You Learn Something New Everyday

January 31, 2008 at 2:45 pm (Writing Center)

When I took the class to become a writing tutor, we were taught that even if you don’t have an appointment, you need to stay in the Writing Center in case there are walk-ins.  Thus, even if you finish an appointment early, you were supposed to stick around until the end of the hour.  But of course there are never any walk-ins, so most people leave.  Not having too much else to do, I’ve always stuck around in the Writing Center as I felt I was supposed to do.

Today, however, I’m sitting in the Writing Center (whence I am writing this post) and the director of the Writing Center comes out and reveals that if no one shows up after about 15 minutes, we’re allowed to leave!  So rather than having to be here for 2 full hours doing nothing, I can leave 15 minutes after the hour.  Having no life, I figure I’ll wait till 15 minutes after the second hour starts, thus fulfilling my commitment for both hours and letting my conscious rest easy.

The question now is: do I go back to my room at 3:15 until I have to come back here for my French drill at 4:45 or do I hang out in the library between 3:15 and 4:45?  Decisions, decisions…


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January 30, 2008 at 6:14 pm (French, School, Writing)

Today I created my own alphabet. My ever-boring classics class received minimal attention today as I tried to create enough symbols to have one correlate to each letter of the Roman alphabet, except for all those pesky capital letters. My alphabet only has lowercase letters. Or maybe it only has uppercase ones. Well, either way, there is only one case for the letters. So now I just need to work on becoming proficient in my new alphabet and amuse myself instead of being bored to tears in Classical Traditions or in French because some people can’t get the difference between a subject and a direct object through their skulls even after almost a week….

But that’s not what I’m concentrating on. Back to my happy place. I created an alphabet today.

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My New Friend

January 29, 2008 at 5:55 pm (School, UR)

There’s a squash meeting at 6, so I came over to the squash courts right after my French drill got out at 5:30, since it wasn’t really worth going somewhere else only to have to leave again in 10 minutes or so.  Fortunately, I have internet access back here in the recesses of the “Wellness and Recreation Center” where the squash and racquetball courts are shoved (don’t get me started… I’m sure I’ll post more on this later.  It’s kind of a sore topic).

Less than 5 minutes after I sit down and turn on my computer, a police officer comes walking by, patrolling the area for anyone crazy enough to come back here and do illicit things or whatever, and we wave.  Then he asks me how I am, and I take off a headphone to be polite, and say that I’m fine and ask him how he is.  After these pleasantries he walks a few steps then asks me if I’m ok.  Puzzled, I say that I am.  He explains by waving his hand over his face, saying I looked like I was about to cry.  A little skeptically, I answer that I’m just tired.  And then we get into a brief discussion about coffee and how I must be the only one on this campus who doesn’t drink or even like coffee.  So I made a new friend 😀

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Motivation and Time

January 29, 2008 at 11:08 am (Rants, School, Work)

What is it about my motivation being inversely proportional to that amount of free time I have?  Seriously.  The more time I have in which to do something, the less likely I am to do it.  Even if it’s something quick and easy, like posting on my blog or something.  And then I look at the clock and it’s hours later and I have no idea where the time has gone and so have to rush to get anything done, much less everything.

I’m just now realizing that starting at 12:30, I am busy for 6 or 7 hours straight.  And I don’t know quite how that happened.  But the problem is that I’m not actually busy for 6 solid hours: I have breaks of a half hour or 45 minutes in between most of my commitments, but that’s just not enough time to really get anything done.  Well, it is, but it just doesn’t seem like it, simply because it takes so long to walk anywhere I need to go on this campus.  Relatively, it’s not that bad, but when you have 30 free minutes and you have to spend half of that walking places, it’s really not that much.  And yes, this is just me making up excuses as to why I’m not going to do anything productive until late tonight.  I’m such a bad person.

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Mush. Absolute Mush.

January 27, 2008 at 5:55 pm (Homework, School)

I’ve been doing homework for nigh on 4 hours now, and my brain is absolute mush.  And of course I decided to save the most important homework (a take-home quiz) for last.  And I can barely string a coherent set of sentences together.  Or at least, a coherent set of sentences that have something to do with the material that we’ve covered in the last two weeks.  Our book is so dense – good, but dense – that to understand it enough to summarize it without resorting to quotes is pushing it just ever so slightly.  Especially to my extremely mushy mind right now.  I think I need a break from work.  But do I have time to take a break?  Who knows?

And I had been so optimistic about getting everything done in one fell swoop too…

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January 25, 2008 at 5:57 pm (Friends, Movies)

It’s tres, tres, annoying to be watching a fun kids movie to cheer yourself up and have your roomate constantly making comments on it like “What?!” and asking questions about potential leaps in logic, or asking about extremely obvious details or judging the (cartoon!!!) characters and the music.  Arg.  Kill me now.  Or her.  I’d be fine with either.

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8:15s Aren’t So Bad…

January 21, 2008 at 6:12 pm (French, School)

Today I had my first 8:15am class of my college career.  After having to wake up at 6:30am everyday for high school, which started at 7:30am, I vowed never to wake up early again.  Yet here I am, waking up at 7:30am, and planning on waking up at that time 5 days/week for this entire semester.  Am I crazy or what?

To be honest, though, it really wasn’t that bad.  Which surprises me.  I went to bed at around midnight last night, asleep my 12:30 or so I believe (thank you, Tylenol PM!).  So I got approximately 7 hours of sleep last night, which isn’t too bad, but considering I’ve been getting at least 8 hours of sleep recently, my body’s not too happy with me.  But I’m happy with it.  And with my ability to comprehend French at that early hour, despite having little-to-no contact with it for nigh on two years now.  I’m actually hoping (praying) that the French class will get harder and that we’re just reviewing right now.  It’s really easy.  Which I don’t necessarily mind.  But still.  I’d like to learn something.  Anything.  Please?

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Color Me Converted (ish)

January 20, 2008 at 3:26 pm (Uncategorized)

Procrastination is a fantastic thing.  One learns so much from it.  In the course of my procrastination today, I decided to give Firefox a try.  I’m an IE7 girl, through and through, but I needed something to procrastinate today, so I figured I’d give Firefox a shot.  Now, I’m not totally converted (thus the ‘ish’ in the title), but it’s growing on me.  I’ve set it up with my preferences and such, so now it’s just a question of remembering to use Firefox instead of IE.  And a question of if I’m actually going to like using Firefox all the time.  But thus far, for the half hour or so I’ve used it, Firefox isn’t so terrible.  So maybe I’m a convert.  And maybe not.  I’ll let you know.

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Parlez-vous francais?

January 16, 2008 at 11:39 pm (French, School, Sleep, Study Abroad)

I made my decision today to pick up the study of the French language again today. It’s been in the back of my mind for some time now, and with study abroad fast approaching, I finally decided to do something about it.

I emailed one of the international study advisors, telling them of my situation in which I studied French for 9 years before college, and then went with Latin in college. She told me that with all those years of French, I could probably do a French study abroad program, but I would have to talk to the person in charge of France. So, still not wanting to get my hopes up, I made an appointment with the France advisor, and went to talk to her. After talking some, we discussed the few options available to me, and we then decided on a private university in Lille, with which my university just started an exchange program.

The Université catholique de Lille is in north-east France, in a prime location: 15 minutes from Belgium, 1.25 hours from Paris, 2.5 hours from London. It’s a medium sized, private university, where I would be able to live in a dorm, rather than being left on my own to live in an apartment, which I was really dreading elsewhere. They have some classes in English, so I would be able to take a mix of English and French classes. The downside to the classes is that I need to take 8-10 classes just to have enough credits for a full semester. I was struggling figuring out 4 classes elsewhere! How am I going to figure out a mix of 8-10 French and English classes? But that’s for a later spazzing session.

The end result of my meeting with the France advisor was that she was going to contact someone at the university and discuss my situation with them and see what they could work out.

So I left the meeting very happy: I could study abroad in France, as I had dreamed of for so long! Now I just needed to relearn French, since I have barely looked at in in 2 years now! And, truth be told, I wasn’t exactly an amazing French student in high school. After struggling a good deal with myself, I finally decided that I am going to take a 200-level French class here. The problem with that, however, is that it is a huge time and credit commitment: the class is held 5 days a week, plus 2 lab periods, which equals 6 credits, or as much as two other classes. The other problem is that the only available time slot is the one that is held at 8:15am, Monday-Friday. And I already have issues with sleeping when I know I need to get up at 9:30. How in the world am I going to get up at 7:30am – or earlier! – 5 days a week?

But, in the end, I have decided that it is worth it, I want to go back to French fairly badly, so I’m going to do it. And pray that I survive and can get control of my sleep issues. Wish me luck!

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Class #5

January 16, 2008 at 11:22 pm (School)

I finally had the last of my original five classes of this semester tonight, The Built Environment.  It wasn’t really what I expected, but I’m going to stick with it.  The professor is really good, really personable.  It definitely won’t be a dull class, which is absolutely necessary considering it is only one night a week for 2 hours and 40 minutes.  The focus of the class is going to be on green and sustainable living, i.e. ways in which humans can interact with nature without doing more damage than we have already done, and perhaps moving towards correcting the damage we have done.  Apparently, “It’s too late to be pessimistic.” 

 Now, I am definitely not a tree-hugger in any sense of the word, and normally avoid these types of issues, but I really think this class will be interesting and I can learn a lot from it.  We are moving into such a ‘green’ world, that it is better to know about it than simply be ignorant and avoid it.  Though, if the professor weren’t as good as he seems from this first class, and didn’t say that he doesn’t mind us disagreeing and all that jazz, then I think I would drop it pretty quickly, since I don’t want to partake in a propaganda machine.  But the atmosphere of the class is really promising, and there promises to be a lot of interactivity, which is important to me.  There will be a lot of work involved, including reading about a hundred pages or so a week and writing 500-word responses to them, plus a midterm and final, plus a final group project, with 20-page individual papers, and a 20-minute PowerPoint presentation.  That seems a lot more overwhelming right now than it did in class.  But I’ll suck it up and do it.  Yey, my first semester with 20 page papers expected of me, and I have 2!  This is fabulous.  I can’t wait to see how much stress I’m under my the end of this term.  Plus the stress of worrying about studying abroad.  And everything that goes along with that.  This is just lovely.  I really need to stop stressing myself out so much before I go to bed.  Fabulous.

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