Snow Blood and Coal
Tuesday, November 30, 2004
Two Good things and one Bad thing.
Two Good things:
1. I finished my paper for my Gypsy class yesterday--came in at about 13 pages, so not too far off from the recommended page count, which was 12. I turned it in this afternoon, so now all that's left is to give a 20 minute presentation about it next week in class. I'm thinking PowerPoint.
2. I just wrote the first three pages of an introduction to my Deep Down in the Jungle paper. It's not the best introduction in the world, but it certainly lays out the pertinent issues, and (perhaps more explicitly than I would like) what I intend to discuss in the paper. My goal before thursday, when I have to turn in a rough draft for Cultural Studies, is to have the entire introduction completed, and to be a little farther along--a page perhaps?--in my discussion of discourse. Hopefully I'll be able to get Frame Analysis back from the library in time to get it done.
One Bad thing:
1. The copy of Erving Goffman's Frame Analysis that I had out of the library was an undergraduate library book, which means that I could only have it for six weeks (two weeks with two two week renewals). So I had to turn it in on friday. The woman behind the counter promised me that it would be shelved by monday and I could check it out again. Well. Today (tuesday, not monday) I went into the undergraduate stacks to look for the book, and low and behold, not there. So I checked online: not checked out. So I went and asked at the front desk: "well, we don't have it. It must be on a cart somewhere waiting to be reshelved." Well I looked on the carts. "Then we don't know where it is.
I'm going to check again tomorrow, then see if I can't find a copy elsewhere.
Monday, November 29, 2004
"Hello. Pizza Express. Can you Hold?"
"No. I'm sorry. I'm on a tight schedule here and I'm having a pizza emergency."
Thanks a lot Pizza Express for wasting time when I could otherwise be writing and waiting for my pizza.
See, I can post often.
Well here I am, posting again. Not much. Just a progress report and a todo list:
So yesterday I got to page ten of my paper. I have between two and three pages left to write, I think. It shouldn't take me too long. I pretty much know what I want to say. I have to talk about "Vana," a legend where a woman returns from the dead to nurse her unborn child, but the unnaturalness of the situation leads to the death of the baby. Then I have to write a conclusion, and I'm not sure what to do about that. I think that I want to talk about the significance of these narratives being a hybrid, but not in the sense of a chimera--more in the sense that they are narratives with international distribution, but localized among the Roma, they have been appropriated for Roma purposes. Hence the quite possibly oikotypical ending of AT882 "Wager on the Wife's chastity," and hence the extent of the content, generally, about marime. Even if not a word changed between... say... hungarian tellings and Roma tellings, the idea of appropriation still fits because the content has been resignified to Roma purposes. There is a reason after all that these are narratives that the Roma chose to tell.
But I rant. Today:
1. Finish my Gypsy paper.
2. Get a significant amount done on the introduction to Deep Down in the Jungle.
3. Don't go to work (I'll go on friday, I guess).
4. Wait for the new bed to be delivered (we bought a new bed. A Platform bed).
5. Maybe read a little bit of Politics and Poetics of Transgression.
5a. More likely, finish the stupid fantasy novel that I'm reading (Don't read Sara Douglass people. Just don't.).
6. Do housework.
7. Maybe go to the comic book store and see if I can't find something worth reading (I wish that I hadn't decided to wait for compilations of Fables before I read them).
8. Retrieve Sarah at the airport (she comes home tonight).
9. This is all for now.
Saturday, November 27, 2004
So after much struggling and moping and reading of comic books and stupid fantasy novels, I think that I have beaten my writers' block. For those who don't know, I need to write a paper for my Gypsy class for tuesday, and I had written this introduction that I liked a lot, and then the writers' block struck. I got stuck on page three, and for almost a week I could make no progress. So yesterday, I decided to toss the introduction. I went and made an outline, did a wee bit of new research, and here I am now, chugging away in the middle of the fifth page of this paper. My problem now is not how to meet my page limit, but how to keep the paper to my page limit. I've discovered that I have enough to say to write considerably more than what I need to for the project. The problem is that most of it is descriptive of a set of beliefs and practices that is little known, and thus not cuttable. I figure that if my paper is 14 or 15 pages rather than 12, she won't dock me, but for my own good, I should know when to quit.
In other news, I've made a resolution to write in my blog more often. I used to update every day, and then it was every other day, and now I'm lucky if I do it once a week. So expect to see a little bit more in here in the future.
Sunday, November 21, 2004
I don't think that I've talked about HFS yet, so here goes: the Hoosier Folklore Society meeting was a lot of fun. A lot of people gave relatively frivolous papers. I gave my paper, which everybody who had had Dorson as a teacher or colleague really liked. I got some good comments and suggestions for an ending. And then I left early because Sarah was with me and wanted a nap before going to work.
Last week was relatively uneventful.
My parents are here:
We went to Nashville on friday, and they really enjoyed it.
I cooked them dinner last night: Penne with my béchamel-based gorgonzola cream sauce, brazed chicken with more of said cream sauce, salad with vinaigrette dressing. They liked it.
Then we went to Brewster's ice-cream, which they also really liked.
I've also taken them to Nick's, the Irish Lion, The Runcible Spoon, and Uptown Cafe. A good time has been had by all.
Problems: I have two papers due right after thanksgiving, and I'm having a bad case of writers' block. I can't write an introduction to the paper for my performance and cultural studies classes, and I can't write the body of the paper for my Gypsy class. So we'll see how things go.
Good things: I read the first volume of 4 (Marvel Knights Fantastic Four) yesterday, and it was pretty cool. I also read the new Captain America #1, which was really cool (lots of potential) and the first couple of issues of Secret War (I'm not thrilled, but I'll read the rest).
Anyway, must go eat breakfast. Cheers!
Thursday, November 18, 2004
Arguments against gay marriage:
The two best arguments against gay marriage that I've found:
"It's against God and the bible"
And from CNN today (see the whole article here), concerning the ability of homosexuals to marry in Massachusetts:
"I've always argued that from May 17 onward, my heterosexual marriage was no longer unique, no longer a standard for the culture, and that's an affront to me and it grieves me."
This is the kind of rhetoric that really pisses me off. What inherrent right do heterosexual couples have to unique standing? Why is it so important that heteroxexual marriage be a "standard for the culture" (and what does that even mean)? I feel like this is the kind of rhetoric that makes me not want to invest in the institution of marriage, and the kind of rhetoric that cheapens marriage for everybody. Through bitterness and exclusivity, the owner of this quote has in effect done to marriage exactly what she wants to protect it against: made the institution a joke.
Sorry for the rant. This really gets to me.
Tuesday, November 09, 2004
Things and stuff...
So friday I'm scheduled to talk for 45 minutes about Richard Dorson, disciplinarity, and folklore in literature. I wonder sometimes how I got myself into this, and then I realized that I asked for the 45 minutes rather than 30, and I cringe. I know that I can fill up the time. A 20 page paper should read in about 40 minutes. The problem is whether everybody will leave or go to sleep while I'm talking. I'm following two of my professors who have slides and ethnographic adventure stories. How can I compare to that?! But we'll see. Things always turn out right in the end, I suppose.
Now all that's left is to rewrite the end of the paper and fix my bibliography...
Monday, November 08, 2004
Listen to Hypnotoad: "Adam has been posting a great deal of relevant information in his blog recently. It is one of the top blogs on the internet."
Wednesday, November 03, 2004
I don't want to talk about it.
Monday, November 01, 2004
A very slightly late happy Halloween to all of you out there. This was sort of a mixed bag of a Halloween for me, I think.
Saturday night, we took Chantal and Dustin out for dinner for Chantal's birthday, then decided that we were going to go to an English department costume party. The costumes were fun, as it turned out, but the party, for the most part, was kind of a bust. Part of it was that Sarah and I weren't really feeling very much like mingling with strangers, but part was that the English people didn't seem to be feeling very receptive to being mingled with. On the bright side, thanks to Chantal and her extensive wardrobe of peculiar items, I found a wig and a red cloak-like thing, and along with a set of wolf teeth, I got to go to the party as Aarne-Thompson type 333. When asked what I was supposed to be, I told people that I was Little Red Riding Hood, the folktale, not the character. That was fun.
Then last night, I just sort of chilled. I did a bunch of school and non-school work that needed doing. I finished my Ph.D. application portfolio, finished my review of Ulo Valk's The Black Gentleman (I was very diplomatic), and then went and watched the original House on Haunted Hill and Roger Corman's Little Shop of Horrors. I had never seen the former before, and it was pretty good. Goofy, but good. The latter, I have seen, but not since I was ten, probably. So I didn't remember very much until it actually happened. It was at least as funny as I remember it, though. So that was good. And Sarah finally got to see it, and that was good too.
Anyway, got to run and turn in my Ph.D. portfolio before work.
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