Monday, February 18, 2008

No excitement here...

Sorry for being silent last week. I had a migraine...all week. Yes, that's right. I had a migraine for 6 days. I couldn't focus or read, and I wanted to chop my head off. Nothing worked -- prescription migraine meds, Excedrin, hot baths, cold compresses, chiropractor visit -- nothing. I ended up canceling classes on Thursday because I just couldn't deal, and I felt so nauseous. I think it's gone now. But it could just be teasing me.

Had an uneventful weekend. We stayed home, and I just chilled in my comfy chair. I managed to read a little of the new Stephen King on Saturday. I went grocery shopping yesterday...I know, very exciting.

I don't have school today, thankfully. I'm going to get caught up on grading and prepping. Good times.

TBR Challenge -- 1 and 2 Finished

I'm a bit late in blogging about these...

#1: The House of the Seven Gables by Nathaniel Hawthorne
Finished: 1/7/08
Rating: B

I'm a big fan of Hawthorne's work -- I count The Scarlet Letter as one of my favorite books of all time. I adore his short stories and include them in my classes whenever I can. But for some reason, even though I had visited the real life house in Salem (highly recommend to anyone who visits there...I love Salem), I ignored this novel for years. Hence, adding it to my TBR Challenge list.

It was...OK. It didn't hold my attention in some chapters, and I was confused by some of the supernatural elements. But there were some sections that were just spectacular. The classic Hawthorne elements are there -- the past haunting the present, witchcraft, guilt, families suffering because of the deeds of their ancestors, etc. If you're new to Hawthorne, check out The Scarlet Letter first.

#2: The 158-Pound Marriage by John Irving
Finished: 1/21/08
Rating: D

I adore John Irving. I re-read A Prayer for Owen Meany every year (yes, I'm weird). I love The Cider House Rules and The World According to Garp. So I thought I'd love this one, too. Nope. Not at all.

The sex and swinging in the novel didn't bother me, though it was a bit much at times. I just didn't get the point. I think Irving was examining love, marriage, sex, relationships, etc...but I don't know what the point was. It was a struggle to finish the book, really. It was just a klunker.

Monday, February 11, 2008

Monday already?

I'm not ready for it to be Monday. Especially a Monday that starts off with a migraine and a clogged toilet. Seriously, what did I do to deserve this?

As usual, I have no time for a real post. I have to prep for my class this afternoon (yes, I'm a slacker) and grade papers for tomorrow. Because of the migraine, my eyes are killing me, so the last thing I want to do is look at a computer screen or read papers.

Had an OK weekend. Had yummy Thai food on Saturday, spent time with my parents on Sunday, started the new Stephen King novel...good times.

Back to work...

Friday, February 8, 2008

That's why we build a wall...

I've been sitting here for about fifteen minutes, munching on cashews and peanuts, staring at this blank box, wondering what to write. I'm not sure I have anything to say today. When my students say that same thing in response to a write assignment, I suggest that they freewrite or brainstorm (clusters are my favorite). Maybe I should do the same.

Maybe the problem isn't that I have nothing to say, but rather I don't know what to say. My little brain has been very active all week, thoughts mixing and twisting with the tide as I teach, eat, watch tv, grade, etc. There's a lot going on. I just don't know what to say about it.

Our trip to Ithaca last weekend to see Ani was a good time. She just blows me away every time I see her. We had second row seats -- I don't know how I got so lucky. I'm not so sure I belong at concerts anymore, though. I get so easily annoyed by the people dancing and singing around me. I didn't pay to hear the drunk girl in the "Ani for President" shirt sing painfully off-key in my ear. It just pissed me off. I guess I'm just getting old.

Anais Mitchell opened for Ani. It was my first time seeing/hearing her, and I just fell in love with her voice. When she stepped onstage, I realized that she was the girl I almost ran over while trying to make an illegal right turn on red in front of the theater before the show.

Since one of her songs has been in my head all week, I'll leave you with this...

Friday, February 1, 2008

I feel...

Well, today didn't turn out (so far) like I expected it to. Which is good and bad.

My advisor woke me up at 8am (yes, I'm slacker). She called to cancel our appointment for this afternoon. We're having some weather (ice, rain) and she wasn't going to campus today. This was a good thing. I wasn't prepared or in the mood to meet today.

The bad thing is that due to the weather Chad and I decided not to leave for Ithaca tonight. From what I can tell, the roads we were due to travel are pretty crappy. And I don't feel like dying. So as much as I was looking forward to chilling in Ithaca tonight, I think we made the right choice. We'll get up early (always difficult for us) and hit the road.

I haven't done anything productive at all today. I've just been putting cd's on my iPod (currently The Sundays, whom I haven't listened to in years). I really should take advantage of this found time to get caught up on my Plath reading...and grading...and prepping...

You is weird. There are moments I want to pinch myself to make sure I'm not dreaming. I have everything (well, almost...I still need to get published) I ever wanted. I'm teaching where I always wanted to, working with folks that I admire. Every time the Dept Chair calls me his colleague, or tells people that I'm a "phenomenal professor" (which I suspect he does only when I'm around), it makes me giggle. I mean, I used to be his student. And now I'm a colleague.

I just wish I could get rid of that little voice who wonders if I truly deserve all of this.

OK. I'm going to get to work. Title of the new poem I'm working on: "Mourning Bacon."