pride and despair

An odd mix, really.  The work has been ragged of late.  But the UC Berkeley protests today, locking themselves into Wheeler Hall, home of the English Dept, and holding it for hours, making it national news.  Building on 9/24, but with the added horror of yesterday’s fee hikes.  Not that I’m not proud of UCLA, too, for the few thousand protesters at Covel Commons for the Regents’ meeting, and the occupiers of Campbell Hall (although, the tutoring building?  really?  odd choice, folks.).  Plus a shout out to the Davis and Santa Cruz occupiers of buildings various and sundry (and the Asst Professor at Davis helping organize, the ballsy fucker).  But I don’t know what my place is in all of this.   I don’t know what my untelevised revolution is supposed to look like, at this point.  I long to have been up at Berkeley for today’s shit, but all I did yesterday was sit down with the occupiers of Campbell Hall and have a five minute chat to thank them for putting themselves on the line.  Is that all?  How do I want to be counted?

[update, 3 hours, a bottle of wine, and two generous glasses of fine single malt scotch later.]  An email to a Berkeley long ago ex, and an email to a colleague’s husband, asking if he has an email for a Berkeley long ago friend (who happens to be the ex’s ex, but that’s complicated, not worth telling, and not particularly telling, from a perspective of detail.).  Still proud of the protests, still don’t know what it is I’m supposed to do, but as I was just telling the dog (and, as YCTNW is asleep in bed, I mean that literally) no one  cares what I do tomorrow.  I’m panicked about finishing my book, because when you divide months by chapters, Xeno’s paradox kicks in and it looks as if you can’t get there from here.  The flip side, of course, is that no one gives a flying fuck what I do tomorrow.  I can nostalg (a new verb! hah!), I can email various and sundry whilst in my cups.  YCTNW and I have vague late morning plans, I have a friend to pick up from the airport at half-one, and we have half seven dinner with a coworker + husband of YCTNW’s.  None of which have anything to do with my book, with how I get there from here.  I wanted a life in which process wouldn’t be held against me, but that doesn’t mean it’s easy.



middlebrow
Friday November 13th 2009, 8:00 pm
Filed under: inner-polish-teenage-girl Tags:

Ah, the secret underbelly of my sometime middlebrow tastes.  Or, more honestly, a character flaw rather obvious to most people who have known me for longer than, oh, 3 weeks.  If you see what I mean, and I think you do.  Show tunes, that is.  Right now, having made a sudden and unexpected run into the middle of my  “10 people I’d fuck at the drop of a hat”  list is the girl (legal, thank you) from Glee (don’t say it), doing songs by ?! unnamed-Canadians, Rihanna, and more importantly, Wicked.  How did I not know this song?  For all of the emotional vulnerability they unpeel in me, show tunes have been not more than a little formative – I spent my adolescence playing Pity the Child on the piano, belting at the top of my not inconsiderable lungs.  And now, perhaps a little safer, a little securer in my exceptionality and my mediocrity both, I can combine my overly sentimental taste for coming-of-age narratives with my aesthetically unsophisticated taste for show tunes, and well, there it is.  A Sentimental Education, as it were.  Cuz that’s how I roll, bitches.



uh oh
Friday November 06th 2009, 12:04 am
Filed under: calendars,can't make that shit up,copy-and-paste,Oxford,plagiarism,reminiscence,seasonal Tags:

From the Diagnostic and Statistical Manual of Mental Disorders:

Narcissistic Personality Disorder, characterized by “a persuasive pattern of grandiosity (in fantasy or behavior), need for admiration,
and lack of empathy…indicated by five (or more) of the following:
1) An exaggerated sense of self-importance
2) Preoccupation with fantasies of unlimited success, power,
brilliance, beauty, or love
3) Believes that he or she is “special” and can only be understood by,
or should associate with, other special or high-status people…
4) Requires excessive admiration
5) Has a sense of entitlement….
6) Selfishly takes advantage of others to achieve his or her own ends
7) Lacks empathy
8 ) Is often envious of others or believes that others are envious of him or her
9) Shows arrogant, haughty, patronizing, or contemptuous behavior.”

5 or more? Fuck, I aced it.  Wait, this isn’t a quiz?

Odd cycles at play, this cold not leaving fast enough, the paper still to write (or, cut and paste, depending upon your level of perspective and pedantry), and now this.  Plus, I need a place to stay in Oxford next May, cuz college sucks.  It’s looking like Lincoln, York, Durham, Edinburgh, Glasgow in early Jan, then Aberystwyth, Worcester, Gloucester, Exeter, Winchester in early Feb, then Cambridge, London, Oxford for mid-May.  Too much work, not enough drinking with friends.  Any volunteers?