it took me all of five minutes to get through my friends page this morning. what is up with you people? did you all go to bed at 8:30 too?
see now I don't know what to do while I wait for breakfast to settle. I suppose I could sit and then get to work. that would be novel: starting work before 10 on a non-teaching day.
I need to put some more stuffing in my zafu. that's the fancy name for cushion you sit and meditate on. it came stuffed with buckwheat hulls but they were as hard as tiny little bricks so I bought a bunch of kapok and poured out the buckwheat and have been slowly stuffing the kapok in as it gets tamped down by my sitting on it. right now it has gone all flat from the last time I thought I had it stuffed full. I bought five pounds of batting because their kapok-filled zafus weigh three and a half pounds and I wanted to make sure I had enough. I've used about half of it I think so I guess it makes sense that it isn't really full yet.
so in case you are in the market for a zafu and the kapok ones are characterized as "firm" and the buckwheat ones are characterized as "moldable" bear in mind that once the buckwheat hulls are the shape of your ass they are like sitting on a concrete bench the shape of your ass. if your problem is that you don't have enough padding on your ass to keep from impinging on every nerve that runs between your sitting bones and what you are sitting on, go for the "firm" kapok. it is much softer and far more likely to keep your legs from falling asleep.
anyway yeah important things on my mind this morning. I am feeling a bit better than I did over the weekend. still I need a vacation so badly that I just want to get a car and go driving down highway one till I get tired and then check into whatever motel presents itself as reasonably nice and with free high speed internet access. of course I don't really have any money and that didn't used to stop me but my credit cards stopped working a long time ago so cash is the way we have to go now and I haven't got so much.
ok. it's 8. I'll sit.
I have to remember to bring refreshments to class on monday. I meant to bring a little candy or cookies or something this past monday but after the crappy weekend all thoughts of congeniality vanished in a huge cloud of worry and stress. I'm not sure what to bring besides chocolate covered espresso beans; they can get just about whatever they want at the cafe which is right across from our classroom so there's no need to get fancy but I thought a little something to munch while watching presentations wouldn't be a bad thing. I guess I could bring those plus something non-chocolate and non-caffeinated for the uncorrupted among us. don't know if there are any but you never know who can't handle the leaded stuff.
what should the second choice be? it has to be small and easy to carry on a crowded bus; preferably something that will fit into my briefcase. I suppose just some sort of non-chocolate candy might be the answer. jolly ranchers or something.
speaking of refreshments yesterday I bought a bottle of ginger-lime sparkling water and I thought it sounded good but it wasn't just water with ginger and lime but also full of sucralose or whatever that non-aspartame sweetener is and it was really disgusting. what is wrong with americans that we have to sweeten our beverages until you feel like you are drinking straight maple syrup. I didn't even think to look at the label as it just said "ginger-lime sparkling water" so I thought that's all it was. bleh. if I wanted sugar in my water I'd get a coke. needless to say I was not refreshed. I threw it away after taking about three sips. maybe some homeless person in need of sticky sweet water picked it up.
yeah I need to put on clothes and get to work. I'm trying to think if there's anywhere I have to be today. I don't think there is. whoop!
oh mercy me I don't want to grade papers.
there are other things I could do. finish writing up and sending grades to those who presented on Monday. figure out a schedule for the student getting an incomplete to be finished by the beginning of next semester. finish the spreadsheet for the grades so that they will all be calculated once the individual grades are entered. grade their response papers.
I suppose one or two of those could constitute today's work. it's all gotta be done in a week anyway. I mean the art institute actually gives us till january 3 to get the grades in to the registrar (laxest deadline ever!) but I told them I would have their final grades ready and emailed to them by this time next week.
maybe warming up by finishing presentation grades and response paper grades would be a good thing.
the spreadsheet is done and the incomplete student addressed. I could do a few response papers which might be good for the grading and commenting muscle without straining it. I can't explain why grading papers is so fucking difficult. I mean I've explained it again and again but you know these days it is not nearly as painful as it used to be but it is just as difficult to get started as it was that very first time when I had no clue what to write on them.
it's not just that it takes time. lots of things take time. it's not even that it requires intense concentration--I'm better with that than I used to be and don't knock myself out to understand things that are poorly written. I just say "I have no idea what you are trying to say here" and leave it at that. well usually I am a little more diplomatic than that.
there are other things I'd rather be doing of course but it's not like I'm going to go do them. I'm going to sit here and berate myself for not doing what I should be doing. why is this preferable to actually doing, I wonder? because really, that is the alternative: work or fret. why is fretting less painful than working?
screw this. I'm going to do some response papers.
powers of concentration on the wane. mental static increasing. restlessness in legs calling for motion.
if I walked all the way over to the haight, what could I eat once I got there? it's always a matter of what you can get at your destination. otherwise why go. well there's the getting there which is of course really the main reason for leaving. but you know how when we'd drive to north carolina we'd stop and get a coke before going back? there must be something to mark the turnaround point.
unless you are exercising. but then you'd wear different clothes.
I'm enormously pleased to have your writings in hand. This is truly fantastic. It will take me a few weeks to get around to reading this, but hope to meet with you shortly after the first and plan the conclusion to this!
she hasn't read it yet. she just now picked it up.
if any of you have a gun could you please come over and shoot me with it?
isn't it interesting how the way things really are never match up with any of the ways you have them played out in your head.
I wish I could keep this in view but the pernicious voice is the one that says yeah but this time it really is the worst you could imagine. and for some reason it is really really difficult to answer that one back. what if it is the worst? what if the plane crashes? what if the rapture has happened?
well that one was easy to trace back.
I bought some soldering wire made variously of tin, lead and silver and I'm going to see tomorrow afternoon maybe what will melt it. I have a little soldering iron and I have a propane torch but the soldering iron you can use indoors whereas the torch frightens me a little. if I go outside to make art someone might see me. oh look. another reason to medicate my social anxiety.
right now I think I will go read about art and drink my nightly liter of fizzy water and see how long it takes before I nod off. I'm not ready to re-tackle buddhism again but might start up soon with some primary texts instead of popularized interpretations that invariably suck up to the common denominator of american society which no matter how you slice it ain't me. put me at the top, put me at the bottom, whatever. I don't fit in the middle.
what do you call someone who won't quit pursuing their calling even when they get pummeled regularly for the trouble? brave or stupid? I'm not sure how to put this without sounding arrogant but I sometimes wonder what it is like to be content and satisfied with dinner and the newspaper every evening and mowing the lawn on saturdays. or is anyone really content with that?