Monday, October 31, 2011

Happy Halloween!

Generally I don't really like Halloween... issues behind that to be discussed some other time (in person, maybe?), but I think I will try to be at least a little bit festive this year.

I'm going to start by listening to this channel:


and reading this:

margot's room.

Then, tonight, I will try my hand at making chili and cornbread and maybe I will watch this:


I think this holiday would be much more fun if I had children.

Saturday, October 29, 2011


today was better.
Much better.
I'm still not certain about everything, but I am feeling less pit-of-despair today.
I had lunch with a potential mentor.
I am grateful for people who are kind.
Also, I think academia is in need of more HUGS.
thank you for your concern.

Friday, October 28, 2011

I might be having a crisis.

This post might suck: full disclosure. Just a warning.
I am having a tiny bit of an existential crisis.
I am here for this conference, and what I really want to do is run away from the stuffed shirts as quickly as humanly possible and never (ever) think about Native American art history again. Ever.

(i probably should have taken this test some time ago...)
(my answers to ALL of these are a resounding FALSE.)

Dramatic, much?

Right. So to some of you this will be a surprise, but I believe in talking through these things. Perhaps it will resolve itself sooner than later, but then again, maybe not. We will ride this out, and in accord with the name of this dear sweet old blog, I will be informed, and thereby empowered to do what I need to do.

I'm truly not certain that I am in the right place- if this is where my training has led me. After sitting in session after session today, I'm not really certain that academia is the right thing for me. I question the degree of enthusiasm I have left to talk ad nausea about Derrida's theories about  the ramifications of identity, what that might mean for me, and for my practice, if it is or is not possible to open and pursue a formal discussion of certain things, if that's even appropriate, who defines identity, and what identity even is to begin with. I just don't know if I care.

Isn't that horrible?

Let me pause here for a moment to defend myself, please.
I'm not saying I am giving up. I am saying I am having some rather serious doubts about how committed I am, and how much I am ready for this whole serious academia thing. I am nervous that I am not made of the precise mettle that I need to be in order to make graduate school work without wanting to shoot myself. 

The honest truth is that I don't think my academic training has led me to a place that I feel ready to leap from. I am in no way discounting my education at BYU, or even the few months I have spent at UNL. In my life, the years I have spent as a student have been the most fruitful and full of my life, and I believe that all education is of some degree of value insofar as it leads you to a plane of inspiration. I do not feel inspired right now. What I AM saying, is that I might be ready for a change. I might be ready to feel inspired again. I pray only that I can find a means as well as the courage to do this if I feel it's the right thing to do.

So now you will ask, What would I do instead?
Funny you should ask.
I am typing this in a living room of a hostel that is UTTERLY inspiring to me. Next to me is a boy from Japan, across from us are two cute German boys who seem to be smitten with one another, and next to them is a cat and two girls of unknown origin. They seem to really enjoy their internet time and Justin Beiber.
Behind me, three British girls are laughing about a super gory Halloween special on tv.
As I reflect, these are the moments that give me the most will to go on living. The human connections. The random encounters and bond- forming. The kitchen full of people laughing and making and eating good (or sometimes not-so-good) food, the front porch with new babies and homemade haircuts, mingling of accents and robust conversations about flavors and farming practices and boys, decorating for holidays with people who don't understand them, weird clothing layers and even weirder ideas about books, heated debates about religion and history and philosophy and hip hop, THESE are were my value system lies, NOT in academic conferences where everyone has to prove their intellectual lineage and justify rationales.
Maybe I am getting nostalgic for a time that is past.
Maybe these are growing pains, and I am willing to accept responsibility for that if it is, in fact, the case.
But I am also willing to give myself the option to get out if I need to.
I might need to.
Any advice?

Thursday, October 27, 2011


I am in Canada.
As I type four men and three ladies sleep in various bunkings around me (and one lady is awake and laughing gently at her computer screen) because I am staying in a hostel that feels a whole lot like Provo for some reason. It was either the best or the worst idea I have ever had. I'm here for this because, well, it's awesome, and I want to learn things.

There was a cute boy on the plane from Chicago to Ottawa, and I wrote a poem in the airport. It's salty, so I'd rather not share it.

Here's to adventuring in America's Hat.


Wish me luck.

Tuesday, October 18, 2011

Sometimes I have Horrible, Terrible Ideas

We got our dog Buddy in the summer of 2001. Our family had moved to Chula Vista a year prior, and we really needed a dog to bring us together after that move. Officially, we got him for baby brother's birthday, but he touched all of us in remarkable and distinctly individual ways.

Yesterday, my dad had him put down, because his body was broken and he was hurting too bad to keep going. My dad sent this email to me today:
So after work I went home to pick Buddy up. I was nervous about it all morning long  I fed him a feast of American cheese, ham, grapes and banana.  He got so full he didn't want any more ham. He hurt so bad that when I asked him if he "wanted to go for a ride" he was only mildly interested. 
I took him to the vet and told him the time had come.  He said he thought I would be back since it was the right time for Buddy to go.  I held Buddy on the table while he gave him the anesthetic shot and then another overdose of the same.  Buddy immediately closed his eyes and relaxed.  The vet checked his heart and he was gone.  He looked so completely peaceful, it was good to see him at ease and not trembling. 
I managed to make it out of the office and into the truck before I started crying like a little girl.  I drove him out to the rancho and found a big rock to bury him by.  After I dug a deep hole I placed him in it in a blanket. I made a grave marker for him out of concrete.  I wasn't really sure of his birthday, so I gave it my best shot.  I put on the marker "Best Dog Ever".  I really think he was for us.  For sure he was the smartest dog we ever had. And pretty loyal with the exception of his miscellaneous wanderings in the neighborhood that got him sent to jail or when he returned to 808 after we moved to Dennis.  Remember his growling and barking at airplanes so high you couldn't even hear them?  How he killed several birds, a bunch of mice and a long list of flys?  How he was forever in pursuit of a stinky old, spitty tennis ball?  How he gave himself seizures after running head long into the wall? Rolling over, shaking, playing dead, sitting, sitting pretty, hopping and dancing?  Tearing through screens on windows and jumping out just so he could sit on the porch waiting for someone to come home? 
He had a good run of it, all in all a great little dog that will be missed and remembered.
Somehow it seems almost unfair to endeavor to love a thing so much that you know will die. It hurts to enter into new relationships and friendships and meaningful interactions because they are laced with the sublime poison of death and defeat. It is so hard and sad. 

Stupidly,  I thought is would be a good idea to watch this documentary today instead of editing things for work or cleaning my room (to be fair, i was GOING to clean my room while I watched it, but, needless to say, that didn't happen). It was a major mistake, but it felt so good to cry. I ended up in a miserable heap on my bed in the middle of the day just remembering Buddy and all the fun we had together. He was my adventure companion and he always was willing to brave the wilderness of San Diego with me, even when it was rainy and nobody else would, or when possums jumped out and hissed at us. Stupid possums...

I haven't cried at all since I have been here. You might accuse me of not dealing with my emotions, hiding them under a rock, or carrying them in my jaw (face yoga...). Well now we can all relax just a little bit, and rest assured that I am dealing again. I am working on "being in touch" etc. Proof of that is in the fact that later, I cried watching an episode of The Wonder Years. 
Fear not. I will soon be well adjusted and mature.

And I thank Buddy for that.

Saturday, October 1, 2011

ME: Talking about (more) weird stuff I do sometimes!

Sometimes (tonight) I go out to bars with friends from school. This is an awkward thing for me because: I DON'T DRINK. Usually I just feel uncomfortable. Additionally I feel thirsty. Drinks in bars are really pretty (sometimes they look like antifreeze or spiderman urine!)  and the make people very funny!

Sometimes (tonight) I come home at a moderate time (1:30 am) and attempt to go to sleep because : GENERAL CONFERENCE IS TOMORROW MORNING! Usually I am a champion sleeper. But this time, (due to aforementioned thirst) no such luck. I tossed and turned for an hour. No sleep. I got up and did a face masque and some yoga. Still no sleep.

Sometimes (um... this morning?) I put on pants and head to the grocery store because: I NEED SOME ELECTROLYTES!

Sometimes the cashier checks me out. Hard core. Sometimes he compliments my shirt, which... is awesome... and maybe has eyes on the breasticle area. Also maybe I sometimes don't wear a bra because: IT'S THREE A.M.

I get it, dude. Eyes on boobs at 3 am: DISTRACTING.
Now get back to work.

And you know what? Gatorade and chocolate soymilk in the middle of the night is perfectly acceptable. Please don't judge me or stare (obvs) at my boobs while I pay. We will not make out when you get off work, because six-thirty (yes. He TOLD me that's when he was off work) comes far too early for this lassie.
Also: ew.

I still can't get to sleep, though.