All posts by Joseph Fonde

Last one.

I just realized that this may be the last History Class I take. When I started college 3+ years ago, I told myself that I would take only classes that I wanted to take. I wanted to major in history and I only wanted to take history and I would not fill it with BS. For the most part I did not do that. Almost every class I have ever taken I had some interest in it though. Yes the ones that were required were a little harder to take something that excites a late 30’s father of 3, but I somehow managed. It was nice to get to know a few of you from multiple classes and cool to see that either our interest align or schedules at least.

All of the classes though I have taken that were history related are the ones that I tried the hardest in. This is where the point of my final blog comes in. College for the most part is a scam. If we only took the classes that were in our major, we’d all have been done at least a year ago. I left Bucks County Community College with 54 credits. Of those 54, 21 credits were “required.” None of them were history classes. three of them were writing classes. I enjoyed them and the professor. I also took psychology, statistics and a microbiology class. The final required class was Public Speaking. I get it, some people are afraid to speak in large groups. My answer to this is “Grow up.” Only weirdos get all nervous when they have to communicate in public.

Young people today are always wanting “Free, Free, Free.” Free college, free Wi-Fi, free whatever. College should not be free. What college should be is not a scam. There is at least one of you in this class that will serve politically one day. Do not give kids college for free. If anything tell them they do not have to take a class called “Hollywood VS Geology: How Real are Disaster Movies?” I took it last semester. Do not get me wrong, it was interesting but it has zero to do with what I am paying the college to give me a degree in. So do future generations like my kids a favor and instead of making college free, make it so they pay for what they want.

I now know though that if the Meteor in “Armageddon” struck the Philadelphia Area and I lived in Bozeman Montana then the windows of my house would blow out and my trees would burst into flame 7 seconds after impact.

I enjoyed this.

Despite my grade and the massive amounts of catching up I had to do this semester (again totally the Professor’s fault) I thoroughly enjoyed the class and its content. All of you are exceptional people and I wish you all the best in your future endeavors.

I enjoyed hearing your topics and am thankful that you sent me your papers in their rough forms to read and offer input. I also wanted to thank you guys as well for offering the feedback on mine. I never really cared either way whether or not somebody ready my paper and enjoyed it or not.

You are all scholars and ladies and gentlemen and I thank you.

I am busy and should be rewarded

With 2 hours to go, I am drinking a Rum and Coke and cranking out what I hope to be 28 points worth of Blogs. I typed up 6987 words over the last week and a half and even then I was still trying to find a way to slack off. I worked over 40 hours this week, cut my grass (twice actually) laid down 40 bags of mulch, transplanted 6 plants, planted a tomato and pepper garden, washed my truck (again twice) went to the city for a court hearing that was subsequently changed to another date and did two other papers and a final exam.

Through all of this though I still went fishing once. You would think that after all of that hard work and dedication the Gods would have granted something better than this…

I have big hands too.


If there is one thing that I see in young adults it is the inability to do math in their heads. So my 14 year old comes home with a C in math. His mother goes absolutely bananas on him, even though she can’t compute her Dice with Friends score without a calculator. I am and always was good at Math…Normal human math. What I mean by that is the 4 big ones. Addition, subtraction, multiplication and division. Throw in a few fractions and decimals here and there and I can still run with the big dogs.

So my son comes home and he gets his rear-end chewed out. She takes away his Xbox and makes him do a couple chores. After this happens and my wife goes to work I sit him down and I tell him that his grade is not really that big of a deal as long as he understand the subject matter. Laziness does not mean he will be counting with his fingers in his early 20’s. I give him a simple scenario…

“If your father still needs 4 blog posts to be graded for and he averages a 7 on each of them, how many points is that?”


“Good. Now add that to 102 and you get ?”


“Excellent. Now 130 out of 192 is roughly what?”

“I do not know, like 65%”

“Close, it is 68%. My final paper is worth 100 points so that means the course total is 292 points. What do I need to get on my final paper to get a C in the class.”

“As long as you get a 75, you should have a C.”

My son is currently playing Xbox.

Warning you now.

No way is my PowerPoint presentation going to be as good as the ones I have seen so far. I had a couple of slides that I thought were really good. Now I am second guessing myself . Either way, I want to apologize to all of you for my lack of participation this semester. The “tech” aspect of the presentations is not really a problem for me. It is the confidence that I do not come off as the “old” guy that cannot figure out how to screen share and all of that. Last semester I ended up having to have my 14-year-old son hold my phone for a zoom session while I was going through the slides on my desktop computer. Yes, I still have a desktop and it does not have a camera.

So do not be surprised if you end up watching my presentation with my son breathing heavily in the background or purposely not keeping the camera straight.


There’s really only one person to blame…

I’ll say it. Yep, Professor Lowe is to blame. Who in their right mind starts the semester off by telling students, one of which is a 39-year-old father of 3, that works 40+ hours a week, whose wife works nights…”If you can’t turn it in on time, don’t worry about it?” I am eternally grateful, do not get me wrong. WHO DOES THAT THOUGH?

Even last week. I asked her about the blogs I’ve missed and she says…”Just do them when you can. Remember, your worst grade on one does not count, so do not worry.”


My one other class, I turned in the assignment at Midnight-07. It was due at 1159 and my professor marked it a day late. What can I say to that? Nothing, it was late.

What I am saying is I have always been kinda, sorta the type of person that might procrastinate. Take my wedding for example. My groomsmen all had the same suits from my sister’s wedding except for one guy. From July of 2008, to November 2008 I had one job. Make sure Nick had the same suit.

“Joe do all of your groomsmen have the same suit?”

“I’ll take care of it.”

Come November, my buddy Nick was wearing a completely different suit than everyone else….I blamed him.

That was my wedding and trust me, my now wife and my mother were not even remotely as understanding as Professor Lowe. My work ethic is my parent’s fault, my son and daughter’s laziness is my wife’s fault and my current grade is the Professor’s fault. Thank you Professor for being so understanding of our plights.

Totally her fault


We are all history buffs. Tonight just before midnight will mark 109 years ago that the H.M.S Titanic struck an iceberg and began taking on water. Approximately 2 hours and 40 minutes later she had sunk, and an estimated 1,600 people died with over half of that number freezing and dying in the water after the ship had already sank. The moments leading up to that were horrific. Many of the passengers and crew were not taking it seriously. The uber-wealthy were up in arms that they might have to share seats in a lifeboat with the passengers that were in steerage. The ship began listing to the forward compartments, rapidly taking on water and trapping those less fortunate to get out before Crew members began locking them in to prevent the deck from being overcrowded. The ship started to go under into almost a straight dive but since she was so long, before the ship got fully out of the water it snapped in half, sending more than half of it to the bottom of the North Atlantic Ocean at roughly 20 mph. The rear portion of the ship then began to float again before taking on massive amounts of water and also sinking.

Now most of my knowledge of this event is from ACTUAL historical evidence. Most other people’s knowledge comes from the movies. Mainly the 1997 movie with Leonardo DiCaprio. Who am I kidding? Most of my knowledge of it came from that movie. When it came out, it was nothing more than a movie to take girls to with my newly acquired driver’s license. This is a great movie, regardless who argues otherwise. I have since learned more from reputable sources, but as a 16-year-old I was pretty convinced that Rose was selfish and two people could have definitely climbed on to a floating wooden door. I have also learned that director James Cameron made painstaking efforts to have the majority of the disaster itself to be pretty accurate. The love story was an added bonus

The two guys in the crow’s nest and the Officer of the Watch are really to blame. All three of them were too busy ogling a young, sweaty Kate Winslet to do their jobs. Anyways folks the analogy of all this is that my current grade is currently a mega disaster like the sinking of the Titanic. The end grade though will be how the movie was received.

If they’d been watching for ice instead of perving on Rose and Jack, this never would’ve happened.

#6 This was one that I did before and rewrote when my daughter tripped the breaker.

Listen. I have to give some advice to you young people out there. For those of you that have children, you know they are a blessing and you love every single thing about them….then when you are not paying attention to it they get a little taller gain a little more weight and suddenly they are older. It begins like this. You get home from work and they come running up to you and giving big hugs yelling “HI DADDY!” Then it goes to you being home for an hour running into them in the hallway to hear “Oh, how long have you been home?” or worse….


If my camera is EVER off during class it is because I am actively cooking while in class. For some dads they look like a man with feet for hands in the kitchen. I am pretty adept at the whole process. I enjoy it and I do it probably 4-5 times a week. That is probably why i have a rough go doing one blog a week.

I was cooking this while doing a peer review with David.


I really think the normal person would’ve said to themselves… “Hey, I am a little behind on my blogs. If I write 5 today, then everyone will blatantly notice that I am behind and did them all today. Maybe I will wait and do a few over the next few days and mix them in with everyone else.” Well folks, Joe Fonde does not care if you see that I did it all in one day. So I hope you enjoy reading the next 1200-2000 words on my struggle. I was 3 new blogs deep, when my 11-year-old plugged in her phone next to the computer. Apparently that was the proverbial “straw that broke the camels back.” The breaker popped, my computer shut down and I lost all three. I had started them in the morning and was going back to three separate windows open when i had different ideas to write. They each had fancy titles too. Not anymore.

So #5 was all about my outline. The use of an outline has been my crutch since I started college. Outlines were all the rage when I was in middle school. Kids would put them in fancy littler file holders with clear plastic covers. Title pages, troll stickers, the whole deal. We were cool, just like Zach Morris in Saved By the Bell. I did mention that middle school for me was before the original Jurassic Park came out. Whatever, we were cool. Well everyone else was cool. I had cheap parents.

My outlines were always right, and they helped in doing the paper later or studying for the test. Thing was, mine were usually folded and or crumpled into my bookbag, then handed in, probably late too. I told my mom it was because I did not have the file folder. I begged for the folder and finally my mother gave me one that was a leftover from my older sister. It was pink. All of my college failures have been successfully linked back to that day when I turned in my book report on Gary Paulsen’s “Hatchet” in a pink book report folder.

The outline I did for this paper is working for me, like they all have in the past. I am just behind everyone else in the paper itself.

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Like this, but pink. It was terrible.
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Still one of the coolest “boy” books out there. The audio version read by Peter Coyote is even better.

When this baby hits 88mph…

That title is a reference to “Back to the Future” where Doc Brown tells Marty what happens when the DeLorean reaches 88 Mph. SPOILER ALERT: IT GOES BACK IN TIME. So I wish I had one of those right now. I am sure like everybody else, when we first start a semester we tell ourselves that we are going to keep on top of things, submit on time, and take part in all of the discussions no matter how mind numbing they can be sometimes.

Alas, it never really turns out that way. So what ends up happening is you are forced to dig yourself out of a hole. Despite your other classes, responsibilities and such you HAVE to get it all done. It sucks, but you have to chip away and get the things done in the order of which they were given. So technically I just hopped in my DeLorean, traveled back a few weeks and this is my missing Blog #3. That means I only have like 7 more to do I think, maybe more.

So if you are in the same boat as me, hop in, the “Flux Capacitor is…fluxing” and where we’re going (at least where I’m) we don’t need roads. Just extra time to get the stuff done that I should’ve gotten done already. I really hope at least one of you has seen this movie more than a few times to understand the jokes and references.

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