Life in the Bubble

So y’all are probably wondering how things have been going in the Bedrossian bubble. You may have seen some of what’s been happening on the show last Wednesday (with everything so chaotic, they ran a repeat from last year the week before that), and everything’s pretty much going alright. I’ve just been super busy and super tired teaching school in the mornings and then keeping the boys active in the afternoons. I haven’t been writing much because, by the time the boys go to bed at around 9:30, I’m so tired that I’m practically ready for bed too.

The days are pretty much like that first day I told y’all about: I get up, make myself a cup of coffee in the fancyass machine and plan out my lessons for the day. Then I go have breakfast with the family and then it’s upstairs to teach the boys as best I can. I told them not to worry about their school clothes while I’m there, since I don’t have anything but basketball shorts, tshirts and sweats to wear. That helped a lot, I think – things got a lot more relaxed in the schoolroom once the boys didn’t have to dress up…and, let’s face it, I’m not cut out to be a teacher who wears a tie like Dr. Peterson. I don’t want to be one, either…so that works out.

Some mornings it’s dang cold (good thing I brought along a couple of the flannel shirts Joyce gave me for my birthday), and some days (like yesterday) it’s been dang warm in the afternoon, so some days we can swim and some days we can’t. It’s even been so cold at night a few times that I’ve skipped using the outside jacuzzi before bedtime and ‘made do’ with the jacuzzi in the tub in the bathroom. (Yeah, a dude can get used to having a jacuzzi lol.)

I think the casual clothes have made me out as the ‘cool’ teacher, and I’m keeping it pretty lowkey in the schoolroom. We start the day off with some math, which at least Matteo enjoys, and then I have us working on the Bill of Rights for American History. I reckoned it was never too early to learn about that, and we got into a pretty serious conversation about the Second Amendment last week. I was surprised how serious it got. No, nobody started screaming or getting all overheated about it – like some adults can get – but I thought it was pretty cool that Matteo was so passionate about his opinion in favor of gun control. It’s not like he’s read a billion things about it, but the boys do watch the news, and he just feels that it’s not a good idea for people to have guns.

I didn’t tell the boys that I own one, and I didn’t insist too much about Second Amendment rights, but I think I made it clear that I thought that the right to have a gun was in the Bill of Rights. Jacob agreed with me, although I did my best not to come one way or the other. I’m totally new to this, but I think a teacher is supposed to guide the students into forming their own opinions. I like it that the boys disagree about the Second Amendment. It shows they’re thinking…and I got a good feeling from that. Kinda like the feeling I got one day when Lucas suddenly ‘got’ something when we were down at Chuy’s.

The boys also don’t think along party lines, which I think is super cool. Jacob may be the defender of the Second Amendment…but it’s Matteo who’s more in favor of free speech. Jacob’s not against it or anything, but he does maintain that there are things you shouldn’t be allowed to say. Matteo says that free speech ought to mean that you can say anything.

The thing I like most is that I agree with Matteo on one thing and with Jacob on another, so I don’t have to pick favorites. I like them both a lot…and it’s cool that we can have the kinds of discussions we’ve been having. The fact is that I’m really enjoying hanging out and talking with them. And maybe they’ll know most of their Bill of Rights by the time this is over, too.

The thing we’ve spent most of our time on’s been Romeo and Juliet, though. I gotta admit that was pretty tough going at first. Both boys whined that it was “hard” and “not in English” and that they didn’t understand any of the words. I expected that, but I finally got them to figure out what words mean in context, which is the trick to enjoying Shakespeare. If you look at the notes all the time, you lose the flow and rhythm of the play and it gets super boring. If you read Shakespeare instead of the dude who wrote the notes, though, it’s really pretty cool. I liked it that the boys were both surprised how the first half of the play (until Mercutio and Tybalt get killed) is a comedy. So they’re on their way to liking Shakespeare…even if the boys did argue about who got “stuck” reading Juliet (and I did a lot of the time lol.) We also had a lot of fun with a game I learned from a college professor: try and read the Queen Mab speech as fast as you can, since it’s really just a lot of crazyass words strung together. Jacob was able to do it fastest…although did have to leave out every other word to win.

I’m also giving the boys a lot of time with the art supplies at the back of the room…and we’ve even made a few holiday arts and crafts projects together. Pretty lameass shit when you think about it, but I think our popsicle stick snowmen turned out okay. (I got the idea from Joyce after I asked her to research arts and crafts projects for Christmas that dumb jocks can do lol.) The popsicle stick snowflakes we made were even more lameass…but they kept the boys quiet for half an hour…and I’m proud to announce that nobody hurt himself with the glue gun. (Joyce was very proud of me for that lol.)

The afternoons have been way easier, since I’m not flying blind. To give us a break from baseball, me and Jacob have been working on football skills a few times a week. He’s got definite potential as a wide receiver, I think. I can throw a football pretty dang far…but he can run pretty dang far and catch it. I’ve even taught him a little bit about blocking, although I didn’t know my own strength at one point and knocked him over. He said he plans to get me back lol.

There’s also been time in the pool, although Maya made a rule that it’s got to be 70° or warmer for us to go swimming. She’s afraid of the boys getting sick, I reckon…although I don’t see how you can get COVID just by going swimming on a cool day. Still…she’s the boss, and, even if me and Jacob get disappointed when we can’t go swimming, I think Matteo’s relieved when the pool’s off-limits.

As for Matteo, the crisis about his having gained a pound died down the next week when he lost the pound he gained. That was on the 8th. On the 15th, he lost two pounds, so I think that puts him back on the schedule he’s supposed to be on. No, he never told Maya about the pie he sneaked, and me and Jacob have kept quiet about it too…although, if you ask me, a few little pieces of pie don’t make you gain weight. I think it’s just part of how his body (how anybody’s body) works when it’s on a diet. It’s not so simple as losing a pound a week just because you follow your diet. The dietician even explained that on a zoom call that was on the show last week.

For those of y’all who aren’t watching the show, the 2 pounds he lost last week mean that he’s lost 9 of the 15 pounds. So that means 6 to go. I’m not even sure that it looks like Matteo’s lost weight, but, then, I didn’t think that he looked like he needed to lose weight in the first place. If you ask me (and no one has), all he’s ever needed is to run around in that awesome park they’ve got out back, but all the exercise they’re making him do isn’t making him any more likely to run around on his own.

He’s gotten over giving me a shit ton of attitude when we’re working out in the gym, but he still doesn’t give it his all…and I think he makes sure that I get the feeling that he’d rather be doing something else. And it’s also a pretty intense workout they have him doing. I know because I’m doing the same workout, just to encourage him. I’m using a whole lot more weight than he is, of course, but I come out of our time in the gym pretty tired, although I’ve never yet said no to a swim after a workout. (Matteo…not so much…although I think I’m getting him to like the water a little more than he did. Still, there’s still a strict rule – I went to Maya herself about it – that the crew’s not allowed to film Matteo in the pool.)

I haven’t been giving the boys a lot of homework. I’ve barely been giving them any, to tell the truth, because it’s all I can do to fill out 5 hours of school every day. I assign them some math problems, but that’s about it…so there’s not a whole lot of Hunter time between dinner and whatever it is we do in the evenings. I know the boys can take care of themselves, and I know that there are grown-ups I can hang out with who are part of the bubble, but the boys gravitate towards me when they’re done with their homework. They’ve got plenty of Christmas blu rays for us to watch, although I wasn’t exactly sure that they were allowed to watch one of them, something called The Gingerdead Man. This big strong jock isn’t the biggest fan of scary movies…but, instead of getting scared, the boys thought the movie was hilarious. It was even more hilarious to them that I looked like I was getting scared lol.

Some nights we’ve ended up in Jacob’s room playing video games, and last Saturday me, Maya, Robert and the boys all ended up playing Monopoly. (We sometimes had family game night back at the Block house, so I know how to play board games.) I felt kinda honored to be playing with the family like that, but I don’t think they were expecting how competitive I can get. I know it’s only a game, and I know this is a friendly bubble we’re in…but I was danged if I wasn’t going to win at Monopoly lol.

Since I’m usually such a nice guy (or try to be), some people are surprised at my competitive side when it comes out. Ok, so I may not have made it to the majors, but to even make it as far as I did in pro ball takes someone who’s pretty dang competitive. To hate losing isn’t the only thing it takes to make a successful pro athlete…but it’s one of them.

That Monopoly night was kinda the most adult company I’ve had for a while. Yeah, I’ve seen Sandy pretty much every day…I’m kinda in the habit of dropping by her office at lunchtime…but my time’s mostly with the boys. I don’t mind. I like the boys a lot. I miss seeing Joyce and Keaton and my other pupils and it sucks big time that Lucas is home and I haven’t gotten to see him (yet), but that’s how things are for the time being. I was watching the news with the boys last week and saw that there are no ICU beds left in Southern California. That’s pretty dang scary…and makes me realize that it’s not a bad thing at all that I’m living in a bubble.

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