Tonight, while organizing my notes in preparation for orals preparation (yes, you read that right), I rediscovered the journal I had to keep for my seventh-grade English class. I had snagged this gem from my old bedroom while staying at my parents' over Christmas, and I'd forgotten to give it a look until tonight. So of course I skimmed a few entries in lieu of doing my pre-work work (yes, you read that right).
The prompt for one entry was to write a story about "the smallest creature [I] could think of." I titled mine "Amoeba," which caught my eye because two summers ago I adopted "Amoeba" as a my totem creature (after Reese decided that "Ghost" was an unacceptable answer). I even identified the Amoeba as my totem when asked this question in a graduate seminar last year.
Anyway. The actual story kind of slays me. Without further ado, I present, after many years in obscurity,
The amoeba swam back and forth through the drop of water, bitterly resenting that it was a one-celled creature. Suddenly, along came an overdeveloped protozoa. It looked so big—could have been two whole cells!—and it looked hungry. It swam toward Amoeba. Amoeba shrunk away in fear, only to be swallowed whole by the protozoa. Amoeba felt himself being hurled through a tunnel of darkness. Then the darkness broke into light, and before Amoeba knew it, God was standing before him in all His glory. God was disappointed in the way Amoeba had lived his life, so He decided to reincarnate Amoeba as a human as punishment. If Amoeba lived his human life well, then maybe he could go to heaven. Amoeba begged and pleaded with God not to be so cruel, but His mind was made up. Amoeba came back as a human. Amoeba’s human life was of hardship and misery. He wished desperately that he had appreciated his one-celledness while he had it. But he lived to be good. He finally went to Heaven, where he thanked God over and over for not making him stay on Earth as a human for all eternity.
I think I might just post these seventh-grade journal entries as blog posts until I run out of funny/irritating/asinine ones. Then when that happens, I might just take this blog down. Or look for other journals. Maybe other people's journals.
For the first time since Spring Break, I'm takin' these old bones across state lines. That's right friends, foes, and acquaintances with whom I maintain tepid-to-lukewarm relations--I'm going away for the weekend!
Sarah and I, along with Dave and Adrienne, depart for Madison tomorrow evening. I hope to lay both eyes and paws (with any luck, some other parts as well...!!!) upon many sorely missed friendlies; however, Rah and Ebeff are renting a room at the Day's Inn (classay!!!) out by the beltline, which will make a late night drink-a-thon highly unlikely. This is just as well, because we need to hit the road up to Baraboo on Saturday where our rental cabin awaits us.
Did I say "cabin"? Yeeeees.
Is it going to be cold and rainy this weekend? Yeeeees.
Will we allow that to ruin our "weekend away"? Haille no! I was raised to weather weather, kids. And who knows, perhaps I will earn a colorful badge that my mom will have to sew onto my sash. THEN who'll be the sucker!??
On a totally related note, for reasons I can't explain, this made me laugh until I cried. Then I stopped laughing. Then it made me laugh until I cried again.
Changin' things up for the weekend; you get your LOL cat first on Friday.
And so begins my first weekend as former adjunct faculty at Crapland Crap UniCrappity. Thanks all in advance for your congratulations. Anyway, weekend! So far,
1) Ventured out last night to see Greg and Bud play a set at Goodfoot, despite drifting in and out of alertness, afloat on a cloud of sleep deprivation. Finally walked home at 1 AM when I couldn't stay awake any longer. Slept until ELEVEN today. Yikes. Tonight, I will
2) Hit some balls (taking care to go easy on the limb currently suffering cripplitude), see a movie at the cheapie theater (where the beer-drinkin' is permitted--nay, encouraged), and go to bed early so I can
3) Get up at 6 AM on Saturday and watch the women's French Open finals. After that, I'll probably
4) Go to the farmer's market, hit some balls (taking care to go easy on the limb currently suffering cripplitude), show my face at a going away party, then go to bed early so I can
5) Get up at 6 AM Sunday and watch the men's French Open finals. After that, I'll probably
6) Get some breakfast, hit some balls (taking care to go easy on the limb currently suffering cripplitude), then
7) Shoot myself in the face for being such a boring loser.
Have a great weekend, everybody (meaning, all 1.7 of you)!
Anyhoo, I just ate some ice cream. Okay, not just "some" ice cream, but half a bloody pint of ice cream. And not just any old ice cream, but Ben & freaking Jerry's, the worst sunbstance you could possibly put in your body. And not only was it Ben & Jerry's but it was the first ice cream I've eaten since... since... GOOD LORD. I can't even remember when.
Was it good? You-hoo-hoo be-heh-heh-heh-het it wa-ha-ha-ha-ha-ha-has. Heh-heh-heh.
Do I want to die now? You-hoo-hoo be-heh-heh-het I do-hoo-hoo-hoo. Heh-heh. Heh. Oh god please help me.
After eating my ice cream I layed down on the couch, and I swear to god I could feel my heart straining to pump my thick-as-butter blood through the hardened arteries in my neck.
I can feel. My pulse. In my neck. My NECK. That shit can't be good.
So give it to me straight, sportsfans: can you give yourself a heart attack by eating half a pint of ice cream? I think I may have just killed myself. Good-bye, world!
Okay, that was a little melodramatic. But seriously, fuck ice cream. And look at this list, direct from the FDA:
Do you notice what's missing from that list? DO YOU NOTICE? Ice cream, that's what. Ice cream, bitches. Why? Because there's no fucking substitute. None on earth. DEVIL SUBSTANCE!
This poetry course constantly reminds me how concepts that come easily to some people can give other people vast difficulties and makes me appreciate my students' "ohhhhhhh I get it" moments when they seem to, oh I don't know, learn something. Well, not just learn something like "Wait--Walt Whitman was a HOMO?!?" I guess I'm referring more to when they suddenly understand or accept a concept that they had previously been unable to understand or had resisted for whatever reason.
THus I've been bemused lately at how literally I interpret things sometimes, or how I just jump straight to the super-stupid interpretation. My friend Andrew from college was even worse, hilariously so because he was a pretty smart guy in general. There's a Liz Phair song (that one that describes how her mother always reacts when she tells her she's seeing someone new) that goes, "I'm sending you his photograph / I swear this one is gonna last / And all those other bastards were ony practice...." As we sat on his roof one night, the stereo still audible from his apartment, that song came on and Andrew suddenly burst into giggles. I asked him to explain, and he refused, then after a little prodding, still giggling, said, "I always understood that line to mean 'Mom, I'm sorry all those other photographs of him got all faded' or shredded or whatever, 'Here's a better one that should last longer.'" Didn't connect it with the "other bastards" line at all, until that very moment. Ha!
Okay, this shit is probably only funny to a huge nerd (me), but I do the same goddamn thing, worse, and embarrassingly consistently. Especially considering that I spend four hours a week bullying my students into reading beyond the literal, it's ridiculous that E-dumb-abeth, for example, JUST got the "Gay Perry" nickname in Kiss Kiss Bang Bang. And I have always misunderstood the part from "God Only Knows" by the Beach Boys that goes: "I may not always love you / But long as there are stars above you / You never need to doubt it...". Guess what I have always thought that meant? Guess. Just guess. I thought it meant "I ONLY LOVE YOU AT NIGHT". (!!!!!) Geeeeezuz.
This summer as I paddled that first long crossing out to Sucia Island in the kayak, I was all scared and trembly and shit, and that fucking Coldplay song with the lines "You belong with me / Not swallowed in the sea" kept running through my head, which at first did not assist in calming me down. But I had to laugh when it dawned on me how borderline retarded it was to think of that song unironically when I was, quite literally, in danger of being swallowed in the sea (well, "in danger" meaning not safe on land, cocooned in a fluffy down comforter), completely ignorant of any "meaning" you're probably supposed to get out of those lines, the meaning that every asshole on the block probably thinks of when they first hear that song rather than thinking of THE ACTUAL SEA.
In short: I'm a moron! Let's revel in it. I want like stories of stupidity.
There is a girl whom I don't know sobbing hysterically, uncontrollably, outside my office door. She has been doing so for the last ten minutes, nonstop. It's breaking my heart.
I don't know if I should go out there (and offer her what? a stranger's bony-ass shoulder?) or let her be. If *I* were crying in a hallway and didn't know that a stranger in a nearby office could hear me, I would a) be mortified, and b) want to be left alone. Still, I feel like a robot sitting here grading papers while she cries and cries and cries.
What have we learned?
a) doesn't relate well to others.
b) has difficulty empathizing.
c) tends to waffle rather than take decisive action.
d) shouldn't wonder why the tag "ice queen" followed her across the country.
e) all of the above.
Also, please notice how ThElizabeff has managed to make this poor girl's sadness all about ThElizabeff.
Perhaps it's only due to the fact that, as Pitchfork puts it, "Oberst remains upbeat--almost optimistic-- employing none of his vocals' trademark warbles or weepiness." Or maybe it's due to the fact that I have lost all sense of direction. I'm gonna start to speak Sipiorski before you know it.
I don't teach on Monday, Wednesday, or Friday, and Tuesday was a snow day*, so technically I had a one-day work-week this week. Of course, the snow day blew all of Sunday's and Monday's prep work out the window, so I spent Wednesday reprepping to cram four hours of material into two hour lectures (for two courses), but on Snow Day proper, I enoyed quite the time with a bunch of work-free friends. My Father's Place bloody marys and free whiskeys at one o'clock in the afternoon can only lead to one narrative cliche: "hijinks ensued."
Thursday I worked, but more importantly: yesterday, exhausted by Thursday's teach-a-thon, I indulged in hours upon hours of Australian Open** action, on my new black leather sofa, with my kitty on my lap, with the dining room still not painted and laundry to do, the dishwater beeping to be emptied and the stomach growling to be fed, I just plain didn't move for hours and hours and hours. Didn't go to the gym as planned, didn't even brew coffee--made one cup on the crappy Senseo thing we got for Christmas, then J brought me a 12-ounce serving from Goldrush (the "coffee bar" he "works" at) at 2 pm or so (by which time I had already logged a good 4 hours of sitting). Jamey even made dinner, which is such a rarety that I had to stick my finger into the plate of food in front of me before I'd believe it was real.***
Don't let all this "I sat for hours" shit lead you to the mistaken conclusion that I am suicidally depressed or plan to buy a trailer and start smoking Kools. In light of all the fit hitting the shan lately, I have a tepid agreement with myself to lay low and stare vacantly out of windows until everything blows over. So that's what I'm doing. My point where y'all are concerned is that this bout of continous sitting means I FINALLY dumped a bunch of photos from NYE, NYEE, and NYEEE in Chicago (plus one measly photo from my trip to Madison) onto Flickr. So, you know, make me happy and check them out. More will gradually trickle on today, namely those preserving in digital The Great Frosting Fight of the 06/07 Divide.