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By Brian Crosby | July 26, 2012
Have you heard about the state bill that would request pet groomers to get certification in order to practice? Now I'm all for ensuring that people are trained in their respected vocations. However, what about those who have had their own pet salons for years? Why do they need to pay money and go through 900 hours of useless training for a job that they've done successfully for years? We don't need the state to affirm if Fido is getting a proper shampoo and cut. Isn't that what the Better Business Bureau's job is?
NEWS
By Brian Crosby | July 18, 2012
Our family vacation this year was visiting Glacier National Park in Montana. The upper part of the park actually extends into Alberta, Canada, making the entire area an international peace park.  As is typical with national parks, the scenery was spectacular. Additionally, the historic lodges nearly 100 years old were amazing. Of course, modern hotel conveniences such as bathrobes and spa treatments were not to be found, as it should be.  Also missing was 21 st century technology.
THE818NOW
December 12, 2011
Providing students the opportunity to express themselves through the arts is something that public schools need to continue doing despite bad economic times.  Looking at what students can produce reaffirms one's faith in young people. One such art is drama.  Last Thursday I saw Hoover's production of "The Diary of Anne Frank. "  Now sometimes when young people portray much older people it is not very authentic, especially for a drama.  Not the case with this production.  The whole student ensemble did a terrific job in portraying the Frank family and their friends in hiding.
NEWS
By Brian Crosby | March 9, 2013
When's the last time you went shopping for children's clothing? Specifically, sports clothing? I just spent nearly $300 at Sports Chalet so that my 9-year-old son could play baseball. And that's with a discount from his coach's company who is helping to pay for the costs. Here's what $300 got me:  pants, socks, belt, undershirt, cap, helmet, helmet guard, fielding glove, batting gloves, bat, cleats, and athletic supporter. Now I don't mind getting my son stuff that he needs. It's just that by the time he plays baseball next year (if he plays baseball next year)
NEWS
By Brian Crosby | August 22, 2011
Have you seen that the state of Indiana will no longer teach children how to write in cursive?  The reasoning behind it is that young people text so much today that time should be spent on sharpening their typing skills rather than their handwriting ones. That logic is akin to telling English teachers it's okay for kids to use abbreviations all the time such as “lol” in their formal writing because they already do that a lot. The main question I have is this:  who is going to teach these kids how to put their signature on important documents such as a driver's license, job application, wedding certificate, or tax form?
THE818NOW
By Brian Crosby | October 13, 2011
I've just finished sending off the last of my youngest son's birthday party invitations which are also the last child's party I plan on hosting. Having a child's birthday party sounds like it would be fun, but actually requires the patience of a saint.  Many parents ignore the RSVP part of an invitation so my wife and I inevitably have to send off reminders. It can be painful for the birthday child to ask each day who is coming to his party when no one has called.
THE818NOW
January 4, 2012
It is common for writers at the end of the year to give a summation of the previous 12 months' events and to end on a hopeful note for the new year.  Forgive me for being so common. No matter your political persuasion, the world lost 3 villains in 2011:  Moammar Kadafi i, Kim Jong-il, and, of course, Osama bin Laden.  The world also saw people take control over their governments in the Middle East.  U.S. troops left Iraq to return home to their families.  And the economy finally showed signs of improvement.  When was the last time so many positive events took place in the span of a year?
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NEWS
By Brian Crosby | July 10, 2013
When you are a parent of a child playing sports, it is not all fun and games. Having two boys who have played team sports, I have discovered that the honeymoon of the “sports are fun” concept is quite short. The competitive and political nature of youth athletics begins before children reach double digits. Recently I attended a basketball tournament and I was amazed at how competitive some of the teams were with kids who appeared eigh or nine years old. I'm talking about kids who had no reservations about bumping into one another or driving to the hoop and falling to hard wooden floor out of bounds.
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NEWS
By Brian Crosby and By Brian Crosby | June 19, 2013
"Man of Steel," the reboot of the Superman film franchise, had the biggest opening of a film in June, earning more than $125 million.   It's a real shame that a film that depicts catastrophic destruction of huge swaths of city blocks is entertaining to the masses.   I don't care how many people go see this movie or how much money it makes, the critics are right on this one. To borrow from Shakespeare, the film is full of sound and fury, signifying nothing. After 30 minutes, I was bored.
NEWS
By Brian Crosby | June 12, 2013
Each end of the school year brings mixed feelings: The relief that the marathon of lessons and assignments is coming to a close along with the sadness to say goodbye to students who I have known up to all four years of high school.   This annual beginning and end of the work year makes teaching a unique profession. It provides the teacher a life lesson. As a teacher you are more aware of your own mortality for while the clientele remains the same age year after year, you grow older.
NEWS
By Brian Crosby | May 20, 2013
Each May high school kids have a soft two-week vacation when Advanced Placement exams are administered.   AP tests are important because a student can earn college credit by scoring at a certain level. For parents, that may mean a savings of tuition down the line. For teachers, though, it means a loss of instructional time. Not only do students miss class time while they're taking the AP tests, but they take additional time off of school to study for them. I'm not saying that this is wrong.
NEWS
By Brian Crosby | March 9, 2013
When's the last time you went shopping for children's clothing? Specifically, sports clothing? I just spent nearly $300 at Sports Chalet so that my 9-year-old son could play baseball. And that's with a discount from his coach's company who is helping to pay for the costs. Here's what $300 got me:  pants, socks, belt, undershirt, cap, helmet, helmet guard, fielding glove, batting gloves, bat, cleats, and athletic supporter. Now I don't mind getting my son stuff that he needs. It's just that by the time he plays baseball next year (if he plays baseball next year)
NEWS
By Brian Crosby | February 5, 2013
I was contacted by an author to contribute an essay to a book on influential teachers. No, I'm not one of the influential teachers; rather, I am writing about one of my influential teachers. John Sage, my advanced 10th grade English teacher, impacted my life more than any other teacher I had. While a very good teacher, what I remember most about him has little to do with his lesson plans.   I was impressed by the way he approached his job. He was the best dressed teacher at Burroughs High School, always wearing a suit jacket, tie, and shiny shoes.
NEWS
By Brian Crosby | January 30, 2013
Well, it happened. It was inevitable, friends tell me. It's part of the parenting experience, or so the experts say. We got a TV for our son's bedroom. He can now play Call of Duty yelling out bizarre yelps in the comforts of his own room. Of course, the 3-hour limit of game playing on weekends (none during the school week) is still enforced. My wife and I held out for almost 14 years to make sure that our family had one television to allow for whole family viewing opportunities and to avoid having the kids seclude themselves behind locked doors.
NEWS
By Brian Crosby | January 14, 2013
For the past week a deep sadness has shadowed me concerning the death of Huell Howser. I am so grateful that Huell Howser was able to hear what I wrote about him in the Crosby Chronicles a month ago. His assistant called me and said that when he read the piece to Huell, it moved him to tears, and that if he could have talked me and said so himself, he would have. Hopefully, he was made aware of other's tributes to his fine work as well. I knew then that it was only a matter of time before his obituary appeared.
NEWS
By Brian Crosby | October 16, 2012
It's Halloween time again which means several special events such as haunted houses pop up. The best event in terms of value, professionalism, and family-friendly (five years and older), is the Ghost Train produced by Los Angeles Live Steamers organization in Griffith Park.  One of the best kept secrets over the past half a century, the LALS group, comprised of train enthusiasts, provides rides on small scale trains every Sunday afternoon in the area adjacent to Travel Town. And for the past several Octobers, they've put on the Ghost Train.
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