Spring break is weird

It’s not really a break, these days. I’m working the whole week (yay), and I have a boatload of stuff to study. The week I get back is the 6th week of the semester, out of 12, so midterms galore. A couple of my classes don’t call them midterms, and we just happen to have a test then, but no one is fooled by this. I also need to finish my essay for that program. So much work and worrying.

But, I’m kind of ready for a break. So instead of writing things and reading things and looking things up, I’m reading journals and watching Say Yes to the Dress. This is even worse when you consider that I’m working at that dress store a couple days next week. Whoops. In any case, serious case of the lazy’s. I gave myself yesterday to officially sit around, and it seems to be leaching over into today. 

But hey, internetting all day led me to these amazing bathroom tiles. Totally getting them when I win the lottery.



(which incidentally is the name of a California blend white wine)(this is relevant because of the California and because of the name)(there also isn’t actually a conundrum, just thinking)

TO CLARIFY. I read a lot of online journals. I hate the word blog. It’s awkward to say. Online journal is more dignified. ANYWAY. I read a lot of them. And being obsessive-compulsive me, when I like someone, I read all of them. Like, keep hitting older posts until I get alll the way back to the beginning. If this sounds stalkerish, it might be. But! It’s like you find a good book! But you came in on the last chapter, and there’s another one coming out soon, so you read all the other chapters backwards! Or something. Anyway. A couple of these people who I read are in the Bay Area. One of them moved there recently, and they are making me want to move back so bad. I already wanted to. I love California and I miss it and there’s only a few people here that I would miss and one of them is totally up for moving out there with me in a couple years. But these people’s journals are making me want to go NOOOOOWWW. 

Here’s the catch. School. I like the program I’m in (or technically almost in, but really, look at my grades. I’m in.) and it’s the best in the country (fortuitous, eh? It’s the only place that offers this degree that I can go to, and it happens to be the best. In the country. Win.) Where was I? Oh yes. I like the school. And I’m taking this barrel of other classes, because I want to do all this other stuff. After I do this program, which will take another 2 years, I want to go to this other 4 year college that is part of the same system, and which has a ton of research-geared courses. I don’t want a full undergrad, but I do want to take enough classes to be able to get into graduate school (yes, yes, I know. Have faith). My AAS plus all thes other classes, plus classes at the next school…. 

I mean, I want to do it. They’re the right courses, I’m interested, it’s what I want to be doing. But it’s here. In New York. Not in California. And I may need to investigate more, but I’m pretty sure nowhere in the Bay offers the equivalent of what I’d get here. To sum up- ARGH. 

To further pull the heartstrings, a friend of mine from high school is moving out here in a month or so, and asked on facebook is anyone was interested in a “large two bedroom craftsman near downtown oakland for 1250”. ARGH. WHY. TEASE. Though downtown isn’t great, but come on. It’s a start. It’s good. I love craftsman houses. It’s the right kind of place for the right price. Anyway.

So, not really a conundrum. I’m here, it’s where I need to be, California can wait. Damnit. 

Mish mash.

It’s spring! And hooray and all that. After a dearth of work, things are picking up, and I have through May booked. There’s a bunch of open space in May still, but I’m at the point where I’m not worried, which is always nice. 

I’m not sure how to handle the summer thing. By which I mean, I’m applying to that program, but I’m not sure when to tell Camp. I don’t want to bail on them and then (horror of horrors) not get into the program. I’m looking at just doing session E, but I need to be sure I can afford to and all that. It’s all complicated, and I am still working on my essay and need to get my transcripts and all that. Rarg.

But it’s spring and it’s pretty and I don’t spend nearly enough time outside, but it’s nice when I can go into the courtyard at school and hang out there. 

School is chugging along, mostly going well. I did my first ever lab report the other day, and I think I did pretty good. It was actually kind of fun, being restricted from any kind of creative writing. Just sticking to the past impersonal and being strictly technical was an interesting exercise, and less stressful than normal writing. I got 96’s on both the lecture and lab quizzes. Chemistry is too slow and boring, but I’m killing it grade-wise. Next week is spring break, which means lots of studying for the 3 tests (that I know of so far) in the couple weeks after, but I’ll have time for that, and be able to sleep in. I’m doing better than I thought I would dealing with the 8am classes, but eesh. It’s a treat when I don’t have to get up before the sun. 

Good grief.

So last week sucked a lot. Not for the most part, the weather was good, school chugged along. But then one free afternoon I was taking a break and watching a hospital show and one of the nurses gets in an accident and winds up in a coma there and one person is super reluctant to accept it and say goodbye and after she finally does, the nurse dies. The accompanying voiceover: “sometimes I think people wait until everyone who needs to has said goodbye before slipping away” and I had to pause and sob my face off because of that parallel with my aunt Adrienne. So that was a fun afternoon.

And then my mom called to update me with the further news of my old cats deterioration. Nothing new or surprising, he’s been slowly declining for quite a while, but still upsetting, and she wanted me to help in making a decision about whether or not to put him to sleep, and without being there I really couldn’t, and even if I had been it would have been utterly heartbreaking (which is why she wanted me to help, so she wasn’t making that decision on her own). But fortunately/unfortunately I got a text two days later that he had picked his time and died during the night. Cue more sobbing. Aside from being my first cat (the one I grew up with before him was wonderful, but not mine) he was exceptionally sweet and handsome and playful. Because he’s been declining for so long, the last three times I was home I was prepared (as much as I could be) for that to be the last time I saw him. But then it kept not being the last time, and so while I knew, that kept a terrible little bit of hope that maybe he would hang on till summer, and then the next time, etc. 

My mom sent me a card about it, and I knew it was coming, and I knew what it would be, but man. You just can’t really control the feelings when you open something like that. So now I get to cry every time I look at the fridge. 

A crossroads!

Or should it be singular? Meh. 

So, I told Camp I was coming back this year. I was all excited! Madeline would be there, and all of the other people that I only see there. I’d get to see all the campers again. That was something I felt really bad about, I felt like I was letting the campers down. Disrupting that continuity of seeing the same people every year. So this year I was all determined to go back, especially since I will be doing internships for school the next couple of summers. 

But then I applied for this job (that I haven’t heard back from and am reasonably sure I didn’t get. Oh well) and having this job would mean I couldn’t really go to Camp. Maybe for one session, but possibly not even that. And then I started thinking, well, I could take summer classes then, get even more ahead. I kind of liked that possibility. And then I got an email about this program between my school and Barumbia (you know, the women’s school attached to that other school) that is an intensive 5 week thing, you take two classes, Population Ecology and Human Nutrition and Bioenergetics (I know, fancy names) with room, board and tuition paid for, and a $500 stipend at the end (!! Finally! Being paid to go to school!). Bonus, after finishing that, you can take a class or two a semester there as long as you’re still a student at my school (and pay you a $300 stipend to do it), and they bring back 4 people the next summer for a paid research internship. This is all a pretty amazing opportunity. And I would be remiss if I didn’t take advantage. Which means, no camp (assuming I get in, of course). And this is less disappointing that I thought. 

I’ve since chatted up my Biology lecture and lab teachers, both of whom were interested in all my various interests and ideas, and both of whom suggested that perhaps Environmental Studies might be a better major for someone interested in field research. It was really hard to make that mental switch of giving up theater and shifting to vet tech, and so now I’m finding the idea of switching tracks again to be very difficult. And I don’t even know that I want to, I still have other reasons for wanting to stay in this program, but they do make some good points. And it’s things to think about. I’m not really ready to make that decision, but it took me so long to start school again in the first place. I don’t want to “waste” time again. (I know, it’s all experience, no time is wasted, really, but. Given the difference in classes and programs, I don’t want to get too far in, or change too soon.)

Things to think about. Rrrrrggg.

In which I talk about school. Again.

While I”m procrastinating on some school work, I figure I’ll use that time to complain about it.

I still love school, the learning thing is great, but there are always drawbacks, and today I feel whiny enough to go into. Starting with chemistry, since I had that most recently. It’s boring. Chemistry itself isn’t, but this class is. It’s a subject I have to put a fair amount of work into understanding, and the class is moving too slow for me. This really shouldn’t be. Lab is not so much the teachers fault, he didn’t design the lab book or experiments, so when I spend half an hour watching water come to a boil, he can’t be blamed. And I get why we’re doing that, it just seems a little silly. Let’s boil something else. Anyway. But lecture. I do tend to overstudy and learn a lot of it on my own beforehand, but he spends so long explaining super simple things, or giving way too much backstory, or saying things in convoluted ways that it takes forever. We’re supposed to be a chapter and a half ahead of where we are now. Already. This was the third week. Argh. 

Dosages is mind numbing. It’s unit conversions, something I picked up in a day for Chemistry. Because it’s dosages, there are some tricky things, and some odd measurements and all, but she’s spending a lot of time teaching fraction multiplication and simplifying. I’m going to stop sitting in the front row for this one.

Algebra is fine. I think soon I’m going to need to study on my own. I haven’t really needed to because he’s mostly been going over things we did last semester, but I’m getting the feeling that he doesn’t explain things in a logical progression like my old teacher did. Unfortunate. But, actually, not much to complain about here. 

English is boring. Sort of. We’re doing poetry these days, which I like, and which makes me want to throw things at everyone else who takes everything super literally. For example, Dickinsons “I felt a funeral in my brain” is not about a funeral. Or, it is, but not literally. Whether it’s about her fear of death, a headache, or going insane (my vote to the last one) is up to interpretation and discussion. But she is not talking about being at a funeral. Incidentally, right now I should be explicating a different poem. But I don’t know what I think yet, so. Here we are. Anyway. I like the teacher, I think he has some good ideas, but I don’t like posting my essays online, and I think the level of group critique that we’re trying to use is silly. Perhaps I’ll be proven wrong. 

Biology! I like this one. I think it may be my favorite class. My lab teacher explains things really well, we get to actually do things in lab (like burn things! And put reagents in things to see them change color!) and my lecture teacher is pretty thorough (though fast) and puts all of the lectures and review notes in dropbox for us to go over on our own. There is no homework, which makes me a little sad (I’m better at studying when it’s required enforced repetition, not as good when it’s just me) but everything is interesting enough that I’m doing well so far. First quiz on thursday, so we’ll see how I”m actually doing then. Incidentally, I’ve learned way more chemistry through this class than in chemistry. 

Switching gears completely, work is picking up. Not quite in time for this month, but next month is looking great. Especially since there’s a bunch going on during my spring break, so I actually get to take advantage of the extra days. I also worked yesterday, and will again next sunday. It’s a space that’s sort of been taken over by the union (so there’s a slight chance I may lose next sunday, ack) which has nicely worked out in my favor as they have a higher rate, and sundays are overtime. Hooray. 

Poetry woes

So I’m supposed to pick a poem and then write about the symbols in it, first their literal meanings, then their contextual ones. I’m having trouble picking. I only need to do one, and I have one, but it feels like cheating because I’ve already done some work on it. So, I want to do two. Because I like stressing myself out. I thought I had one picked, but now I don’t like it. I like the poem, I don’t like it for this assignment. 

I have a few poetry books that I’ve been flipping through for two hours now, trying to nail down and pick one, and my problem, I’m finding, is that I like poetry for language and imagery, not symbolism. There are so many poems that so beautifully encapsulate an idea or feeling, but just through metaphor, through description. Maybe I’m being too picky. Or misunderstanding. Or overunderstanding? When a poem just makes sense, and just hits to the core, there is no need to draw it out, to explain it. 

But perhaps now (20 minutes after I finished that last sentence) I’ve tracked down something. There is potential.


So, all that studying? Pays off. Somewhat. My bio teacher posted the powerpoint for tomorrow’s lecture, and I’ve already learned more than half of it. Huzzah for overpreparing! This is especially good because I was supposed to study today, but I ended up working on my kitchen all day. 

Madeline came over yesterday and we got dinner and hung out till late, and she stayed over, which meant I didn’t really get going till noon. Which is fine, we had a lot of fun and slept in and I made breakfast and all. But I had wanted to be all manic study, and by the time she left I wasn’t really excited about studying, and had a huge pile of dishes to do. And then I decided to finally put up the pot rack in the kitchen. Long story short, it involved 2 trips to the hardware store, lots of holes drilled, and many many tools. But it’s done! And it hasn’t fallen down yet! And the kitchen is looking much better already. I still need to get a spice rack to hang as well, so we can clear out some cabinet space. 

And now I’m wiped out and want to take a nap, but I should go to bed in about 3 hours anyway. It’s that annoying tipping point where I’m too tired to do much studying, but it’s too early for sleep. This is why facebook and tv were invented.


All I want to do is school stuff. What a nerd. Except my study habits could use some improvement. Like, I should be doing chemistry review stuff right now. Whoops.

But other than the fact that if my computer is in front of me I get easily distracted, and that in general I stare off into space sometimes, it’s great. My chemistry lab ended super early today, and I had nothing to do, since I’ve decided I don’t need the text book in class. Clearly, I hadn’t anticipated having a two hour break occasionally. But! Turned out fortuitous. I went to the library and found another textbook, one that makes waaay more sense to me. Somehow it has little wording shifts that make it click. So that’s pretty great.

I’m trying to pace everything, but I”m still figuring that out. 3 of my classes are only once a week, so it’s hard to know when to study for them. Right after the class is good, but I also need to right before class. But then I have stuff for other classes…. It’ll get there. I also have maybe been doing too much? The last Biology class, and today in Chemistry, they just went over what I had taught myself right before. Which is fine, but it does make class a little boring. I suspect it’ll be more useful later on when things get harder. 

I’ve also been sick this whole week, and so pretty wiped out. Hopefully that’ll end in the next couple days. And also I’ll pick up work. If I”m feeling better I should be able to study more efficiently, so working should be fine. And also I need work.

And my dinner is ready.


(I wrote this last night, and right as I was about to post it, the internet went belly up. So now I probably should add more, but also I should study)

I was going to write about my classes and how my english stuff in almost all online, which is sort of annoying, but I also see how it makes sense, and also about the other stuff and how much I like it, and about how I went to drop off my taxes today which means I went to the empire state building, except I’ve never been to the top, and my tax guy is pretty awesome and also really cheap, and also about how I bought dinner for a homeless guy and it made him really happy. I was going to write about all that, but then I got home and studied Dosages, and then spent about 3 hours doing the homework and now I’m wiped out, and there went also finishing my english assignment which is already way too long and also probably rambling although not as badly as this.