Wednesday, June 30, 2010

Tuesday is a long day at school. I use a couple hours in the morning preparing for 202, teach 202, the usual rhetoric class, then head off to support 620, the graduate writing for broadcast taught by this man who knows a good deal about writing. It's interesting to listen to him lecture. The last two classes has been about the finer points of grammar, and common mistakes that journalists often make. "Writing for the ear." Much of the grammar stuffs can be found in The Elements of Style, which I've also been reading (again) in conjunction with this class and just because it's helpful to review, and kind of interesting. Ninety five percent of it I already pretty much know in the back on my head, sub-consciously and do, and my time in the writing lab with student writing and explaining why a sentence is written in a particular way and in class, after about four hours I begin to lose a particular sharpness, no longer able to focus on what's in front of me, and instead start to focus inwardly.

After nine hours of imagined and real explanation a kind of tiredness sets in and metastasizes into the thought that something bad has happened to me. When I come home I am much more likely to quickly consume two slices of cheap pizza than make my own dinner. Pizza tastes good! but, there is a kind of little failure I feel when I go this route. I'd like to think that the feeling isn't completely my fault, a lack of self control caused by the cruel world, but that seems to be the idea that gets the ball rolling in the first place. "I deserve it." When I'm tired and drained it seems more reasonable to address the feeling directly, i.e. take a nap. Lie down and not do anything, as opposed to staying awake via life support, plugging into a video game like the basketball one I've been playing.

Which is why I'm bringing all this up in the first place: in this game there is a 'my player' mode where you design a guy ("Bucky Kat") and play him in basketball games, and if you do well you are given points to improve the guy, his jump shot or whatever. It's kind of like a role playing game, where when you kill dragon you get the sword, and then you are ready to kill the super dragon. Or kind of like real life, where if you get a book published you can get a better teaching job, or if your girlfriend would just stop doing that one thing everything would be peace. Anyway, its addictive and totally escapist, and like spending a weekend smoking crack in a locked bathroom in a basement apartment or looking at pornography, it's an experience that doesn't translate well when somebody asks "What have you been up to?" I'm getting an eerie feeling that I've written all this before. Oh well. Maybe next time I'll write something new. In other news, Miley Cyrus is testing new identities which actually seems pretty normal.