If I am talking about the weather, that also means that not much is really happening in my life. Sure, I am super busy. Boxes are being unpacked, organizing is being done, and work on the never-ending-research-project of doom is proceeding. None of that, though, makes particularly scintillating blog reading. It’s not as if I am going to discover a hunky naked man in one of those boxes. Nor is it likely that we would then have hot, hot monkey sex upon that discovery. After all, I have all my hunky naked men shipped via UPS.
So, given that I don’t have enough energy/ambition to create a coherent post, I will cobble together an entry from several thoughts that I have had over the past week:
*Starting over seems like a slow process. One also has to get acclimated, clean, connect utilities, and update all those online profiles. These things take even more time when there is only one of you in the move. After all, there are certain contents in a household that remain the same whether there are one, two, or four individuals in the unit. Everybody needs cookware. Everybody needs towels, etc. When there is only one of you, it takes that much longer to unpack all of that crap.
*Starting over also requires a lot of emotional energy. No matter the circumstances, there is something viscerally unsettling about suddenly living in a new place. Still, if Jesus has the power to rise up from the dead and take to the sky, then so do I.
*In all of my unpacking, I have concluded that I own way too many books and way too many dishes. At least I can justify the former (somewhat) by the fact that I am a professor. The latter, though, is seriously out of control. I am volunteering myself to the American Psychological Association as a case study to update the DSM with a new diagnosis of "Dish Mania." Why – WHY – do I need four sets of dishes? Three of those sets are seventy years old – the other forty years old. Why? Why? Why?
Do I seriously think that Fergie and her posse are going to drop by at any moment and will require massive catering? And, let’s be honest, if Fergie and her posse did drop by, I would use paper plates. This whole dish thing is out of hand. I need help.
*Unpacking those dishes was slowed by placing shelf-liner in all of my new cabinets. To be honest, I have never really seen the purpose of shelf-liner. Before she left, though, my sister and I went shopping for household items needed in a new place. When I informed her that I didn’t really plan to line my shelves, she looked horrified. As a result, I dutifully bought several rolls of the stuff. Seriously, though, why do I need this? Does it protect the dishes from the shelves? Does it protect the shelves from the dishes? Why is there such an antagonistic relationship between the two that they need a neutral zone of paper?
*Beyond unpacking, watching ancient t.v. shows, and starring blindly at a text that needs revising, I have also poked around the town a bit. Yesterday, I went out to search for a birthday gift for my other sister (Yes, there is another). She is a Leo (which fits her perfectly).
I decided that the funky downtown of Midwestern Funky Town would be an ideal place to find a funky gift.While wandering around, I discovered that every shop, regardless of its actual contents, was a “gallery.” If there was a 7-11, it would have been renamed the “Big Gulp and Slurpee© Gallery.”
It seems to me if you are selling a vinyl LP that has been melted into a chip and dip bowl, you have forfeited your option of claiming “gallery” status. Don't get me wrong. I understand the quaint appeal of the item, but it's not really a "gallery piece."
Trust me, they weren’t selling this item with a sense of Andy-Warhol irony either. Midwestern Funky Town is not that funky – yet.
*I am in a major hurry to get the Texas license plates off of my car. I don’t want anybody in Midwestern Funky Town mistaking my unfortunate tags with an endorsement of that state’s atrocious politics.
*When I get those new plates (Monday – probably), I want the traditional blue plates of my new state. I hate all of these novelty plates that every state keeps issuing. What is with pasting lighthouses, sunsets, or boats all over vehicle tags? It’s a means of identification not an ad for freshness.
Yeah, I know a lot of these plates represent a minor donation to some worthy cause. This leads to its own absurdities, though. Like the idiot who drives a giant pickup truck but has the nerve to buy a “wildlife” plate. Clearly he reasons that forking over an extra ten bucks a year is going to undo the eco-damage of his four-miles-per gallon gas milage. It’s a little like Dick Cheney suddenly sporting a peace button on his lapel. Sure, the message is great, but it’s a little hollow when it’s resting on somebody slightly to the right of Kaiser Wilhelm.
*Meeting my new colleagues at Big Midwestern University certainly contrasts with my first weeks in Texas those many years ago. It’s great to have so many people interested in the history of race, gender, and sexuality all in one place. They seem happy to have added me to the faculty and have really gone out of their way to make me feel welcome.
I can’t say that this will last my entire time in MFT, but it sure is different than my Texas institution already. During my first week in Texas, in contrast, several senior colleagues came by my office to inform me that a) They didn’t want to hire anybody in Latino studies but were overruled by higher ups b) they didn’t think that Latino Studies was a legitimate historical discipline (too regional, don’t you know?) c) they really, really didn’t think that sexuality studies was a legitimate field of inquiry (too “trendy”) and d) they hoped that I didn’t take any of that personally, but thought I “should know.” Still.Not.Over.It.
*Before leaving Boston, I finished reading the latest Harry Potter book. There are some things to say about it, but I will wait to write about it until it is
*Moving still sucks.