Monday, February 26, 2007

"Today is your Birthday"

Three decades on the planet today. I thought about doing an introspective, where did I think I was going to be, where do I think I'm going to end up. But now that sounds horribly depressing.

So maybe I'm ready for a things I'd like to do before I die list. That doesn't sound cheerful either. Finish formal education, travel, and get published; it really hasn't changed since high school. Add get healthy to leave longer--I didn't forsee being in as much pain as I'm in now.

My coworkers are treating me to lunch. I'm probably going to treat myself to dinner and a Ghost Hunters marathon unless my parents have other ideas for tonight. And memorize Bilbo's birthday speech. That'll be fun for my 40th.

Read Free!
The BookWorm

There is a new renaissance festival in Louisiana! Check out the Acadiana Medieval Faire at:

Sunday, February 25, 2007

Maybe I grossed everyone out

Hormones are finally balancing out through birth control chemistry. I also cut back on the caffine today, been having way too much lately.

So homework-wise, I've got progress! Finished this week's readings, finished the reading response, have the rough draft of the mini-research project done. What's left to do is 500 words on Zy's Novel and I'll be done for the week. Now I do have to get the cooking show scripts mostly done before I can do any more homework, and that's pretty much the end of the list.

I am worried about the cooking show, that's why I've procrastinated on them so long. I've never written anything like that before. All my other scripts have had a concrete location and characters. And of course my perfection gene is rearing it's ugly head. It's my baby, it's never been done on the circuit before, it MUST BE PERFECT! Yeah, a perfect receipe for writer's block and stage fright.

Anyways, the sixth reading response for ENGL-646.

I’ve given up trying to discuss this class with my boyfriend. Every time I get the grumpy old man response: “those stupid brats know nothing so they are being taught nothing; fire everybody and start the brats over with the basics because the stupid brats don’t know any basics and will remain stupid until they master the basics.” Not in so many words but that’s the attitude. And how many agree with me that 35 is too young for the grumpy old man routine? Judging by all the reading we’re doing, it’s a common feeling out in the public and maybe too common within. All the slang, all the leet-speak, all the text message shortcuts; we’re raising a pack of wild animals that will turn on us like Lord of the Flies. They’re not human; they can’t communicate. And it’s the teacher’s fault they can’t communicate.

Ignoring the blatant ageism to think about it logically, there are problems with teaching and improvements to be made—there always is—but are kids fundamentally more stupid than the generation before? As a group of course not. Are teachers deliberately teaching bad writing? No of course not, but that is what the back-to-basics argument implies. And how many doing the yelling want to fund actual reform that doesn’t look like anything they had going to school? One of the articles that I found doing the mini-research project proposed a solution of separate classes in high school instead of the broad “English” class that has to cover everything: a literature class, a grammar class, a writing class. Because they are different things. I think it was the same article that claimed most parents dismiss any changes or modernization to the classroom because subconsciously they feel it invalidates the experience they had. Maybe the joke “you have to suffer through school because I suffered through school” really isn’t a joke.

The only teaching I have done was the writing tutorials on writing fanfics, and I didn’t introduce grammar elements until after we had covered brainstorming, plot, characters, description, scenes, narration, Mary Sues, etc. and the ESL writers asked for more clarification on terms. So my own experience matches whichever article we read that said you can’t teach editing until there is something to edit. With that in mind, the essay I liked best out of this week’s reading is “The Study of Error” by David Bartholomae. The first of his points to strike me was how we as readers turn off our critical skills and dismiss writing with errors as rubbish and the writer must be an idiot to write rubbish, which is what I think my boyfriend is doing. Study the errors (Bartholomae gives a good breakdown to how to start doing that) and figure out where the real problem lies. My tutorials were a crude method of doing that, since so many of the errors I saw were not understanding the fundamentals of telling a story.

I may have exaggerated Chad's grumpy old man routine, but it does get damned annoying. While I have no particular desire to reproduce and raise, I don't hate kids. Some of it may be ex-teacher bitterness too. *Shrug*

What I'm finding rewarding about this class is how it is validating my personal experience. Despite the lack of feedback in the end, despite the occassional nasty replies calling me a language fascist, despite my unpublished expertise, I was doing good with those tutorials. Maybe even some theory-sound work without getting bogged down in the theory. Mind you, I'm not ready to pick them back up and start writing them. But at least I don't feel that they were a total waste of time and just me preaching to the choir.

Read Free!
The BookWorm

There is a new renaissance festival in Louisiana! Check out the Acadiana Medieval Faire at:

Friday, February 23, 2007

Lousy timing

At the risk of turning off all male readers of my blog (I actually think I just have one and he just had a baby), I need to bitch about my damn cycle.

Haven't had one since November, explained the condition, and got some progestern from the doctor to kick start it. Took the medication but nothing happened, so by this morning I'm contemplating having to go back to the doctor when I get the clean bill of health on the pap smear and HPV test. Head to work, running late thanks to stupid wreck ahead of me, and feeling lousy thanks to those proto-starting cramps. Those have been giving me false alarms since last Friday, but today it's actually productive.

Yeah, no doctor trip. Boo, I have no pads in my black laptop bag. None.

I find one in the car. My last one and it's for a thong. Course, I'm not wearing a thong today, so I can only hope it will last until I get home, where I have a stockpile of them. *Sigh*

In other news, I think I figured out what was going on with the scene I was stuck in. I'm at home this weekend due to weather, so I'm hoping to get a huge chunk of writing and homework done. At least get Chapter Nine done, and read what other people have submitted for revision.

Not really news, but the Doctor Who obsession continues unabashed. I figured out a crossover with Biker Mice. *Headdesk* Oh, I'll never write it--mainly because the Plutarkians aren't a worthy adversary for the Doctor--but I'm considering a cameo for the last Biker Mice story in the Wars Are Won series. Still I like this exchange between Throttle and the Doctor, and figured I'd share since you put up with me grossing you out.

Throttle: "But you're a Time Lord. You could make sure this whole mess never even started."

The Doctor: "And if there had been no war with the Plutarkians, where would you be? I doubt with an Earthling mechanic in Chicago would be one of your choices. Besides, I am the last one you should ask. All of my people sacrificed themselves to stop the Daleks in the Time War and those exterminators still pop up. Get rid of the Cybermen and somebody reinvents them. Deal with the Plutarkian menace on your own, you stand a better chance of defeating them for good. And you will defeat them."

Read Free!
The BookWorm

There is a new renaissance festival in Louisiana! Check out the Acadiana Medieval Faire at:

Wednesday, February 21, 2007

Is there a rule it has to rain on Ash Wednesday?

I know it's the one weather pattern you can count on in Louisiana, but I think it has been a trend for the past few years. And it's hard enough coming back to work with an odd day off without the wet stuff.

Tomorrow I should be withdrawn from the Thursday night class. Despite how I feel about the class, my schedule isn't cooperating and getting out before I do something to a professor is probably for the best. I would have already done it, but the paperwork requires more signatures. And he doesn't have office hours on Friday, Monday, Tuesday was a holiday, and couldn't get an appointment for today. So hopefully I can drop in tomorrow and then turn in the sheet. And if that doesn't work, I'll go with a medical stress leave.

Okay, back to writing. I need 500 words before class.

Read Free!
The BookWorm

There is a new renaissance festival in Louisiana! Check out the Acadiana Medieval Faire at:

Wednesday, February 14, 2007

More health fun

Got the dreaded pelvic exam over with yesterday and got diagnoised with PCOS. The short answer is my hormones are out of whack due to insulin resistance and messing up with my ovulation. What does that mean specifically for me? I get all the fun shit like pimples and PMS but no bleeding to show why I need to bite people's heads off, and a four month wait till my appointment with an endocrinologist. And they want me to start pricking my finger every day.

And a happy Valentine's Day to you too.

Read Free!
The BookWorm

There is a new renaissance festival in Louisiana! Check out the Acadiana Medieval Faire at:

Sunday, February 11, 2007

Damn almost two weeks

Since my last update. No wonder I'm getting emails. ;)

Actually up to the eyeballs in reading assignments. ENGL-646 "Teaching Creative Writing" is actually turning out to be a good, useful class--even if it's bogging me down with the reading right now. ENGL-650 "African-American Drama" is not, and I'm ready to disengage. Unfortunately, I can't withdraw and have to pay back the financial aid I've already spent. Current plan is to suck it up until March, when it will be too late for Financial Aid department to demand it back.

Writing has gotten distracted by a Doctor Who fest. I've been bad. But I surprised myself actually. I was one of the Americans introduced by Tom Baker via PBS, but when I actually caught an episode (they aired it insanely late in those days) I loved to watch it but always felt that I was never in the know. I wanted to be sucked in. I was a sci-fi fan and demanded to be sucked in, but it never clicked. The Eighth Doctor's TV movie floored me, but nothing ever happened with it, and I moved on. Fell in love with "Doctorin' the Tardis" during college days. Vaguely, heard about a new series and Ninth and now Tenth Doctor, and "oh well, I'll get around to it eventually."

Then Andrew Sullivan posted a fanvid blending Delak from the new series with the French soldier's dialogue from Monty Python's Quest for the Holy Grail. It's on YouTube, go looking for French Delak. Then I went clicking on other YouTube fanvids. And found this one.

Friday I bought the 2005 season on DVD and had to reason with myself not to buy 2006 because of funds.

Now having finished those episodes I'm so very thankful for British eight-year-olds. The producers aimed the very intelligent show at them and knowing that all they would know (if anything) would be Doctor is an alien and time travels in a blue box. There's still the mystery and the wonder and the excitement that I picked up on as a kid, but no longer the sense of missing something.

Okay, and it doesn't hurt that I wouldn't mind jumping Nine or Ten's bones. Sorry, Four, you just don't ooze sexy.

Ahem, also spending more time in Lafayette. I was there yesterday, and got a reprieve for today because of the massive piles of reading. We're having to do massive amounts of cleaning to the wooded area, but it will be worth it. I will post our work-in-progress pictures when I get some.

And my friends Billy amd Misty have successfully reproduced. Kay Lily born February 9th weighing 9 and half pounds. I'm going to have to get some time to travel to Florida, but I also have time to make the trip, since I'm perfectly willing to let Misty's family go first. Though I feel bad about not being there as backup to send them back to Louisiana.

Drat, have laundry to deal with and then I need to go to bed and get my schedul back on schedule.

Read Free!
The BookWorm

There is a new renaissance festival in Louisiana! Check out the Acadiana Medieval Faire at: