Aug
2013

Sabbatical update, 90 day edition

I know that you’ve been waiting to know how I’m doing on my four goals for sabbatical. Well, I’m behind in some areas and way ahead in others. C’est la vie.

Books read:
1. The Orchardist by Amanda Coplin
2. Wild by Cheryl Strayed.

Movies screened:
1. Manhunt (2013) Dir. Greg Barker
2. Behind the Candalabra (2013) Dir. Steven Soderburgh
3. To the Wonder (2013) Dir. Terrence Malick
4. Star Trek: Into Darkness (2013) Dir. J.J. Abrams
5. Hope Springs (2012) Dir. David Frankel
6. Love, Marilyn (2012) Dir. Liz Garbus
7. American Experience: Freedom Riders (2009) Dir. Stanley Nelson
8. The Girl Next Door (1999) Dir. Christine Fugate
9. Miss You Can Do It (2013) Dir. Ron Davis
10. Wish Me Away (2011) Dirs. Beverly Kopf and Bobbie Birleffi
11. Homeland, Season 1 I generally count a season of television as ‘equal’ to a film. I clearly take this all a tad too seriously. 🙂
12. Homeland, Season 2
13. The Crash Reel (2013) Dir. Lucy Walker
14. Edie & Thea: A Very Long Engagement (2009) Dir. Susan Muska
15. Promised Land (2012) Dir. Gus Van Sant
16. First Comes Love (2012) Dir. Nina Davenport
17. The Master (2012) Dir. Paul Thomas Anderson
18. The Way, Way Back (2013) Dirs. Nat Faxon and Jim Rash
19. Fruitvale Station (2013) Dir. Ryan Coogler
20. The Runner: David Horton’s 2700 Mile Run (2006) Dir. J.B. Benna

Taking care of myself:
This needs much improvement. Sleep, first and foremost, is greatly needed.

Travel:
I’ve been in 21 states thus far, eight of which for the first time. I’m very happy about this category. Very happy… and maybe a bit sad that I’m not still on the road.

Mar
2013

Thank Goodness It’s Monday

I know the expression is T.G.I.F. in honor of the end of the traditional work week, but for a while now I’ve thought I should give thanks for Monday, give thanks for the beginning of the work week. I figured that today was as good a day as any to do so. Today, my fellow faculty and I received our appointments (contracts) for the next academic year. Too often we may grumble about raises and our wishes for more recognition for the work we do in the form of monetary reward. Today, I almost signed my contract as soon as I got it and returned it pronto to the appropriate office. Even though I didn’t, it doesn’t mean that I’m not grateful for my job.

Yes, in this economy I’m ecstatic to be a tenured Associate Professor. However, it’s more than that. I’m grateful that when my knee hurt this morning (the vestige of playing high school basketball) that I was able to sit down and lecture to my students about communication conflict. It is a privilege to sit down when I am physically in pain on the job.

I’m grateful that I have colleagues that make me laugh.

I’m grateful that I have colleagues who do care about me, in the midst of sometimes feeling like John Donne was wrong, that I am in fact an island.

I’m grateful that I work at a school that has worked so very, very hard to insure that it has no debt.

I’m grateful that I have food on my table because of my job.

I’m grateful that I know I don’t have to choose between paying my electric bill and the phone bill.

I am very grateful, despite appearances to the contrary.

Thank goodness it is Monday and I recognize the many things for which I can be grateful.

May
2012

National Photo Month, 5/17/12 edition

Josef Miles gave his mother, Patty Akrouche, an early Mother’s Day present this past weekend. I think he gave us all something quite precious.

For more about Josef you can read this report from NPR.

[Image credit: Patty Akrouche]