Saturday, July 10, 2021

5-minute post

Long time, no see! Following xykademiqz and gwinne, here's a 5-minute update post:

  • Even if I don't get any vacation again this year (see also: heat dome, smoke, western hellscape), I have an autoreply all ready to pretend that I do, and I'm not afraid to use it. As an administrator, I never felt as though I could take the time to disconnect, but current & past administrators around me all have better sense about work-life balance, and if they're not on duty, they're emphatically not on duty.
  • Have learned that it's totally easy to pretend that you want to go back to in-person conferences and the classroom this fall. Pro tip: Nod enthusiastically when people bring it up, and lie, lie, lie like a champ.
  • Missing the land of no internets and adjacent waterways fiercely this year, which I suspect is standing in for other kinds of loss. Knowing that I might not revisit this region for years, if ever again, is something I try not to think about.
  • My research right now is writing-adjacent rather than writing--necessary but rote work--and my brain needs to get back to writing. 
  • Inside Higher Ed now wants you to sign in, just as the Chronicle does, so the bar of "is this worth reading?" is now a lot higher there as well. 
  • Even a broken clock like Caitlin Flanagan is right twice a day, and she has a point about Twitter. Since the former guy is gone (thank God), it has devolved into a lot of in-jokes and fussy, pointless  fights about whether "best" is too curt as an email closing (previous post on this here). On the one hand, it's a good sign if people are consumed with such trivial stuff. On the other hand--can you say "waste of time?"


gwinne said...

Hello! So happy to see this post from you! (And thanks for the link!)

I am off Twitter for the summer and maybe forever because, yeah. I do like it for work-related things but it's too easy to get sucked into non-work related things. And it's not good for me.

The logging into the chronicle makes me crazy, as I use our institutional membership and I have to log in literally every time I want to read an article. Le sigh.

I am using an auto reply this summer only for internal email addresses, mostly so if I get an email from an upper level administrator or an undergraduate wanting office hours they are reminded that I AM LITERALLY NOT PAID over the summer and whatever it is can probably wait. But then some colleagues have suggested texting as alternative and that is frankly worse. If I know you only because of the university and we are not friendly enough to exchange snarky text messages during meetings....I don't want you to have my phone number.

This comment is making me realize I might be crankier than I thought... End of last semester was pretty bad. I'm not ready for summer to end.

Dame Eleanor Hull said...

I wish I could somehow go back to in-person teaching without the commute home at night, and also without moving to the town where I teach . . . I don't so much mind the morning commute, but it's lovely being already at home when the night class is over.

undine said...

gwinne--"not good for me" is a good enough reason, and it's one I'm trying to adopt for Twitter & Facebook both. Apparently I am so filled with envy about people going on vacation that I can't see they aren't going on vacation *at* me, so--not good for me in any sense, not due to them but due to me.

Also, who wants to receive texts 24/7 instead of emails that you can ignore? Texting as an alternative is indeed "frankly worse."

I don't think you're cranky, but sensible.

Dame Eleanor--you are so right about the commute. Being in the classroom itself would be okay, I guess, but that drive! And you have a night class, which makes it worse.

gwinne said...

Undine, I appreciate that. But I do think I have lingering work-related crankiness!!

xykademiqz said...

I wish to be transported into a pocket of space-time outside of the current timeline, where I will be alone and not have to see anyone or feed anyone or put anyone to bed. The thought of vacation terrifies me; even *more* togetherness, only in a place with an inferior kitchen? In a place where I will be expected to put on a swimsuit *gulp*? Kill me now.

Has anyone else developed an allergy to walking? I cannot make myself go away. The thought of going outside, the same route for the millionth time, running into people *ugh*, getting sweaty... I cherished the walks last summer, cherished them oh so much, but now, I am spending all summer indoors. WTF is wrong with me?

I wrote fiction like crazy last year. This year, not at all. The well is dry dry dry, and everything I manage to produce is garbage.

Teaching went well last year. I did it in person both semesters, and I've had super high evaluations. They're always high, but either I've reached new levels of pedagogical awesomeness, or the kids are sooo grateful for some semblance of normalcy (for most, my class was the only in-person class all year).

undine said...

xykademiqz--your comment reminds me of the old Onion piece where the Mom does everything she does every day, just closer to the ocean: About walking: I have about 3 mildly different routes but am starting to feel as you do--something different needed.

That's great about the evals!