Dear Olympic commentators and everyone else in America. It's Beijing, with a hard /j/ sound, as in "jerk." Not Bei-zhing with a fluid Francophonic /zh/ sound, as in je suis un pédant. I realize you want to sound worldly and sophisticated, but not all languages are the same. The 'j' represented in Pinyin is a straight, American-sounding /j/ sound.
A linguistic nitpick. Not a patch on the time John Tesh hosted the Olympics and kept using the word "histrionic" to mean "historic."
I went in to work today to make up for yesterday's snow day. I put up a few charts and boards and materials, and I created a PowerPoint slide show that has all my kids' names zooming in and out; I figure I'll let it play during conferences, unless it gets annoying.
Yesterday at the school dinner, the Head's secretary couldn't get over that I'm 37 and not the age that I appear, perhaps 22. She kept asking if I followed rejuvenating regimens. "What vitamins do you take?" she asked.
I said, "Uh, vodka has vitamins, right?"
My father's health is deteriorating at an exponential rate. He doesn't have control of his bowel functions and can't walk more than ten feet without getting dizzy and tired. I went by after work and helped him around the house, made him some sparse meals, and washed his soiled clothes and sheets. My mother is looking into a rehabilitation center for him --- not a nursing home, but a place where a doctor and a physical therapist strive to get his health up to where he can function at home again.
Part of me feels guilty that I can't take care of him, but he really does need professional help at this point. Like I say, he can't even walk. The hospital's run several tests on him and his doctor says there's nothing organically wrong with him. But clearly, something's not working: he's not getting nutrition from food, or his meds are messing him up (he's currently taking an appetite stimulant, two antidepressants, an antipsychotic, a bladder control med, and antibiotics the size of rifle bullets). Dare we hope that he can get checked into a place that can nurse him back to health and return him, perhaps a bit worse for wear but able to perform the basic tasks of daily survival?
Anyway, I was supposed to meet my realtor tomorrow to sign a lease on that new place, but instead I'm going to the rehabilitation center. If I lose my place in line to lease the house, c'est la vie.