Sunday, September 19, 2010

Coming up for air...

I was on a blogging hiatus for the past couple weeks. I could point to a number of causes--one is that my new MacBook Pro is in intensive care (read: do not drink water near electronic devices). Another could be that I just started classes and along with them came many meetings and parties and such. In other words, I was in New York City 4 out of 5 days last week. It was fun, don't get me wrong, but I spent many hours on the train, or with my nose stuck in a book, desperately trying to finish it all, and to actually understand what the heck I was reading--oh, and to not sound like an idiot in seminar.

It's not like I think I'm stupid, well, maybe I do for spilling water on my laptop, but other than that... It's that I have spent the past four years mainly discussing history with teenagers. I am not trying to discredit them--many of them were very bright and offered insights that I never would have imagined. Oh, and others would try to explain to me that they didn't write their papers because their "printers were broken" and would complain about having 30 pages of reading. The world isn't perfect of course. What I am trying to say (and digressing as usual in the process) is that there is a theoretical language that I acquired when studying history, and I don't think I am fluent in it anymore. I think that is the intellectual handicap I am presently suffering from; and the only way I know how to conquer it is to work my little behind off.

That brings me to the other cause of my hiatus: half marathon training. Essentially any moment that I was not reading, I was running--or maybe sleeping. Some of you might say that I could not have picked a worse time to do this. I thought I had a lot of work as a teacher and coach, but I was quickly shaken from that assumption when classes began. I am happy to do the work, and for the most part it is very fulfilling. It is not that I did not enjoy teaching, but I found that I was mainly working for others, and now I am again working for myself (well, I'd better be, because I am paying a LOT of money for it!). But this quest for intellectual fulfillment, nerdy as it may sound, can weigh down on me after hours reading Michel Foucault or Raymond Williams, or after listening to inane conversations on the train while trying to read said theorists. So, I know that I need this physical outlet. Also, if I remember anything from my undergrad days, I would turn to food as a distraction from reading/paper writing, so if I want to succeed as a grad student, and fit into my pants, running (and the occasional hot yoga session) is the only way to go as far as I see it!

Of course, this blog post is a form of procrastination in itself, as I should be writing a paper right now. And yes, I can feel my influence from Foucault as I am proofreading this and observing the run-on sentences and stream of consciousness. I would prefer my paper to be polished than this blog, so sadly, you will have to take this as is. A blog was in order though, if anything, to prove that I have not dropped off the face of the earth.

Ok, now to make sense of Paul Gilroy...