Good things recently.

[If you aren’t into the whole “glass half-full” thing, you might want to leave now.]image

 1. Being sick: You may be thinking “But illness is generally a bad thing….,” to which I say,  yes, it does suck. Especially when your ears are completely stuffed up and you have a Latin final during a time when you wish you could be at home watching re-runs and trying not to get sucked into the abyss of a head cold. But, what does not suck is when you start feeling better, and every day you wake up you feel progressively more like a human being again. Ah, to be able to appreciate the everyday normal workings of one’s sinuses. Plus, whenever I start getting down about my allergies (which are at their best right now, as I live in the capital of tall-growing sneezy grasses) I remember that they aren’t as bad as the recent evil cold.

image Ok, so I don’t have a window, but still…

2. New Job! So, as of this week, teaching English 99 will soon be over. Classes themselves are officially over. No more lectures about topic sentences and thesis statements, no more fervent 1a.m. grading sessions. I’m a bit sad not to be teaching at SSU anymore, but I was also getting a bit weary of it all. But, I will not be unemployed in the Fall – you’re looking at (well, reading at) SSU’s newly-appointed WEPT person. Which means an office upgrade; I get my very own little office (with a door and everything!) in a corner of SSU’s administrative building with which to do lovely WEPT-related tasks. I can only thank God (or the patron saint of employment, whatever) for giving me a reason to be away from home and to have a space of my own (well, for a time anyway) at school where I may escape into the small, bureaucratic world of filing, phone answering, and email replying. 

3. Finishing Latin: One whole year, down! Now to decide if I want to submit myself to the slightly-masochistic realm of language one again. I’m also considering French…whenever I look into Ph.D programs the language requirement makes me feel rather inadequate as an intellectual. I’ll work on it.

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4. Europe Trip: Less than 2 weeks away! Am I freaking out a little? Yep. Am I still in disbelief that I’m going, and that I actually have the money to pay for it myself? Indeed. Very, very excited.

5. Gluten-Free Cinnamon-Sugar Donuts: Enough said.

Overall, general bounciness. I still have a pile of work to do before the semester ends, but there’s light at the end of the tunnel. A super-shiny-travelly-light.

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It’s odd how the end of the job search can be so sudden and yet, at the same time, very anti-climactic. in After searching for a summer job since February, after attending several interviews which seemed very lovely but came to no success (I blame not being hired for summer camps because of all the teachers flooding the job market) I finally got a call: Someone wants me.

And mind you, this is not my dream job. This does not utilize my UC degree, nor my grad school-skills, and has no real place in my future. However, it will get me out the house while my father, returning from UCI for the summer, stays in my house. (Plus it will pay the bills for my new very fantastic cell phone. Yip!) But economic beggars can’t be choosers, it seems. Plus I get to play with clothes all day.

So I received the call that I was hired on May 23rd, and was told I would start on June 1st. Great, I thought. Just enough time to lay around being bored, I thought. HA! they said. Not so fast. Fast forward to Monday, when they call and say that I’m now going to have to come in June 9th and 11th instead. Honestly, by the time it takes to find a summer job, get hired, and go through paperwork and training, there is no more summer left!

(Though they don’t know I’m only planning to work the summer…it’s not like I’m going to jeopardize school and teaching for a little more than minimum wage.)

When you know you’re going to have to work soon, but not too soon, it first seems like freedom. Then, the freedom turns into something like anticipation, which turns to furrowed brows and yelling “Just start already!!”

Also, I think the weather has become aware that I recently acquired a watercraft that should be used in warm weather. How come finals week has an extreme heat wave, and summer is filled with wind and rain? Hmmmm?

Thus I have spent more time indoors, shopping indoors, and working out indoors. This is an odd thing; have you ever discovered some random muscle that is completely weak compared to the rest of your body? As in the machine on the lowest weight setting feels like you’re lifting an anvil? Just wondering…

To explain, no sum up, I re-watched The Princess Bride again last night. Oh, the awesomeness.  Following is a chart describing said awesomeness. That is all.

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Oh blog, I have long neglected thy pages!

Do you ever have those moments when you really feel like writing, but there is so much going on in your life, and your head, that you can’t seem to even start? Thus is my life.thesis

But, thus will not be my life in a week or so, when I am done with my first year of grad school, and can retire to a summer of brainless loafing. Bear in mind, however, that my definition of ‘brainless’ involves reading and doing prep work for my thesis next year.

Add in the fact that my little, serene house is soon to be invaded by the men in my life, and will be rather crowded for the summer, at least. But, while my dad is up here taking up MY space, I may just have to flee south to his empty Irvine apt, to sit on the nice warm beach for awhile. We’ll see.

But good news! Picture me on Monday, quite exhausted from having writer’s block (or writer’s laziness, who am I kidding) till about 1am when I proceeded to write my recent article report for class, and stayed up till 4am doing so. (Why oh why do I get a second wind at about 12:45am? It freaks with my sleep schedule.)  Sitting on my bed, dripping coffee into my veins, and checking my email to find that SSU had finally made a decision about the teachers for next year. And I am happy to report that next Fall I will be joining the ranks of the ever-exhausted and underpaid grad student  who teach freshman comp, otherwise known as English 99!

Get me with my very own little group of resistant students and (shared) office hours. Am I excited? Does a bear…oh you know the rest.

Perhaps the best thing about this news is that I’m going to get the chance to see what I want to do with my life, to see if teaching is really going to be my future. Hopefully I will not be discovering this during the 8am class – I will be flitting between grogginess and caffeine highs, not so good.  Recently all my efforts to find a summer job have come to no success, and I was beginning to think that I was un-hirable. The crazy thing is that I could always find a simple job before, so maybe the economy is really that bad, or maybe the job market is being flooded. OR maybe no one wants to hire grad students? I rationalize that they just don’t want to be around someone smarter than them all the time (let me cling to my last shred…). But, thank God, apparently I’m not like the employee plague –someone wants me!

And really, I need the summer to decompress, because right now, my brain is being squeezed through the academic equivalent of a sieve.  So what’s left to do…finish my article on the history of medieval writing instruction (20 pages), write my last paper for the publishing and  politics class (6 pages), and write my paper for the English garden class (a very painful 15-20 pages). If in two weeks my next post is incoherent and full of stupid grammar mistakes, take pity on me. I gave at the grad school office.

But oh, the weather is calling me outside. The rain and fog has finally gone away, and the sun is predicting at 73 degree day. Now why do I have to go to class in a room with no windows? 

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I think everyone should make it a practice to google themselves once in awhile, just to see what kinds of things turn up. Of course, this would be much more difficult if your name is John Smith. Fortunately, I seem to be the only person with my exact name in cyberspace.

This brings up the bigger issue of how much people can find out about us just by clicking a mouse. Which becomes even more important when these people are employers, or other judgmental folks.  And one should know if their blog about how much they hate corporate America or how wasted they were Saturday night pops up with a simple search.

But what really scares me is if people are checking credit reports, because, honestly, my credit is not so great. I’m putting myself through college and grad school, so what do they expect? Debt is just a detail. But how much weight are employers really putting into these things? In today’s not-so-lovely, ever slimming job market, can someone’s bad credit or student loans really cause them to lose  possible job? It’s a whole new resume-frontier that you can’t fake, and it frankly a bit unjust. A person is not their credit, and if a late payment on a credit card overrides a college degree with highest honors then there is something wrong with this world.

Sometimes I envy those folks who put all their profiles, etc to private and basically stop all speculating; they achieve some kind of internet mystery. Frankly, I don’t really put anything out there that I would never want anyone to see; doesn’t that go against the web’s grain? If you don’t want your friends to see that you’re bashing them on someone’s wall, maybe you shouldn’t do it. Of course, no one wants their boss to know everything – there’s a professional line there.

Now what was my point here? Ok, I’ll be honest, it’s fun to snoop around on other’s people’s profiles sometimes – you all know you do it. So when someone puts a wall up, it’s annoying – maybe even pretentious?

I suppose I’m going to have to join these people soon though; if I’m a college teacher I can’t let my students see my status update that declares how annoying their paper are. Because facebook is no place for honesty, right?