Education: August 2006 Archives
It's a podcast. It's a long podcast. It was actually fun to put together. If you're really not interested in Somalia - stick around past 2:35. The stuff about Somalia is good information, but sort of tangential. Listen to Somalia, College and Snobs [m4a format; iTunes recommended]. Depending on what y'all think of this one, I may or may not do podcasts in the future. Leave comments! (And if you're reading this on LJ, as always, I only see comments on the actual site.)
- Taking 12 credits this semester, rather than my typical 15-20. Sensible. Sane.
- Teaching two sections of lab. Still sane.
- Was not hired for the position at the new Apple retail store in town.
- School: Finish those labs from last semester. For real. All the way.
- Design: Get the blog redesign project I started done. All the way. It's really mostly done - I just need to convert to templates and make a few more decisions about how to display archives.
- Photo: Take 100 photos per week. I have a camera which it is reasonable to carry around (the Casio EX-S600EO) with a freaking 2GB SD card; I no longer have any excuse not to go crazy with the taking of pictures.
- Photo: Enter at least one contest at DPChallenge per month. (Why not use that for inspiration?)
- Video: Get approved as a video stock contributor at iStockPhoto.
- Writing: Write a substantial piece of short fiction. I'm not talking about serious "literary fiction" - I'm not even sure I know what that means, actually - I just mean something longer than the look-at-me-we-all-have-ADHD flash fiction I can bang out in a single sitting. A plot would be good. Characters required. I'm thinking 3,000-5,000 words. (I just know that if I can get one done, I'll have loosened up the knotty problem of how to turn my ideas into words.)
- Music: Finish one of the songs I have started. I've got about six sitting around, each with about half of the lyrics written, an idea of the melody line for those lyrics... then nothing.
Dear Apple, I love my iPod. I didn't realize how much I'd missed it. ...okay, maybe I did. The larger screen is love. Color? Even better. The software for viewing contacts and calendars is much improved. Request: please have a discussion with the person who decided it would be ok to make the middle button completely flat. I am now not only missing a piece of tactile feedback concerning where my finger is on the device, but it is difficult for me to press the button without jogging the touch-wheel. I have moderate-length nails which cause me no difficulty when I type, nor with the multitude of tiny buttons on the other electronics I own. They shouldn't cause problems with the iPod, either. xoxo
~~~Dear Apple, I would very much like to have the iMac I ordered. I understand that you are v. busy and that this product is very popular, however, I would like to note that telling me that my product is going to ship late - and up to two weeks late, at that - the day after it was supposed to ship... well, let's just say I've made that sort of mistake before, and it didn't work out well. Don't worry - I still love you. <3
~~~Dear Casio, Manual appears to be missing from box. Received something manual-like, but only four of the pages are in English; remainder appears to be repeated text in several other languages. Will admit interface is fairly easy to pick up, but you know how methodical physics is making me. Where are the equations? ^_^ P.S. Camera so pretty! Very thin! Must be staying away from the twinkies. Appears to have adopted my wardrobe.
~~~Dear UNO, Some of your computer lab rules appear to be unenforceable; others, not in line with your practices. For an example of the former, see the "offending, intimidating or harassing others is not allowed" rule. There are several people sitting within earshot who could potentially be offending me if I got offended by things like obnoxious laughs, clothing with religiously significant symbols, or the fact that anyone is actually looking for pictures of Lil Jon in a fashion that is not intended to be ironi-- wait, that does offend me. The guy next to me is seriously built, and would intimidate anyone except (perhaps) my sister. I would recommend retooling the language on your signs to be more meaningful. For the latter, look no further than your rule against attaching peripherals, when you have pulled USB extension cables through the holes on the desk explicitly for the purpose of making the attachment of peripherals easier. Perhaps these rules predate the addition of said cables. In this case, I recommend what is called a "revision". That's where you change content that is no longer correct. Helpfully yours, Erica
1. My mail is b0rked. This is something with the server. I don't know what. Send email to my first name (dot) my last name (plus sign) sperari (at) that domain Google has for mail. If you're missing any of this information, it's around on the site. If you can't work it out and you have a different address, give it a couple days, then try the address you have. 2. For those of you I haven't told, I had an interview Tuesday with Apple for a position at the retail store they're opening up out Village Pointe. They called today; I did not get the job. 3. Immediately after hanging up the phone after the phone call from the very nice lady at Apple who told me they'd chosen not to hire me, I got a link to an article telling me how miserable my life as a scientist is destined to be. Sam is currently working full-time and going to school part-time in order that I might be able to finish my degree sooner; I've recently been feeling rather insecure about the prospects of my being able to provide for us as well as he's able to. I'm simply not certain that my skills and physics degree will be marketable. I'm vaguely terrified that they won't be. Needless to say, the article (which makes a dozen or so of its ilk I've read) could have come my way at a more opportune time. 4. Sam and I have put in our orders for our tricked-out iMacs, complete with the discounted iPods. 5. I somehow torqued my shoulder earlier today, and it's extraordinarily painful. I'm hoping I can manage to get some sleep tonight. This is not an exhaustive list of everything on my mind, right now, but if you add it all together, it provides a decent picture of how today has colored my mood and my current reactions to ongoing foo. It also explains why I feel very much like being in bed. Good night.
Summer semester has been interesting. I've had a little time off, which has been helpful, but I haven't been idle; I taught a credit and a half of physics labs (about 50 in-class hours, plus 30 or so for grading, spread over four four-day weeks), did summer camp counseling (90 hours, spread over two weeks), and took two online courses through Metro. That's just the stuff that actually gets assigned hours; I've also started work on a couple of software projects, worked on a variety of graphic design projects (one of which you'll be seeing, shortly), wrote quite a bit, and spent time cultivating my relationships with friends, both meatspace and internet-based. Nothing I've done this summer has driven me battier than the online courses, though. I wanted to get these two courses - Black History and Human Geography - out of the way as cheaply and quickly as possible (one for lack of interest, and the other by way of protest); summer session online seemed the way to go. Human Geography has been a lot of inane things I already knew. Where people are, why people migrate, what people grow, geographic factors leading to success or failure, etc. The professor, while I'm sure he's very nice, has asked some of the most terribly slanted questions for homework I've ever seen. It's not nearly as bad as Black History, though. The questions in there, while nowhere near the repugnance level of some of the material in the Native American Religion class I tried to take to fill the diversity requirement (did you know that white women are perpetuating genocide by taking interest in Native American spirituality?), have frequently been of the "When did you stop beating your wife?" variety. I skipped one week of homework, half because I was ill, and half because I couldn't summon the self-loathing required to write the page-long essay on one of the two topics given. Even when they're not bad enough to skip, they're still awful:
- Analyze Jesse Jackson's presidential qualities. Would he make a good president? Why or why not?
- Do Black entertainers and sports figures have a responsibility to the Black community? If so, what?
- How does the Maya Angelou phrase "on the pulse of morning" describe African Americans in the 1990's?
- Analyze the most critical issues facing African American communities today. Why did you choose those issues? What can be done to address them?
- Write an essay comparing hip-hop music to the beginning days of Rock and Roll. Use plenty of web links to illustrate song comparisons.