Tag Archives: Score

Sure. We’ll Call Them Highlights.

by Richard

As long as you don’t notice the teams against which the Florida Gators are actually scoring, these look like some pretty potent highlights.

Unfortunately, they come against such perennial stalwarts as Florida International and University of Alabama (Birmingham) so we’re not exactly burning up the field there, dudes.

Still, it is nice that we can pick out a few good things that came out of that horrible 7-6 season from last year.

Hey, it’s the start of the year. We’re 1-0. (Again running up against the Little Sisters of the Immaculately Conceived, Yet Still Very Poor And Slightly Blind.) But I’m going to go ahead and call that unfamiliar sensation rising up within me optimism.

With that, let’s take one last look back at 2011, score a few highlights and then move on. Quickly.

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The Parents’ Dilemma: College Edition

by Richard

Over the weekend, we got the last piece of good news. Zippy the Monkey Boy received word from the seventh college to which he applied that he’d been accepted.

So that was seven for seven, which was good. He got into the one college he really wanted to attend, University of North Carolina Wilmington, and, according to the news from the weekend, he also got into the school he didn’t think he had a chance at: my alma mater, the University of Florida.

Now I’m torn.

See, both Zippy the Monkey Boy’s mom and I graduated from the University of Florida. I was born in Gainesville, FL, and she attended medical school there. Additionally, both my parents graduated from there and my grandfather coached football there. So, yeah, UF runs deep in our family.

Now, the odds of Zippy the Monkey Boy getting accepted to the University of Florida were, at best, slim. Seriously slim. He was from out of state. He didn’t have that outstanding an SAT score. He was in the top 5% of his high-school class, but that was about it. Looking at it objectively, I didn’t think he had a chance.

Heck, looking at it objectively, I, with my test scores from back then, didn’t stand a chance at getting into UF with this class and I had a better SAT result than Zippy the Monkey Boy.

Things, as they say, were not looking good. And then we never heard from the University of Florida. Acceptances came and were disregarded. He got into all six of the other schools to which he applied, but still no word from UF. And then, finally, here in the ides of February, he finally heard.

I gotta say, I’m torn. Really, really torn. Zippy the Monkey Boy’s wanted to go to UNCW since he was old enough to know what a college was. But, as a son raised in a rabid orange-and-blue loving home of the Gators, he also loves UF. I really do want to keep pushing him to go to UF. I know it’ll be (much) more expensive, but I think Zippy the Monkey Boy is the last chance we have for any of our next generation to go to UF. I mean, I doubt Sarcasmo will be going to UF if he ever goes back to school and I know Hyper Lad, who’s currently getting his room painted in *gah* Alabama *gah* colors, won’t even consider it.

Zippy the Monkey Boy was our only choice. And I have this sinking feeling he’s not even really, seriously considering it. When the other choice is UNCW, a school he’s loved for so long and loved on his own, well. . . There’s no choice.

I guess I’ll have to get used to yelling, “Go, Seahawks!” during basketball season. At least since UNCW has not football team, I can still cheer for the Gators on the gridiron.

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Freaky Friday: Bully Brains

by Richard

This is actually kind of scary. We know that being bullied makes for some big-time backlash for the young dudes who get bullied. What we didn’t know until recently is that being bullied also makes some physical changes in the brains of those kids who get bullied.

Yeah, that’s right. Young dudes who get bullied actually suffer permanent changes to the structure of their brains because of the bullying.

If we thought there was a reason to crack down on bullying in schools before, brother, you’d better believe there’s more of a reason now.

They lurk in hallways, bathrooms, around the next blind corner. But for the children they have routinely teased or tormented, bullies effectively live in the victims’ brains as well — and not just as a terrifying memory.

Preliminary evidence shows that bullying can produce signs of stress, cognitive deficits and mental-health problems.

Now University of Ottawa psychologist Tracy Vaillancourt and her colleagues at McMaster University in Hamilton, Ontario plan to scan the brains of teens who have been regularly humiliated and ostracized by their peers to look for structural differences compared with other children.

“We know there is a functional difference. We know their brains are acting differently, but we don’t know if it is structural as well,”said Vaillancourt, an expert in the biology of bullying.

According to Vaillancourt, she finds changes to the hippocampus, the area of the brain responsible for memory.

Bullied young dudes have already been found to score lower on tests that measure verbal memory and executive function, a set of skills needed to focus on a task and get the job done. Mental-health problems, such as depression, are also more common.

Come on, dudes. This is ridiculous. We need to have a zero-tolerance policy for bullying in schools that’s actually enforced all the time, every time.  Kids need to feel safe when they’re at school, trying to learn.

I mean, come on. How can you learn if you’re constantly looking over your shoulder, fearing the next push or the next time someone starts name calling?

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