Wednesday, June 29, 2005

this is what happens when you don't have caller ID

I had some really, really good news to share with Becky, aka, Treasured Life Director, this morning, so I called her at home. She answered the phone, didn't say hello at first, and I said "Do you want to touch me?" She hung up. Good lord. The dilemma: do I call back and acknowledge that it was me who just called or do I wait? Of course, I call back.

Becky: Hello?
Me: Becky, it's Amy. That was me just now. Why'd you hang up?
Becky: Well, when I have to say hello more than once and then I hear, "Do you want to touch me," I generally hang up.
Me: I meant it, like, I'm so genius you might want to touch me. You know, so it might rub off on you?

Note to self: Stop asking people if they want to touch you. It scares them.

P.S. Becky, I beat you.

Tuesday, June 28, 2005

If Tom Cruise were in charge...

...imagine the suicides that wouldn't have been prevented. Imagine.

If Tom Cruise were in charge, I would've never
1. had the guts to try teaching
2. gone back to get my MA, never mind my PhD
3. lived past the age of 25.

What I'd love to see because there's still a part of me that's vengeful: Tom Cruise suffering from post-partum depression. Wait? Not gonna happen? Oh well, then, in that case, he's got every right to denounce Brooke Shields for being smart enough and brave enough to speak out about it. There's a celebrity people should be listening to, a person who might encourage women to seek help when they need it.

I used to love Tom Cruise because he was such a hunk. It always surprises and delights me when a person's personality demonstrates so clearly that it really is what's inside that counts. Tom Cruise is an ugly person.


If you loved the show as a kid, you'll love the movie. I smiled the whole way through, even as I recognized that I was able to turn off the analysis switch in my head (of course, acknowledging that you're turning off the analysis switch means you've probably started to do some analysis and caught yourself). Turning off the analysis switch is a very hard thing to do, but Bewitched is such a happy, fun, sweet movie that it was relatively easy. Endora was terrific and Uncle Arthur killed me. And, I gotta say, Will Farrell was perfectly cast. Nicole Kidman will be known for her nose--in this and in The Hours--forever.

The best thing I can say about it, though, is that it paid beautiful homage to Samantha, aka Elizabeth Montgomery.

hotter than the hinges of Hades

I like that saying. Heard it for the first time yesterday. Tomorrow's forecast calls for a temperature of 100 degrees with a "realfeel" temperature of 108. Lord above. Hinges below.

This afternoon Julie and I are going to sit in an air-conditioned movie theater to watch Bewitched. Tomorrow afternoon I'm sticking my head in the freezer.

Monday, June 27, 2005

projects projects everywhere!

So, I'm working on this book prospectus with a fabulous title: Student Authorship in Composition: The Production and Politics of Belief. And I'm collaborating on an article with Ron Fortune on forgery and plagiarism. And I'm also writing--in my head at this point--an article on Bourdieu with another fabulous title that I owe to the esteemed life director. And this morning, as I'm sitting in the coffeehouse talking with a grad student, I get a fabulous idea for another article on depression and argument. And then there's the one I want to write on plagiarism and social theories of punishment. And then I want to do stuff on shame and social class. And on authorship, responsibility, and motherhood. And then I'll pass out and die.

But seriously, my brain, it's kinda productive right now. It's thinking back to those summer days spent at the Syracuse Borders and saying, shit, if we could do that, we can do anything.

My mentor at UMass, Judy Goleman, always told us to be happy when we find those spaces we could fill with future projects and to write them down. Hence this entry.

But the other reason for this entry is to remind myself how fruitful my larger project is and to be happy about it. This work, this life, I like it.

making things: good

Take the MIT Weblog Survey

Saturday, June 25, 2005


I'm going off Diet Coke, people. Well, I'm going off the three or four minimum cans I drink per day. From now on, it will be a special treat, and I'm not purchasing twelve packs anymore. Oh, the money and the bone mass I'll save.

A true addict, I used to get an icky feeling in my stomach when I was down to the last twelve pack. Many times I've gone out late at night to get a couple more, just to make myself feel better. The house was usually stocked with two kinds--regular Diet Coke and caffeine-free Diet Coke--for nighttime. I'd also recently begun buying Diet Coke with Lime. Oh, the varieties.

Canned Diet Coke is so so so much better than bottled, but in a pinch I'd buy a 20-oz. bottle from the machines at school. While I was in Spain in 1997, I ordered Coca-Cola Light. The addiction goes back at least to 1995. I tried to quit for a spell while I was writing my dissertation, but what the hell was I thinking? Quit an addiction while writing a diss? How about starting up a couple new ones? Mini peanut butter cups will probably always remind me of the diss process--that and Borders cafes.

More water water water in my system. I took the money I would've spent on Diet Coke and bought new Brita filters cuz lord knows how long I'd had that one in the pitcher.

I'll keep you posted on my progress.

the chin problem

A line from Richard Russo's Empire Falls made me feel a little bit better about my lack of a chin. It's not just me. It's my heritage.
In natural light she looked rather pinched, and in the manner of a great many women of French Canadian ancestry, she lacked a chin, as if someone had already pinched her there.

Why don't men of French Canadian descent lack chins is what I want to know. Harumph.

Friday, June 24, 2005

I just might melt over here

8 am and it's 82 degrees. Highs in the high 90s for at least the next four days. Belly and I are off for a walk now before it gets unbearable. An unshowered walk, I'll have you know. Stinky.

Thursday, June 23, 2005


One of my two or three readers may remember--fondly, I'm sure--my obsession with Mormonism after having visited Orem, Utah, and feeling as though I'd been kidnapped and brainwashed overnight. I listened to Jon Krakauer's Under the Banner of Heaven and ate up every single word. And I love dooce's commentaries on growing up Mormon. Well, don't you just love it when your research and your obsessions collide? This is not to say, of course, that I don't firmly believe that we research what we do because of obsessions in the first place. But now that I'm reading up a little bit on forgery, I'm realizing that I can nurture my Mormon obsession at the same time. Mark Hofmann, perhaps the most successful literary forger of all time, began his career forging Mormon documents because he understood what people wanted to believe. He understood the power of suggestion.

To think, all that time I spent in Syracuse, and I never made the pilgrimage to Palmyra, birthplace of Mormonism.

if blogger allowed categories...

Imagine with me for a moment:

Annabelle, good dog
Annabelle, bad dog
my wacky dreams
mental health
Normal weather
just everyday stuff I do
authorship, plagiarism, and forgery
writing projects
funneee friends
movies, books, and such

holy hot, batman

Just walked all of a block with Annabelle and thought I was going to pass out from heatstroke. Tomorrow's forecast calls for a high of 95 with a "realfeel" of 100. One hundred degrees, people. Holy air conditioning, batman. And the neighbor kid is mowing the lawn at 1:30 in the afternoon in this weather. Good lord.

Must go. Need a/c now. Erg.

Wednesday, June 22, 2005

the best C's keynote I've heard

was given by John Lovas in 2002. He was funny, endearing, and smart. His talk and the flashing commentary as he spoke had many of us laughing out loud. I can only imagine how much his colleagues will miss him.

forgery: true crime

Yesterday at Barnes and Noble, I asked for help finding the book The Poet and the Murderer, subtitled A True Story of Literary Crime and the Art of Forgery, and I was directed to the True Crime section. I had wandered the store a bit, looking in the writing section and the essays section, even the biography section, but with no luck. How does one--or how does a bookstore like B&N--categorize forgery? This is true crime, my friends. Nestled among books about Elizabeth Smart and Andrea Yates and Amber Frey was The Poet and the Murderer, a book detailing the forgery of an Emily Dickinson poem in the mid-90s and, though I haven't gotten there yet, the forgery of Mormon documents by the "counterfeit artist" Mark Hofmann. Interesting, isn't it, that he's an "artist." Con artist. Counterfeit artist. The art of forgery. All of these terms imply a definition of manipulation as a kind of art. Imagine this: the art of plagiarism.

Reading this book is like reading a mystery novel, but the question isn't whodunnit, but how'd they do that? Love love love this stuff.

Tuesday, June 21, 2005

if you're aware you're taking something for granted...

are you still taking it for granted?

The weather here, people. GORGEOUS, every day. Of course, we're hurting for rain, but still. Every day I wake up to sunshine and birds chirping. And sometimes Belly yelling. (Julia thinks it's funny that I say Belly's "yelling" rather than "barking," but if you've heard her yelling, you understand. She's really yelling at animals/people/inanimate objects.)

Slept in today, so I may not get a good table at the coffeehouse, but such is life. I'm off. And so is my book prospectus. It's coming along.

Monday, June 20, 2005

last day of spring

Julie lent me a copy of Richard Russo's Straight Man, and holy shit, if you've ever spent any time in an English Dept., you've got to read this book. It's laugh-out-loud high-larious. One of my favorites is the character who's referred to as Orshee because every time someone says "he," Orshee pipes in with, "or she."

Went to Lowe's yesterday with Julie to get specs on tile and paint and lighting for her bathroom makeover project. Oh how I wished Hillary was there to help us.

Speaking of summer and of Hillary, she's having an inground pool installed as we speak, and I'm not in Massachusetts to enjoy it. She told me this morning that she's already having visions of cracked heads. That's why there's no diving board.

Went back to Comlara Park this afternoon with Belly and, more evidence that she's a grown-up doggie: she swam for a lot longer this time, even out to the parts where she couldn't stand up. My little girl was just a head moseying along. I think next time I'm gonna bring a chair and a book and sit and read while she swims.

My new neighborhood has a neighbor's group and a neighborhood watch and even a block captain! Maybe if I stay there long enough, I'll earn the right to be block captain. Me and Belly patrolling the streets. ha!

My chalkboard is finished but I don't know how to frame it, so it sits unframed. Perhaps I'll put wire on the back of it and just let it go naked. Nekked.

Sunday, June 19, 2005

a funny thing I heard at the dog park today

A little scrumpet dog was coming into the park with her owner and my girl Annabelle was, as usual, barking at her. The scrumpet's owner said to the scrumpet, "Be careful. You could be just a filling in that dog's teeth."

Friday, June 17, 2005

RELAX. don't do it.

It's 10:20 on a Friday morning, early summer, 68 degrees and sunny out--simply gorgeous here in the heartland--and I'm still in my pjs. This, my friends, is work for me. I am having to relearn how to, um, RELAX and take the time to smell. No shower first thing today. Slowly drinking my coffee, watching Belly watch the squirrels in the back yard, and blogging about my efforts to be nicer to myself.

When I was back in Syracuse in May, I stayed with Jen and Michael and the kitties, and on Saturday morning, with no dog to be responsible for, I sat around until at least one o'clock watching The L Word before I finally took a shower and did something productive. This experience was alien to me. First, watching TV on a Saturday seemed like a sacrilege when the sun was shining outside, and second, I had no responsibilities. No dog to walk, no papers to read, no classes to plan. Jen and Michael must've thought I was a nutbrain for commenting on how weird it all felt, because clearly they know how to relax. I envy them that.

It's not the why of this that's difficult to understand: if I didn't plan everything as well as I did in grad school, I wouldn't be here today. There, a constant work ethic was rewarded and encouraged. And of course it began long before I got to Syracuse--this is why it's so hard to break. It's the how now that I'm trying to figure out. How to undo the programming that tells me that if I'm not doing something productive--on a weekday, no less--then I'm wasting time and I'll never get anything published and I'll never get tenure and I'll wilt away and die. How to allow myself to sit and smell and watch the Belle (and laugh at my silly rhyme). One thing's for sure: if I didn't have this dog to keep me grounded in the now, I most certainly would wilt away and die.

Be. here. now. Relax.

Wednesday, June 15, 2005

bumperstickers and happiness, together in one post

The best bumpersticker I ever had on my car was black and white and said, simply, BUMPERSTICKER. When that one got smashed when my car got rear-ended, I got one that said "There's only now." I think that one showed up in my CE article.... For more than two years now, I've been driving around with "Cleverly disguised as a responsible adult" on my car's behind, and it's been the subject of many comments from friends and strangers alike. Everybody loves it. Becky's husband Tom wanted to know where the disguise was 'cuz he didn't see it. Well, seeing as I'm working through this crisis of adulthood, I decided it was time for it to go. It's been so hot these past few days that it was surprisingly easy to peel off. I also took off the ADK and the bear face from the Old Forge Country Store (which I love). I kept the WOOF oval sticker that Julia gave me for my birthday, and I put on my new favorite: a blue bumpersticker with a silhouette doggie that says "Dog is my copilot."

Speaking of wonderful doggies, yesterday I decided that, since the weather was so much cooler and walking Belly in the 90-degree heat had lost some of its joy, Belly and I would go some place special. I took her to a park not 10 miles from here (but it seemed like a really really long way because it was highway driving) called Comlara Park, home of Evergreen Lake. I picked a 2.5 mile point-to-point trail, and we hiked. After about ten minutes of hiking, we came to an opening in the trail that led to the lake, so I told Belly she could go in. She splashed around, batting at things in the water, sticking her whole head in, shaking her body off while still in the water. I laughed so much at my funny girl that I was close to tears. She was just so damn happy and it had taken so little on my part to make her that happy.

When we got back on the trail, I let her run off leash and she was such a good girl. She was running ahead of me and every once in a while, she'd stop and make sure I was still in sight. Ladies and gentlemen, Annabelle Blue Butler has officially grown up. No more yelling and yelling and yelling for her to come after letting her run off leash. No more worrying that she's going to run off and find some random car and get hit. It's official that Belly wants to please me and wants to be with me more than she wants to run off and hear me yell her name a hundred times. This was a long time coming, as many of my readers know very well, and I'm grateful. But what really made the day so good was seeing how happy my dog was with something as simple as a trip to a new and exciting park. I'm beginning to understand what it means to be happy, really happy, as opposed to content. Yesterday I was happy, and now as I write about it, I'm happy again. Thanks, Boodabug.

Monday, June 13, 2005

coldplay y and x

Ah, my dear friend Peter indeed burned me a copy of Coldplay's new CD, but he told me today that the songs are in reverse order than they appear on the original. And he didn't make me a playlist. Sigh.

Brought six boxes of books to my school office this weekend and today. Now my office at home looks very empty, but that's six fewer boxes of books I'll have to move to my new house. Plus, my school office looks officially lived in.

Summer craft project: chalkboards. Michaels sells "chalkboard paint" that you can use to turn virtually any surface into a chalkboard. While I was spray painting a piece of plywood this afternoon, I also got my naked toes. Now I can write a message on them. But not for 24 hours, when they'll be dry.

I'm working on getting a Normal police officer to agree to do a K-9 demonstration at Julia's 40th birthday party in August. Doggie's name is Wrigley and I really want to ask his owner if he's wiggly. Wiggly Wrigley.

Met a wonderful little Jack Russell terrier named Beau at the dog park the other day. Small name for a small dog. He looks just like the dog on My Dog Skip.

Julia's gonna be leaving for a research trip to her home state of Virginia soon. She'll be gone for a month and Belly and I aren't really sure what on earth we're supposed to do without her and Tucker and Callie Wags. Write a book. Write a couple articles. I guess. But that's no fun without funny Julia stories to break things up. Phooey.

Sunday, June 12, 2005

sweet sweet dreams

I'm hoping my dreams are still coming true, that I'm still psychic in my dreams, because last night I had the sweetest sweetest dream about being in a relationship with a lovely man. Early on in the dream, I exercised caution and said to him, "wait, before we get too involved, I need to know if you want kids." He said no. He was sure he didn't.

Speaking of kids, I shipped all of the stuffed kids to Al in Massachusetts--with the exception of Baby Bernie, who went to Paul's in New Jersey. Patting myself on the back for that move. I kept Grampa Schleppy because he's too heavy to ship--he woulda cost me at least $25 in shipping. Besides, we need one stuffy around here other than Belly's toys.

Slept until 10 am today and it felt so good. Took the girl to the doggie park, talked to Paul-o for a while, went to Borders to buy a copy of Welfare Brat, went to the Coffeehouse where I wrote three pages, came home, took Belle for short walk, read a little, ate a little, and here I am. I'm hoping my dear friend Peter's gonna burn me a copy of the new Coldplay cd. Looking out for that....

Saturday, June 11, 2005

grape ape, er, beast

The other night, I'm lying on the couch eating grapes and Belly's on the floor right next to the couch. She's begging because I'm eating. "You want a grape, little girl?" I give her one. She rolls it around in her mouth and spits it out whole. Stares at it. Paws at it. Takes it again, rolls it around in her mouth and spits it out whole. Stares at it. Paws at it a little. Begins the whole process again. Twice. Until she finally eats it. Stares up at me for another one. I'm laughing out loud, telling her what a funny girl she is. I give her another grape. So begins the process anew.

The thing I love about moving is getting rid of crap I don't need. I took three garbage bags full of old clothes and shoes to Goodwill the other day, and I'm going through all the books I've moved too many times and putting them into three piles: move to the new place; bring to school office; sell to used book store. I'd been having a very hard time trying to decide whether to bring all my CE and CCC journals to school. When Xin left Syracuse, she gave me her very big collection of CE, so it's an impressive coupla shelves' worth. On the one hand, it makes sense to have them there for easy reference when talking with students, etc. But the beauty of having them at home is not having to go anywhere to get the one article I desperately need to read TODAY. So that's solved. They stay with me.

The other big project of the summer: working on being nicer to myself. Deleting all the negative self-talk and replacing it with positive. I think it's the hardest thing I've ever set out to do--dissertation and entire Phud process included. Humility be damned.

Thursday, June 09, 2005


The bad news is that there were almost no doggies at the Humane Society. The good news is that there were almost no doggies at the Humane Society. Two of the four who were there had been adopted, one was visiting with a propsective owner, and one was a Rottweiler, which Julie and I are both afraid of.

Had a fantastic meeting yesterday with my colleague Ron Fortune. We're collaborating on an article on Bourdieu, plagiarism, and forgery--and shit, is it gonna be good. I get so excited when we talk about these ideas together. The result is often me clapping my hands together or pounding the table or becoming just speechless, in awe of the possibilities. This is all good. Happy.

Last night I dreamt that I was in the audience of The Price is Right. At the commercial, they handed out big yellow price-tag-shaped nametags to everyone and pizzas to only some members of the audience. I didn't get a pizza. But Heather Rosso was there with me and she got to "come one down" to be the next contestant on The Price is Right.

My friend Christy has a kiln in her basement because she owns a small pottery-painting business. Last Friday some of us went over and painted stuff and it was so much fun! Tomorrow, painting again. Last week I painted a "wonky pitcher" and tomorrow I'll be working on finishing a small mixing bowl I started last week. Painting pottery is so relaxing--and in the end, you have something you can actually use, something that's functional. Eat your heart our, Bourdieu. I love only what can be put to use. Not much distance from necessity in my taste.

Julie has fixed up her front patio with new furniture, an outside rug, beautifully potted flowers, and wine spritzers every day at 5:00. I love Julie's new hangout.

Life is good, my friends.

Wednesday, June 08, 2005

one thing I'll never buy again...

is a car without air conditioning. Holy oven on wheels, batman. Temps in the 90s all week here, which is fine as long as I'm not in the car for any reason. New house has central air: yippee!

Off to show Julie the new house and then to the Humane Society to look for a new doggie to join Julie & Rob's family. Doggies doggies doggies. Love them so.

Monday, June 06, 2005


1. When I have a lot of time on my hands, I convince myself I have a lot of time on my hands and can therefore do anything but work. So nothing gets done.

2. When I'm busy and don't have as much time, I don't have to convince myself that I don't have a lot of time on my hands, so I get more done in the time I do have.

3. When I'm busy, all I want is a few days with nothing scheduled so I can get stuff done. Back to Step 1. Repeat.

Sunday, June 05, 2005

Belly fame

Already my girl is famous in Normal, IL. Today at the dog park, the parents of Milo asked me if Annabelle is "the barking dog in the red car."

Uh, yup.

Milo lives on the corner of Grove Street, where the dog park is, and his mom and dad always chuckle when they hear us going by.

Annabelle doesn't normally bark her head off out the window of the car. UNLESS I take the turn onto Gregory Street--then she knows we're going to the doggie park. She barks her little head off the whole way and if she could use words, she'd be saying "We're going to the park! We're going to the park! Yippee!"

Now Milo's parents can say call her Annabelle instead of "the barking dog." Though I think that name's gonna stick. Me, I prefer "loud mouth."

Saturday, June 04, 2005


the day at the races. the day at the beach. the monsters. the dead. the beauty of words. the poem. the character. the story. the husband. the age. the year. the new year. the hot tub. the champagne. the dinner. the lunch. the birthday cake. the new mother. the houseparents. the hard drive. the floppy disk. the envelope. the page. the baby of the family. the picket signs. the graduation. the commencement. the chicken in sag harbor. the war. the battlefield. the frog. the pen. the horse. the flowers. the Lily. the Carter. the even-keeled people. the happy people. the ignorance. the intelligence. the happiness. the misery. the birth. the womb. the crowning. the hunger. the thirst. the first cry. the pushing. the tearing. the pink blanket. the father. the bunny rabbit. the shame. the pride. the loneliness. the fear. the confidence. the negativity. the change. the boss. the style. the shape. the figure. the talent. the tenacity. the dedication. the dream. the nightmare. the ex-boyfriend. the radio. the heat. the cold air. the antifreeze. the flowers in your hair. the chalk. the fingernails. the tent. the outhouse. the journal. the affair. the forgiveness. the fidelity. the security. the infidelity. the jealousy. the paranoia. the neuroticism. the direction. the mole. the shoes. the smell. the morning. the sunrise. the sunset. the stars. the streets. the mustard-yellow pick-up truck. the playground. the molester. the bite. the balloons. the safety. the water. the finish line. the sweater. the slippers. the wrapping paper. the christmas tree. the cheesecake. the turkey. the weight. the scale. the chocolate cake. the party. the keg. the truck. the perm. the headboard. the aspirin. the zoloft. the pills. the bleeding. the ride home. the looks. the tennis court. the judge. the judgment. the tracks. the wolf. the rainbow. the sprinkler. the hose. the dog. the bed. the covers. the comforter. the comfort zone. the rocks. the ropes. the boy. the scraped knee. the jelly. the peanut butter. the garage. the skunk. the raccoons. the blinds. the screams. the moans. the feelings. the moment. the morning after. the loss. the shattered dreams. the horror. the zipper. the ring. the jaw. the lips. the cheekbones. the gold. the hat. the hell. the warm water. the waves. the force. the survivors.

*digging through some old stuff tonight, I found this. Not really sure when I wrote it, but I wanted to record it.

the ex is getting married

Milestone. One that's been written about millions of times before, surely. Al is getting married next August, and now I feel like a spinster.

I've been thinking lately about the things we tell ourselves and the ways that our emotions persuade us. Depression, for example, as argument. Logically, I know that Al getting married is not at all a reflection on me or my worth. But, tending as I do toward depression, I convince myself that this means there's something wrong with me. Again, logically I know that it has nothing to do with me. What I'm interested in is how I've managed to convince myself that this has anything to do with me or my single-dom or the pathetic possibility that I'll be alone for the rest of my life. See, the little voice inside my head says, even Al is capable of finding a life partner. There's obviously something wrong with you if you can't.

It ain't pretty inside this head sometimes.

Friday, June 03, 2005

the life cycle of a colored hair

How long after coloring one's hair (well, my hair) do you think it would take me to get back into the habit of checking fo white hairs on top? I never stopped checking, of course (old habits do indeed die hard), but last night I saw evidence that they're coming back. Now, for anyone else to see this evidence, they'd need a magnifier and a lot of light, so that's not the issue. What matters is whether I see it.

It's been exactly two weeks since I colored it.

Ah, the beautiful paradox of a 32-year-old woman with a crisis of adulthood (will I ever feel like an adult?) and a tireless search for any evidence of age on her head. Never mind the couple of wrinkles I've been noticing lately. We just won't talk about those.

A couple more advantages I'm finding to the new house in Bloomington:
1. The city of Bloomington collects recyclables. In Normal, you have to take your recycling to a drop-off place.
2. I'll be much closer to nightlife, 'cuz we all know what a party animal I am.
3. 1.5 mile walk to Julia's house.
4. Walking distance to the farmer's market, and I can take Belly.
5. This house is much much cuter inside than the one I was planning to rent in Normal.

Thursday, June 02, 2005

a different kind of luck

Okay, so that other house fell through. Ugh. Turns out the owner's going to hand it over to Redbird Property Managment, one of the many student-housing managment companies in town. And I do not want to rent from them.

So Bonnie, the broker, came to my house today to tell me she has another place for me--for $200 cheaper than what I'm paying now. It's in Bloomington, Becky, so there go all the beautiful puns on the name of my town. This also means I can't walk to work. Well, I could walk to work, but it'd take me a good 40 minutes.

All is not lost, however. Still got a good-sized fenced-in yard for the bugger. This place has a washer/dryer in the basement, has dark-colored carpeting for all the mud the beast tracks in, a small mudroom in the back, a nice front porch for people-watching, and gorgeous woodwork on the inside. From the outside, it's not that hot because the siding is ugly. Two bedrooms, a dining room, a good sized kitchen, cute living room, and lots of storage space in the basement.

I guess I'm kinda sad about not living in Normal anymore. I knew I didn't belong in a town with that name.


That's toilets to most people.

This article reminds me of Erica Jong's bit, I think it was in Fear of Flying, about how she could tell the story of her life by telling the stories of all of the toilets she's used--public and private.

We Americans are a prudish bunch. Damn Puritans.

Wednesday, June 01, 2005

I'm writing a book

See, that right there is what we'd call a performative speech act. The entire time I was writing my dissertation, my Treasured Director (now known as Treasured Life Director) would say things like, "write this down for your book," or "when you write the book, you can go into more depth about this." When I write the book. As if!

Not quite a year later, I'm ready to say out loud that I'm writing a book. Saying it makes it so. Saying it makes me scared, but it also makes me get stuff done. Like looking at prospecti and talking to people I'm gonna need to interview and making lists of things to do. Ah, lists.

Tentative title: Student Authorship in Composition: The Production and Politics of Belief

Bourdieu of course figures prominently--he's responsible for my obsession with the production of belief. No, that's not true. There are many many reasons I'm obsessed with the production of belief--reasons for which I have a therapist. Bourdieu helps me talk about belief intelligently. And for that I love him.

If we could boil my whole life, every single interest I've ever had--academic and otherwise, but especially academic--down to a single word, it would, indeed, be belief.

a new kind of academic animal

The abstracat is a highly evolved academic species, one who entertains only highly theoretical notions and resorts to spraying those who dare try to engage him in issues of the everyday.

This new species was discovered by Julia, who sent off an abstract to a conference. File name: abstracat.doc