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Grades are in today. I ended up with a 4.0 for both semesters this year. So there. Apparently I can request a "Degree Verification Letter" which should satisfy the ATA, even though I can't get an official transcript yet.

Yesterday I did most of the things I was supposed to do, except for laundry, which I have to do today, and a couple of phone calls. I ended up making soup that can be summarized by "take some chicken and throw a garden at it". It's got carrots and potatoes and tomatoes and cabbage and zucchini in it, and garlic and various herbs and a couple of bay leaves. Good stuff. It's hard to ruin that sort of soup.

I get my driving lessons during the first week in June. Which means I have to call the shuttle service to get to the airport and back next week. (Ye gods, that is next week. I knew that, but it sort of snuck up on me anyway.)

Today I have to make the phone calls I didn't make yesterday, do laundry, and send out my resume to the places I keep meaning to send it to, now that I've re-written it for the fourth time.
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Graduation, like most graduations, was a lot of standing in lines and a lot of sitting down and waiting for things to be over. However, I have now officially graduated, and in four to six weeks I'll have the diploma to prove it. For now I just have several pictures of myself in a silly hat and a gown with silly sleeves.

I'm supposed to be on my way out the door to a party, but it's going to rain any second now and the party is about half an hour's walk from here. I think I'm going to see if it rains and lets up, like it usually does, and then go.

On to the next grand adventure, I suppose...
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The messing around in Photoshop was only half successful. When you start with an image that isn't very high-resolution in the first place, and then try to make it bigger, there isn't much to be done about it. However, the other project was a smashing success, to the point where now I've got two versions of it and I can't decide which one I like better.

I came home last night and discovered that the trumpet vine and the fence across from my front door have both been demolished. Most of the fence is still there, but the section that was holding the vine up is gone. I wonder what they're going to do now?

Today I must remember to buy stamps. I went to the bookstore yesterday and bought some generic graduation announcements, because personalized ones are exorbitantly expensive and I wanted to let my undergrad advisor know what the recommendation letter she wrote for me when I applied to grad school did for me. (I think I remember telling her I'd been accepted, but I can't swear to that.) You have to buy the announcements in packs of 10, so after I send one to my undergrad advisor and one to each set of grandparents, I'll have seven left over, and I haven't a clue what to do with them.

I also discovered in the course of buying announcements that the bookstore is having a pretty good small-electronics sale. I'm considering a bit of semi-profligate spending, because my current portable CD player is getting tired. It still works fine, but the mechanical parts make worrisome buzzing noises when it starts spinning a CD. Considering that a new one would usually be $80 but is now $45, I think it's justifiable. (The graduation regalia I'll only wear once cost more than that.) I know, I know, I should just get an iPod. Not until I have income again, thanks. [EDIT: Score! The bookstore is having a "25% off everything that was already on sale" day. So I got the CD player and some other necessary odds and ends for $35.]

The other night my father and I were talking about desks, and he suggested the cheapest way to get a bigger desk is to buy a hollow-core door and a couple of small filing cabinets. I said "right, and the door will even have a hole in it for the computer cables", which floored him for a second, and then he thought it was hilarious. He hadn't been thinking about pre-bored doors. I don't think I've ever zinged him in his own profession before. Maybe you had to be there, but both of us were snickering about that for the next five minutes.

Time to go run errands, and come home and start printing things.
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I got the tutoring schedule today. I can't imagine there are that many people who need tutoring yet, but I get to sit around for 8 hours next week waiting for people to show up. And we're starting the coffee hour next week, too. I'm going to be occupied, if not busy, all of a sudden. (I wonder if I can get a wireless connection in the room I'm going to be stuck in? Hmm.)

Apparently my parents have been adopted by a bat. I can't imagine what it's finding to live on, but it seems to spend its days hanging around (literally) in a corner of the back porch.

I have to remember to go to the public library sometime today. They're holding a book for me.
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The people who name hair colors must be related to the people who name paint colors.

The sun isn't quite out, but at least the cloud cover has holes in it today. And it's windy as hell, but it's warm again. I should be outside, probably. I'm going to have to go out and buy milk, at the very least.

I'm waiting for e-mail from the woman who's in charge of tutoring. It might be nice to know what I have to be doing before I have to start doing it. On the other hand, I don't know what I'm worrying about, since I'm only tutoring for about two weeks. Who's going to need tutoring in the first two weeks of the semester? Probably the same people who needed tutoring last semester.

I still don't know who's teaching project management. It's one of two people, and I hope it's the one it probably isn't.

I have to remember to make some new posters for the coffee hour sometime next week. Which is easy; all I have to do is change "Thursday" to "Friday", re-print the thing and make a mess of copies. Which reminds me, we're out of coffee.

Apparently it's not just me; my advisor intimidates everybody.

I wonder if the rec center will let me go bouldering on the climbing wall?

New Toys!

Jan. 11th, 2005 01:51 pm
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The Moose has landed! Ye gods, that was quick! Unfortunately it landed with a mostly-dead battery, so it wouldn't start up. I'm charging the battery and making lists of things off this computer that I want on the Moose.

So, once I get the Moose started up and set up satisfactorily, anybody want to buy a G3 iBook, complete with original cables and all the other stuff it came with? (Possibly including the box, if it survived being in storage.)

And I got the package from my mom today too, so I have a nonstick frying pan small enough to make two-egg omelets in. (My other one is too big for that; I either ended up with a very thin omelet if I was extremely lucky, or I had to use at least three eggs. I don't always want to eat three eggs.)

If I didn't know better, I'd say it looked like Christmas in my living room. Whee!

[EDIT: New toys all over. I've just been handed the French tutoring assignment until February, when the woman who usually does it gets back. Apparently she has some health problems. This will probably make my teaching classmates happy, because they used to complain that the French students were getting sent to a native German tutor. So now I get a copy of the elementary French textbook, too.]
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I believe we have a winner in the Let's Make Up Our Minds, Shall We? category:

So far I've heard four different deadline dates for filing the "intend to graduate in May" forms. Two different dates in late January, one in early January and, as of this morning, next Monday. So I went to the graduate studies office to try to figure out what the hell the deal was, and they were closed. Apparently today is holiday luncheon day or something. So I have to go back at 1:30 and see if they're there again yet. [EDIT: They were. The deadline is January 21; I think the "December 21" in the memo this morning was a typo. But I filled out the form anyway, so now I don't have to deal with it at all.]

So far today I've dropped off the SciTechMed final and gone grocery shopping. Now I have a whole list of domestic stuff to do in the next two days. A fair bit of it might have to wait until tomorrow, though. Even though I knew it was a bad idea, I got into the Coffee Heath Bar Crunch ice cream last night after I was done with the exams. Therefore, I was up until 3:00 this morning.

The sun is out today, and while I'm all in favor of that, it's very bright out because the sun is reflecting off the snow. My first coherent thought this morning was "turn it down, willya?"

It had better be time to do something productive, because otherwise it's going to be naptime, and my entire afternoon will be shot to hell.
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The polls close in Ohio in 22 minutes. I've gotten two separate recorded political messages in the last FIVE minutes. The phone will be unplugged for the next 22 minutes.
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Yes, I voted. It only took about half an hour of standing in line, and most of the people in line with me were students. Then I went to campus to print things, and bought a milk crate to keep my dictionaries in, and came home in the rain. The problem with hanging around on campus is that there aren't really any good places to hang around. The air, or lack thereof, in most of the buildings makes me sleepy. Then I get into the caffeine-and-sugar thing to get over being sleepy, and everything else goes to hell in a handbasket. So, the best way not to fall into the problem in the first place is not to hang around on campus.

Since I'm home I might as well do some more composition exercises.
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I'm typing this without my contact lenses, because I went to dinner at my classmates' place last night at 8:30 and got home at 4 AM. For some reason (which probably had to do with drinking wine followed by industrial-strength coffee), I couldn't stay asleep past 9:30. My lenses need at least six hours to soak in the disinfecting fluid, so that would be 10:00, so they're still soaking and I can't see a damn thing. I think I'll go be blind as a bat in the shower for a while. One of my classmates smokes, and my hair smells like an ashtray. Maybe that had something to do with my not sleeping, too.

It was a fun night, though. 10 or so people, 3 or 4 bottles of wine (I wasn't really counting, but people kept bringing wine and we kept drinking it). I'll have to clean this place up and borrow some chairs and invite people over here some day.
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I'm not sure how they did it, but the building I live in is built in such a way that the only reliable way to find out what temperature it is outside is to go outside.

First, both windows in my apartment face south, and most of the weather comes in from the west, so if there's a breeze, it doesn't really come in through the windows much. Second, the eaves extend about two feet beyond the wall, so the windows are in shadow for most of the day. That tends to cool off the air that comes in if the windows are open. Third, the entire building is beige except for the front door, which is darkish blue, and the screen door, which is dark brown. The concrete front stoop is beige too, which means it reflects heat, which means the doors get HOT, which means that the air around the outside side of the door is hot too.

What all that means is, it's entirely possible for it to be cool enough indoors for me to need a sweatshirt and socks, while outdoors it's a short sleeves and sandals sort of day, but I can't tell that until I get most of the way down the sidewalk.

Now for the one-sided argument: This week's composition assignment is to do two outlines on the same topic, one informational and one compare-and-contrast. The topic I decided to deal with is "why Dubya shouldn't get elected", which is just fine for informational purposes, but I'm having a terrible time coming up with a reason why he shouldn't just go away. I've got three hours to come up with at least four reasons, and right now I've got one and a half. I'm going to have to write both of these papers for which I'm writing outlines sometime in the next couple of weeks. Sigh.

On my way back from the ATM in the student center, three separate people asked me if I was registered to vote (which I am). Even though Ohio is a swing state, they don't seem to care about who I'd vote for; they just care that I vote. Finally, a nonpartisan idea. (I think the College Democrats are the ones doing the asking, but they don't advertise that fact, so I'm letting it pass as nonpartisan since I don't know.)

Maybe I'd be able to come up with another two and a half reasons for this outline if I had something more substantial for lunch than coffee and cookies.

I've also figured out why I was going insane yesterday. That deserves its own entry, though.


Sep. 1st, 2004 07:53 pm
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It's official; I'm a nonteaching graduate assistant. I now have a key to my advisor's office, so I can use her computer. This is extremely weird. I keep waiting for somebody to come and tell me it's been a mistake and I'm not allowed to work in her office any more. I don't know why I find it weird, but I do. I think partly it's because I don't feel like I'm earning my tuition and stipend by doing two hours of editing work per day, maximum, and chasing down e-mail addresses and doing other minor stuff like that. Granted, it hasn't really hit the fan yet, so I may feel more like I'm earning it later in the semester.

On the "I knew there was a reason I'm a student" front, I can get VirtualPC for free, so I can run Trados at home if I can get ahold of it for reasonably cheap. That would rock.

Localization is going to be a good class, too. They split it up into two different sections, so there are only fifteen people per section. The smaller the better, in terms of computer classes. I learned that one last semester when we were all taking Terminology together and everything took three times as long as it should've. (So with fifteen people, it'll only take one and a half times as long?)

I went to drop off my rent today and mentioned that my showerhead had sprung a leak straight up. Above the top edge of the shower stall, there's wallpaper, and I was afraid getting it wet so much would be a bad thing. Since I renewed my lease, they offered me several options for freebies, most of which I already have. The one I decided on was carpet cleaning. The showerhead was replaced today and the carpet gets cleaned the Monday after next.

Life goes, and I go with it, and things are pretty good.


Aug. 26th, 2004 06:07 pm
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That's me, jumping into academia with both feet. Today I went to fill out all the necessary paperwork (yes, I want the graduate assistantship, yes, I'm a US citizen, yes, I pay taxes in this country, yes, I live in Portage County, etc.). After that I went to the reception for new and returning grad students, and met the first-year French students. I think there are more first-year students this year than there were last year, but I lost count and there were a zillion people there anyhow.

Anyway, in the course of catching up with people and all like that there, I discovered that I now have an official mailbox in the MCLS office, and in that mailbox was my job description. I'm research assistant to my advisor, which is highly nifty, and apparently I'm also in charge of the French coffee hour this year. The silly thing about that is that the faculty member in charge of the French coffee hour is the same one I have two of my three classes with this semester.

Time for dinner and filling out the rest of the paperwork I couldn't fill out earlier. (Does anybody know their bank account's routing number without having to look it up? Hell, I don't even know my account number without looking it up.)
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Ye gods. Selling books back is even more of a pointless exercise now than it was when I was an undergrad. Out of a grand total of $120 worth of books I'll never use again, I got back $5. I made them take the ones they wouldn't give me anything for, because I can use the bookshelf space for other things (and besides, I don't like reading plays in the first place). So, I guess what it boils down to is, I've got bookshelf space that cost me $115. Somebody somewhere in this process must be raking in the cash hand over fist. Take a book that costs $11 new, sell it for $6 used, buy it back for $0.50...the Mob should get in on this.

I'm not mad, and I'm not surprised; I'm just disappointed.
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And lo, it's May 4, and we're in another war. In consequence of which, I'm not going anywhere near campus today until I have to. I'm not expecting anything in particular to happen, but I'm not interested in getting caught in the middle of the prevention of anything happening either. There have been several appeals by various groups to the entire student population not to do anything stupid.

Speaking of stupid, I'd love to get my hands on the idiot with the leaf blower outside my window at 8:30 this morning. I went to bed at 2:00 this morning, and six hours wasn't quite enough time asleep.

I think I bombed the Terminology final. All I know is that what I turned in was the required length and had seven different citations. I have no idea whether the content was what's required or not. I'm in that nasty mental place where I'm trying to convince myself that worrying about it now is a waste of time, but that telling myself I don't care at all isn't necessary either.

If I knew what would make me feel better, I'd do it.
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Whoof. OK. Time for this week to slow down some (which, thankfully, it will do tomorrow).

Got up, took shower, had breakfast, went to see about prof's office hours. Office hours start at 1:30, is now 11:30. Fine. Go upstairs to computer lab, mess around with glossary until 1:55. Go back downstairs, discover note on prof's door saying she has a meeting until 2:00. Decide that lunch is in order, go off to student center, obtain food, eat food, go back to see prof who is still not around. Sit around for ten minutes, read KSU newspaper, go to honor society induction ceremony intending to duck out fifteen minutes early and catch prof before class.

Prof appears at induction ceremony, proceeds to talk to everybody on the planet except me, we go off to theory portion of class. Sit through theory, go upstairs for practical session, discover I have managed to leave both original texts and one draft version at home, in addition to leaving copies of proposed final translation project at home. Fortunately have book from which copies were made, but still, ARGH. Sit through practice, finally get five minutes at end to go over midterm and get approval for proposed project. Come home, heat soup, eat, and here I am.

Have modeling session again tomorrow, in freezing art studio (as opposed to volcanic art studio next door, which I was in yesterday). Planning on grocery shopping after that, followed by reading and translation and whatever all else.

What does one do with a silly purple and gold tassel dated 2001, other than decorate one's desk lamp?


Mar. 29th, 2004 09:04 pm
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The devil's in the details...

I spent an hour this afternoon trying to find a book the library swears it has two copies of, but I'll be damned if I can find it, and I want the head of the reference librarian I talked to. When I told her I was having trouble finding this book, she said "You must be looking in the wrong place. Keep looking." Mind you, she didn't tell me where to look instead. Not helpful. Especially since the reference desk is on the first floor and the book I can't find is supposed to be on the fifth floor. I went up and down between them about three times just to make sure I was looking in the right place. The book I want has a call number that ends in O7 A3, and the stacks go straight from O64N to O7 A32. There's no A3 in the middle there, and I swear there should be. I have no idea where else it would be. It's not like I'm doing this for fun; I need this book. I'm going to try a different reference librarian tomorrow. I didn't intend this to take an hour, but it did, and I lost track of time and had to run like mad so as not to be late for my class.

My resume now has a third line to be added: Member, American Translation Studies Association. It's getting to the point where I either have to remove my summer jobs during college or go into a second page. I also have to find something to use as a sample translation before the ATA conference. I don't think I have anything suitable yet. What I need is something semi-technical that I've done a good translation of.

Tomorrow I get to lock myself up in the computer lab when I'm not in the library trying to find that book. At least I have new music to keep me company, thanks to Newbury Comics' used CDs.
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I think I might be getting slightly better today. I've still got a sore throat and all that stuff, but I don't feel so much like I've been hit by a train. I really wish I could have had yesterday off instead of Tuesday, but yesterday I had to turn in a midterm exam, so it would have been a bad day not to be in class.

In the Yet Another Thing To Put On My Resume department, I got an e-mail message this morning telling me that Phi Sigma Iota wants me as a member. Phi Sigma Iota is the national foreign language honor society. I wonder if joining it really means anything other than the fact that I get to wear a little extra regalia at graduation and I get to put the membership on my resume? Of course, I'm biased, because I was in the National Honor Society in high school, and the only thing it was good for at my high school was to look good on college applications. (I got the acceptance letter from Oberlin the same day I was inducted into the NHS. I never went to any meetings because I was on the swim team at the time, and I was more interested in going to practice than going to NHS meetings. Everybody who actually went to the meetings admitted they were a waste of time anyway. The NHS sent me a nasty letter at the end of the swimming season, telling me that if I didn't start going to meetings, they were going to throw me out. So I went to a couple of meetings, and got the NHS seal on my high school diploma, and that was that.)

It's funny, now that I think about it. People make a tremendous big deal about how your record in high school will make or break you getting into college, and then you get in and nobody cares. Your record in college will supposedly make or break you getting into grad school, except it doesn't. If it did, I wouldn't be here. And after you get out of school in general, nobody cares what sort of student you were, as long as you graduated. Nobody interviewing me for a job has ever asked me for my college GPA, or cared what my extracurricular activities were, or any of that stuff. There's no such thing as a "permanent record", and even if there was, I doubt anybody would care what was on it.

So what am I accumulating now? Two lines on the next version of my resume. One that says "Member, Phi Sigma Iota", and one that says "MA, French Translation, Kent State University, 2005". Will either of these get me a job as a translator? I don't know.
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I found the other grocery store. The one that actually has the things I couldn't believe the other one didn't have. Most of the things in the larger store are cheaper, but there are some odd exceptions. Cheerios, for example, are cheaper in the smaller store. The larger store is three blocks up from the smaller one, but it's on a road that looks like it goes out into the boonies, and you can't see the larger store from the smaller one. I hiked up there the other day looking for an outpost of civilization, and found it in the Tops Friendly Market, which knows about frozen fruit (and several other things that make me happy, including the World's Second Smallest Broiler Pan).

The upshot of the whole expedition is, I'm considerably happier than I was a couple of days ago (thanks in large part to a phone call from whuffle), and the weather is behaving very nicely, and I'm sort of waiting for it to rain so all the salt and sand and accumulated gunk gets washed off the sidewalks. As a matter of record, on February 27th I went out in bare feet to go pick up the mail. The season of "Dammit, I'm tired of wearing socks!" has started. It must be almost spring.
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This morning I got e-mail from a friend of mine that basically said "Hi, what was I going to e-mail you about?" I've had days like that.

They're putting up another house in the field across the street. I wouldn't want to be doing roofing in this weather, thank you very much. I wonder if they're building the houses as the lots sell? That would make sense, I suppose. Most of the developments I've ever seen going up are a case of "build all the houses and then try to sell them", and it always struck me as a bad idea. In any case, the fact that they're putting up another house basically means they wake me up every morning by hammering on things. Hopefully after this they'll leave everything else alone until the ground thaws out again. I can't imagine that digging a foundation trench in frozen ground is very much fun, and I suspect it isn't much fun pouring concrete in freezing weather either.

While I was off gallivanting around last month, they did in fact come knock down the eyesore next door. When I got back, there was nothing but a large pile of debris, and now there's just a large concrete slab. I'm sure they're going to build something there, but I don't know what, since that lot is between the housing complex I live in and a sorority house. I don't know that I'd necessarily want to live right next door to a sorority house. Then again, I'm no fun at all, so what do I know? If it were up to me, I'd have them build something other than housing, preferably something that meant I didn't have to go on a half-hour round trip walk every time I run out of milk. The walking is good for me, but sometimes it just isn't convenient. Anyway, I was rather amused the other day that they had been out there locating a gas line, and had spray-painted it on the snow. It makes sense in a "well, what else are we supposed to do?" kind of way, but it amuses me that they put a permanent mark on an impermanent surface.

Some day when I remember to do it, I should do some research about growing tomato plants in flowerpots.
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