make sure to look at the date someone posted their entry.

    But thanks for the support. I may need a second the next time I have to battle.


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