Tuesday, October 04, 2005

catching up

Day 29
26 September 2005

I am so stupid. Stupid, stupid, stupid. How stupid am I? Glad you asked. I had an assignment due in English 600 today. Knew about the assignment for weeks. Started looking for articles for the assignment on Wednesday. Had a little trouble finding the articles I wanted. So, did I keep looking, maybe go to the library, get started reading? Of course not. I waited until Sunday night, when going to the library was not even a possibility. Finally settled on three articles that could be seen as relevant to my emphasis, with a little stretching; at that point my main criterion was that the full text needed to be available online. Sat down to read the articles at 10 p.m. Finished writing my responses at 4:30 a.m. Peach woke up at 5:00 a.m. Did I learn anything about the hazards of procrastination from my undergraduate career? Apparently I did not.

Funny - Sarah and I wanted all the same articles, and both had the same problems finding them. Our conversation when I got to class went approximately like this:

Sarah: So whose articles did you use?
Me: I wanted to use some of Nick's ...
Sarah: He had one about Belinda, but -
Me: - it was too short.
Sarah: Yeah. And did you see the one about gendering satire?
Me: Yeah, but the link to the "full text" turned out to be the full text of the abstract, not the article.
Sarah: I know. And I tried to find something from Steve, but all he's done recently is -
Me: - book reviews.
Sarah: Yeah.

Day 19
16 September 2005

Missed three days of Polish this week because Link has strep throat. Fortunately the professor is very understanding about stuff like that. He says I’m welcome to bring the kids to class with me, but I prefer not to unless it’s absolutely unavoidable - it’s just not a very efficient use of time. Besides, I need to have that hour during the day when I’m "Octavia," not “Mom.” Well, in my Polish class I’m “Katarzyna,” but you get the point.

Day 15
12 September 2005

OK, so I do know a few people in my grad class. There’s Raven from Late Brit, Kim and Andy from Honor Society ... the thing is, all the people who are graduate instructors got to know each other before the beginning of the semester while they were going through their orientation/training thingy. So when I show up to class, they’re all talking to each other about their students or whatever, and it feels like I must be the only person there without any friends.

Met Sara, from Switzerland, who also wants to specialize in gender issues in 19th-century British Novels. What are the chances?

Day 8
5 September 2005

No school because of Labor Day. Spent the weekend in St. George. The hotel was decent, but turned out to be one of those places where “non-smoking room” means that while you, personally, will not be smoking in it, the previous occupants had no such restrictions.

St. George appeared to be a genuine desert - Glen said it reminded him a lot of Arizona. Very hot, lots of rocks, occasional spontaneous cactus. (Spontaneous Cactus: good name for a band?) All the houses are approximately the same color as the red stone the place is made out of. It’s kind of a cool effect, but I could see it getting monotonous after a while. Everybody has landscaped their yards with gravel and nifty rocks so they don’t have to have as much grass ... again, kind of novel, but I could see the lack of greenery getting oppressive after a while.

Drove home after the moosebutter show, which finished up around 10 p.m. or so. On the way home, Link (not his real name; age 5) slept in his car seat, but the baby woke up and started complaining around 11:30. Just as we had decided that we should probably pull over and feed her, UHP appeared. We were a little puzzled, because we weren’t speeding enough to notice ... turned out one of our headlights had burned out. Peach (our baby; also not her real name) was NOT excited about sitting there in her car seat while the trooper ran Glen’s license, and wailed like the Furies the whole time. Maybe the trooper felt sorry for us - he gave us a warning and sent us on our way.

Day 2
30 August 2005

The English Graduate Student Association had its opening social tonight. Glen and I were late because our babysitter bailed, and we had to find another one on short notice. I hate trying to do things like that at the last minute, but it wasn’t the sitter’s fault - you really can’t argue with an excuse like “My friend tried to commit suicide and I need to go visit her in the psych ward.” One of my friends agreed to take the kids for a couple of hours, and now I owe her big. After all that, we got to the social and discovered that everybody else had brought their kids with them. Also, did I mention that I don’t know anybody in the program? Nobody talked to us. I felt like a dork. Got a copy of Longman’s Anthology of British Lit. as a door prize, though.

Day 1
29 August 2005

My first day of grad school feels a lot like my first day of kindergarten. (How funny is it that my son started kindergarten today as well?) Can’t find my classroom; don’t know anybody in my class; not really sure what it is I’m supposed to be doing here. The new Humanities building is gorgeous, but the underground level where all the classrooms are is kind of confusing. I wonder if there’s some symbolism in the fact that all the humanities professors now have offices with windows, while all of the humanities students are now in basement classrooms with no windows. Don’t get me wrong, they’re nice classrooms with no windows. I’m just wondering.

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