(From which "South Park" Chef-crooned song does that come? Mad bonus points if you can provide the next line.)
So we (I) took the plunge last week (well, on the 27th, actually) and ordered our official Homeschool Supplies for this upcoming year (I need to get out of this weird academic-year parallel-universe September-June mindset thingy) from Rainbow Resource Center.
As with so many other things in this giant homeschooling alterniverse, I am of two minds about Rainbow Resource. First of all, they're about the smuggest, snarkiest Christians on the block; this smug snarkiness is typically expressed by such sentiments as "Unnecessary but politically-correct evolutionary content is included in the book; if you can stomach this, the part that actually deals with the science of archaeology is worthwhile." And they also offer books such as Astronomy and the Bible (quick synopsis: astronomy loses, Bible wins), ABC Geology Coloring Book (starting with "Ark, Believe, Creation"... what the heck those have to do with such established geological topics as plate tectonics and hydrology, I could not say), and And The Bride Wore White: 7 Secrets of Sexual Purity (tip #3: carry around a pouch of rotting meat, and every time you catch yourself having Impure Thoughts, treat yourself to a nice deep whiff. Remind yourself that this is what ALL FLESH, hot 'n' sexy or not, smells like after sufficient putrefaction).
They also ship veeeeerrrrrrrry slllllllowwwwwwwllllly. I placed my order on the 27th of July, as I may have mentioned, and it shipped *Monday.* Via UPS Ground. Which still doesn't have my tracking information available.
So why do I send my hard-earned dollars to these people who apparently oppose and despise everything I stand for? (That would be national health care, gay marriage and secular homeschooling. Also zombie movies, renewable energy and red wine. In case you were wondering.)
Because, for one thing, they look like a bunch of crunchy-granola, denim-jumper-free hippies. Their kid is wearing an AC/DC t-shirt in the catalog photo, for heaven's sake. The same names pop up in the catalog as reviewers year after year, giving me the impression it's probably not a bad place to work. And the reviews have a personal, if occasionally slightly nutty, flair to them.
They've also been incredibly friendly and helpful every time I've called them up with a question or problem. I've never felt rushed and I've never lingered in voicemail hell for hours on end, despite their having apparently quite a small staff.
And also, I kind of feel like shopping with them breaches some kind of barrier. Look! A godless wine-bibbing secularist can in good conscience send her money to people who are culturally and ideologically quite unlike herself! How... tolerant. How... liberal.
Well, I was going to blog about some of the things we've been doing to occupy ourselves while we're waiting for our goodies to arrive; I was even going to list some of those goodies and wax enthusiastic about why we picked 'em out. But this post has gone on quite long enough already, and maybe I'll save some of that fodder for a future rambling.