Why Are You Reading This

December 21, 2011 § Leave a comment

mfw all of it

Exams! Has god ever created a more irritating exercise in self-loathing and manic depression, designed to call attention to the terrible life choices that have brought one to academia? I don’t think so!

The categories you are apparently now pursuing (first of all, why) –Oh My God Exams, Folklore, Symbolic Power Y’all and/or Digital Culture– were designed as study repositories for a series of PhD qualifying exams I took in the Fall of 2011, then promptly forgot ever happened. Such, such, such are the joys. In case you were wondering wtf you were looking at!

The Home Stretch, Sort Of

October 4, 2011 § Leave a comment

AND SO IT BEGINS. Also/or AND SO IT ENDS, at this point what’s the difference. Because yes, finally, tomorrow morning from 10-12 I’ll be dining in hell aka a poorly-lit seminar cave whilst my amazing honeybadger of an advisor and two examiners inquisition my shit on symbolic power, whatever that is LOL, and humor & folklore. It’s an odd feeling — I’m not nervous, exactly, and know that I still have one more hoop to jump through afterwards, but there’s something about this particular exam that feels weirdly conclusive. Yes the digital culture list is longer, and yes orals –proper orals, which I’ve scheduled for November 4– is the BIG exam, and is the final thing before the prospectus, which is the final thing before I advance to candidacy. But Breadth exams have pushed me harder than digital culture has, in part because I didn’t have a built-in fire for either list. Plus it’s like running a mile — for me, the hardest lap was always the third. You know that no matter how tired you are, you still have to go around again. Once you’re on the fourth lap, fuck it, you can handle 400 meters so GO FASTER. You’ll rest when you’re dead, and so forth. Tomorrow is my third lap. Everything else will be a slingshot.

My job for today, then, is to anticipate possible questions and theoretical clusterings, starting with symbolic power. As Jiggle-Billy says. COMMENCE IT.

A Quick Programming Note

September 24, 2011 § Leave a comment

Video unrelated (PROBABLY LOL), but always a joy.

Speaking of joy, Fall has officially fallen — I know because the sidewalks around my apartment once again glitter with the shards of a thousand broken bottles. It’s like Twilight, except not Mormon, the ground, and highly unlikely to give this woman a phantom baby. Although stranger things have happened, I suppose.

The point is that, starting Monday, things err gonna change round these parts. Sort of, due to it’s time to shift back to exams. It’s been fun writing you, chapters, you’ve got a really pretty face and a sweet personality, but I’m just not the type to settle down. It’s nothing personal I swear. Plus I’ve got business to attend to.

Yeah fucking called “orals.” Which is good because that means better readings (better=more explicitly relevant to my interests) AND brings me one step closer to “starting” my dissertation. If I were approaching this process like a normal person, I’d have even more to celebrate — we don’t need to schedule the exam until the very last week of the term. Thus it should come as no surprise that I’m shooting for late October. Which means –and John I know you’ll furrow your brow and snort in half-pleased horror– that suddenly things are going to start going fast(er). I have a LOT of ground to cover, and not very much time, and like really seriously dwindling energy reserves. But it’s very important that I’m done with the hoop jumping by November. THE FATE OF THE WORLD DEPENDS ON IT OK.

Anyway. I just wrote my syllabus and am taking the rest of today off. Gonna go pick apples or somesuch. Tomorrow revising, then hit the ground running on Monday morning. It’s been……..a summer.

Thanks for the Pep-Talk, You Monster

September 12, 2011 § Leave a comment

And so it begins! TO THE DEPARTMENT SHE GOES.

And That, Honeybadgers, Is How You Fucking Do It

August 31, 2011 § 2 Comments

Picture related, it's me on a victory lap

Well that’s that friends, I have officially completed my Breadth Exam lists! Although it’s more like MY EXAMS ARE DEAD LONG LIVE MY EXAMS, since I still have about 2/3rds of the Digital Culture list to work through. But I said I’d finish Breadth stuff by September 1, and by god I take my self-imposed deadlines seriously. The written portion of the Breadth Exam begins on September 12 and will end September 16; I still have no idea what the questions will be. Until then I’ll keep pecking away at Digital Culture, though my output here will dwindle somewhat (probably down to one selection a day) while I revise the RIP chapter between now and the 12th.

So. I think I’ll take the rest of the day off. Or not, because at this point what does that even mean.

Aaaaaand I’m Back

August 15, 2011 § Leave a comment

Something about the Rainbow Bridge

Mother was very busy this weekend, kicking ass, taking names, chipping away at various outside projects one deafening keystroke at a time, not unlike like a deranged woodpecker and not vacuuming once even though MY CARPET, it’s covered in bits of dried mango.  Pretty good haul all told, but totally dunzo — time to get back to dumb exams, it was fun while it lasted etc.

However I’m an idiot and forgot to order the last few books on my Symbolic Power list, meaning I’ll have to put those last few selections (and it really just is a few, hot damn) on hold & move on to the Digital Culture list. This list is the list I’ve been waiting for — the Folklore list was fun, and will be foundational for some of my post-irony stuff, and the SymboPoPo list has proven to be more useful than I was expecting, three cheers for Carol Stabile. But the Digital Culture list, obviously that’s directly relevant to my direct interests. It also marks the transition from dumb Breadth Exam to less annoying Orals, meaning my bloggin approach will also change. There are about 150 items on my DC list, compared to the 50 between my two Breadth lists. Plus Orals is just that, more of a conversation, so I don’t need to prepare myself in the same ways. I think what I’ll do is write a very short 100 word overview for each selection, then divide the list into related topics and write longer posts on the questions at issue. We’re getting down to the wire, just a few more weeks of this and then I can relax. Except lol not really, Dan Savage is a liar, but at least I won’t be subject to space madness aka THIS SHIT for very much longer.

Why Don’t You Have a Seat.

April 11, 2011 § 2 Comments

Excuse my dust, cadre of nonexistent readers. Soon this will become a “web log” filled with WRITING and INSIGHT! -or at least writing. And no feelings, I promise. It’s gonna be a GAS, oh boy.

The plan: They’ve been telling me since before I was born that I should have an academic blog. Finally I was like, ok. So here she blows. I guess I’ll write my way into projects or whatever. Plus solicit the advice of colleagues and friends, who by and large are smarter than me. Also liveblog my fascinating journey into the bowels of my PhD exams. Will I make it out alive?? Probably not. In conclusion, hello.

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