Well, I sent in my last assignment of the year today, so I guess I must be done. I’m not sure if I trust myself to relax yet–I’ve been keyed up for too long, and I’m still waiting for the other shoe to drop in the apartment back in Irvine (I’ll tell that story later, but I don’t want to jinx it), but I’m very slowly starting to unwind, as it becomes clearer and clearer that it’s summertime, and I can play videogames and watch movies when I want. Time will come when I have to use my summer breaks for work, as well, but this one is mine and damn if I’m not going to waste it.
I’m expecting the same kind of adjustment when Julie gets back. The night before she left (the night I got back), she said, “It feels like I’m going to go away and come back, then you’ll go away, and so forth. It doesn’t feel like you’re going to stay.” That’s just how I feel: I’m not used to getting comfortable. But I’ve got time to get that back, starting in an hour and a half when she gets home.
Yet another sign that the Bush administration is becoming unhinged:
Cheney cusses out a Senator.
(CNN won’t give the actual word, but what Cheney told the Senator was that he should go fuck himself–which seems to fly in the face of that Constitutional Amendment he’s endorsing.)
Okay, enough griping–I’m ready for an optimistic entry. Seeing the Giants beat the Dodgers is enough to get some spring back in my step. I’ll be finishing my essay tonight, and hopefully wrapping up the last of my apartment issues, and then it will well and truly be summer.
I’ve got some decent plans for this summer. I’ve given myself a reading list, covering many of the books I really should have read by now (and some that, according to Sarah Lawrence syllabi, I really should have read). I want to work on getting my blog paper published, before it becomes completely obsolete. And I’ll have to revise a paper for my MA Review, which will be taking place in the upcoming year. Other than that: relaxing, with no real office work to get in the way (case in point: where do you think I’m writing this?).
And man am I happy to be out of Orange County. As I was packing things up on Saturday, the song “Little Boxes” kept running through my head. It took me a while to realize why: for two months, I get to live in the land of varied architecture. And “Fahrenheit 9/11” is playing on like 8 screens in the East Bay alone. I missed you guys.
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Well, here I am on summer vacation. How’s it been so far? I was up until 2 last night grading final papers, and I’ve got a paper to write in the next couple days. I’ve spent the last three days dealing with issues with the apartment I left behind, making sure from a distance that everything’s ready for my subletters (it isn’t, mostly my fault since I didn’t have time to tie up loose ends before leaving).
Of course it was great seeing Julie, while it lasted (she’s in Iowa until Saturday), and I like being in our new place. I want to relax and enjoy it. But being a grad student means never getting to say you’re done.
“All these years later, one somehow thinks of Ulysses as being of that day, June 16, 1904, though it was published in February 1922. It is still as defiant a comedy as ever, as fictional as a gazetteer, willing to make a hash of the genres its author inherited. … Ulysses has come to stand as the apogee of “elitist” literature, a novel that carries a kind of foreboding in its very title, the prospect of a hard road ahead. But there is really no less elitist novel in the English language. Its stuff is the common life of man, woman and child. You take what you can, loping over the smooth spots and pulling up short when you need to. Dedalus may indulge in Latinate fancy, and Joyce may revel in literary mimicry. But the real sound of this novel is the sound of the street a century ago: the noise of centuries of streets echoing over the stones.” —New York Times Editorial, June 16, 2004
“Every life is many days, day after day. We walk through ourselves, meeting robbers, ghosts, giants, old men, young men, wives, widows, brothers-in-love, but always meeting ourselves.” –James Joyce, Ulysses
Happy Bloomsday, everybody.
Finals time again, with a vengeance. (Vengeance for those bad final papers I turned in last quarter, presumably.) This quarter is a lot more manageable than last, since I’ve only got one large paper and one small one to complete, but it’s not really less stressful since I’ve got to clear out of the apartment and catch a plane on Saturday. Writing under a professor’s deadline isn’t fun, but it’s a lot more flexible than a 4:15 flight out of John Wayne. (The Orange County airport, if you didn’t know.)
Last time she was here, Julie asked me how my first year of grad school went. “I don’t know,” I said, and I really don’t. I’ve met some cool people, and I’ve read some important books (or I think I have, it all went by so fast), and I guess I must be learning how to do this. But it’s going to take some unhurried reflection, of the kind a summer data-entry job can provide, before I can see this year as something more than a string of due dates.
Movie recommendation: “Supersize Me.” This is that documentary about the filmmaker’s experiment wherein he ate nothing but McDonald’s for 30 days straight. The filmmaker is funny, energetic, and engaging, and the movie is really exuberant; at the same time, it’s disturbing, depressing, and disgusting at turns. About half of the movie is spent on the health problems he gets (he gets depressed, his liver turns to fat), the other half on the various factors behind obesity. It does the best job I’ve seen at discussing the obesity problem, showing the different ways unhealthy food is foisted on America without making the argument that none of the responsibility lies with us, or that obesity just doesn’t matter (obese children are far more likely to develop adult-onset diabetes, which can take 20 years off one’s life). And it’s really interesting and fun. So check that out.
Ladies and gentlemen, after seven years of being eligible for one, four years of saying I’m going to get one, and one year of saying this time, I’m really going to get one…
I have a driver’s permit.
Watch out, you 18-and-older licensed drivers sitting in passenger seats: it’s legally possible that I’m sitting next to you, driving the car under your instruction.
Michael Moore found a distributor for his movie.
You can view the trailer for it here. Or at least you could earlier today. Apparently the server’s been overloaded, which I suppose is kind of a good sign.
The movie comes out June 25. I’ll have to wait a couple days, though–Julie’s going to be out of town then, and she invoked movie fidelity on me. Amazingly, this is the first time I’ve experienced it personally.
Recent additions to the Neverending List of Magic Disappearances, Stanford Court, Irvine:
–The 50′ ethernet cord my roommate lent me at the beginning of the quarter. His parents needed it back; put quotes around any part of that you want. This goes a small way in explaining why I haven’t updated in so long. (A very small way–I got a new cable last Tuesday.)
–The forks. I ate fusilli with a spoon today. That doesn’t make a man feel like a chef.
Stay tuned! The list is Neverending!