Now this is what you call "dramatic irony."
27 August 2007
Hard as it is to believe, the NSG Doc has finally caught up with the times. Well, kinda. I'm writing this entry from my long-wanted but only recently-acquired laptop. It's a neat little system, with a great display and a nifty design. It is, however, causing me to install all the programmes I use on a regular basis, and I'm having to deal with the various frustrations caused by Microsoft Vista. I can certainly see why people aren't enamored with it. It's slow, bloated and irksome, especially when it nags you about every single task you attempt. I'd remove it, but something tells me that'd be more hassle than it'd be worth. Otherwise, though, I love the new system and I can only imagine how much commuting time won't be going to waste anymore.
BTW, thanks to those of you who sent kind wishes regarding yesterday. They were much appreciated. Perhaps more later. Cheers.
22 August 2007
Wow, it has been a long time since I updated here: have been crazy-busy lately with various things (writing, editing, reviewing medical briefs slightly larger than Montana) and desperately pretending that it isn't really August. I am in the slow process of setting up at New Institution which, it turns out, is much more complicated than it used to be: contractual stuff, net access, voice mail, the whole drill. (I shudder to think how exasperating it'll be checking voice mail on even a semi-regular basis; email alone has become a chore.) I'm also trying to figure out the eventual purchase of a laptop, which is an odd thing since I've been using the same desktop since Clinton left office. As I'm planning to continue my freelance work, I'm going to need one with all the work I'll have to do. Turns out I'll also have to use a laptop in my teaching, which I've never had to do before. It feels like I'm being dragged into contemporaneity, and in my experience that usually means more work rather than less. C'est la vie.
I've also learned that one of the things I'm going to have to teach is the tired chestnut of the five-paragraph essay. Surely you all know the structure. It's also one I used to rail against in class, as many of you also know (probably too well). That structure, in the hands of some genuinely awful teachers, has probably been responsible for some of the most turgid and thoughtless essay-writing I've had to endure because so many people think in rubrics rather than argumentative or analytical logic. No religious man I, suddenly I'm praying I can impart the fundamentals without accidentally becoming part of the problem-- specifically, contributing to the breeding or enabling of Baaaaaad Writing. The structure works as a teaching device because it's simple and memorable; but as an organizing principle, it's often woefully misleading and functionally impractical. When I taught first-year courses at Place Of Which I Do Not Speak, one of the first things I used to do was demolish that model. Now I have to promote it. I'm sure several of you are laughing your butts off as a result.
So, yeah, there's a lot cooking these days with only more to come. I can't promise, alas, a return to form in re blogging any time soon. It's that time of year when I normally become most elusive (and, if caught, surly). It came to my attention, however, that this year-- for the first time-- I will officially be twice as old as most of my students. Twice. As they say, if I were a horse, they'd have shot me by now. How's that for logical positivism?
09 August 2007
Just some random bits and pieces for your consideration:
- Watching The Simpsons Movie, I was struck by one sight gag that has to be one of the most insightful observations I've seen in a long, long while. At one point, as a giant dome is falling upon Springfield and the direness of the town's predicament becomes apparent, the movie cuts to a shot of the town church and Moe's Tavern. The denizens of each stare up into the sky, panic, and run into the opposite building: the drunks to church, the religious to darkened stools. Ah, truth in satire. When the shit hits the fan, the familiar crutch just won't do. Bloody brilliant.
- Ironic moment pending: Occurred to me the other day what a joy it would be to fly-on-the-wall when Nelly Furtado's daughter becomes an out-of-control teenager. The precocious But Mom!s would be priceless. *snicker*
- Ever like ships in the night, it seems that just as I'm about start working in the same city as Zelda, she's off to another city. The story of our lives: always in the same area, never in the same place at the same time....
- Since being sheared like a New Zealand lamb, I've been inundated with "Oh-my-God-you-look" [insert number here between 19 and 22, with or without a colourful expletive]. Sure, it's all supposed to be complimentary & all that, and I'm equally sure most of the remarking is exaggerated. It reminds me, though, why I started growing in beards all those years ago; one tires of the "do you have ID" and effusive darlingism. There's something desperately wrong with the world when people start calling me "cute." *Shiver* Especially when I know it's meant in the Gary Coleman sort of way. Ugh. Talk about your cognitive dissonances; it's like describing Burgess Meredith as "cuddly." Or Trouble, pictured at right doing his best impression of a possum, as "ambitious." (Old Cat's Book of Practical Possums, anyone?)
Oh well. It's August, that most dread-inducing month. It's enough to drive a man to drink--- even more than usual. Then again, I like my crutches tried and true.
06 August 2007
Yes, yes, yes: I have been delinquent in updating this blog, so my apologies to those of you who keep checking it so inexplicably dutifully. Have been asea in issues and paperwork, and generally exhausted, but I have finally (and surely temporarily) alighted from the waves long enough to catch my breath. And yes, as Zozo tweaked in one of her comments, there is a bit of a change for the Ole Doc, as he will be assuming a new position shortly at a local institution. (As opposed to my last institution, the position for which I was constantly forced to assume zoologically constituted "presenting.") But good news in my own regard has been so rare, that every little bit counts.
So, there you have it. Kinda sorta. Discretion, better part, you know the drill. But now you know. Kinda sorta. ;-)
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