Showing posts from 2006

Ho! Ho! Ho!

Merry Christmas!!!!

Near a creative black hole.

That is how I feel right now (at least in the blog department). I can't seem to come up with anything exciting to tell you. Not anything funny. Not anything even mildly amusing.
Well...maybe a little. I did run in sub-20 degree weather last Monday and Tuesday. That was a trip. I am trying to get ready for the half-marathon coming up in less than three weeks. I did a 10 mile run on Monday of this week and will do another on next Monday. My leg is fine (thank goodness!) and I am tolerating the jump in distance very well.

Other than that, we are in the middle of finals week here. I have a paper due, mercifully, next Monday by noon.

On another note: My week would have been perfect except that Barbara Walters preempted Boston Legal.


The show is truly my only pleasure these days.


I can be an openly proud Bond fan!!! I LOVE, LOVE, LOVE the new James. The movie is fantastic and finally someone has portrayed a character and written a script that is as close to Fleming's Bond as I have ever seen. YEA!

Trying to see the sunny side...

At the moment, I am suffering from a bad cold or the flu. I am not sure which one, nor do I have the energy to find out. My mom had surgery on her ankle yesterday to remove screws and plates from her bad break years ago...she even got to keep them as a souvenir. She can't walk around so great right now and is using a walker for a few days. I told her things were just too crazy in our house between her and dad!

Other than that, nothing much is happening. I know I don't update the blog much these days, but my life seems to be a scheduled series of events. Staying at home so much is strange for me, but I have been able to read a lot. By the time I have to teach (5/7 pm), I have no energy. Next semester, I am supposed to teach at 8/9 am. I like that much better.

Other news....let's see...

Well, Kelly and I saw Finding Neverland last weekend. Yes, I know I am hopelessly behind in keeping up with the latest movies. However, I really loved it. I thought it was wonderful. However, …

Feelin' the Burn...

Of the final days of the semester, I mean. I can't believe that I have a paper due in two weeks. Lovely. Even lovlier: my topic is in shambles because I am too exhausted to think!

Nothing of interest is happening these days. Last night, due to withdrawal from cold medicine that I had been taking for two nights, I was up all night. So, around 3 am I decided to surf the web. This lasted until six in the morning. I did find some really great stuff...for example, I found my friend, Jeff's, myspace page. (I like the picture of you on the site, Anne!) I can't really remember everything that I looked up, but it was a fun time...well, as fun as it gets when you are an insomniac.


I am teaching literature in the Spring!!!

Fellow Library School Students, This One Is For You...

Oh, my.

Last night, my dad had a little one hour gig to play, so my mom and I decided to go out to dinner (dad's friend took him to play). Then, we wanted to stop by the library. So, mom went upstairs to look at the cookbooks and I wandered around the mystery section downstairs. Later, I went upstairs to find mom. When I saw her, she said, "The weirdest thing just happened." And this is it:

After looking at the cookbooks, she wandered to the edge of the 800s. On the shelf nearest the aisle, at eye level, a book caught mom's eye. She picked it up and opened it. THAT was when she realized that the book was wet and a horrible smell was drifting from it. Yes, someone urinated on the book. I think mom was in such shock, she still didn't know what to think when I got to her! Anyway, I located a young guy (probably a part-timer or volunteer) and told him what happened. He went to grab the older librarian and all I could hear from her, in a very Southern drawl, was, &quo…

I need inspiration. (Or, please excuse my pity party)

After eveything that has happened in my life over the last year, I am finding myself struggling to stay inspired. I know it is temporary, but it is really hard (especially when I can't even run right now!). It doesn't help that this semester, even though I like my classes, I am not taking anything in "my area" of Victorian lit. And it isn't as if there is a lot of time to do any extra reading. Next semester will change things because our Victorian Lit. professor has agreed to a directed study. The work will be intense, but I will learn so much.

On a positive note, overall, my students are great this semester. I really like them (although I wish they would commit to the reading a bit more) and they are really doing a good job. I think some of it has to do with the different teaching style I have now...the summer job I had required a specific style of teaching and I think it really does work for both little kids, middle/high schoolers, and college age. Anyway, thing…

More hamstring news...

Today I went to a sports medicine specialist because the leg is just not getting better. He gave me some medicine and told me to wait another three weeks. I am supposed to try running in two weeks (1 mile or 2 miles). If I experience pain or if the pain continues into week three, I have to go back for a MRI. This time around, x-rays were obvious broken bones. The doctor thinks it is a muscle problem; however, if it is still going on in three more weeks, then I probably have a stress fracture. Lovely. When I was there, I wasn't in too much pain. He stretched my leg back and I still felt okay...but now, six hours later, I feel terrible. Oh well.

Okay, that is all I have to say about that for now! Other than dealing with the leg, I am really just hanging in there. School is okay, my students are good this semester, and dad is coming along very well. Last Friday, I really needed to get some work done at the library on campus. Dad was kind of down that day, so I told him to g…

Questions and Answers

Okay, so on Wednesday morning I went to the dermatologist. I haven't been in six years, so, of course, I had massive amounts of paper to fill out with lots of personal information. As I went through various lists to check off, I had to fight the urge to write crazy things next to the boxes. For example, one section said to "check off the box if you have experienced any of the following..."

I checked the "no" box so many times that I felt kind of boring after a while. So, when I got to "weight loss," I wanted to write "I wish." When I saw "headaches...depression...anxiety...," I thought, "Well, yea....I am a graduate student getting a Ph.D. in English. Of course I experience these things." After a while, to kill time, I ended up making up answers in my head and laughing to myself so much that I am sure others in the office thought I was nuts. The things I have to do for fun.

Breathing Freely

I just finished having paper conferences with my students. It is something I like to do, but it just takes up so much time! At the end of it all (and this semester I have about 58 students), I feel more sleepy than when I run a long time! Ugh.

The leg is still sore. I keep hoping that it will get better soon...I am starting to give in to stress and that isn't good. I need to run!!! Oh well.

I am trying to think of anything funny that has happened to me lately...hmmm...well, I should have something funny to say this weekend. I have to drive up to KY to pick up my grandma. My great-great-uncle's neighbors bring her halfway from Indiana to Alabama (i.e. the KY/TN line). So, I will meet them, my grandma, and my 94-yr-old great-great-uncle on Sunday. He is a trip so I will keep everyone informed!


Oh so sad.

Well, I had to break down and go to the doctor. After I ran yesterday, I felt sore, but relatively okay for a while. Then, about 6:45 last night, my leg cramped up really bad! So, today I went to see the doc and he said I have to stop running for at least 3 weeks (but should avoid running for a month if possible). UGH. So, that means that by the time the Vulcan run comes around I will be super SLOW.

So, anyway, I have some medicine I have to take for a couple of weeks (basically powerful ALEVE). Not being able to run is very bad. VERY BAD. I need the stress release. Oh well. Expect interesting blogs for a month. (hah)

A fallen woman.

Well, no, I did not literally fall; however, my leg felt as if it wanted to collapse beneath me this morning! (Actually, I am being dramatic. I am sore and stiff right now, but it is okay.) I hit the training grounds again this morning. We had a big group and went five miles. Also, the ROTC was out...which made us all feel like wimps. Still, I can plead an injury for now! I especially enjoy the picture above. The woman is down on the ground and a dog is sniffing her for signs of life...that would be my lovely Casey. He might sniff, but then he would go down for a nap. The people gawking the the background would be my running partners. In fact, this will be me after the 10K I have promised to run with my cousin, Jessica, in a couple of months. You see, she is running, too...only she is REALLY running, learning to run a 10K without stopping. Yep. This picture is really a glimpse into my future, folks.



I have injured my right leg, folks. I was supposed to run in a 5K this weekend, but it looks like that is out. I have a bad strain in my hamstring, so, until the pain goes away, I am out of the game. (Approx. 3 weeks according to most sources.) So, for all of you who don't remember a thing about anatomy, this is me running:
Well, it is sort of me...minus the fact that this is a picture of a guy, of course. The big thing in red is the hamstring and that is what is hurting me.
Other than that, I am just working and working. I am still reading Clarissa and probably will be forever. The book is great, but I am running out of time during the week to read it. I am still on schedule, for now.

Saturday, I went to Birmingham to babysit. The kids and I had a great time and I try to ignore the fact that they are getting too old to need me around much longer! Well, more later. Now, I have to get ready to go out to campus and walk the m…

Skilled beyond belief; OR, All of my education finally payed off.

Yes, folks, today I proved to the world that a woman in pink, nails slightly polished, and wearing girly shoes can have "manly" skills. I INSTALLED A MAILBOX!!! My parents' mailbox was in bad shape, so I convinced them to go to Home Depot and get a new one. This afternoon, I put it up and it looks great. YEA! I have some skills. Maybe, when I finish my Ph.D. and enter the saturated English market, I can become a handywoman. I bet it pays better!

Searching for a topic because my brain is fried.

Well, I really wish I had something to discuss. I feel like all of my creativity is out of reach right now! The only thing I can really talk about (because I am constantly reading it) is the novel Clarissa. It is really fascinating, but I wouldn't recommend it for anyone afraid of reading REALLY long books. My version, with over-sized pages and teeny-tiny print is 1500 pages. I think the Penguin edition is the only complete, unabridged version available. Anyway, it really sucks you in after a while, although I still can't figure out the motives of the characters just now.

Other than that, I am finished with week 2 of teaching this semester. My students are a good group and I hope it will be a good semester.

Also, I ran 6 miles this morning (ugh). For the first time, it was actually pleasant outside because the humidity wasn't overwhelming...however, that did not help my running ability. I can't wait for fall weather!

Christmas in July....

AND THANKSGIVING IN AUGUST!!! Yes, folks, I am about to turn the big 3-0. So, because I have to teach on my real birthday, my grandmother made my favorite meal today! (Thanks, grandma and Larry!) We had turkey and dressing, roasted veggies, peas, beans, cranberry sauce, was lovely.

Other than that, I am busy preparing for the first real week of classes. Last week, I just introduced myself and the class to the material and course objectives. However, now, we start for good! Actually, I am putting to good use a lot of the lesson-plan-making skills I learned over the summer. Planning out eight different classes per week is quite a job, I tell you. I don't know what to do now that I only have one preparation to invent!

Also, I am reading the LONGEST book on earth: CLARISSA. I am actually on a reading schedule with it because it needs to be finished by week 10 of the semester...It is 1500 pages. You do the math (because I can't).

The new blog address!!

Well, everyone, I have moved the blog to my old address! I no longer live in Tampa so I can't have the address for susieupdatetampa, now could I?
I will try to notify everyone very soon!

Gasping for breath.

Well, I have joined up with my running buddies here in T-town. And, to provide myself with adequate motivation to get up at 5 am three times a week to run five miles or more, I signed up for the Disney 1/2 marathon in January and will soon sign up for the Mercedes 1/2 marathon in Feb. If I don't do that, I will never get myself out and run. Surprisingly, I am enjoying myself so far!

Other than that, my mind is finally calming down enough to enjoy my brief week off...ugh, it is already Thursday. Anyway, that is about it. I haven't read nearly as much as I wanted to because this week has been super busy.

Last Saturday, I just spent the day exhausted. Sunday, we went to the Bright Star restaurant in Bessemer. It was Dad's first trip out of town. He did well, but was really tired after. When I came home, I decided to make a trip to the public library. On the way home, I had a flat tire. I had to drive on the tire for a bit because I was not in a safe area. Eventually, I made it…

Me, again!

I feel like myself again! My summer job is finished and I have a week to relax before the new year (academic) begins. So, I decided, today, considering Alabama had its first ever tax free weekend, to make a positive change. I bought a pair of running shoes and will begin to re-train myself starting on Tuesday morning with my old running group. I also, as a fixed motivation, signed up for the Disney Half-Marathon in January (13.1 miles through the Magic Kingdom and Epcot). So, I am very excited. As I said when I trained for the Mercedes Marathon: "At least I get a good t-shirt out of it!"

I am also trying to get everything in order around me. I want things to be more organized than they have been all summer.

Dad is doing well and will complete his last week of cognitive therapy on Wednesday.

Other than that...I don't really have a lot to tell. I have been reading some great books...Ralph's Party, some books by Anne Rice, some children's lit (including Peter Pan...v…


Then, I will be finished teaching and I can take a mini-vacation from work. I have a week off before orientation begins here in T-town. I plan to read much non-literary material, including romance novels, chick lit, and anything else that I feel like reading.

Also, my dvd player arrives, I will spend much time watching British films (I have ordered two for the player and also Kelly, my friend here, has a few). I CAN'T WAIT! Plus, I can finally get things straightened up around here. Still have a few boxes to unpack...

Dad is doing great with memory therapy. In fact, he is doing so well that they are releasing him after next week! No one can believe how well he is doing!

In the evenings, when I am relaxing, I am reading a book called Ralph's Party by Lisa Jewell. It is a chick lit book written around 1998 (I think). Anyway, it is a lot of fun. My former professor recommened that I read it. True, as he said, the author doesn't plunge into the depths of the singl…

Region Free

I am buying a region-free DVD player. I am soooooo excited because now I can watch all of the British movies that I want to buy on Amazon. Also, I can watch movies from all over Europe...very helpful considering that I am trying to learn some new languages. Ahhh...the joys of technology!

I need a life.

Seriously. I am probably the most boring person on Earth. Anyway, my friend Kelly and I watched a great film today called Kinky Boots. Here is a link for it:

It was really a great film and I was happy to see the guy from Love Actually in another movie.

Other than that, I am getting super nervous because I am taking my car in tomorrow for repair work. I hate having to do that...I need some things checked out and I just don't want it to be too expensive. (Right.) I have two more weeks of work...and, then, school starts. So, here I go again!

Well, once I have something interesting to say I will try to post. (I.E. don't expect much.)

T Minus Three Weeks

I have three weeks left of my summer job. This term has been different from the last term, some new challenges and some easier situations.

Other than that, I am very excited about a new database I just found on-line:

I love the British. My friend, Kelly, believes that those of us whose ancestors chose to come to America ought to try to find other relatives still alive on the big island and form a class-action law suit. Kelly just got back from London (she was there for almost two months) and we both agree that our relatives had to have been smoking crack (or opium or some other narcotic) to have left there in the first place. I am very bitter. So, until I can go there for an extended stay, I will just have to watch movies and hang out with my British friends.

Dad update: He his doing really well. He gets frustrated because he cannot see the progress he is making, but my mom and I try to snap him out of it ASAP.


Well, as you can see, it has been a really long time since I posted anything! My dad had a massive heart attack and was on life support for a couple of days. He came off of it and can walk and talk and everything. The only thing he is struggling with right now is his short term memory. The doctors say it will return in about three to six months. So, my mom is taking advantage of the Family Leave Act and staying home with him for three months. He is doing better but he is very frustrated because he can't remember everything (luckily he doesn't remember anything about the night it happened). Sometimes he gets a little depressed, but I try to talk him out of it as soon as I see him looking down. The night it happened, the doctors did not think he would live through the night; but, now, he is doing so well, he doesn't even need any physical therapy--and it has only been 16 days since he had the attack! The only therapy he will attend for a while is cognitive therapy, to help w…



My friend, Katie, got a fabulous job and I thought I would spend today's blog congratulating her!!! I am really happy for you!

It seems like people are in a good-luck cycle right now. My cousin, Jessica, found out that she now has a fabulous business opportunity, Katie has a job, and the planets are perfectly aligned. (Well, I don't know about that last bit, but it sounded good.)

Anyway, a big shout out to all my library school buds who are employed now!!! (Lyda, Katie, Elizabeth, etc....) HOORAY!!!! The degree paid off!

I remember nothing.

Well, another week has passed. My mind can't keep up with anything. I remember nothing.

My mom has been mentioning my cousin, Audrey's, wedding all week. And, even though we have talked about it, I forgot it was even taking place last night. Mom called when I got into my car after teaching in Hoover and said, "Well, are you on your way? Are you going home to change?" Ummm....change into what? A bottle of Maker's Mark is the only thing I want to dissolve into at this point. I was hungry and exhausted. Anyway, when I came home, mom had gone to the wedding because I wasn't going to make the time. I got dressed, tried to cover up the exhaustion, and went to the reception. And, PRAISE GOD, there was free wine. I wasn't sure about this one...some weddings around here, due to religious affiliation, may not serve, um, tasty beverages. However, Audrey came through and was having quite a nice time herself.

I actually hate weddings. I can't stand going to them. H…


I just heard on the news that Polar Bears are resorting to cannibalism because of a natural food shortage.

I guess I did not suffer the crisis I imagined during finals week when I could not find my Dove dark chocolate at Target in Tampa. However, I could have sworn that the world was ending and thought I saw people hoarding little red foil wrapped chocolate bits everywhere...

I think this is my perfect food. It is smooth, delicious, and includes little messages inside each individually wrapped piece (appealing to the literature lover in me). Ahhh...ask yourself: If the world ran out of your favorite food, would you resort to cannibalism? (I am surely going to hell for making light of such a sad situation. I love Polar Bears, really. I am actually teaching three of my reading classes from books that include a polar bear character. I am sad and sick.)

Feeling Better.

Well, the foot is getting much better. It has been a pain, literally. I am feeling a little better about my job, even though I am still exhausted! I had a wonderful conversation with a parent today, and two days ago a parent handed me a note saying that for the first time ever her daughter was excited about something she had read. That was really great! Still, I am in need of a vacation and some sun (with lots of SPF100 covering my body!).

Other than that, yesterday, after finishing up with my teaching, I had dinner with my cousin, Jessica. (Hey, Jess!!) We had a great time and it was just what I needed after a long week. At dinner, I told her that she needs to read the book Kitchen Confidential by Anthony Bourdain (another huge crush of mine).

My favorite episode on the Travel Channel is when he went to France and tried absinthe. If you aren't familiar with him, you should check out his show or read one of his books. They are so funny! (Of course, only if you can stand the crass…


Well, I teach classes tomorrow all day and that will conclude week two of my summer job. It is something else...but I won't go on and on.

So, basically, I wish I had something to add to this blog. I have no life, I am exhausted, my foot is killing me because of a minor injury (which doesn't make life easy when I have to walk all over Samford campus to get to these classes, carrying all kinds of books and things), and I just need a good night of sleep.

What is everyone doing these days?? I am sure you have something more interesting to say than I do right now!! Leave some comments and inspire me....

It ain't pretty.

Well, I finished my first week of teaching. Some parts were good...others not. I will save that conversation for another time. Right now, I am totally exhausted because I just go in from another day of this and I can barely hold my head up. Anyway, more later when I am awake...

Back in Bama

Well, I am here again! Of course, I will be at training for the next few weeks, so I don't think I will be updating the blog much. I will try to post something on the weekends, if possible.

Other than that, I am just happy that I survived the drive and umpacking yesterday. I crashed last night and I didn't want to get up this morning!

Tomorrow is my father's 62nd birthday! Always on the big CINCO DE MAYO!
Happy Birthday, dad!

Job Update

Well, he officially offered the job to me this morning. Yes, there was another interview (#5). So, I begin training in Atlanta on Monday! I am very excited.

Also, I am trying to get things together to bring home tomorrow. I have so much stuff I want to try to fit into my car. I am not looking forward to that! Still, it is best if I can bring home most of my stuff now. That way, I just have a few boxes and the furniture to handle later.

The last couple of days have been "feel good" days for the most part because some of my former students and current students have come by to say goodbye. Yet, all of this is tempered with my panic over my Shakespeare final...which takes place in about two hours and 50 minutes. The death bell ringeth. (Is "ringeth" a word??? I got it from an episode of AbFab...god bless Eddie and Patsy.)


So, I just joined MySpace. I know several people who are on it and if you want to view my stuff there, just let me know and I will send you the "join" message. Right now, I really don't know what to do with it. Katie needs to send me some suggestions...


I have so much to do! I worked this morning through about 2 pm, and then I collapsed. I needed some time to rest after the active weekend. Plus, I am living in the land of flowering plants and my allergies are acting up horribly.

Tuesday night I have my Shakespeare final exam. Be afraid. Very afraid.

Chicago relived.

This is a Chicago story I must share.

So, when I finally got to Chicago (my flight was delayed), I made my way to my apartment in the middle of the city. It was a beautiful building and I was really excited to be there. The doorman (actually a doorwoman) began to check me in and then gave me the keys. When I grabbed my suitcase, she said, "Oh, by the way, your other party checked in earlier." I paused and asked her what she meant. She then said that I was listed as the other half of a couple listed on the lease for the weekend. She said the guy had already checked in. I emphatically explained that there was no couple thing happening with me, that I was proudly spending time in my room as a solo occupant. She insisted that I was part of a couple. However, after much protest, the lady finally believed me. So, she called the manager. The manager informed her that the other guy had been there earlier but left that afternoon. So, I was told to proceed to my room.

I went up to the 2…


Well, IRD called today and e-mailed me all kinds of forms (W-4, employee manual, etc.), and set up a information call on Tuesday. As far as I know, I have the job, but the e-mail calls it a hiring interview. It seems like everything is going as planned and Josh, the man calling me, implied that all was fine. I suppose that the "hiring interview" is just a formal name for it all. So, if nothing goes wrong, I will be working for IRD!! I hope it all is set in stone because I think the job would be challenging and a lot of fun. (For those of you who don't know much about IRD, it is the Institute of Reading Development. They hire teachers to increase reading skills, ability, and enjoyment for children and adults. The people I met are great and I hope it all works out!)

I will keep everyone informed.


(Thanks to everyone who e-mailed about Chicago. Unfortunately, I had already left! Sorry!)

Okay, well, it was really stressful. The interview/hiring day was seven hours long. We didn't eat lunch until 3:30, so that did not help me out too much because you know how I love food. Some of it went really well, and other parts of the day could have gone much better. They are supposed to let all of us know by Wednesday about our status. I was really impressed by the company and would like to work for them; however, there were 25-30 of us there for the interview and they only hire 2-3. So, at least I had a really great time in Chicago and met some great people (IRD staff included).

Other than that, I am totally stressing about the end of the semester. I have so much to do and no time to do it.

Has anyone out there been to Chicago????

HELP! I need some advice. Any opinion or information would be helpful. E-mail me and I will quiz you!

P.S.: Thanks for the encouragement, Lyda!

Job Update...

So, the interview went really well on Friday...and, they are sending me to Chicago this weekend for a final interview and training day. I hope it works out! Wish me luck!

Buffing Up

I can actually see a faint outline of my arm muscles. I am in total shock.

When I planned to write this entry, I tried to find a funny photo to include. I typed in "muscle woman" on a google image search...and, well, it was just too scary. I mean, look at this:

Scroll down the page...I dare you.

I am sorry, but that physique just is not pretty on anyone. So, no, I don't want a steroid body, but something other than flabby arms would be nice.

My New Favorite Series!!!

I think I have already talked about Philip Pullman's His Dark Materials series, but I have not devoted an entire entry to it. I LOVE these books. There are only three in the series, plus a smaller book called "Lyra's Oxford." The author is working on a new one, according to his Web site. Anyway, they are fantastic. They are sold in the children's section and the fantasy section of the bookstore; however, the books are very deep and dark and adult.

I have also heard that the trilogy will be made into films by New Line Cinema, using the Lord of the Rings directors. YEA! I am very excited. Anyway, I just wanted to give everyone a heads up on these books just in case you have not read them.

Who knew?

Today, I am finally caught up on all of my work (and am actually ahead in some classes) so I have been lounging all day. Well, "all day" except for my workout. I had forgotten what it felt like to be able to sit back and relax! Anyway, I am going home this weekend for a mini-holiday. I hope to see all of my family (Jess...if you read this, send me a line and let me know what you guys are planning for Easter. Are you going to T-town??).

Anyway, I had a phone interview this morning that went really well. It is for a summer job, but it sounds great and the money is excellent. I have another phone interview on Friday, so wish me luck!!!

Other than that, I think I will take the rest of the evening and watch some trash on t.v. Enjoy!

"I detect the powerful odor of mendacity..."

Quote: from Cat on a Hot Tin Roof.

Pour me one while you are at it, Brick.

Okay. I really hate it when a professor tells you that he or she is open to interpretation and intelligent analysis, then takes off points because you did not tell him or her what he or she wanted to hear (literally says so!!). Sorry. Just indulge me in this: Isn't that the purpose of education? Isn't that the way to further scholarship???

Side note: I totally agree with the grade I received on the exam paper. The problem resides in the commentary.

What the heck is wrong with me???

Okay, today has just been crazy. Last night, I did a really long Yoga session and my poor body is sore and exhausted. So, today, I tried to take a nap because I was just so exhausted...but I could not sleep and ended up just watching television. Then, I decided to work on my paper outline that is due on Tuesday. I had a very rough sketch of my outline already saved. Also in that file I had included various quotes I intended to use in my paper from sources I have already researched. When I began to revise the outline, I accidently cut the section including the quotes....and saved the document! CRAP!!! I could not recover the old version, and I had to go back and find all of the quotes again. I was devastated. UGH. Anyway, I think I have all of them in a new document now, titled, appropriately, "Quotes for paper." Sometimes I am such an idiot.


I just ran my first mile--straight--since last year. I feel it, too. But, I am happy I was able to do it. Actually, I don't think you could call it "running," but it was definitely between walking and running. A light jog. :)

So, now, I am setting a huge agenda for myself this weekend. I want to get a lot of stuff done before I come home in a few weeks (so that I don't have to work over my brief trip). So, I plan to read all of the articles that I can get for my Shakespeare paper, make an outline, and, hopefully, begin writing the paper. I also need to get my work done for literary criticism, but that shouldn't take too long. I finished my homework for Romanticism, so at least that is out of the way. However, I still need to plan my teaching schedule for the next two weeks. Yippie. Loads of caffine will be needed.


I just realized that I have been posting on this blog for over one year!! My first post was on March 6, of last year!!! Like sands through the hourglass, so are the days of our lives.

Loathing Lear...and indulging in a rant (I apologize in advance.)

Maybe it is just that I am exhausted, but I am finding that reading King Lear this time is killing me. I have read the play twice before now, but I don't remember the finer details. I enjoyed it the first time, but now it is just a chore...probably because my mind is in a million places at once. Every Tuesday night, I come home with a headache due to information overload! I need some fun in my life, people!! And, yet, there is no time.

Actually, today I had one of those universal experiences (in King Lear fashion). A girl that I know arrived to class early and began talking to me incessantly. She is the kind that likes to speak loudly, deliberately drawing attention to herself, desperate for all to notice her. She gets right in your face, still speaking loudly, and goes on and on about her life and how brilliant she is. It drives me nuts. I am forcing myself to make time for fun reading this semester, and that was what I was doing before she came up to me. I was trying to get throu…

Ugh...totally exhausted.

Another productive day...but I am so exhausted.

Also, have a student story for the record books...but, I will be proper and not refer to it here. You will just have to ask me about it when you see me. I don't think I have ever encountered one like this before. Totally shameless.

A Clue to Harry Potter's Professor Snape...?

Part of what I am going to say is old news: Severus Snape's character could be based on a Roman ruler of Britain in the early part of the 3rd century. (See )

However, I have a bit to add....

I am researching a bit of information for my Shakespeare paper and am reading Machiavelli's The Prince. In one of the chapters/sections, he refers to Septimus Severus, saying of the ancient rulers, "all except Severus came to a bad end. For in Severus was so much virtue that, by keeping the soldiers his friends, although the people were overburdened by him, he was always able to rule happily because his virtues made him so admirable in the sight of the soldiers and the people that the latter remained somehow astonished and stupefied, while the former were reverent and satisfied." Additionally, I saw where he brought a century of peace to Britain. Despite the fact that it has been reported that J.K. Rowling created Snape based on a hated te…

Freak of Nature

How is it possible to gain 3.5 pounds overnight? Especially when one is on a diet??? Come on!!! I need some inspiration to keep this healthy eating going. Not to mention the exercise.... My grandmother has a little sign in her bathroom that says "Diet is Die with a T". So true.

Well, other than that, I have to say that I have been super productive today. I finished a book for class, ironed all the clothes that I let pile up in my living room, typed up my essay for Wednesday night's class, and, now, I am writing this blog. But I am not finished yet, people! I am still on a roll!!!! I have another little essay to write up and some reading to, I must leave the blogosphere and get to it.


Yesterday, I tried very hard to get my work done...but it was just impossible. I did read some for class, but I also went to the public library twice (a really long drive, for those of you who know where it is) and read some great trash. I just need a break sometimes.

Anyway, other than that, things are okay. I am still doing well with the new "healthy living" plan. I have worked out three times this week!!! Except for my running days, this must be a record. My friend, Melissa, is trying to convince me to train for the Disney Marathon in January. I might do it again. At least that course is flat. The Birmingham course was murder. At least I would have killer legs again!

New Life...Day one.

Well, I decided on the way down here that I would get serious about exercise and good health. So, I have begun, today, with a new healthy lifestyle, vowing to eat right and exercise (at least four times a week). I mean, I did train for a marathon, for goodness sake! I can do this again. Today, I have been doing well, so I will update periodically on the blog.

Other than that, I finished my midterm (holy crap) and began working on all of my other assignments that suffered because of it. That thing took ten years off of my life. I need serious R and R after that one...maybe I will watch a good movie tonight!

Dazed and Confused

I just got back into town and my spring "break" is officially over. However, I am working on a midterm that is killing me. I have been trying to finish it for a week and it is just insane how much work I am putting into it. I should stop myself. Anyway, the drive down was fine until I hit Gainesville. Then, I had to drive 25-45 mph for 100 miles. The reason: everyone was getting off on the FL turnpike to go to Disney World. I don't want to hear anything about sales being down. The mouse controls the world.

Anyway, other than that, I am just exhausted. My trip home was great. I saw a lot of family and friends; however, I worked just as much as I played.

Well, I think I will make something to eat and sign off for the evening. More later if I am awake...

9 more hours...

And I am FREE!!! Spring break officially begins for me at 9 p.m. tonight, after my last class.

Anyway, you might think that all my hype about Harry Potter was anticlimatic because I didn't write anything about it yesterday; however, Tuesdays suck the life out of me because I am on campus ALL day. I am still soooooooo excited. I am also only letting myself read a chapter a day of the sixth book. I will not be happy when it is over.

So, there really isn't much more to tell. My class (the one I teach) had the big debate yesterday. I have to say that it was not nearly as fun this semester as it was last semester. The students seem to be really tired...gee, I wonder why? Anyway, we debated abstinence only sex ed. vs.comprehensive sex ed. It is usally a really funny debate...and I have heard some stories!

Well, until next time....

I can't move.

Literally. I have been sitting in the same place for eight hours. I have only gotten up four times. Research is making me into an old hag. I bet that, if there was a scientific study done (long term) on graduate students, we would find that we die early from exhaustion...and possibly from dullness. We may even find that we kill other people due to our dullness.

This story beats them all!

Okay, those of you who know me probably realize that I have bizare tire woes. In the past, I have had more flat tires than any of us can remember. (Once, a staple --yes, a staple-- caused my tire to go flat. Granted, it was a fairly large staple, but the guy that found it in my flat tire could not believe it!) Anyway, last night, although it was not a flat tire, I did have tire woes.

At five p.m., I went to a local Barnes and Noble because Jack Klugman was there signing his new book about him and Tony Randall. The signing was at seven and I was out of there by 7:30. On the way home, I heard an ambulance; so, I pulled into a turn lane, which eventually forced me to turn onto a street that I normally would avoid at night. Shortly after, as I was driving down this street, I heard this clicking noise coming from my front tire. I almost died! I thought for sure that my days were over, that I was going to die in Florida near the hooker hangout (Jeff and Jessica know what I mean!) and I would…

Random Ramble

Well, I really have nothing to say. I worked this morning on research, then I went to campus for a meeting with my professor, who said the nicest things to me when she found out I was leaving. It made me feel better, like I wasn't a total loser! Anyway, other than that, I just went to class. My night class was cancelled (thank goodness).

After arriving at home, I launched into an Everybody Loves Raymond festival. Because I missed most of the preliminary American Idol shows, I just can't get into that this year. So, I am watching reruns of other shows and reading Harry Potter and the Half-Blood Prince during what little spare time that I have. Anyway, that is about it for me these days. If anyone else has a funny story to share, I would love to hear it.

Give me a freakin' break. (Pardon my language. I have faults, you know.)

Just a little jewel of a research story to share with everyone...
Today, I worked on a long overdue project concerning researching documents about women's health and beauty. The documents I tried to find were printed during the 1600s. After looking through several resources, I came across the best title of all:

"A discourse of women, shewing their imperfections alphabetically."

Yes, it was written by a man.

Yes, thank you so much, you misogynist bastard. It isn't as if women don't have enough to worry about without pleasing you. And thank you for outlining my faults in an order that I should at least know...I mean, even monkeys are learning to sign the alphabet these days. Gee...Speaking as a 17th century woman, I feel as if my fault for the day is that I feel pissed off....would that be under "P" or subcategorized under "O"? Or, is it a "See also.." situation?

I need chocolate.

Yes. I need lots of it. I am totally exhausted and I don't want to do anything at the moment. I graded, read, and posted assignments all day long. Then, after dinner, I packed up some of my books and things to bring home the next time I am in town. I have no energy left.

Other than that, I posted the photo of Snape, my favorite Harry Potter character other than Hermione Granger, because it perfectly reflected how I felt yesterday as I graded rewrites. One would think that if a student had a chance to rewrite for a higher grade, that student would actually turn in a paper that was different from the original graded copy. I had a student turn in the EXACT same paper. The commas, words--all were the same as the original. Do they think I won't notice? I have them turn in the original with the revision....Ugh. I am NOT amused.


Well, I have to take back everything I said about Valentine's day! My cousin and grandma sent me cards. They were so great and came at a time when I needed them most! So, I still think V's day is a sham for most people, but, when the cards come from people who really, sincerely care for you...well, that is very different!

Okay, so my life has not changed all that much since the last few postings. The major hassel today has to do with this Blog site.. I actually run a total of five blogs. This is my personal blog. However, I also have four other blogs for my students. I post assignments on those blogs (well, two are from last semester). So, has flagged the two blogs I use this semester as potential spam blogs. They are not spam blogs, of course; however, I cannot post to them at the moment. I had to send in a notice to Blogger for both of them so that a "human" could look at them and make sure that I am using them legally. They sent a message back saying th…

ANTI-V's Day

I have always hated this holiday...even when I had a significant other. My friend, Katie, has the best post about it; and, rather than have you read my post, moaning on in a not so funny way, I will just refer you to her site:

Well, things are about the same down here. I am in the process of getting things ready to move. I know it sounds crazy, but I really only have about 2.5 months left. I have a lease until August, so I may take my time moving. However, I have let potential employers know that I can start in May. I think the most important thing is to get the job and start making money. I consolidated all of my student loans yesterday. I was dreading it, but it actually turned out better than I thought. At least I don't have three to four more years to add to them.

Moving is not fun. I can't believe I am doing this all over again.

oh well....

Big Change

This is to let everyone know that between May and August, I will be leaving the Sunshine State for good. There are many reasons for this...however, the main reason is economics. Originally, the dept. allowed me to be registered as an instate student (one of the reasons I decided to come down here). Well, apparently, they found out that they could not do that any longer...and no one notified me of this because I just found out, I am having to pay a huge amount in tuition, I have no financial aid resources for the semester because of it (a major factor in a decision to take a second job...I will be working 10-20 hours on the weekend at Panera Bread Co. in addition to my 14 hour days on campus teaching and taking classes), and, let's just face it--that ain't good, to use my superb English skills. The normal response has been: well, next semester you will be instate, right? True. But this has broken the bank and I am officially done in every sense of the word.

It was a …

Tagged by Katie! we go...

4 jobs I've had in my life:
hostess at a Chinese restaurant
cashier at Dillards
English instructor

4 movies I could watch over and over:
Girl with a Pearl Earring
About a Boy
Harry Potter and the Prisoner of Azkaban (lovin' me some Alan Rickman)
Love, Actually

4 TV shows I love to watch:
Everybody loves Raymond
Super Nanny

4 places where I have lived:
Tuscaloosa, AL
Tampa, FL
Guadalajara, Mexico (very briefly)
fourth...yet to come!

4 places I've been to on vacation:
Cancun, Mexico
St. John, St. Thomas, St. Croix
Puerto Rico

4 places I'd rather be:
On a huge spread of land nowhere near anyone somewhere in Montana or Wyoming.
York (in England...not Alabama...)
St. Croix

4 of my favourite foods:
Indian (almost anything)
Maccaroni and cheese
Sweet Potato Casserole
My mom's jalapeno corn casserole

4 websites I visit daily:

4 people to pass the …

Crazy Folk on the Road

I swear, I am amazed that we don't have more wrecks down here. These people are just plain stupid and crazy when it comes to driving. I saw three "almost" wrecks on my way to get a cup of coffee. I am convinced that I should just make my own coffee at home. However, I must run the risk of damaging my car...staying inside all day will kill me. Of course, something is amiss...ever since the meteorite incident on my way home, I feel that I am marked. Yes, folks, something fell from the sky and hit my car. I don't know what it was, but I do know that it came from above. However, at least I can mark "being struck by meteorite" off of my list of possible ways to die. I mean, what are the chances of it happening again? [Unless I am like that unfortunate soul in THE GREAT OUTDOORS (the movie) who was struck 66 times in the head by lightning...That would happen to me. I am a creature of pattern.]
Anyway, other than that ramble, nothing is happening. I am trying to …

Dallas--Season 4...thank goodness.

It is finally out! I have been waiting for months to see Kristen fess up to shooting JR. I will say that Lucy is getting on my nerves, but maybe she will change a bit as the season goes on. By the way, didn't the writers of this show realize that not everyone's long lost parent needs to show up in the first 6 episodes of season 4? Poor Miss Ellie...Jock was a jerk in his younger days. She should have divorced him and taken all of the Ewing oil profits.

Anyway, things are good here. I am trying to finish reading Hamlet and I have a ton of other stuff to do...I am just still so sleepy from my recent excursion to T-town. So, I have been really lazy and I have not gotten much done at all. I had a conversation with my graduate advisor the other day and it looks like I have just one more year of course work and then I have to take the three day comp. exams! I am so excited. Anyway, after I pass those, I can start on the final leg of my PhD...and, that means that I am just one step …

School is back in session...

And I feel the pain. It is deep and intense. Unfortunately, I am finding it very hard to be excited about this semester. I am not in classes that I am thrilled about and my early morning students seem to be more listless than usual. It is going to be a long semester. I have to get out of this funk!

Other than that, I am totally immersed in the sixth Harry Potter book. I am reading it super slowly...which is killing me...but I want to make it last as long as possible (another reason I didn't read it when it came out). I dread having to face the reality of the last installment. Rowling ought to continue the series!!!! Or, at least, write some prequels...that is an idea. Also, I have a theory about something. Rowling makes tons of allusions to historical events and literary characters in her books. Today I was reading about the French Revolution and was reminded that Arthur Wellesley defeated Napoleon at Waterloo...hmmm...Arthur Wellesley and Arthur Weasley...I think the Weasleys must…

A Lovely Evening...

Ahhh....I love to cook. I always forget until I actually do it. I decided that I wanted to cook some roasted vegetables tonight. My friend, Carol, always makes them when I go to her house for dinner in T-town. So, I looked around on the internet and found a recipe ( ).

It isn't the same as hers, but it is equally as good. It has a lot more stuff in it, but I plan to take out some of the ingredients next time and replace them with other veggies. So, I made that and a very little steak (my official "school is starting" meal), had a couple of glasses of Pinot Noir, and ate a slow, luxurious meal by myself (while watching "Girl with a Pearl Earring" while I was cooking and "Lord of the Rings" while I was eating). All in all, it has been a perfect evening so far!!!

Only a few days of freedom left!!!

Well, I am back in town and trying desperately to squeeze all of the pleasure reading I can into my schedule. School starts back on Tuesday (for me). SIGH. Anyway, I am looking forward to it, but I am still tired from Christmas.

Nothing interesting has happened lately. I went to Wal-Mart today and escaped without committing a murder. I hate the crowds at Wal-Mart and am convinced that one day I will be charged with a felony assault when I am pushed to my limit in there. Our store has placed little t.v. screens at the registers that advertise products in the story (usually DVD collections). It is really just a tactic to distract shoppers from long lines (WHY??? THERE ARE 35 LANES AND ONLY 8 ARE OPEN!!!). Meanwhile, it is just one more advertising glitch in my already overexposed life. I can't remember how much advertising we are exposed to each day, but I know it has to be more than the average released in government reports.

Well, am going to get into bed now...will be reading Harr…