the grid

the grid

Sunday 28 April 2019

Spring Intersession - week 5

Spring in the midwest was progressing nicely, with daffodils and cherry blossom, and then we got another snowstorm. So we'll see how things go. Will there be apple blossom, or did the buds freeze?

I have been trying to focus on my two main tasks, grading (blowing up bridges) and my Kalamazoo preparations (mapping), but other tasks (leathery-winged avians) keep coming my way, with greater urgency and earlier deadlines, which is why the battle imagery continues to appeal to me. Whiz-bangy things whistle past my head and I react and somehow continue to move forward, but I'm never quite sure what's going on.

The app from Monash that I use to figure out what I can eat safely has updated and possibly I have been poisoning myself with strong tea . . . weak is okay, but I like it stewed . . . on the other hand, I've been drinking strong tea throughout this low-FODMAP exploration, with long-ish symptom-free periods, and the app also claims that coffee and cocoa powder are okay but I have found that for me they are not. Chocolate made without cocoa solids is fine. It's all very strange. Here too I wander in territory that seems familiar yet throws up unexpected obstacles.

At any rate, I keep on keeping on, and in two weeks both the semester and K'zoo will have wrapped up and I'll be able to plan the summer! I'm not sure if this is a "Yay!" or an "Aaaagh!" A bit of both, I suppose, so chin up (or head down?) and onward with the explosives and the maps while ducking avians . . . Here are your goals from last week. How did you do?

Dame Eleanor Hull
Blow up two bridges.
Continue mapping main route and alternate route.
Keep fending off leathery-winged avians.
Tend to the needs of the talking cats.

heu mihi
1. Daily things x5: Exercise, language, writing, sitting (it's an aspiration). Continue to make progress on Amy.
2. Grad student support: Read prospectus & diss chapter.
3. Undergrad support: Return papers on Thursday, attend/help with Thursday evening event, read/watch and prep All The Things.
4. Service: Various curricular reviews, update majors sheet, email reminders about various things, check in about Spring 2020 schedule.
5. Knit 5 inches or so of sweater.

1 Really, write 500 words for Perform
2 Finish and submit book review
3 Another batch of grading
4 Do 2 paperwork batches for summer or fall

1) self-care - continue to drink a great deal of water. Be kind to self. Make Drs appt for early next week
2) check LikesMaths final version of paper for resubmission
3) review one article
4) ten rows of square
5) mark a little bit a day

1. Grade the papers (get it done Thursday)
2. Go to show my colleague is doing in the national park
3. Finish book for paper
4. Walk three times (it makes a big difference!)

Saturday 20 April 2019

Spring Intersession - week 4

Thanks DEH for posting last week when I was somewhat distracted by physical woes (which at least make a change from other kinds, I suppose)!  Nature has not yet "taken it's course" (I have a kidney stone and was sent home from the out of hours service with meds and instructions, of which that was the foremost) but as GEW promised it is not as unpleasant as it was.  I actually ate real solid food twice today and it stayed where it should be, which is clearly a bonus.  And concentrated enough to finish a nice cosy medieval mystery novel.  Which means I'm probably well enough that I should be feeling REALLY guilty about the all the marking I am now impossibly behind on... except it's a beautiful soft blossomy sunshine-and-breezes Easter weekend here in the UK, and I have annual leave in my diary for these few days... this job makes one insane!

One of the unfairnesses of the academic year cycle is that it's inhabitants don't get to properly relish spring.  The first shoots and milder airs bring midterms and final projects and last pushes to achieve grades and finish the year's projects, and it really does seem rather unfair to only see spring in glimpses around the edges!  I always enjoy the photos on Bev's blog here as she beings her readers along as the wildflowers appear each in turn (and feel kind of guilty for not getting out into the countryside here more often during these lovely months, but the pleasure of her stories and pictures far outweighs that).  Something else I promise future-retired-me... a spring of following stuff around with a camera, and an artist's eye.

"And take from seventy springs a score, it only leaves me fifty more" bemoaned the poet, who seems like a mere whippersnapper to me, as well as inconsiderate since the lines scan in such a way that swapping the fifty and score look like clumsy mis-recollection rather than intentional commentary!  If you have any energy for an on-topic comment, maybe share what signs of spring you've managed to see around the edges of the grading and the anxiety-soothing and the headless-chicken-running of the season...

One foot in front of the other!  We can do it!


DEHFinish taking out that half-destroyed bridge, and blow up another one.
Continue mapping my retreat route and alternate routes.
Take out a nest of leathery-winged avians.
Try to keep the talking cats happy, and retrieve some heavier boots if I can remember which cache they're in.

heu mihi1. Weekly things TWICE instead of x5 is FINE. Exercise, language, sitting.
2. I do want to write x4, though (and I've already done it x3, so this is manageable).
3. Knit at least a couple of inches of sweater.
4. Orchestrate all the minutia and try not to fall too far behind on email.
5. Call stupid Verizon if the internet isn't fixed by the time that I get home today.

1 Write total 500 words for Perform
2 Read 200 pages of next review book
3 Complete one batch of grading
4 Wrap up conference detritus 

JaneB (carried over)
1) self-care - focus on water, fruit & veg and doing something in the evening however crap I feel
2) draft the discussion for Problem Child 2 and send off to former PDF
3) ten rows of square
4) 1 small chore per evening, since my Decluttering Helper is coming on Saturday and I need to get back to where we left things...

1. Finish revisions to paper I am giving on Thursday
2. Grade papers
3. Read book
4. Walk twice

Sunday 14 April 2019

Spring Intersession - 3

Spring, hah! It's snowing chez moi (moi = DEH, in the American Midwest), which is better than the tornadoes and flooding people farther south are getting, so I guess I should shut up. It certainly adds an element of the pathetic fallacy to my story of the lonely scout trying to set up caches of supplies for an army, then fall back to her own lines, sabotaging bridges and otherwise thwarting the enemy as she goes. Then there's the problem of leaving footprints in the snow . . . although if it falls fast enough, the problem solves itself.

Anyway, goals for last week are as follows; how did you do on your expedition?

Lay explosives as above.
Blow up another bridge.
Continue mapping my retreat route and alternate routes.
Take out a nest of leathery-winged avians.

heu mihi
1. Weekly things x5: Exercise, write, language, sit
2. Service thing that fell into my lap
3. Plan for workshop
4. Request editorial meetings at Kalamazoo
5. Get to the point on the sweater where I divide for the arms

1. Write total 500 words for Perform
2. Read 200 pages of next review book
3. Complete one batch of grading
4. Wrap up conference detritus

1) self-care - focus on water, fruit & veg and doing something in the evening however crap I feel
2) draft the discussion for Problem Child 2 and send off to former PDF
3) ten rows of square
4) 1 small chore per evening, since my Decluttering Helper is coming on Saturday and I need to get back to where we left things...
or in fantasy terms:
1) ignore the mountains, focus on relacing my boots ready for getting on the road
2) pass the Annoying Squeaky Thing to someone else to hold for a little
3) add a few stitches to my group's pictoral banner, for when we need to communicate our purpose to peoples who don't speak our language
4) reorganise all the stuff in my pack so it's properly wrapped up and findable.

1. Keep adding to collaboration essay (Tuesday and Thursday)
2. Friday and Saturday, do more reading and thinking to revise talk I gave last year, since I give it in NYC next week.
3. Read a book.
4. Walk two times

Sunday 7 April 2019

Spring Intersession - 2

Since it's an intersession, I'm going to have fun with my goals and keep allegorizing the real-life tasks in terms of my fantasy-world expedition. Diana Wynne Jones's Tough Guide has provided further inspiration (see Leathery-Winged Avians). Anyone who likes can join me in the silliness, but OTOH I totally understand if getting creative takes more energy than you have to spare at this point in the academic year. Alternatively, get creative in a different way in your comments!

Furthermore, it's not too late to join. Whether you're a long-term participant, an intermittent contributor, or new to the group, you're welcome to leave a comment setting goals for the next week. If you didn't comment last week, tell us a bit about yourself and your goals up to mid-May.

Goals from last week:

Dame Eleanor Hull
Kill leathery-winged avian that has been stalking me and the talking cats
Dispose of the body
Blow up a bridge
Lay explosives to blow up another bridge
Map retreat route

Elizabeth Anne Mitchell
Turn in paperwork for tax rebate.
Make phone calls for doctors’ appointments.
Spend a half-hour on the faculty review document.
Draft reference letter.
Evaluate two-three inches of files.

heu mihi
1. Get back into morning running--x3.
2. Daily things x5: Language, write, sit. Make progress on Amy.
3. Obnoxious service thing that just landed in my lap.
4. Finish current stage of blue sweater (up to pocket length).

1 Finish revise & resubmit
2 Finish reading review book and post review
3 Write 100 words/day for Perform

1) as ever, focusing on water, fruit & veg and sleep
2) green thing, rough of list
3) another 20 rows on first square?
4) actually do the basic weekend chores on Saturday morning rather than half-assing them Sunday night.