a day of profoundly mediocre productivity. I did a couple of hours of
work-study, though not as much as I should've; spent maybe 45 minutes
on Spanish, not as much as I should've started work on internship applications,
but didn't get as much done as I should've; did some reading and thinking
about my history paper, but not as much as I should've... noticing a
however, indulge in a bit of yummy goodness that tasted like a peppermint
patty and, as Malavika put it, "makes you feel all warm inside."
Peppermint schnapps and chocolate milk? Excellent. Although I didn't
have the same response to it as a very sleep-deprived Malavika, who
collapsed near-unconscious onto Matt and then onto my floor. It was
all good, though, because it was highly amusing, and she was revived
officially scheduled a pickup of my laptop on Monday evening. While
Alex thinks that I will tell Airborne Express "No! You can't take
it!" when they show up, it's likely that I will indeed let Dell
do the evaluation of my screen that I've been talking about for months.
God, I hope they fix it. Cross your fingers for me.
February-- I haven't been in the best spirits all around recently,
but this evening I managed to be tremendously cheery and upbeat as I blasted
my music and bounced around cleaning my room. It was really great fun,
and I accomplished a lot, although it's hard to tell that by glancing
at my room.
to do so much this weekend. It's rather frightening, all the more so
because I can't honestly see myself doing more than half of what I actually
should. I really need to make one big long list, mark down what needs
to be done by when, and then refuse to go to bed until I've done what
should be done each day. Like that's going to happen.
have a working computer! I am lying on my bed, updating my site on my
laptop through Dreamweaver! Okay, the arrival of my AC adapter doesn't
stop Topcities from being idiots, but it helps with everything else, including
allowing me to move my site in full to Tripod, even if I can't get any
sort of redirect up at Topcities. I also got the website for The
Protest up today. Yay for extensive acts of webmastery...
now that my laptop is operational, I really should send it away, so
Dell can decide if they're going to fix it for me. If I send it, I should
do it pronto, before I'm going to need it for my papers. I doubt they
will fix it , and I'm afraid that the shipment and evaluation process
will aggravate the screen problems so much that I won't be able to use
it when I get it back. But, y'know, screw it. If there's a chance this
POS computer can be a little less crappy, I've got to go for it.
course, that means that I really should put in hours and hours of work-study
tomorrow, which has been ridiculously neglected this quarter, between
my busyness and my computer difficulties. Let's go out on a limb and
aim to somehow spend 5 hours doing work-study tomorrow, before I schedule
a pickup for my computer for Friday. Yeah, that's a plan.
February-- Bleh. So much I was supposed to get done
tonight... not a heck of a lot actually done. Well, I did browse through
3 of the 5 books I got out of the library today on Scandinavian welfare
programs. (I really shouldn't start on this paper until after I get farther
on my history paper, but since I need my poli sci prof to write a recommendation
for me very soon, I need to be ready to go to his office hours and sound
intelligent and enthusiastic.) I also wrote myself a resume essentially
completely from scratch, since the most recent one I could find was from
spring 2001, and I used maybe a sentence from that. These were both, indeed,
things that needed to be done. But so, so much more could have been accomplished.
Crunchtime is rapidly approaching, and it isn't going to be pretty. And
I'm afraid it's Peace Project stuff that's going to fall by the wayside...
and I also called Dell. They told me that they got around to finally
shipping my AC adapter yesterday-- thanks, guys. They also said that
all the crashing isn't their fault and I should blame Microsoft, and
that I'll have to send in my laptop if I want them to decide if the
warranty will cover fixing the screen, and that if the warranty doesn't
cover it, it'll cost $430-- like there's any way in hell I'm putting
that much money into that piece of crap. Grrr.)
February-- So it turns out that Osco Liquor will indeed accept my
New Jersey driver's license as proof that I'm 21, and I have the bottle
of peppermint schnapps to prove it. I didn't even intend to go there today,
but it was freezing cold, and as I made my way back from volunteering
this afternoon I knew I'd have to stop somewhere to thaw
out briefly before making it back to PARC. I was thinking I'd go into
Osco, when suddenly I passed Osco Liquor and thought "Aha!" I browsed
around a bit as feeling started to make its way back into my fingers and
toes, noting the disappointingly high price of Bailey's, as well as tons
of different sorts of individual-sized fruity "flavored malt beverages."
(Which of course make me go "Ooooh!") Eventually I grabbed a bottle of
good old peppermint schnapps, for what seems like a very good price for
the size (even with the Evanston liquor tax, which I'll blame on Frances
Willard just because I want to), and purchased it with no ado whatsoever.
am at the point in the quarter where I start panicking about how much
has to be done by the end, without actually bearing down and doing much
of said work yet. This is going to suck later, I guarantee you. So
many reasons I wish time would just stop where it is for a good
February-- PARC elections have come and gone, and in a few short weeks,
my stint on exec board will finally be over. Speaking of
things that are over, we had our playoff game for floor hockey today.
It was pretty rough. The Evans Scholars-- and whatever sorority they were
teaming with-- seriously outplayed us. And because we were in the co-rec
division in the playoffs despite playing in the white league for the regular
season, for the first time we had to have 3 girls on the floor at all
times. This resulted in the four of us girls being pretty tired, while
about 5 guys were on the sidelines at all times. It felt so different
from how well we played during the regular season. Ah, well. There's always
next year. And soccer.
other news, my needy desire to be the most important person in someone
else's life, which I was sure was finally dead and buried, has apparently
risen from the grave. Persistant bugger, eh? I will now try to hit it
over the head with a shovel repeatedly, and hopefully it will go away,
maybe for good this time.
February-- I don't go into Chicago enough. We went in today; it was
very cool. It was also very cold, and the wind literally made me lose
my footing a couple of times, but it was all good. We (meaning me, Alex,
my friend Allison who drove in from Purdue, and her friend Jose) wandered
aimlessly, as I pretended I knew where I was going, and we looked at lots
of Chicago buildings that I'd never seen before (like, oh, the Sears Tower).
Then we watched the fireworks over the river (part of Chicago's devious
tourism scheme to convince unwitting folks to come to Chicago in the winter
months when they really ought to be somewhere warmer!) which were nice,
and walked down Michigan Avenue for a while before heading home. Chicago
is so close to NU, and it's really pretty sad that I don't take advantage
of that more often.
I am going to let someone down. This sucks. Either I will let Katie
down, who I told I'd help fundraise for at the Blackhawks game tomorrow,
or the girls on the floor hockey team, who I ought to save from physical
misery by coming to the playoff game tomorrow so I can sub in for them.
We didn't get assigned our playoff time until after I told Katie I'd
go, and I'd forgotten that Sunday was one of the options. So, the battle
of the hockey games is on. Who will I disappoint? Tune in tomorrow to
find out. But either way, I'll feel guilty! I fail...
February-- This whole "adopting Alex's room as my own" thing doesn't
work too well with the daily-updates strategy, considering it's not very
polite to be typing an entry while Alex is trying to fall asleep. And
besides, I don't know how many people are even reading this anyway, thanks
to the hellacious technical difficulties that make me want to cry. (Let
me know if you've made it here, will you?)
hard decisions sucks. Do you go for the sure thing, or try for something
better but risk losing them both? Man, I'll be happy when all this housing
stuff is over...
Thought of the Day: I need writing samples for internship applications.
My computer recently crashed and I lost all my previously written papers.
I have no short essay assignments this quarter, just poems and two 10+
page papers. The applications are due March 15. Very, very not cool.
February-- I have suddenly realized that I have quite a busy weekend
ahead of me. Leaving aside the small matter of actual schoolwork, this
weekend I'm seeing Bowling for Columbine, participating in Quiz Bowl,
helping Katie's hockey team sell tickets at a Blackhaws game, and helping
run a PARC election. And Alex wants to "do something fun", preferably
in Chicago, this weekend. On top of that, I'm probably also going to dinner
with Matt, a friend of mine might be visiting from Purdue, and I had hoped
to go to one of Katie's hockey games, although for the life of me I can't
figure out how to fit it into my schedule. How did that happen to me?
My weekends usually involve sitting in bed reading without getting out
of my pajamas!
other news... well, there isn't really any interesting other news. I
got another 100-150 pages of my Ireland reading done, commented on some
pretty lousy poems by my classmates but was too kind for Colleen's liking,
sent out a dozen e-mails to profs about our latest NSAS endeavor as
well as some other assorted e-mails that needed to be sent out, and
was tortured by the devilry of a series like the West Wing which makes
you, if you tune in once, have to watch again the next week. Oh, and
I missed my extra-credit visit to the Northwestern observatory for my
astronomy class, which would've been helpful, since while I seem to
do swimmingly on quizzes while attending class only occasionally, tests
are a different story, and quizzes are only 25% of my grade.
time to head towards bed. I've gotten a lot of the nagging to-do items
off my list, but there seems to be no shortage of things left to do,
unfortunately. Funny how that works.
February-- Grrrr... damn technology.
apparently believes that my account does not exist. Funny, you'd think
that while using it for the last 6 months I'd've picked up on something
like the nonexistence of my account. Perhaps they've just deleted it
for some reason. In any event, the site seems to be functioning normally
at its usual location, http://brittgm.topcities.com.
But as I can't log in to edit it, I decided to move over to Tripod temporarily,
and possibly permanently if the Topcities people don't respond to my
questions after a couple more days. Not worth the hassle.
since my AC adapter has not come back from the dead, I'm not using my
laptop until the new one arrives (tomorrow or Thursday, hopefully).
Which means that instead of using Dreamweaver to take all my files from
Topcities and transport them here, I've instead just copied the index
page and this Thoughts of the Day page to Tripod, and the rest of the
links should just take people back to the Topcities pages.
I'm sure that was phenomenally interesting to y'all. In fact, many notable
things have happened in the last couple days that I could talk about.
(My string of daily entries which had been going so long, admittedly
with minor fudging in a couple places, is dead. Ah, well. It's not my
fault, it's Technology, dammit.) But I think I'd rather be hideously
boring, for today, anyway.
February-- We visited another potential apartment today, and I liked
it a lot. Granted, I really want to get a lease signed and taken care
of, and the fact that it's a house and is cute pleased me in a wholly
irrational way. But it has lots of perks, and I think I would really enjoy
living in those surroundings. The downside, of course, is that it's the
farthest-away place we've visited yet, which would produce its share of
hassles. It's kind of amusing that lazy me-- who told Alex in October
that I wouldn't live anywhere farther than 5 minutes from PARC-- is pushing
this place and its 15 minute daily walks. I keep telling myself, "You
know how many hours you spend inside your residence every
day? So don't even think about the mere minutes that would be involved
in walking, those are tiny in comparison. Find the best damn living space
you can." Besides, I would like this place on my own anyway, but I can
tell that Alex really likes it, so I'm pretty much sold. The boy is going
to be so stressed out next year anyway, I want him to be able to live
in a place he's happy with. I hope it will end up that way.
really kind of sad the way I've completely appropriated Alex's room
and turned it into my own. I would guess that I spent a half-hour today
in my room, and at least 8 hours in his. I mean, it makes perfect sense,
since he left around 2 and has not been back since, while I've of course
spent hours at PARC, using his computer for vitally important things
game. I did manage to be pretty productive this afternoon, getting all
my required reading done, although the rough draft of my sonnet for
Tuesday is really boring and lame, and I really didn't get as much reading
done as I'd like in the Ireland book for my paper. Ah, well. There's
February-- I see no reason to rehash the Valentine's Day-ness, since
it's all right here.
evening did finish in a rather fun way, something that was very welcome
this evening (especially since I was wobbling on the border of being
rather sad earlier). I probably shouldn't go into the details, but it
involved Guy's office at 2 AM, Guy, Scott, Colleen, and a wobbly table.
It was a quality experience.
February-- Coney might be pitching again this year!!! If you don't
know, Coney is David Cone, otherwise known as my favorite baseball player
ever, who didn't play last year and basically seemed like he was retired,
although he never made a formal announcement. But it turns out he's just
signed a minor-league contract with the Mets and will compete in Spring
Training to be their 5th starter. This is wonderful not only because it
means I may get to see him pitch again (which is reason enough to be happy),
but also because if he can manage just 7 more wins, he'll hit 200. And
despite what some people may say, if he gets 200 wins, I think he's got
a shot at the Hall of Fame, which would be really special.
other news, the most bizarre thing has happened. I've been trying for
a couple weeks now to get the Allison mailroom to give me the package
they said they had which had been returned to me, which I knew had to
be one of the ones I mailed to a customer on half.com. But when I finally
got it back and went online to try to notify the customer that their
book had been returned to me, I realized that this person had left me
feedback that said, "Great transaction, quick delivery." I am not quite
sure what to make of that, considering that I have the book she ordered
(and paid for!) sitting in my room. Do I contact her? Do I wait and
see if she contacts me? Do I try to sell the book (which is going for
$25, after all!) and get paid for it a second time? So
February-- Have I ever mentioned that I hate my computer? Well, I
do. The current problem is that the AC adapter is dead. Thus, after draining
my battery, I can no longer use my computer. Or, as Scotty would say,
"I can't do it, Cap'n! I don't have the power!"
So I've temporarily adopted Alex's room as my own, which works out well,
considering he's usually away from PARC and not using his computer,
and I'm usually in PARC and wanting to use a computer. The main drawback
is the loud video game-playing people in his suite. But since I'm usually
procrastinating instead of trying to actually accomplish work, it seems
to be okay thus far.
I should probably call Dell and make them fix it for me. And maybe my
whole computer, while they're at it, although that doesn't seem likely.
In the meantime, I can borrow Laura's AC adapter (anyone know other
people with Dell laptops?) if I really need to be on my own computer
for a little while. But, dude, it's frustrating. Someday, somehow, I
will have a computer that does not cause me stress.
Damn it all, stupid computer. I'll explain all the problems later. But
it sucks, and I will not be updating temporarily.
February-- Somehow I never, ever manage to get anything done on a
Sunday afternoon, after I wake up, until after we've eaten. And since
it often takes hours to get around to heading to Norris, and usually we
spend an inordinate amount of time there, I end up in situations like
today where I get back to PARC at 5:30 to finally start work for the day,
a couple hours before meetings start.
get around to writing this, as well as finally
putting in a couple hours on the Ireland book I'll be writing my Modern
Europe paper about. So, not a completely wasted day. But I still could
do with another couple days of weekend. Monday comes so fast....
Back when I was a freshman, no work ever seemed to get done on Saturday,
and it wasn't until Sunday that I would settle down to actually be productive.
While that scenario hasn't disappeared, it seems that nowadays I often
accomplish a decent amount with my Saturdays. Am I developing some degree
of maturity and responsibility, however minor? Regardless, the fact is
that at the end of the night, I've gotten everything done that has
to be done for the week.
course, that doesn't take into account the two midterms plus a quiz
coming up this week, nor the two major papers due at the end of the
quarter which are going to require a good deal of extra reading. I can
thank VH1's "I Love the 80's" specials-- we spent 2 1/2 hours watching
1986, 1987, and 1988-- for my negligence on those fronts. (Although
somehow, I'm not entirely confident much more would have been accomplished
without that distraction-- there are always distractions to be found
hopefully progress will made on these things tomorrow. One can always
February-- One thing I've learned in life is that although you may
be unhappy at times, there's always someone worse off than you (and it's
usually Alex) to put your problems in perspective. Sure, I have this nagging
sense of failure and frustration when yet another potential apartment
falls through. But it's of course nothing compared to Alex's several boatloads
of troubles, as usual. Poor guy.
for a wide variety of reasons, I managed to put in all of a half-hour
doing homework tonight. Go me! Sigh.
Why oh why do I insist on spending hours looking at classes a good week-and-a-half
before preregistration? Because I'm Britt, and this is what I do. I didn't
figure out an awful lot, either, considering that taking Spanish, Reading
and Writing Fiction, and CIA in the Third World are all sort of shoo-ins.
I think I've decided I want to take Intro to Hinduism. So that leaves
one more. Unfortunately, most of the good choices seem to conflict with
CIA in the Third World, which is the class I've been waiting to take for
three years, so I'm not exactly going to skip it. The best choices I'm
left with seem to be Democratic Transitions (damn having no CTECs on the
prof!), for my poli sci major; Iran in the 20th Century, for my history
major; or USSR and Successor States, just for learning's sake. Assuming
I take the first 4 classes I mentioned this quarter, I have 4 more requirements
to fill, plus two credits for my thesis next year. So I don't have to
take a fifth one, but that would require me to take a fourth class next
year with my thesis if I wanted to take a non-required class. Not that
that's the end of the world.
really, really weird to think about this being my last basically free
and open quarter.
was the most pleasant day I've had in a while. After an afternoon of classes,
including a midterm which seemed to go well, I headed over to the spiffy
Kellogg building for what they call a domain dinner, where they give us
good food (mmm, salmon!) for free and encourage us to talk about Important
Issues. Then, after coming home, I got to spend time with friends, and
still managed to put in over two solid hours of productive work-study
was nice enough that I was only temporarily frustrated and infuriated
by the problems a certain person, who seems determined to make us unhappy
so he can get some sort of satisfaction out of being successful, is
trying to inflict on us. Sure, it's annoying as all hell, but it only
bothered me when I was talking about it, and then it evaporated away
instead of lingering to spoil my mood.
this is a sign for the better, and I can somehow maintain higher spirits
as I make my way through the stressful upcoming week...
I don't understand why testing the alarm system in the library takes (at
least) two full days, and why one of those days has to coincide with the
day I have 4 1/2 hours of class in the library. Both of my classes ended
up fleeing the flashing lights and the ever-repeating "There is a fire
in the library. Please exit by the nearest staircase. Do not use the elevators."
On top of that, I got a package slip of the not-so-good kind (didn't know
that sort existed, 'till I started selling books on half.com), and the
current returned book may have been waiting for me for more than a week,
which is pretty bad. And the Peace Project fireside at PARC tonight did
not go so well. These are not things to force me into uncontrollable weeping,
but certainly not the cheeriest situation.
as a response, I threw myself into procrastination, because there's
something soothing about it. (You could say it's because the familiar
tends to be soothing; I prefer to think that there's something satisfactorily
rebellious about doing what you want to do instead of what you should
do.) Instead of studying for tomorrow's midterm, first I went downstairs
and ate mac 'n' cheese, and animal crackers with icing, with Matt as
we watched TV. (What else would we do? I swear, I don't know if I'd
ever watch TV here if it wasn't for that boy.) Then I came upstairs,
ostensibly to study. Instead, I browsed around online and came up with
ridiculous spring break ideas for Colleen to shoot down-- "Britt, are
you sure you really want to take a Greyhound to Tucson by yourself and
spend a week in a hostel there?"-- before realizing that my true calling
for the evening was, in fact, planning out my 2004 trip to Europe, courtesy
of Eurail passes. (Hear Britt, the dismissive anti-Eurocentrist, say,
"Oooh! Eiffel Tower!")
got around to doing a little studying. But when I end up not doing as
well in this class as I'd like to, remind me about tonight, and all
the other nights like this.
been one of those days. (Or, rather, another one of those
days, since I seem to be having a number of them lately.) One where the
posters keep falling off the wall and you spill soda all over yourself.
One where you discover that for no apparent reason, your fridge has somehow
become unplugged, leading to the untimely demise of a nearly full block
of cheese, a large quantity of smoked salmon, eight eggs, and, oh, yeah,
the ice cream which ends up dripping throughout the whole thing. One where
you get an e-mail from your boss saying that the analyses you've mentioned
to him are good and that you should get together to talk about all the
other analyses that (theoretically but not actually) have
been done, and another e-mail from your disappointed-sounding grandparents,
who have just given you a very generous birthday present, saying that
you don't write often enough. One where, despite having to catch up on
those things plus the other dozen important things flitting around at
the back of your mind, you do not do reading or study for your upcoming
midterm, but instead stare out the window or pretend to buy yourself a
new computer online or investigate Amtrak rail passes for an illogical
spring break idea or look up next quarter's classes. One where your headache
won't go away, and it's impossible to keep your room from being either
too hot, or too cold from the winter air coming in through the window.
One where you end the day overwhelmed by the list of things that you need
to get done, thinking about the limited free time ahead and how many empty
hours you've just wasted.
one of those. Can it stop, now?
I've had a weird weekend. Not all bad, but I don't think I'd have another
one like it if I had the choice.
set my alarm this morning, and headed over to Fisk a little after noon
to work on the Protest. I came up with a few graphics, but mostly I
was preparing to start putting the December issue on the web, which
I of course started working on when I got back to PARC, instead of doing
schoolwork. In fact, I wasted most of the afternoon away, until it was
time to leave for dinner with a fellow at 6:30. After several hours
at the Turkish restaraunt, which resulted in missing a constitutional
committee meeting, which was expected, and an exec board meeting, which
was not, Scott and Colleen and I begged a ride back early (!) to make
it to our floor hockey game at 10.
course, when we made it up north for the floor hockey game, we discovered
that our opponents, Chapin, had not shown up. So we had to forfeit,
and between last week's cancellation and next week's bye, that'll mean
we have a month inbetween our two regular season games. It's pretty
disappointing, especially for me, since I think it's a fun and exciting
game, and was really looking forward to practicing and learning more
and improving. Which is pretty damn hard when you don't get to play.
we came back, and I hung around with Scott and Colleen, and then seeing
Scott's World Series DVD made me develop this, well, craving to watch
my 1996 WS video. So, I did, and it was marvelous and made me feel nostalgic,
but also sad, and lonely watching it all by myself, too. And now it's
late, and I'm tired, and I haven't done much schoolwork at all, and
the nerves and tension I've been feeling all weekend haven't gone away.
I just feel all kinds of out-of-sorts.
I suppose that babbling on about it won't do me any good. And getting
some sleep at least has a chance to.
spent basically all of today in my room, in my pajamas, by myself. Yes,
it sounds really lame, but it wasn't too bad. Okay, so the part up until
about 9 PM kind of sucked, as I sat around waiting for a certain phone
call from the landlords of a certain place, unwilling to leave my room
for more than 30 seconds in case I missed it. But once I finally convinced
myself that it was time to stop obsessing about that, it wasn't so bad.
I did get tons of schoolwork accomplished, although not as much as I should've,
considering the sheer amount of time I had. Of course, that might have
something to do with the 7-8 hours in which I could only focus for a few
minutes at a time before staring worriedly at the phone again... It's
just hard, because there really don't seem to be any other good housing
options right now, and I so badly want this to work out well. But I need
to breathe and tell myself that we'll figure something out in the end.