Sunday, September 24, 2006

Random bullets of what-have-you

  • Where Lucas is concerned, Mr. Trillwing likes a clean nostril.
  • Course description for one of my fall courses: What can we say about a decade that saw the blossoming of both automated kitchen appliances and the military-industrial complex? Throw in racial segregation, juvenile delinquency films, and anxieties about nuclear holocaust, and you’ve got a recipe for a very interesting Tupperware party. This course explores the material culture, literature, neuroses, media, and anxieties of 1950s America.
  • Lucas likes to draw on his Magnadoodle. Right now he's ambidextrous, with a slight preference for the left hand. Please, please let my child have a well-developed right brain hemisphere. If he's left-brained, Mr. Trillwing and I will not be able to communicate with him at all.
  • Lucas also enjoys playing with his little wooden train set. Best of all: track destruction that would make any U.S. Civil War general proud.
  • Luke's fine motor skills are, I think, exceptional. But baby signs? Walking? Drinking from a sippy cup? Not so much. We went to a playgroup last week where the kids his age (and some younger) were toddling, signing, and drinking from cups. I know all kids develop at their own pace, but playgroups aren't the best place for Lucas to showcase his mad fine motor skillz.
  • I'm going a little bit crazy about not knowing where I'll be (professionally or geographically) in a year. Major concerns:
a) Urge to fulfill my destiny by casting myself onto the academic job market in the interdisciplinary humanities.
b) Fierceness of said job market.
c) Desire to work from home, and especially to nap at 2 p.m.
d) Increasingly strong entrepreneurial streak, coupled with desire to work in museum/public history field.
e) Heartfelt longing to never, ever again grade 50-100 mediocre papers at once.
f) Desire to have weekends and evenings free for family time.
g) Yearning to be near family 400 miles south of here.
h) Growing love for my little university town and its damn fine public school system.
Yeah, figure that one out.

  • I didn't get the job for which I bought the million-dollar interview suit. I figured as much, of course. I don't yet know who won the job--I think they may be conducting another round of interviews. My own interview panels went about as I expected, with me answering (I think) questions about public history, museums, and the democratization of knowledge with my usual blend of academic insight and humor. Unfortunately, I had to answer such questions as, "Tell us about a time you constructed a world-class archives facility on a floodplain" with blank stares. And since the position is located at the city-county archives, well. . .you do the math.
  • Pursuant to my job angst, I've been listening to a lot of small business podcasts and practically cyberstalking Chris Brogan, who is establishing a series of new media channels. His enthusiasm for this technology and for crafting a meaningful life is infectious, and his success thus far is inspiring.
  • I declined the opportunity I mentioned earlier to write for a major blog network. I want/need to freelance a bit, but the subject matter was outside of museums/public history. I've realized it's in my nature to multitask, so trimming obligations won't necessarily make me more productive. Instead of trying to cut down on obligations, I'm going to focus them all on my favorite fields.
  • Exercising is not happening. Tomorrow I hope to get my two flat bike tires fixed--they cracked during that nasty July heat wave. Then I can bike into school four days a week, encumbered by backpack and laptop, dodging fallen black walnuts and fighting headwinds both morning and afternoon.
  • I've realized I'm not good at changing my diet. That means I need to exercise to lose these 20 pounds. Ugh.
  • On September 30, in order to raise money for prostate cancer research, my ridiculously fit little sister is undergoing what she calls a "crueling" workout titled "Fight Gone Bad." She writes that
Fight Gone Bad will include 55 lb push presses and high pulls, 14 lb wall ball and 20" box jumps (basically until I collapse-see Crossfit for pictures, video and more information).
If you have $5 or $10 or more to spare, might you consider supporting prostate research by contributing to her goal at this link. Thanks for your consideration! (If nothing else, click on over to see how frightfully photogenic she is.)


ArticulateDad said...

Just keep up the fight, my friend. The careers we long for are there for our making.

Anonymous said...

I have a ridiculously fit (and photogenic) little sister too. Isn't it depressing? ;-)

Good luck with all your bullets!

Anonymous said...

Boogers are gross. I stand by my Clean Nostril Policy!

~Mr. Dr. T

Heather Clisby said...

You should check out the International Museum of Women. It's an entirely online museum based in SF. Might be a job that is more conducive to afternoon naps ... ?

Anonymous said...

I clicked on the link to Stacy's fundraising. I admire the goal, and her committment to physical fitness, but what the hell is "Elite Fitness?"

Leslie M-B said...


Elite fitness is the kind of fitness that would kill mere mortals.

Oh, wait, you've run a marathon.

Think bruises. Think Ironman. Think...paramilitary. Seriously. The CrossFit place where she works out recently hosted a weekend seminar on "urban evasion and evacuation." Yeah. Basically street fighting and Armageddon-style urban survival.