Sunday, May 9, 2010

Now that I have finished, what do I do with myself?

There are all the annoying sundry tasks that we all have to do, of course.  (Organizing the unholy mess of papers littering the corner of my office living room that used to hold a recognizable filing system is way up there.)  But, as we know, these tasks kind of suck, and easily repel a person.  Still, I'll have to get around to it pretty soon: now that I'm graduating, I need to sort out what I'm going to do about my student loan repayments.  To consolidate or not to consolidate?  That is one among many questions.

There's also looking for a summer job, so that I needn't burn all the way through my savings.  I thought applying for unemployment benefits might ease this burden a little, but since I managed to fill out the forms wrong, I now have a freeze on the benefits until my hearing (!) later this month.  Nothing could put me back in my place so well as the realization that I'm too stupid to fill out a government form, and the corollary realization that I need to explain this fact to an investigator who, by the look of the scary 'appeals packet' sent to me, can barely write English.  Back to Craiglist I go!

In more professional matters, I suppose there's no time like the present to start revision work on my dissertation book manuscript (hee hee!).  But after the defense, I don't feel at all confident that I know how to structure a book that people would even judge worth reading, much less appreciate at the end of it.  I seriously don't know which bits of the diss will make good reading, which are dross, and which have yet to be written.  I'm hopeful that a coffee hour with Dr. Awesome will help me sort through these things, but zi is away for a few weeks, so I'm in the dark until then.  I feel like I'd just be jacking off by trying to organize a book prospectus all on my own, but I suppose I'll have to start somewhere.  Theoretically, there is an academic press that has expressed a nibble of interest in my work: they told me they'd give me a call by the end of April to talk about the idea.  Naturally, ain't nobody been blowing up my phone of late.  This is probably a good thing, since it gives me more time to cook something up, but it would be sort of a letdown to whip up a prospectus, only to have the press decide it would rather file its collective nails than call me.

In kinda-sorta academic but mostly fantasy matters, I could also try to figure out exactly where I'll be moving to in Research City.  But, since that won't be for some months, that activity is only slightly more useful than dreaming of unicorns.  There are more immediate questions to answer for my research prep, but only my colleagues can answer them, and we all know how available our colleagues are when we need them to spit out an answer.

And, now that I no longer have an imminent life-determining paper to complete, I'm curious to explore this new activity I've heard about: "dating."  Apparently, people pursue sexual and/or emotional needs by going out on "dates," during which they form and test a number of sociological and psychological hypotheses about their fitness as a couple.  I would like to try this out.  Anyone know how I should start?


  1. I hear that last paragraph in the voice of Brent Spiner. I'm sorry; it's in my nature.

    My advice? Do one of the — many, I'm sure — things your dissertating self said he didn't have time or energy or will or whatever for, and if he only had more time he'd do it but with all that work and stress he just couldn't. You owe it to him. Go!

  2. Packing!!!! How exciting! (where is research city?)

    Clearly you must spend hours and hours on Craigslist fantasizing over potential new neighborhoods in Research City!

    On the other side, I guess you can spend some time going "outside" and doing "fun stuff," although I have no clue what those things are.

    You should start saying goodbye to all your favorite haunts and hangouts in the area, and take lots of pictures to remember things by.