Friday, August 17, 2007

Random Bullets of Friday

  • Hello!
  • Yeah, I'd say TGIF but my plan is to either get ahead on my teaching prep or reconnect with my dissertation ("hey, baby, haven't seen you in a while") this weekend, so I'm not particularly excited or thankful.
  • Last week I was so exhausted by everything about the summer class that I took all Friday, Sat and Sun to recover ... and I mean, I couldn't even muster the concentration to pay attention to my newspapers. This week ended much better, kinda like when you get out of shape and the first week or so back into your workout just exhausts you, but then you get into the swing of things again.
  • So, nothing really exciting to report for this weekend, or having happened this week. I'm treading water, but with a little more stamina than I had before. (and if teaching was a muscle, man, I'd be ripped by now! But anyway.)
  • Everything is on fire again. And by "everything," I mean part of California's backcountry. It's an annual thing --- August is the month of wildfires and the Santa Ana winds for SoCal. We're currently getting blanketed by ash from a big fire about 40 miles away, which, with the strange underlit cloud cover and eerie blood-red sun, is making me have unsettling premonitions of Vesuvius, or maybe the end times of Revelation. So if I don't post for a while, it might be that teaching has gotten heavy again, or it might be that my entire town has been buried by the ash of a newly-discovered active volcano. I'll try to strike an interesting pose for posterity.
  • This morning I was skimming through some diss-related books ... not quite as meaty as actually writing a page or two, but since I don't really remember where I'm at in my chapter-planning thing, I figure I've got to get back in the groove any way possible. I'm torn over whether skimming a book and proving it is definitively not useful for your chapter is exhilarating (book recommended by advisor out of the way!) or heartbreaking (I just put in x number of hours to get a negative result!). This is why my footnotes are as crazy and long as they are ---- dammit, I want to show off all the reading I did, whether or not it was directly useful!
  • Yeah, I know. I'll get rid of those in the book version. Right now it's faster for me to write them up and psychically process them that way than not include them, and feel strangely obsessed with trying to force them into my argument regardless of usefulness. It may be some weird "mourning and melancholia" thing specific to dissertators.
  • Speaking of, I hate when I read about a theorist and discover a whole side-line of thinking that I know nothing about because I had written it off so long ago I forgot I had done this. Sure hope you can understand Butler while thinking Freud is a schmuck and melancholia is boring! Oh well. I hate how every theory is so tangled with every other that I can never find a starting or an ending point and have to constantly go back further and further into the ranks of philosophy to understand what the first theorist is saying, if I haven't forgotten already who I was originally reading.
  • Also on a theoretical note, I just read something that described a theorist as drawing "not only from poststructuralist theory, but Marxist theory, psychoanalysis, and feminist theory as well." Those aren't poststructuralist? Dude. I had been using poststructuralist as a wider umbrella term than just all-Derrida, all the time. Maybe I'm not poststructuralist. Or maybe Marxism, psychoanalysis, and feminism (!) have actually integrated poststructuralist thought more than this author is willing to believe. Maybe I have to recaption my picture of little Timido on the blog. What say you?
  • I say I want my own _____ist label and my own brand of theory based on my name. I keep trying to work my real last name into some iteration on the model of "Derridean" or "Foucauldian." I have no idea what my brilliant and world-changing strand of theory would be, but I want the obscure trappings of academic fame anyway. I can't really get my name into a cool-sounding _____ism, but Sisyphean theory ... yeah, I can already tell you what that would be about.

1 comment:

gwoertendyke said...

ooh, i want to hear your theory--do tell!