Friday, September 30, 2011
I was pulled into a meeting yesterday trying to make sense of numbers from yesteryear (before I was here) with speculation of tomorrow (now that I'm here) in the off chance that these funds or those funds arrive. If I calculate FICA, and remember in cost contributions, and divide it by the square root of income taxes of owning a home and paying high Connecticut rents, I can report my numbers into an equation that makes sense to morticians. Then, if I die, what will be left with my inheritance?
Actually, it wasn't that bad. I did have to figure out where money has been spent and where it could be spent while a room of friends tried to make sense of how money was reported when money was coming to us, and what will happen now that the money has been removed.
It was fun. I was planning on revising all day, but instead of letters I got overwhelmed with numbers. It makes sense now, but I do have a headache and am very ready for calmer sailing. Really I am.
Thursday, September 29, 2011
Your job today is to find one moment in your day to move like the dancer in this Dubstep video. I don't want you to be like yourself. I want you be be like all "them other kids." You may be watching the morning news or Days of Our Lives. You may be in the car scanning tunes on the radio. You may be in the grocery store and an 80s soundtrack comes on. The goal is then to move robotically like Marquese Scott. There's no trick photography...only the human body grooving.
You know you want to groove, so do it today. Show your neighbors, your spouses, your friends. Show your pets and your mailmen. And if you're really good, send me a video.
Wednesday, September 28, 2011
I've cracked more eggs to teach perspectives on writing than I can count. I use it as an event for individuals to write "their angle" on what happened: the chicken, the farmer, the anarchist, the 3rd world child, etc. I'm glad I found this cartoon as it adds another perspective to my metaphor. Every event has interpretations. Those eggs who are left for another day must have much to write about. The waiting must be nerve-wracking. Sitting in darkness until one an eater is in the mood for an omelette or french toast.
It's something to think about. As you bite into your breakfast, you might want to examine what is being said in your refrigerator (especially if you're in my parent's fridge. There are many many many stories there).
Tuesday, September 27, 2011
Looking for humor to relieve stress, I found this little diddy with a singing Duckling. It's not my style to go violent to relief stress, but I appreciated the cartoon's quacking.
For a short few seconds, it did put a smile on my face.
Monday, September 26, 2011
I post this knowing that the sounds of summer will soon be disappearing and that my night music of cicadas and crickets will soon give way to traffic and plows - there won't be the songs of insects looking for mates. It is now captured here for winter nights when I can't sleep and I want to remember what it's like to sleep with the windows open.
This summer, at my relatives in Amagansett, I slept like a baby because of their wooded area and the songs of bugs. Of course, if a cricket gets into the house it can be like Poe's "The Tell Tale Heart" and I want to rip my floorboards apart. But outside, they made for nice rhythms to rest my eyes.
Sunday, September 25, 2011
And I thank Aaron Martinson, class of 2007, for the lead. I too celebrate creative genius and anyone who can go beyond the parameter of normalcy to create a world of imagination. It is said that we encourage this so little in our schools and society. When I see a video like this I begin to question even more the ridiculousness of how we currently school children. A friend I just met here said she's already thinking about home schooling her kid. On day one, her kindergarten kid began formal assessments. They were given no play time - insane.
What are we doing, America? We should be encourage Googles, Doodles, and Fraggles....not test takers. We can do better.
Saturday, September 24, 2011
Because all I see in the next few days is rain, and more rain, I decided to channel Prince and his Purple world. His music was central to those of us growing up in the late 80s and his movie, sparking controversy when it came out, was a cult classic to many of my friends.
I wonder if my niece, Nikki, realizes yet that her parents named her after his famous song from this movie. Oh, Darling, they have some explaining to do. When they're not at the dome serving football fanatics, they might want to discuss the music with their only daughter. See, they once knew a girl named Nikki.
And on Saturday...I will hum Purple Rain to make the gray seem a little less dreary.
Friday, September 23, 2011
I sort of like hearing church bells while at work. They clank and I think, Hmmm, now that's a good sound - not one I'm accustomed to, but a good sound nonetheless.
It's Friday. I hope most of you have something special planned. I will be in my office. In my continuation of a ram impersonation, I am hunkered down and charging full speed ahead.
Thursday, September 22, 2011
The Sherman Minton bridge stretching out of Indiana and into Kentucky has been indefinitely closed down because of found cracks. Those crossing between both states are faced with a headache, leaving I-65 and the 2nd Street bridge as the only ways across the Ohio River in Louisville. Traffic on all three bridges are often intense, and now with it limited to two, friends are reporting it takes over an hour where it once took ten minutes.
Sounds like Connecticut to me.
I am thinking about Europe and how rail makes everything more accessible. With less reliance on cars, Europeans can get to point A from point B because they built a system that takes human foot traffic from place to place. America wasn't build this way and, in many ways, it works against our way of independence. Still, when I sit in highway parking lots I think, "hmmm. perhaps Obama should invest in rail transportation to help an populated United States have easier access to getting to destinations they wish to travel. I love driving, but it is wasted time if traffic doesn't flow.
Poor Kentuckiana. I'm glad I'm not in that snafu.
Wednesday, September 21, 2011
When I was an undergraduate I met a girl who was from Scarsdale. Her mother was Paula (I believe) on The Magic Garden. I remember her telling me that Sherlock, the squirrel, was in a box under a bed in her home - the show was cancelled and everyone moved onto their lives.
I reflected on this tonight as I drove home from the university. I began to think about how beautiful college was for me because I met people from so many backgrounds and who had parents who did work in many occupations. It always humored me that Victoria's mother ran a children's show and although I never met her, she was a part of my upbringing. I loved when she picked a joke from the Chuckle Patch.
I think we need a new garden for kids and if anyone wants to hire me, I'd love to help with the programming. I'd also love to be reunited with Victoria. She had a tremendous impact on my mind while I was learning my way in the world. Hmmmm. I wonder where she is?
Tuesday, September 20, 2011
I wanted to find the clip where Richie Cunningham is brought to a nerd party - where girls were competing to see who could find the biggest dork. Fonzie comes well prepared and makes a scene. I always liked that episode because I envisioned myself at one of those parties one day. Never happened. I wasn't even pathetic enough for that.
So I found an episode when Lenny and Squiggy sing on Laverne & Shirley. My widow's peak is getting to be more and more like Squiggy's so perhaps the girls from Happy Days will finally bring me to their party. Who knows?
That is noise that awaits to be made.
Monday, September 19, 2011
Football season began and I'm oblivious to what is going on. I don't turn on my t.v. and Cynde doesn't ask me to count money at the band booth while fans buy overcharged prices for hotdogs. I am completely clueless to the world of the Dome and I'm wondering what is going on.
This is the reality of my ram impersonation. I have my horns down and am charging forth without a clue to the real world. I'm lucky to take time to pee let alone check the internet for scores.
So, this clip says it is supercharged to get people ready for the season. Shoot. I need it to charge me so I can get done with my dissertation already.
Sunday, September 18, 2011
When I was transitioning to middle school to junior high school, my friend Peter Boy and his sister, Elaine, who was already at SUNY Oswego taking classes to become a teacher, invited me to the movies to see the first Muppet Movie at Penn Can mall, which is now an automobile dealership (halfway between Pennsylvania and Canada). I remember the movie because their mother, Stephanie, drove over a parking lot island when we were leaving because she was so enthusiastic about our review of the movie. The film introduced us to a crew of fuzzy, wired Jim Henson creations that sang about life, finding their ways, and friendship. I loved the film.
I am thinking of the film, and its music, as I try to make sense of my life that feels as if I, too, am on strings and performing at the pace of others. The songs were sung in choir and they resonate to create a rhythm of life that continue with me today. Ah, Kermit. Some of us hear your song and wonder if we can actually fulfill the magic you croaked about. I'm trying.
Saturday, September 17, 2011
It's Saturday. I'm in my office for the next two days revising. I'm slowly going insane and that is why I'm channeling Maude. I don't think there is any other text needed - just Maude's way of living. I need to live that way more but I'm so busy in the land of monkey brain and academia. Ah...What have I done to myself?
Okay. That's my rant. I will get over it. The music has already made me a little more free.
Friday, September 16, 2011
Today started in the mid 80s and it is now around 50 degrees. It is September and outside the wind is whipping green leaves trying to turn them Brown. I wondered if their was a song for September and I found this clip with Willie Nelson's voice. Perhaps the song captures the changes upon us.
When I ran this morning I was drenched from humidity. Now I think I need to unpack my North Face jackets. I will need them to get through the week. The air has become chilly. I am sure many of you will spend this weekend closing your pools. I will be in my office working as I've been doing since I arrived to Fairfield. I have a window though and I can speculate on what the rest of the world is doing.
You know, Willie Nelson has a voice that is good to the ears. I like the way he brings September its music.
Thursday, September 15, 2011
I've written about whales before, but I am doing so again today. Why? I love making whale noises, especially as I put window stickers up in my office of two whales and a shark playing volleyball with a blowfish.
Hey, it makes me happy.
I'm on the Long Island sound (there are now whales), but I am closer the ocean than ever before. Perhaps I will get to hear them live and in person in the very near future.
In the mean time, I nominate Casey for making the best whale noises. I'm sure she will outdo everyone else.
Wednesday, September 14, 2011
It's official. I'm now officially overwhelmed with the access of everything and the instant way we communicate. In the time I teach one class: one hour and fifteen minutes, I return to 45 email messages. I like to be on top of my game, but there is simply too much communication. It has to be filtered abruptly. And it no longer comes through the telephone or from snail mail. It's email (and I'm smart, I don't have email attached to my Blackberry yet...haven't found time for it. I am sure when I do, it will be more information coming at me all the time).
I'm a verbose, windy person. I now appreciate lists.
2. I need you to (fill in the blank)
3. Thank you.
4. Your name.
All the other wording is abundant and I have to cut to the chase. Sigh. What a shame. Those of us who chose words for a living should find joy with them. Of course, 'back in the day' written language was pleasure---something I did in a park, at a beach, or on a couch. Now, it's digital and everywhere.
And it remains a tool. I shall remain a fool.
Tuesday, September 13, 2011
I drove back to Connecticut last night. Ate a burger on the way. Had no traffic until I hit Connecticut, and then the game began. It's a beautiful state with many, many parking lots they call highways.
I think I need spinach to get me through this year. I think I have a couple of recipes. Time to channel my inner Popeye. And, Wimpy, you can mail the check for that burger. I'll take it.
Monday, September 12, 2011
My poor sister and her husband. It is field band season again and the CNS Northstars, with their 45 musicians, are back on the field. Let the season begin, the long weekends drag on and on, and the Dome Show employment continue.
Usually I post noise to my site, but the sound is hard to hear on this; they need more musicians. Where'd they all go? I think they've morphed into the colorguard.
Sunday, September 11, 2011
My alma mater went under water so I took the smoother ride to Syracuse through Albany. Didn't want to risk flooding away. I believe the waters have receded but I didn't want to chance it. What an unexpected mess for Broome County.
My ride was rather uneventful, although the waters also came close to washing out the NYS thruway in places.
Thanks Irene and Lee.
Saturday, September 10, 2011
And I now have a 2011 MacBook Pro. It was delivered this week but I haven't switched over to it yet. Why? Because I haven't had time. It's beautiful, though. It will be sad to say goodbye to the one I currently use as I've been behind its screen incessantly for many, many years. I've not kept up with upgrades since leaving Louisville, so I am excited to see what goods it has.
It's hard to believe people function on other machines, but I understand the expense. What was wonderful this time is that the computer came as part of the job. Bonus. That is a good thing.
Thank you, Apple. When I'm down, I think of you and you've centered so much of my life and the work that I do. Hard to imagine 1984 or who'd I be if you didn't find your rebirth in technology.
Friday, September 9, 2011
I can't teach without alluding to the "Allegory of the Cave," but I don't have my file with me so I'm doing it YouTube style and through paraphrasing. This is a metaphor for learning and it is much better in Plato's form. Even so, it's so classic that there's comedy in other renditions, including this one.
I will plant this noise in the minds of my neophytes and let them take it where they will.
Gosh, is it Friday? Seriously. I can't think about time or I will cry. I have no idea where any of it goes. Zip Zap Zoom.
Thursday, September 8, 2011
But I post anyway. It's all blurring at this point and I'm looking forward to possible seeing a view that isn't a computer screen sometime in the near future. Everyday I am one step closer. Every second, I feel further behind. It's all good. So so good.
Meanwhile, I'm going to find a pillow to rest my head. I'm cooked. I think of Chicago, outside of NYC, near Bridgeport and hum, "Does anybody every really know what time it is? Does anybody ever really care?"
Smile and the world will smile with you.
Wednesday, September 7, 2011
I opened a graduate class today with an easy read, The Writer's Notebook. I love the text because it helps one to plant seeds and to get ideas about what to write. I think his advice about writing about big issues with smaller details is smart to observe. The assumption that others will take a bigger leap - well, I think good writing does, that to.
I want to know why the missed belt loop matters, for instance.
I brought a change of clothes for my Tuesday class because it was a long, long day. I forget a belt. Why? Do I write because my brain is in a million places beyond getting dressed in the morning or changing a pair of clothes? Do I write that I changed in my office and forgot to shut the blinds so migrating campus goers had full view of me switching out of shorts and into slacks? Do I write about the excitement that I might now be on YouTube as some crazy man caught on a cellphone standing before a new campus in his white boxer briefs?
Or do I just post some noise. Good to hear what Fletcher sounds like. I've heard his voice in his books, so it's good to know there's a tone to his call. He's a great man, that one.
Tuesday, September 6, 2011
In preparation for tuesday and the first day of classes at Fairfield University (my brain is fried) I had tacos for dinner. This is a rare treat. I make them seldom and growing up we only had them when dad when to staff training in Pittsburgh. He hates them so mom only treated her kids when he was out of town.
So, it was tacos for Tuesday.
What a dumb post. Forgive me. I am cooked. Like beef before cheese, onions, tomatoes and sauce are added.
Monday, September 5, 2011
I'm using this post as a 7th inning stretch before the writing crunch I shall feel on Monday. On Tuesday, the reality of my new life sets in and I have to transition much of my time for the career I've chosen for myself. Of course, much of this career depends on the completions of my dissertation that is closer now that it ever has been before to being complete. I will not have 14+ hour days to commit to my writing and this perplexes me. Actually, it scares the heck out of me, especially as I try to meet deadlines and move forward with my world.
So, on labor day, when others have time to lounge about and contemplate the nature of work, I will be in my office working like that madman who has been emptying the ocean with a fork for the last two or three decades. I'm hoping lady fortune will be with me and allow me to articulate the last revisions that I've wanted to make before I begin teaching on Tuesday. I anticipate that I am two or three days off my desired outcome and I will be reciting the serenity prayer to get by.
But for this moment, I am stretching my mind and getting away from my exhaustion...if only for a moment.
Sunday, September 4, 2011
All through high school and into college my Nissan Sentra, Cecilia, played my cassettes of the German band, Yello. I first heard them in Ferris Bueller's Day Off and I collected every tape they made, spending my checks from Sibley's and then Kaufman's. I didn't know they had videos. This is the first time I've even seen what the musicians look like.
Funny how they are a marker to a time that once was, but I only had a picture in my head of what the musicians were like. I knew they had to be quirky, and I was right. And I have all my cassettes but no cassette player. Like the CDs I also own, they are now obsolete...the records and 8 tracks for my generation.
And the day will come where .mp3 players and ITunes will be a remember when.
Saturday, September 3, 2011
It's time to return. Yep. They've been in classrooms already in many southern schools and the northeast has begun to kick off, as well - despite Irene's interruption.
I started thinking about School House Rock and the songs/cartoons that led my youth for creative learning. I post the good ol' Bill song to remind everyone of a time that once was and a time that still is (thanks to YouTube).
I probably should visit all their videos so I can relearn much f what I've forgotten. They were clever, weren't they?
Friday, September 2, 2011
After another marathon day I returned home to find a box of Triscuits and a bucket of hummus as my only friend. That is dinner as I know it, and so I thought I'd find a video where someone else lives the way I do. Nope. I found someone who has more time on their hands and who can create a creative appetizer from Triscuits. Not me. I just pull them from a box and dip them into whatever I can or add slices of cheese.
Of course, this woman says they are appetizers. In my world they are dinner and I'm thankful for them. I believe, though, that tomorrow I get a real breakfast and dinner through new faculty orientation. It will be nice to have more food groups represented. We shall see. Lord, my body is craving a hamburger and my father's grilled vegetables. Shoot, I want Cynde's cutlets and KC's breakfast casseroles.
I will settle for the asbestos crackers made by Nabisco, though.. It's what I can do given my hectic life right now.
Thursday, September 1, 2011
Yesterday will go down in history as one of those days where Iost my wallet and consequently I lost my mind. Long story short, I helped my roommate move in and somehow between purchasing batteries at Home Depot and carrying dressers upstairs, my purchasing power disappeared. I frantically tore up my truck, my garage, my house, my files, and all the packing materials that two people have brought into a new home. No luck.
I monitored my bank account in the off chance my wallet was stolen, but there was no activity.
After six hours of playing Sherlock Holmes, the wallet fell out of a black fold up chair that I moved into the house from my roommate's belongings and that somehow got wedged in its grasp. It is somewhat miraculous that it popped out as it did just when I was throwing in the towel.
We both did a jig. Too bad there's still no check to cash so I can fill the dang thing.