I helped elect this man, twice. For that, I am proud.
I went bicycling with dad last month during the winter break. It was pretty cold, and it had rained the night before. We biked along the LA river, found a wild bee hive under a walking bridge, and eventually ended up at Tinkertown, a little area near Griffith Park where you can get your train fix if you happen to love trains (or even if you don’t–it’s free and super cool). But before that, just as we were coasting down the ramp to get to the LA river bike path, dad came to a sudden stop, and started gliding back and forth across the path so he could stay upright without unclipping his fancy clip-in shoes. My bike doesn’t have the shiny disk breaks (I think) his does, so naturally I slammed right into him, and took his bike right out from underneath him. I landed on my left side and slapped the ground with my left hand and forearm at the same time (Hap Ki Do training ftw!), and dad landed on top of me. He ended up with a small bruise on his hand, and I ended up all kinds of colors in plenty of fun places (see below).
Still, it was a fun, beautiful ride. I couldn’t believe how many trees and random foliage is allowed to grow right in the middle of the river. It’s pretty amazing, and surprisingly beautiful. And it’s always fun to spend time with dad.
It’s been a pretty cold season as Los Angeles winters go. He and I live in his grandfather’s old house, a two story, three bedroom and bathroom house that’s an amazing place to live, but expensive to heat. We tend to just hang out in the bedroom while his tower hums and heats up the room. Meanwhile, Boyfriend is often colder than me (especially his hands and feet), so he bundles up and is occasionally adorable.
When a new semester of grad school approaches I disappear into my dark place. A place where no light pierces the inky blackness, which is a metaphor for stress.
I’ve been doing a pretty good job of getting ahead on the readings while I’m not getting bogged down with endless papers and crap. I found some good people to be in “inquiry groups” with this semester (which is apparently a requirement for both classes, oddly), so I’m feeling good about that.
Still, school is shitty because it never ends. There’s always something you should be doing, a forum to post on, an article to read, a paper to outline/write. There’s only a week between this semester and the next, then there’s a three month break because, y’know, they felt like fucking with our schedules or whatever.
But I’m only complaining because it’s inconsistent, and nobody likes change. The one thing in this program I can count on, though, is the confusion. On behalf of everyone. All the time. The professors are confused about the syllabi because they didn’t write them, so they can’t explain them to the students. The students are confused because they don’t get clear instruction from the (confused) professors. The education department is confused because no one seems to know who did write the fucking syllabus for whatever class you said you were in, so maybe try calling back later?
One professor (who was changed a few days before the class began) wrote us three emails in the first week, all within ten minutes of each other, essentially saying:
1) Hey guys, take a look at this outline from class last week.
2) Subject: “Oops!” Wrong class, my bad!
3) Subject: “Yikes!” Jkjk, that was meant for you guys. “Carry on!”
Tonight I got an email from her with the subject “READ THIS PLEASE!” It went on to outline deadlines for assignments that were vaguely gone over in class, and let us all know that a bunch of us had already lost points for not doing shit we didn’t know we were supposed to do. When my world is being turned upside down, this is the consistency I know I can depend on. Thank the FSM for small miracles.
I would bail out if I weren’t already two semesters in. Plus, I want my damn master’s degree. My idea of my adult self has included getting a higher education degree for so long, it would be weird not to have one. Not to mention the added benefit of better job opportunities in the future (PLEASE KTHXBAI).