Thursday, June 24, 2010

Poetry Readings Make Me Sad

Tonight I went to a wonderful poetry reading hosted by Cave Canem and House of Asylum in Pittsburgh's Northside with new friends I met through attending Colrain.  Carl Phillips, Colleen McElroy, Claudia Rankine, and Sapphire read under a tent in the Mexican War Streets neighborhood. Beautiful weather, great people, and an all-around great atmosphere.  Lately though, poetry has made me sad.  So many poems are about love (or at least lust), and listening to these poets tonight made me downright lonely. I am meeting new people, getting out, etc., but still there's something lacking.  I'm just not that girl who likes to come home to an empty house.  Thank goodness for pets.  Mom points out at every opportunity that my pets are a reason someone "wouldn't" want to be with me, but let me tell you, feeding Sterling catnip at eleven o'clock at night straight from the garden and watching him attack the dog that's ten times his size is a darn good end to my evening.

Wednesday, June 23, 2010

Burkina Faso

Did you ever learn something new, and then it seems you hear about it everywhere you go?  On Monday I went with a friend to see Burkina Electric, a band from Burkina Faso at the Thunderbird Cafe in Lawrenceville.  You should check out both the band and the venue.  Great night!  I don't know why I had never heard of Burkina Faso, but there's a city there named Kaya (like my dog!).  And on television this morning I heard a reference to it also.  It's just amazing how much I don't know!

Wednesday, June 16, 2010

Really Truly Karma?

Someone who I barely know told me the other day that this was going to be "my year."  I don't know what that means, but today feels pretty darn good.

I am a decent teacher I think.  I've won some awards, and I've gotten some pretty nice praise.  But I've never really loved doing it.  I enjoy moments of it, but I always feel like there's more that I can do.  There's a good chance that at some point I'll teach something again, but right now...I'm not a teacher!!!  Ok, well I'm cheating a little.  I am teaching four online courses...  But I don't have to dress like a teacher!  I don't have to duck in the halls from other faculty members who don't like me.  I don't have anyone yelling, screaming, crying, or puking in my office.  True, now I have to dress like a lawyer and be a poor student again, but at least for today, that feels good.

I don't consider myself to be wishy-washy.  I'm pretty good at making decisions. But I also like to leave my options open.  That's what I've been doing about jobs for the last few years.  I just take everything that comes my way, and do waaaaay too much.  But last night my brain/body wouldn't let me do it anymore, and get this...  I think I was rewarded today for trying to be a little bit human and not work too much.

When I called Duquesne to ask them to consider switching me to a day student, they said they'd be happy to do that.  Not only that, as a day student I am eligible for half my tuition paid the first year and almost all of my tuition paid each subsequent year provided I maintain certain grades.  Seriously!?  That's all I had to do?!  Why did no one tell me this!?  I don't know what my brain/body knew that I didn't, but the decision to not go back to SRU was awesome.  Good news!


I have been going back and forth about law school and teaching at Slippery Rock this year.  Apparently my body is making the decision for me.  Last night I put out my clothes for my interview at Slippery Rock today, I organized my resume, and I planned my teaching presentation.  I planned to go and interview even if I didn't take the job.

But it's four in the morning, and I've been up since two.  My mind is racing, my heart is beating a million miles a minute, and I'm basically having a panic attack at the thought of going back to that place.  I don't want to spent 12-15 hours in the car each work week.  I don't want to have no life because I'm driving back and forth.  I want to go to law school.  In fact, I'd prefer to go to law school full time and be out of there is three years.  There, I said it.

Last night I cancelled my cable, my Netflix, my extra features on my cell phone, etc.  I'm back to being a student, darn it.  I don't especially enjoy being poor, but here's to law school, here's to saving a few bucks to hopefully make more in the long run, and here's to living life without working 24/7! Yikes, this is terrifying!

Wednesday, June 9, 2010

Degrees of Separation

If you're interested in purchasing my new chapbook, Degrees of Separation, for ten dollars, please contact me, and I'll be happy to send off a signed first edition right away!

In Memoriam

On Memorial Day Mom and I went to the Allegheny Cemetery, which is an amazing place in Pittsburgh.  Older than much of the city itself, Pittsburgh literally grew up around it.  I hadn't downloaded the pictures yet, but here they are.  My grandmother, grandfather, great grandmother and others are buried at this historical site.

Tuesday, June 8, 2010

Breakdown Shakedown

I'm always on the verge of a minor breakdown it seems.  Today I was really close.  I spent the day at my parents' house working, playing with the dogs, and getting up the nerve to ride a crazy horse that is owned by one of the boarders at the barn.  She was definitely abused and promptly dumps anyone off who tries to get on her back.  It's another one of those crazy scary things I do to myself (see yesterday's post) to try and ride an insane horse.

The big thing I found out today is that my law school schedule will be Mon-Thurs every evening until ten o'clock.  How in the heck am I going to drive to school at the place that shall not be mentioned (if I get my job back) at least three hours a day, teach full time, grade papers, study for class, and survive?  I know the rational answer....I can't.  Is it crazy to try?  I feel like my parents are thinking: "you're going to be in debt" and "you need to keep working there so that you can pay the bills and have health insurance."

I'm just so tired. I want to rock law school and be at the top of my class.  I want to get away from teaching.  Did I ever mention I hate being a professor?  ACK!  Ok, sorry for the venting.  I know no one can give me the answer, but I really just don't know where to begin to figure it out right now.

Monday, June 7, 2010

Scaredy Cat

Do you do things that scare you?  Or are you the safe type?  Go to the same restaurants?  Have the same friends?

I'm definitely the former.  From the time I can remember, I did things that scared me.  I was riding horses and competing at the age of four.  And I remember that I was terrified, but that was part of the thrill.  In college I had severe anxiety, but I volunteered each year to be an orientation leader. Suddenly I was in charge of 20 cocky, scared, crazy freshmen.  And we had to do ice breakers!  Ice breakers are truly my nemesis, but I figured if I forced myself to do it, I'd be a better person.

Then I moved to Florida.  Talk about terrifying.  I didn't know anyone, I couldn't even drive a stick, and the car I was taking was a fun new six-speed Firebird. 

I go to running groups that terrify me, poetry readings that terrify men, conferences that terrify me.  And I do it all in the name of "becoming a better person."  But today I'm wondering, is there a way to embrace that quiet and shy personality that is my true self?  I'm wondering this because I'm about to do something again that terrifies me.

I'm headed to law school in two months or so.  The Socratic method scares me, men in suits scare me, being a student who knows nothing again scares me, failing out scares me, not fitting in, not being good at law, not passing...  all of these things terrify me. Why am I doing this again?

Wednesday, June 2, 2010

I Promise I'll Do Better

The quick recap?  I know, I haven't been on the blog at all lately.  I'll give you the short version, and then I promise I'll be better.
1.  I went to a poetry reading in Pittsburgh.  I ended up at a bar with my former professor.  Strange strange.  Very very strange.
2.  I will be reading at the Polish Hill Arts Festival this July 19th at 2 p.m.  I hope my chapbook's done by then!
3.  The garden is planted, I've sent a million poetry submissions, and I'm settling in to teaching online and catching up.
And finally, I want to know.  How old is too old?  For dating that is.  My next possibility for a "match" is a man 16 years older than me.  A very successful, drives a Porsche, has Pens season tickets three rows from the ice 16 years oldern than me.  Can I really go out with this guy?