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Give me a BIG “Slice of Life” with all the juices running down my chin!

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Presentation on theme: "Give me a BIG “Slice of Life” with all the juices running down my chin!"— Presentation transcript:

1 Give me a BIG “Slice of Life” with all the juices running down my chin!

2 Think About Your Daily Routine Are you every bored with everyday life? Or has something recently happened to you that is fun and interesting? Do you, your family members, your pets have unique quirks that would make for great reading? What strange stories could you tell about crazy everyday life?

3 Mentor Texts Ludie’s Life by Cynthia Rylant When sparks fly and its not love By Lane Filler, author of Ask Mr. Smartypants Exercise and FoodTV Just Shouldn’t Mix by Tasha Thomas Ten More Minutes by Julia Sanders, LE Gable Middle School See Study Driven page 247

4 From Ludie’s Life by Cynthia Rylant But thought they’d been married a long time and usually saw things eye to eye, when it cam to where they put their bottoms, Ludie and Rupe parted company. She added one of those soft pillow seats to the top of her blue commode while he hunkered down onto a piece of barn wood with a sports page from last May. Winter nights, when Ludie rolled out of bed and shuffled into the next room in her nightgown and slippers, Rupe just grabbed a flashlight on his way out the door. Ludie used a johnny house until she was fifty-eight years old. then Rupe had a septic dug, and Ludie picked out a nice blue commode. But until she was fifty-eight, Ludie did her business outside, if there wasn ’ t three feet of snow, in which case she used the pee pot under her bed. Rupe never minded the johnny house and even after they got the new indoor bathroom, he continued using it exclusively. Every so often he would move the johnny house — dig a new hole in the yard and set the thing on top. and he did eventually concede to replacing the stacks of newspapers he ’ d relied on all his life with a proper roll of toilet paper Ludie had provided.

5 When sparks fly and it's not love By Lane FillerLane Filler By the time my wife mentioned that none of the electrical outlets in her bathroom were working, I had nearly forgotten the plume of sparks arcing out of my daughter's bedroom wall the day before. I was installing hooks for a series of nets Angela purchased to hold Quinn's stuffed animals, which currently number 1,337 and are subdivided by species, size, cuddliness, corporate family (Disney, Pixar, WebKinz, etc.) and, for all I know, political affiliation. Quinn collects stuffed animals compulsively for the same reason she lives on a diet composed entirely of cheese pizza, cheese toast, cheeseburgers, macaroni and cheese, grilled cheese and, just for a non-cheese thrill, chicken tenders: Because before she was born, Angela and I always said, "I tell you one thing, our kid isn't going to be some stuffed animal-obsessed picky eater," and God heard us. So I was drilling holes to install the anchors for the hooks for the nets. Years ago, I would have skipped the anchors and just screwed the hooks into the sheetrock, causing the animal-filled contraptions to crash down on my sleeping daughter in the night and teaching her to deal with sudden, suffocating fear, but I've grown. And as I was drilling a hole near a corner, a thick, steady, fairly beautiful stream of sparks shot out of the wall. "Ahhhhhh," I shrieked courageously and stopped drilling. The sparks ceased, too, but the room filled with an odd odor: melted rubber, ozone and my terror stink.

6 While I terrify easily, I also have a short attention span, so once the sparks abated, I installed the anchors and hooks, hung the nets and forgot the whole thing. Then, the next morning, Angela said, "The outlets where I plug in my makeup mirror and curlers are dead." Me: "You do not need makeup or fancy hairstyles. You glow with a natural beauty." Angela: "So you've done something horrible and don't know how to fix it?" Me: "Well, there were sparks shooting out of Quinn's wall yesterday, but I assumed it was fine because... Man, that's a hard sentence to finish when you say it out loud." So I looked at the breaker box, tried switches, went in the oven-like attic, scratched my head and allowed myself to get frustrated by the fact that every time I walked past Angela, she'd say, hopefully, "Did you get it?" Me: "Until I tell you otherwise, assume I'm failing miserably and stop asking." Finally, I called my ex-boss and still friend, Carl, who has a passion for electricity. He came right over, his eyes glowing as I explained about the sparks, my terrified squeals and the dead plugs. We cut out a small piece of sheetrock, just enough to let us see that yes, I had drilled through not one but two electrical wires, then left them in the wall, exposed and live, insulated only by hyper-flammable furballs. A trip to Lowe's, a much larger hole in the wall, wires, junction boxes and a heroically excessive Taco Bell break later, the problem was solved. As for the gaping maw in the sheetrock, thank God for enormous nets full of stuffed animals. I don't think my wife will even realize it's there until Quinn leaves for college.

7 Exercise and Food TV Just Shouldn’t Mix By Tasha Thomas Visit any local gym these days and you might notice that flat panel LCD screens outnumber free weights and treadmills two to one. Though I haven’t held a formal gym membership in several years, I often work out in hotel gyms when I’m out of town, or visit the student wellness center on campus if I need a pick-me-up during the day. The newest fad I’ve noticed is cardio machines that actually have personal televisions attached. Of course, I guess it’s only natural in our multi-tasking, info-hungry, entertainment obsessed society that we all need constant multi-media gratification. Burning 500 calories an hour on a stair climber just isn’t enough. We’ve got this need to be distracted. Hence, the screens. So three years ago, when I was lucky enough to talk the hubby into buying me my very own personal cross-trainer elliptical machine, we couldn’t think of any better idea than to set it up in the basement, smack dab in front of the 42-inch plasma TV, equipped with satellite, DVD player and even an old VCR.

8 Yet despite the multiple forms of entertainment at my fingertips, I first decided to try reading while getting my evening workout. Harry Potter and the Deathly Hallows didn’t seem like such an indulgence if I were burning fat and building muscle while following teenage wizards on their escapades. Besides, I thought, becoming engrossed in a good book would make my workout pass in a flash. This however, proved nearly fatal as 2 hours, 12 chapters and nearly 10 miles later I realized I wouldn’t be able to move the next day. I quickly came to the realization that maybe the boob tube was the way to go when seeking distraction from the mundane hum of the cross-trainer. Consequently I moved on to my other obsession (one that’s much worse than wand- wielding wizards): Food TV. Just so we’re straight, I don’t classify myself as a foodie, just a Food TV junkie. I yearn to watch bakers battle it out creating confectionary works of art. Bobby Flay gets me hot under the collar with his grilled mahi mahi and peach salsa. Heck, I want my daughter to marry Tyler Florence (okay maybe that’s taking it a little too far). At any rate, during most of my workouts for the past three years, the basement TV has been set firmly on channel 231, the Food Network. And it’s proven fairly effective—well, sort of. As I climb simulated hills, clock virtual miles and attempt to burn real calories, I get to watch Rachel whip up 30 minute suppers any woman would be proud to serve her man. I spend time with Paula, savoring the thought of her red velvet cupcakes, fried catfish and bacon jalapeno poppers. I even get “Down Home with the Neely’s” lickin’ my lips for some barbeque and mashed sweet potatoes.

9 I’m inspired! Motivated! Compelled to expand my own repertoire of nightly fixin’s to go beyond salmon patties, spaghetti and salad. I’m cataloging new techniques and making mental notes to look up various recipes. All the while, operating on the premise that I’m actually getting my body “in shape.” Hah! I’m really not that brave. I do salivate at the thought of Paula’s red velvet cupcakes and will occasionally look up a recipe online to make for a special weekend dinner. But usually, once my workout is over, I get good stretch, put the one-eyed monster to bed and head upstairs to a bowl of mescaline mix, a few slices of cucumber and maybe a tomato wedge or two. If I’m lucky I treat myself to a few chunks of feta and some fat-free balsamic vinaigrette. At least my clothes will fit tomorrow, but my taste buds are tired of being teased. Giada, please, take me away! Hmmm. I hear Direct TV has just added the Cooking Channel to their line-up.

10 “Ten More Minutes” by Julia Sanders Like any other kid, I have to go to school every day. So I do the regular routine: wake up at 6:45, get dressed, brush teeth, wash face, do hair, eat breakfast. My mom usually takes me to school, but on certain days, she has to go to work early. So I’m left to fend for myself. When I go to brush my teeth, I hear this beep that gets really annoying after a while. The beep is nothing less than my dad’s dumb alarm clock. He sets it for 6:30, but doesn’t wake up ‘til 7:00. I know he hears it. And I’m like, “Dude, wake up! If you weren’t planning to get up until 7:00, then set the alarm for 7:00.” (And set it loud enough to hear!) After his clock goes off like 30 times, he finally rises from sleep. At 7:15. By 7:25, I’m ready. Sitting in the kitchen, watching T.V. Waiting. It seems like he always takes a shower in the morning. He goes to bed at 10:00. He could have taken a nice shower and still been in bed by at least 10:15. All he does is watch T.V. ‘til he falls asleep.

11 The worst part is that I’ll go in his room to tell him what time it is, and he’ll blow this booming snot missile that you can hear from outside. It makes the old ladies who walk in our neighborhood turn around and run back home. At 7:35 he irons his clothes for about seven minutes. He adds starch, though I don’t know why ‘cause he doesn’t want to impress anyone. He told me that himself. At 7:42, he’s brushing the hair that he doesn’t have. Taking his sweet time. I’m like, “Daddy, I can do my hair faster, and I have WAY more hair than you!” Then he says he has to “Get it right” and a lot of other stuff that I don’t listen to. At 7:45, HE’s rushing ME out of the house so that HE can be on time. Clearly, it’s HIS fault that we’re late. Once we’re in the car, he can’t find the keys. So for about five minutes, he is searching for the keys that are already in the ignition. He mutters to himself. I get to school right before 8:00, about 7:58. I have an instrument that I have to drop off, but I can’t drop it off and still be in class by 8:00, so I have to literally run to class to be on time. With my instrument in my hand. That’s why I carpool with my neighbors.

12 Tips for Writing “Slice of Life” 1. Be brief. Many written reports or stories are 500 words or less. The most important criteria to remember is that a good piece needs to be an unbroken reading experience. 2. Tell a story. Structure your story around examples, using a pencil as your paintbrush to evoke images and paint a picture in the reader’s mind. 3. Make a point. But do not turn it into a sermon or a soapbox to present the superiority of your ideas by including "shoulds" or “musts" aimed at the reader. 4. Use your senses. Make the reader feel like they are seeing and experiencing it through your body. 5. Tell about the ordinary. Personal essays are often best when they describe a common but freely shared experience. It doesn’t have to be about being a survivor of the Twin Towers. Talk about your reaction to 911. Or tell us about watching a sunset or baking bread. When you talk about walking your dog, take us along. 6. Make it engaging. Invite us to consider your point of view by sharing the particular experience that brought you there, describe what happened, how you reacted, and why you interpret your experiences the way you do.

13 Tasha’s Brainstorm Box Cleaning Toilets Grading Papers Taking Zoey out to Potty Waiting on the shower to get hot Making the bed Dusting Furniture Grocery Shopping Deciding what to have for dinner Exercise Now YOU Try!


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