14 December 2009

Closing time.

I'm not sure why I love this time of the semester so much, but I always seem to blog about it. It's always nicest when the grades are turned in, and the classrooms are vacant, and the parking is plentiful. But not because of those factors. I think that the end of the semester makes me even more excited for the next one. (Students taking my spring poetry workshop can attest to this, based on the 1,266 word email I just sent them).

On Saturday I represented my department at Fall Commencement. I love the ritual of it. The moment I got out of my car (dragging my regalia along the ground if I wasn't extra vigilant) and saw all of the students and their families, I began a three hour fight against bursting into tears. I never went to any of my graduations beyond high school, so maybe that's why it's always so moving. If there was ever a moment when I doubted my career choice, commencement would always serve as a reminder of why I love this job. I made it through without losing it, but next time will make absolutely sure to take a decongestant beforehand. UA is not stingy in the floral department.

Here's a picture of me looking like a dork, posing in the "Ladies Chorus" in the bowels of EJ Thomas Hall.

Finally, over the weekend I realized it's been a while since I posted a random picture taken out a car window, so here's a little industrial Cleveland sunset. I had an exciting weekend filled with electrical problems, random strangeness, and a visit from a mouse (which was thankfully liberated without serious bodily injury from our resident mouser, Henri). We also celebrated Hanukkah with some dear friends, and Gabi had her first experience lighting candles. Now it's just me and the to-do list, and some very empty halls.


Jay Robinson said...

A 1266 word email! 1266 is divisible by 3, and I approve, therefore, since I am a numbers guy after all....

Penultimatina said...

That's not counting the signature, however. I consider that to be a flourish, not actual content.

I blogrolled you, btw!

Jay Robinson said...

Thanks for that!

Word Verification: wolow. Incidentally, that sounds like "Thanks" in some language somewhere I'll bet.

Lyle Daggett said...

I also skipped commencement, in both high school and college. Our college (a department at the U. of Minnesota) was a pretty experimental non-traditional program, with lots of students of the same description, and it was the mid-1970's, and... well, I only recall one of our graduates who actually attended commencement in the years I was there.

My first year in high school (1969-70), the seniors that year picked a slow funky jazz piece for the march up to the stage, instead of Pomp and Circumstance.

Although I didn't go to commencement, the day in college when I had my final graduation committee meeting (sort of an undergrad equivalent to surviving the orals for a dissertation, though not nearly as nerve-wracking), the tune that kept endlessly going through my head (the way a tune will do that sometimes) was Stevie Wonder doing "Living for the City" (it's on his album Innervisions. To this day when I hear the song it timetrips me back.

Word Verification is "addlishn", which I think is a good word for graduation that doesn't involve attending commencement.

Take on May

It's the first day of finals week and I already have that loopy off-my-routine feeling. Waiting for things to grade, and when those ...