0

From Snowstorms to Sunscreen (and a little coin jewelry)

Yes, writing about the weather is so boring and banal, but I’m not feeling too inspired these days (which is evident if you’ve been to my apartment recently) but it’s gotten really warm and sunny, all of a sudden. I spent several hours outside selling jewelry at the cart on Friday afternoon and Saturday morning, and even though I put on sunscreen, I still managed to get quite a lovely burn on my arms and forehead. It’s only May and I already look like I’m done with summer.

In other news…I do wonder if anyone reading this would be interested in buying some of the jewelry I sell. It’s all made by my dear friend right here in Madison from vintage/recycled materials from all around the world, so think global shop local (I came up with that one!) We don’t have a web presence just yet, but here’s some of the stuff we sell. If you’d like to own any of it, just comment below, I’ll send it to you, and we can work out some type of payment plan or something.

Here is a selection of just a few of the coin earrings that we sell, made from real coins from around the world. They sell for $15 USD, and if you’re interested, just let me know. I took pictures of eight of our stock, from the beginning of the alphabet, and I will take more pictures – we have many more coins, and other items as well – and upload them here sometime. These coins are from Argentina, Australia, Austria, Bahamas, Barbados, Belize, Bermuda, and Bhutan. I’ll send them anywhere…any takers?

Ooh la la

4

Still Hanging On…

It’s been some time since I’ve posted an update, but I’m still hanging in there. I proctored my final final exam for my Theater 120 students yesterday morning, and got a little sunburned walking around town afterwards. Most of the past 48 hours have been spent catching up on chores and getting some reading done. I finished a book and I’m close to finishing another. The one I finished wasn’t that great, but the ones I’m reading now are definitely review-worthy, so stay tuned.

7

Is It Time Yet?

Time is a tricky thing, you know?

We all know that it flies when you’re having fun, and stands still when you have those moments of fear or tedium. But it does keep going on.

I admit, I have not been keeping myself on the strictest or most efficient time schedule these days. My sleeping patterns are way off, I’ve been eating random things at random times – for example, I just had a peanut butter and jelly sandwich, and am defrosting some chicken – and self-care has definitely fallen by the wayside. On Friday, I went to the gym for the first time in a few weeks and although I didn’t feel gross or sick afterwards, I definitely felt weaker. I’ve actually missed any exercise for the last few days, other than worrying, because of my dissertation proposal, which I turned in at 2:00 this morning, and my immense stack of grading, which I should probably be doing now instead of typing this blog and pretending like I have more time.

But anyway, real talk. It just seems like time is never on one’s side. I know that I’m not the only person who has grading and work pile up at the end of the semester. Yet there is this feeling of an avalanche that’s either falling or about to fall, right on the edge. Or something like that. And it seems like my time is just measured in increments of activities, deadlines, and due dates, and then…well, I don’t know exactly what, but if I don’t find some employment past June, I guess I’ll find out, and then maybe I’ll look back with fondness on times like this when I can’t even stay on the same train of thought because I’ve got so much going on in my mind.

And it’s only Monday. Three days of grading, teaching, and meetings are ahead of me, followed by a relatively free Friday, then a busy Saturday, proctoring an exam in the morning and doing Salsa Saturday at night. Then, next week is my dissertation proposal defense…I can’t even think about that right now…and then I can at least attempt to shape the rest of my time, at least for the summer…

How do you deal with time?

1

Staying In and Getting Real Night, Part 6

Another Sunday night, another Golden Girls marathon. It’s the episode where Stan becomes attached to a toy monkey, so mute goes the television. Time for staying in and getting real.

So what’s new with you? I’m stressed, as usual, and there’s noise coming from the hallway which will become a real problem if I feel like going to sleep anytime soon. I had a bad week last week in terms of healthy eating, so I skipped the dance team dinner at Great Dane, yet managed to come home from Whole Foods with not only almond butter, protein, and veggies but also a container of gummy stars to reward myself for…well, nothing.

Which brings me to my next topic, or lack thereof. Dissertation. I have a meeting coming up in 2 days to talk about it, and I still have no idea what “it” is, or will be. I’m pretty much at the same place I was four years ago. I thought I’d have it all figured out by now. I feel like I’m probably going to end up googling “how to pick a dissertation topic” because yeah, I should probably start working on that idea sheet. I mean, I have a few ideas, but nothing really concrete enough to gel into a game plan. Granted, it’s still (closer to) the beginning of the semester, and I guess if all else fails I can change my topic. I do know what I don’t want to do; even though I really enjoyed researching the Romani of Central Europe and their performance practices, I feel like I’ve probably exhausted 95% of the sources available to me. Probably very few new books on the topic have come out in the last few years, if any at all. I was even surprised to find one article of interest, in a Canadian journal. Even though language barriers are tough to overcome, ethnic barriers are nearly impossible, and I honestly think that there’s a certain point that I, as a white American, cannot penetrate, either for ideological reasons or because there’s simply nothing on record.

I really want more gummy stars but at 11 PM I said to myself, no more for the night.

Dinner was a lazy salad – threw together some lettuce, onions, cucumbers, Craisins, and tomatoes in a tupperware, tossed it with oil/vinegar/lemon juice, and called it dinner. Not too satisfying, but I’ve got some sparkling water to hopefully sate myself.

I know these posts are super boring and totally against the original purpose of this blog, but what are you going to do. At least it’s real talk and not just pointless word vomit, a la LiveJournal.

Oh, and in other news, I got some reading done today, outdoors even, and I’m close to finishing two books, and I haven’t even finished a single one since February started, so that’s something.

Okay, time to zen out and meditate in order to dissertate. Ommmm….

0

Sweat + Small Stuff = …

It’s almost midnight, once again, and I got back from two hours at the gym about twenty minutes ago.

As I am actually sweating, today was just one of those day where the small stuff really made me sweat, with a few panicky moments.

For starters, today was one of my favorite days of the semester, Mafia Day, where I get to discuss the play Trifles with my sections, and reward them with a game of Mafia to bring out their acting skills. In my first section of the day, it was pretty much dead (no pun intended), but in the second section, it got rowdy, boisterous, and fun, with wild accusations being thrown across the room, friends becoming enemies, enemies becoming friends, and of course, in the last few minutes of class, I screwed up the game.

We were down to 11 students: 4 mafia (1 had been discovered) and 7 townies. The two students up for “the pit” were the Milliner, who was innocent, and the Lounge Singer, who was in the mafia. The vote was cast, and 6 hands went up for Milliner, and 6 for the Lounge Singer. I was confused, but then someone pointed out that the Librarian (who’d been killed in the round prior) had stuck her hand up for the Lounge Singer, so her vote did not count, putting the Milliner in the pit by a vote of 6-5. Unfortunately, stupid me got caught up in the heat of the moment and announced that the Lounge Singer had been killed when it had been the Milliner. That mistake caused the Lounge Singer to reveal that he was in the mafia, significantly changing the outcome of the game: now, 3 mafia and 6 townies were left alive. We only had about one minute remaining, so in the fourth round, obviously the mafia chose to kill the Milliner since I obviously did not do a good job of it, leaving 3 mafia and 5 townies. A quick round of accusations resulted in the Town Mayor and the Welder up for “the pit” (which didn’t matter, since both were innocent), ultimately ending our game with 3 mafia and 4 townies. Had the game been able to continue from that point, the mafia would have one final chance to win, if they were to successfully nominate and vote out one more townie, they would gain control and win the game; but the remaining townies could also have won as well if they managed to guess correctly.

If we press the rewind button, and I’d announced the correct death, we’d have been down to 4 mafia and 5 townies. Again, same scenario as above, only with fewer people dying. Either way, it’s likely that the mafia probably would have won, but the surviving townies were rather outspoken and might have knocked off the remaining mafia, who were all keeping to themselves.

Fail on me, number one.

The next two were even smaller, but still stung: first, as I walked into my office, I heard a crunch – I stepped on an assignment that one of my office-mate’s students had slipped under the door, tearing a hole in it with my boot. I fired off an apologetic email to my office-mate (who was gracious enough to respond, saying that it was not my fault), and went to copy said torn paper. On my way to the copy room, I walked past one of the other offices. Its door was propped open, and it was dark inside, which is quite unusual. Knowing that there were several expensive things in that room (a desktop computer, a coffee maker, personal items), I knocked on the door, causing the light to turn on…startling one of my colleagues, who was taking a quick nap at his desk. I shrank back and apologized for disturbing him, even though he told me that the door was propped open because he was expecting a student anyway.

Ay-yay-yay. I gotta stop saying that.

And I gotta stop sweating the small stuff, once I apologize to my student for accidentally pushing him into the pit.

6

Need A Cure for Kicking the TV Habit? Get Sick

Hey y’all, or as my immune system might say, “hnff heck hack.”

It wasn’t working in a germ factory, or even going out with a wet head that got me congested and sniffly, but I think it might have had to do with some spicy fries I ate on Saturday night after Salsa Saturday and could still taste Sunday afternoon. Ever since then, I’ve been mostly just sniffling, with a few minor coughs and a sneeze here and there. It feels like I have water in my nose, and that my eyes just want to close. I’m not sure that it’s a sore throat, because cough drops only irritated it more. Today, while teaching my first class, I had a fit of hacking, at the end of which I pronounced “brb, dying,” and after one or two more coughs, pronounced myself dead.

But hey, when you’re teaching Samuel Beckett and the Theatre of the Absurd, it works.

Anyway, all I wanted to do after I got home from school and meetings was to lie down on the couch and watch TV.

Except…

THERE’S. NOTHING. ON.

I flip through channels, and go through the TV guide, and…nothing appealing. When I’m well, there are all sorts of things that I’d like to watch but either don’t have the time to or just forget about. But of course, when I want to relax and watch something good, all that’s on: sports, weather, news, infomercials, crappy Christmas movies (which could be its own generator, future post idea!), televangelists, murder dramas, pointless reality shows, and whatever’s on the Spanish channel.

I could go to bed early, or read or lesson plan or something, but I think I’ll just write a blog post about it and see where it goes.