I've already had an amazing weekend, and I'm dying to share it with readers of my blog. I managed to get into a fairly high-level student-run symposia up at UC Berkeley on evolutionary developmental biology ('evo-devo').

High level for me, at least. Since I don't have a lot of other experiences to compare it to, I'm not sure what my opinion might mean, but I totally enjoyed myself. I took a dozen pages of notes on the handful of presentations I was able to see and got something useful out of everything.

While there, I was fortunate to not only finally meet the manager of my beloved Darwin Finches*, celebrated Sci Blogger PZ Myers, but a whole bunch of the gang at NCSE and even the amazing Ken Cope, who regaled me with anecdotes about the animation field. Wonderful! This all occurred over beers with me and my good friend Richard Moore, after PZ's keynote addres to the sympsia, parts of which I even recorded. Good times!

But I got home very late (after 3 in the morning) and I just finished softball practice, which started at 10. I'm VERY tired now, but I need to go pick up some furniture for my father-in-law. After that....it's nap time.

* Amazingly, based on email I've gotten, I apparently need to add: it's a spoof, people!



This evening I took a test on ADHD.

No, that's not a punchline. I'm currently in the middle of a special education course that I need for my Clear Credential in order to continue teaching. The previous session's worth of notes, the last chapter and a couple of discussion groups have been occupied by the topic of ADHD.

What makes the whole thing difficult is that I've not only had lots of experience dealing with ADHD kids as a teacher, my own son's public school career was defined in large part by the fact that he was the classic ADHD kid: impulsive, inattentive, constantly in hot water for not handing in work. And, to top it all off, I was my own son's instructor for two years (Earth Science and Biology).

So, I know what ADHD is all about. I know every side of it, with the battles over medication and the behavioral strategies and the excuse-making and the raging and the weeping. I'm an expert.

So, having to sit and listen patiently as a bunch of young twenty-something prospective teachers discuss this from just one point of view, on the basis of limited experience, and constantly thinking about the ordeals that my son, and to a lesser extent myself, went through....it was just tough to take, emotionally. And then, this evening, as I was taking the test, I found myself breathing a little hard and my eyes were smarting. A weird experience.