Saturday, June 23, 2007

Guatemala Trip Report V: Reading ABQ From Down South

Antigua, Department of Sacatepequez, Guatemala

Finally having settled down into an agreeable torpor of a simple hotel room with 10 cable movie channels, a daily hike toward and somewhat upon one of the many surrounding volcanoes, and mornings spent drinking several cups of coffee Antiqueno before a breakfast of plantains, tortillas and something to put into the tortillas, I can sit back and read the ABQ papers at one of the 1,543 internet cafes.

As most readers of Babble could quickly guess, I'm having the most fun reading about APS and its many press relation disasters. I won't link the articles because I'm in an agreeable torpor, but the daily onslaught of stories (particularly in the Journal) about "GradeChangeGate" and "PrincipalDeckChairOnTitanicThatIsAPSGate" is good for plenty a long-distance chuckle. Today we hear about the MacArthur principal Andy Barrett retiring rather than take the transfer to another school. Mr. Barett has multiple sclerosis, and had ovecome the limitations of his conditions at his school to the tune of being widely loved and doing a great job.

So naturally, APS dumped him somewhere else. Seriously, it's hard not to believe Superintendent Everitt and her out of touch with reality staff don't just sit around envisioning the most damaging public relations moves possible, enact exactly those moves, and then practice that "What, this is unpopular and controversial, not to mention stupid?" reaction complete with dumbfounded openmouthed expression in front of mirrors in the APS administrative bathroom before striding out to announce them.

The last organization this tone deaf to public reaction might have been Idi Amin's Angola, and who's to say Everitt and crew aren't considering a cannibalism press conference right now?

Oh, and you had to love the findings of the body selected to investigate "GradeChangeGate", findings that basically said the teacher was right and that District Administrators are a bunch of manipulative liars. (btw, props to Board Member Esquivel for driving this process to an investigatory conclusion)

And speaking of County Commissioner Teresa Cordova, as a resident in her precinct I wonder how many thousands of candidates are ready to run against her sorry ass in the next election? Heck, my Golden Retriever would stand a damn good chance against Cordova at this point, and he's in favor of City/County Unification.

Okay, enough guffawing and chortling at the ABQ news in this distant Guatemalan cafe. Time to go climb part of a volcano. Maybe if I get far enough up the mountain I'll be able to barely make out the APS cannibalism press conference in the distance.


Natalie said...

You had me with "plantains and tortillas"... :) I'm looking forward to the next installment of Scot vs the volcano.
APS is in a downward swagger. I couldn't agree with you more that the decisions, anti-decisions, and hubblebubbleshenanigans are extremely tiring.
Enjoy your vacation. APS will be here when you get back as will all, if not more, seriously de-grading decision processes. (Pun intended.)
Go climb a mountain! :)

Anonymous said...

I know others may not want to hear the APS horror stories, but I love your humorous take on it. So glad you found all the articles and responded. This is not going away, and we have Marty Esquivel to thank. I hope he does go on trying to get an independent audit. Have fun down there.