Tuesday, February 8, 2011

Miss Robertson with a Tan and a Bow in Her Hair, and Other Tales from the North

We had a brief heatwave, but it is now back to being fabulously, unbelievably cold.  I've put my stylish, decidedly not-warm Jackie O jacket back in its rightful place in my closet's "autumn collection" and have rediscovered the wonder that is long underwear.  After a disastrous evening walk from my garage to my front door in which I thought my fingers might actually break off at the joints, scattering on the frozen ground below me, I have also retrieved my gloves from the bottom of my purse.

Meanwhile, I'm learning more and more about the North Dakota Child's interests--namely that all boys obsess over hockey (PeeWee, UND Sioux, and NHL, in that order), all girls favor heavily sequined shirts and pompom-ed or animal ear-ed hats, and that both genders enjoy a good laugh at Miss Robertson's accent.  People here have that tendency toward the vowel sounds unique to Wisconsin and Minnesota.  As a result, the local specialty, Taco in a Bag (alias The Walking Taco, or taco meat and toppings served over a bed of crushed Doritos) is pronounced Taco in a Bayg.  Additionally, my pronunciation of the e in Caleb and the a in Maggie is apparently so egregious that students with those names don't even respond when I call on them in class.

The website I took this tasty-looking picture from posed the question,
Where else besides Ohio can you get taco in a bag?  The answer:
Anywhere in Grand Forks, including--but not limited to--
the mall, school cafeterias, and at informal dinner parties.

Despite my faulty pronunciation, students still mostly seem to like me, as evidenced by the fact that my hug-to-handshake ratio as students leave at the of the day is approximately 3:1 (I require one or the other).  As further evidence of these students' esteem, I present Exhibit B: a caricature that some third-graders and I made in class one afternoon.  I've entitled it "Miss Robertson with a Tan and a Bow in Her Hair."  If you look closely, you can see that it is signed by the artists.  Enjoy:


  1. Yes, I see the resemblance. Of course, I also see my own resemblance. I no longer have to imagine what I would look like with blonde hair, and you no longer have to imagine what you would like black, I mean tan.

  2. Amazing. Isn't long underwear wonderful? One of my friends at Stanford who was from Chicago knew about taco in a bag, she did it with hot cheetos sometimes - do they even sell hot cheetos in ND? Sounds a little too spicy.

    And yeah, sorry I never warned you that your accent is hilarious... Watch Fargo and study up.

  3. lmao that drawing is priceless. the earrings are all you, though!

    taco in a bag, hmmm. i want to try it, because i'm hoping for spectacular or spectacularly bad, but i have a feeling i'll just be let down.

    i don't want you to lose your accent, but just so you know, if you start talking like them i will die laughing. you're going to have to start making voice posts so we can hear the progression of your accent!

  4. Katie and Karina--I don't think I'm ready for a Fargo-level accent yet. I'm hoping to keep my own, even if it is hilarious.

    Also, hot cheetos would be delicious, but that's definitely not an option here. I actually checked the last time I went shopping.

    Natasha, you're right--it looks like a combo of the two of us! Too bad we didn't have it for when we roomed together.