• Remember the gender normative play house Rose Petal Cottage? Well now she has a sister, Sweet Lily Castle! • A 76-year-old woman whom the NYPD called a "pickpocket terrorist" was arrested for the 37th time for stealing a wallet this week in New York. • This month has been a horrible time to attend a wedding banquet in China where almost 300 guests at four different weddings fell ill from food poisoning. •• Meanwhile, a judge has ordered a woman from Iowa to stay away from her fiance on Monday after she bit his hand and drove over his foot. • The National Education Association says that male US teachers are at a 40-year low, with a measly number of them in early education. • A Canadian man is currently on trial for two counts of first-degree murder because two of his former girlfriends died from HIV-related cancers after he had unprotected sex with them and lied about his HIV-poisitive status. • Meanwhile, inSPOT, a website that provides free, anonymous STD-anouncement e-cards for people who have STDs to send to their former sexual partners has sent 49,500 cards since 2004. • Studies say that the often-recommended cup of coffee to cure headaches related to post-lumbar puncture procedures is not effective. • A 38-year-old New York man was charged with assault after he hit his 62-year-old girlfriend in the eye with a roll of toilet paper on Sunday. • A former HS cheerleader is fighting a RIAA lawsuit that says that she must pay $7,400 for pirated music she downloaded when she first entered high school. • Try to hide your shock: A new study reveals that the LAPD is more likely to stop and search black and Hispanic residents than whites. • Taffey Anderson, a mom from Oregon, says she plans on burning The Book Of Bunny Suicides, which her teenage son checked out from his high school library, because she thinks the book is "not OK."• An 85-year-old table tennis champion says that it is hard to find worthy competition in her age range. • Residents of the city of Plymouth in the UK are upset that a strip club that has opened near the historic Mayflower Steps will deter tourists from the area. • The lawyers of Lisa Nowak, the astronaut accused of attempting to kidnap another female astronaut, were back in court today fighting to keep away potentially incriminating evidence from being admitted into her trial because she was taken advantage of by the police when the evidence was obtained. • A study of university students has found that an emphasis on the way that skin cancer will ruin a person's appearance is the most effective way to get people to reduce their use of indoor tanning beds. •
I'm a middle school teacher, and I agree that we NEED more men in the faculty ranks. So many students need a good male role model. Our faculty is around 25% male, which is a high number these days. Alas.
That said, I can understand why men are reluctant, especially in the primary grades. People are so paranoid these days, and men have to be very careful. All it takes is for one parent to level a charge (however baseless), and the teacher is in for a world of trouble. My 11-year-old girls still love to hug me, and occasionally I'll touch their shoulder to get their attention, or whatever. But if I were a man and did the same, even innocently? Yeah. Every male teacher I've known has been completely professional and awesome, but the dynamics these days are so damned tricky.