Saturday, July 08, 2006

So Much to Write About, and Yet Rusty, So Not Sure How to Write Any of It

Well, I've been an erratic (at best) blogger this summer, and in part that has been because of my travels and in part that has been because of just being busy with other things and, well, I don't know. I think perhaps that I needed some time away from blogging in order to think about things and gather ideas to blog about, etc. And, hell, who am I kidding, my time that I usually devote to blogging has been spent lying in the sun and reading trashy books.

At any rate, now I'm feeling the itch to blog, but I'm not entirely sure how to scratch it, if you know what I mean. I've kind of fallen out of the voice that I use for the blog, and I've fallen out of the habit of crafting particular posts with readers in mind. And so here I am, bursting with things to tell you all, and yet I'm not sure how to get any of it from my brain and into writing. I know I can always fall back on the list method of posting, but, well, I've been doing a lot of that since summer began and it feels kind of lame and lazy to me right now. Also, well, I suppose I've got things to say that don't really fit into a list-y format. So, in no particular order, here are the things that are on my mind and what I've been doing, etc.


You might think that with my traveling and my lounging poolside that I don't have work-related things going on with me. Or that if I do they are not particularly pressing things. For the most part, I don't have much pressing on the table at the moment (except for the special issue of the journal thing that i'm responsible for that basically I'm going to force myself to do in a 48-hour period when the weekend is over, because apparently I just need to make a push and get the thing done), but I suppose I have a number of things that have been weighing on my mind related to work. First and foremost, in August it will be 3 years since I defended my disseration, and I've already done some revising of it but never gotten around to much else, and so fuck it, I've decided, I'm turning the thing into a book proposal, I'm polishing a couple of chapters, and I'm starting to shop the bastard. I mean, really. Now's the time, right? If I don't do it now, the whole thing will be out of date and basically useless. I really believe that it SHOULD be a book and that it would add to the field (blah blah blah), so I've got to just force myself to get my shit together and to get it out there. I realize that this may sound somewhat rash as a course of action, but well, worst that will happen is I'll be rejected, and even that would be better than letting the thing continue to gather dust. At least then I'd have confirmation that the manuscript is kind of a piece of crap, right? (By the way, I feel a sense of purpose and resolve related to this with a simultaneous feeling of fear and hopelessness. What's that all about?) The other big work-thing (and also something that I think relates to the fire that seems to have been lit under my ass re: the book thing) is that I'm pretty serious about going on the market this year. This is entirely daunting, as 1) I'm going to need to ask some people for letters that will require delicate handling, 2) I don't feel entirely "worthy" to go on the market because a) I'm not totally miserable b) I'm not trying to live nearer to a partner (which seems to be the only "personal" reason that the books, people in the profession, etc. don't question), and c) I'm entirely afraid that the result will be something along the lines of, "Dr. Crazy, who do you think you are trying to gain employment at a place better than your current place because really you're just not good enough." That said, insecurity and feelings of inadequacy have never stopped me from doing anything before, and thus, I need to get to work on job-search-related things.


Well, to be completely honest, I've been a bit of a recluse this last week or so. Partly, I've just needed time to myself after all of my travels, and partly, I'm trying to get back on track with just my life - things like cooking decent meals, eating at regular times, working out, sleeping on a nice schedule in which I get enough - if not more than enough - sleep. All of that takes a lot of time/energy, and I just haven't felt like dealing with people while trying to deal with all of that. This may, however, be making me somewhat crazy, and so I plan to venture out into the world and to interact with people in the coming days. Funnily enough, while I know that this is a good thing, I'm not looking forward to it. Oh, and the Man-Kitty thrives. I have some new pics of him, as well as pics of my various trips, so I should probably post those, huh? I think my camera is still packed somewhere....

Pop Culture
Ok, this portion of the post is going to be list-y, as, well, I don't have any deep thoughts about the pop culture things that are on my mind.

  1. I really enjoy that new Nelly Furtado CD.
  2. Does anybody else feel like the Pussycat Dolls are like the Spice Girls without the Girl Power? And does that depress anybody else but me? I mean, sure, the Spice Girls weren't exactly singing "I am woman hear me roar," but isn't a lyric like, "If you wanna be my lover/you gotta get wit' my friends" better than a lyric like, "And now, ain't nothing else I could need/ And now, I'm singing 'cause you're so, so into me/ I got you, we'll be making love endlessly/ I'm with you (baby I'm with you)"? I think so.
  3. Ok, that song, by The Fray? That "in over my head" song? A.) It's really catchy B.) Does the video remind anybody else of XTC's video for "Dear God"? I watched the video for a couple of weeks and I kept felt like I'd seen it before, and I think that's because it's the same as that XTC video (or very similar). And if that's true, have we really reached the point where videos are just remakes of other videos? (The answer to this is probably yes, as the new artist Cassie has a video for her song "me and u" (a song I've got to admit I love) is pretty much Janet Jackson's "Pleasure Principle" video.) And what ever happened to MTV designating certain videos as "buzzworthy"? And why is that horrible Matt Pinhead - oh, I'm sorry, Pinfield - now on VH1? Why didn't they just retire that dude outright?

Ok, I think that's all of my pop-culture related stuff. Anything else? Well, not really. I'm trying to weed all of the paper out in my house and to re-organize (for the umpteenth time) my study. My mom's coming to visit in two weeks, I'm late on getting my travel voucher in to be reimbursed for my trip and I'm pissed because it's not my fault I'm late getting it in (or at least not entirely my fault), I'm successfully through 6 days in phase 1 of the south beach diet (yes, I returned to phase one) and I'm feeling really energetic and good re: that but will be happy when I'm done with the de-toxing aspects of phase 1, for I miss things like brown rice (how sad), and I think that's all. Oh, and I'm thinking about starting another blog that just relates to job-searching things. Not sure. Basically, I'm not sure that I want to junk up this blogspace with that nonsense, but I don't know. Must think on it some more. Now it's time to print out my manuscript and to begin organizing a schedule for whipping the thing into shape and into a book proposal.


Flavia said...

Re: Pussycat Dolls: at least one other person echoes your sentiments--including the Spice Girls comparison.

Re: going on the market: I don't have statistics or books to back me up on this, but it's my feeling that going out on the market after Year Three, in the hopes of moving on up, is not unusual. I know several people who have done this in their 4th or 5th year, even without the partner thing or the book-just-published thing as a compelling reason. So, FWIW, I say that testing the waters is completely reasonable/normal.

Mel said...

year 3 is a good time to try the market because year 5 and possibly 4 you will be busy getting stuff out for tenure; also you still seem "new" enough for some depts who really want fresh new young folks.