This semester I'm not teaching. I'm helping grade for one of the first year grad classes and being the departmental consultant for one of the colleges. I now also have an office with a door (shared with two others). Technically, in that other college, I also have an office with a door, but it's a sliding door and there are 8 desks, so it doesn't count. I kind of miss having students, but I don't miss lecturing.
I recently switched over to an almost entirely plant-based diet for a couple reasons. This has radically increased the amount of cooking I do. Also, the store stopped stocking the bread I like, so I've been using the bread machine more, too. Now, I'm not exactly a stranger to eating only plant-based foods: generally for Lent I'd been having a plant based diet, but in the last few years dairy crept back into that out of convenience. A positive benefit: no heartburn.
Choir at church is going okay, except right now it's me, the wifing unit, and somebody else who just follows along with other voices (which is great to have, but it'd be nice to have somebody who could independently sing the alto...). We finally got rid of one of the pieces that I hate because (1) it has the soprano really hammer a high note that we can't really do except on a good day (2) the family that really really liked the piece moved away (3) I have no idea how they would sing it when we're not here - it simply can't go well. I mean, it's not all that high - we go higher in other pieces, but this one is like a climax - high volume and sustained. Of course, the argument that "I hate it" is not acceptable, the only acceptable reason to scuttle it is that the people are worried about their voices. But we're not doing much else with the music, since it's just two people here, you know? We need to make it so that, on the occasions we're not here, people can do it, and that precludes, like, getting fancy.
There are a million little things that don't work right in life right now. It's mildly annoying but it kind of saps productivity at times. Like, emacs likes crashing right on startup. Great, I won't do any work in a text editor... The towel rack in the bathroom keeps falling down. Marvelous, we'll hang the towels on the shower rod. Water leaks into the car when it rains. Great, we'll park in the garage. The cigarette lighter outlet on the car seem to have gone funky and the GPS seems to lose charge easily. Super, we can charge it at home and only use it a couple minutes at a time when we do need it. etc etc. These are problems that can be solved easily if you're not a poor grad student.
Politics are pretty sucky right now. Our continued insistence on intensive energy use, which requires a dependence on fossil fuels, is really going make things blow for a lot of people in a couple decades.
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