Thursday, July 14, 2011


Sigh. This summer class is going to be like a lead weight around my neck for the whole session, isn't it? I spend the whole day feeling bad, that I should be working on grading and finishing the prep for that last week of class, and I don't do it. And, really, course work is never really "done," during a session, so even if I do work on it, this leaves me making myself feel bad about not working "enough" or not being "done" for the whole damn duration. Hmm. I don't know if I can make myself not feel that, considering how long this pattern has existed. On the other hand, I want to work on my procrastination patterns and get into the habit of just doing the grading right away, and that's a long-standing pattern as well. On the other other hand, maybe the idea of changing long-term procrastination habits is just as futile as changing how I have feelings of guilt and dread around grading.

I dunno. What do you think? That I've been watching too many tv shows with pop-psychology and I am psychologizing myself in silly ways? You are probably right.

In other news, I am still feeling stuck and confused about my article. Today I read (reread, actually) a historian on that topic and thought about things. Yesterday night I called my sister and lobbed ideas at her head for a long time. It felt good. I used to do this all the time, with writing projects or my dissertation or love life problems or (even more frequent) roommate problems, and my sis is great at being supportive and asking questions that then help me rethink the situation. I didn't figure out my quandary yet, but I told her my main idea for the article and she said, "cooooooool." Which, yeah, that could be her blindly being supportive, but whatever, it made me feel good, which is important when I'm feeling stuck and slow and like I will never finish my summer to do list.

Just like I have made mixed progress on the research and teaching front, I have done ok, but not consistently well, with diet and exercise (I am going to actually bore my readers to death, aren't I? Oh well.). I have done some nice walks and hikes and yoga (still on the to-do list: go to the beach!) but I have also skipped plenty of days. And I am watching portion sizes and eating less ---- the conference weight I gained is gone, but I am still at the very top of my acceptable usualy school year weight range ---- but I am eating total processed crap. Seriously. My parents eat processed Wonder Bread, Velveeta, Minute Rice, Steak-Ums ---- any oversalted crap with high fructose corn syrup as the top ingredient. I guess that's ok since I eat lots of fresh stuff and beans and rice that I cook up myself when I'm at home. And beer. We'll pretend that if it's local, craft beer it's good for you. I had wanted to miraculously lose tons of weight this summer, and it is going down by a little, but, again, I am frustrated.

Furthermore, while I am complaining ---- oh yeah, I should rant about how my parents are driving me crazy, except I just finally put it all out of my mind in a state of zen-like forgetfulness ---- it seems like everybody has left blogland for the summer, and nobody is posting! Post interesting stuff, everybody! Lots of it, since I check the internet obsessively whenever I am attempting to force myself to do class prep/grading! Grumble, grumble.


Ok, I am watching those "I'm buying a house" shows and am, as usual, completely confused by these single professionals without family/kids and the size of the houses they are always looking at. Don't they think about how hard it's going to be to furnish and fill a huge house? To clean it? There's this obnoxious chick --- ok, I know I have been singing the praises of California, but yes, Californians are obnoxious and this chick who is moving from San Francisco to Austin just so she can afford a house is one of the most annoying, self-centered, ohmigaaaawwwd! Californians ever --- but she is buying a house with like 3 bedrooms and a living room and a dining room and an informal living room (den?) and an upstairs bonus room and I'm like, WTF, lady? You are going to have three floors and be the only person in here? You can be only on one floor at once! I just do not understand. On the other hand, I hate Criminal Intent and NCIS and that's all that is on in the evenings, so I watch these shows and yell at them for exercise. I am strange.

Any interesting procrastinating I should be doing? Point me to some silly websites. Alternately, you can fix my article.


Anonymous said...

Since you asked... You could stop by our blog and congratulate us on our blogiversary (yesterday). Maybe even poke through the archives. :)

Or you know, use that as a reward after some set amount of time working. 15 min on the article? 30?

Bardiac said...

At the risk of sounding defensive (because I live in a much bigger house than makes sense), I think the choices to go with a three bedroom house on those shows reflects a couple things.

1) In my area, the only 2-bedroom houses are GI Bill/Post WWII era starter homes (with tiny kitchens and bedrooms, one bath, one car garage, though some have obviously been remodeled) or condos. So if you want something different, you're into at least three bedrooms.

2) Even if you're single, having a second/guest bathroom is lovely, as is having a den/family room for the TV (instead of in the room you use for socializing or reading), also a laundry area not deep in the basement. I think the housebuilders start putting in stuff like that after the third or fourth bedroom.

Even with my larger house, it cost a LOT less than a house in a more urban area, and though we are hurt by the housing drop, we never had high prices, and won't recover the way places in Boston, NY, LA, and so forth will. I figured I might as well enjoy living in my house, since I don't always enjoy living in this climate/area.

Anonymous said...

To add to what Bardiac said, a 3BD house is easier to sell, so if you're thinking about resale value and ease, you gotta start with a 3BD.

And 'round here, an "informal living room" is usually called a "family room." If it's smaller and more office-like, it's a den (or an office, or "den or office"). A house can even have *both* a family room and a den/office.

And if you want more to do, join Google+ and play with it! I'm there!

Dame Eleanor Hull said...

The obnoxious woman will hate Austin, have a crisis about priorities and the meaning of life, and downsize back to Cali.

Anonymous said...

we're buying our house from a young woman who lived there alone (before she moved away to get married to some guy I can tell was married to someone else until maybe six months before their wedding google tells me everything). It's 4 beds, 2.5 baths plus a study. As far as I can tell, the upstairs has not been touched by human hands since she bought it. I really don't think she ever went up there or used any of the other bedrooms for anything at all ever.

I'm sure she was looking at resale or whatever but it still seems weird to me to choose 2200 square feet of house in which to live alone.

Sisyphus said...

Eh, I hope she loves Austin, so that she never moves back to Cali! But she's never gonna see her house, she'll be working so much overtime to pay for it!

And I totally understand couples buying big, thinking they will probably still be there when they have kids and need more space, it's just ---- how often will that lady have people over using her 2 guest rooms, twice a year?

She was also obsessed with having an in-ground pool and was planning to spend even more to have that put in. Nobody was selling with pools. If Austin's mosquitoes are anything like Postdoc City's mosquitoes, she's going to have some unpleasant surprises.

Anonymous said...

Good luck with the writing and the article. I'm struggling here myself with mine due in three weeks (but that doesn't mean I actually have three weeks I'll be able to work on it). My problem is that there are so many ways I could approach it, I've not picked one and really researched one approach in any one meaningful manner, so I may be just on the verge of embarrassing myself with this chapter as it is.

Hmmmm, even if I were single and buying a house, I would want at least 3 bd and 2 baths. I love having a master bath. Even when I don't have overnight guests. And I like the idea of a guest room and an office that are separate. (I don't want two beds, but there are nice air mattresses that do for short term stays). And I like having a "dining area" or a "breakfast area" or at least a place in the kitchen to put a table and some chairs. I had a house at a really young age (21) and lived in an area that had large apartments for cheap, so perhaps I'm a bit spoiled, and did not have the resources to fill all of the space, but it was nice to be able to have rooms designated for specific things rather than having one room designated for a bunch of stuff like den/tv. room/office/eating area.

That being said, I would want all of this to occupy some smaller space than say like 2500 sq. ft. just for me.

Anonymous said...

I ended up with a 2 BR house, but had thought I would get a 3BR. The only reason I got a 2BR was because it does have the Nook of Ideas, i.e., a dedicated office space, which means that I don't have a spare room/office. A dedicated guest room that did not double as an office was a MUST for me because since I don't live near family and many friends, I actually have guests on average 6-8 times a year. Having that guest room is a luxury, but it means not having to do MAJOR organization every time a person comes to visit, and that is HUGE. I do only have one bathroom, which, honestly? Is not a hassle for me, and I can't imagine needing an extra family room or tv room or whatever. My house feels for me about the right size for one person, and could possibly work for two if absolutely necessary, though seriously if I had another person living here with me (partner/kid) I'd be looking to upgrade to a house with 3 bedrooms. I use my dining room all the time, but I don't miss having an eat-in kitchen, because seriously, when I don't have people over I eat in front of the tv:P