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Differing Sensibilities

A lot of women find this kind of thing sexy. I do not; I think it's sweet and cute, but not sexy. I guess I just don't get it. I prefer stuff like this and this. Oh, and this. :)

Must Do/Rather Do

Today, among lots and lots of other things, I must write a 500-word essay for my Rhetorical Theory class on The New Rhetoric by Perelman and Olbrechts-Tyteca. I also have to do some work with the blog collection (for those of you who have been asking when the frell the collection is going live, we're aiming for mid-June). I should also be working on my final papers for my Rhetorical Theory class and my Women's Studies class, gah. For the former, which is intended to be a conference paper, I had been thinking about doing something applying the theory we've covered in class to blogging, but now that I'm all in a tizzy about taking the prelims this summer, I was thinking about doing something more like a prelim-style explication of Habermas and the public sphere. I figure a blog researcher ought to know her Habermas, since it's been linked to blogging by several people. For example, there's Invisible Adjunct's blogroll, and Andrew Ó Baoill has been doing some good work in this vein as well. I also need to be fine-tuning my CCCC proposal.

What I'd rather be doing: Knitting and exercising. I know it might be hard for you to believe, but for the past few weeks, I've been going to the gym nearly every day. I used to exercise all the time when I was in my late teens/early twenties, and I'm starting to get that kind of enjoyment out of it again. I do 30 minutes on the elliptical machine, and then I go to the weight room, where I do tricep presses, arm curls, the torso-twist machine that works your obliques, leg curls, leg extensions, and leg presses. Three sets, twelve reps each. It makes me feel great--lightweight and strong, like I'm made of titanium. :)

Losing Teeth

Today, Karlyn Kohrs Campbell came and spoke to my Women's Studies class. Sometime during her talk, she mentioned Susan B. Anthony, and I was, for a moment, transported back to childhood.

If you met my mother and spoke with her for an hour or so, you wouldn't guess right off that she is a feminist. I don't even know if she'd say she is, but I can tell you that when I was born, she named me Clancy because she'd heard the name on Gary Collins and Mary Ann Mobley's 1970s morning show and liked the fact that it was a little gender-ambiguous. She has a master's degree in business education, and she'd seen too many Melanies become Mels, too many Janette Anns become J.A.s. She thought ahead and figured that if people couldn't tell on paper if I was a man or woman, they'd take me more seriously. In keeping with the bucking of the gender norms, my parents bought me Tonka trucks along with dolls (I always liked books better than either, and they bought me plenty of those too) and dressed me in t-shirts, jeans, and sometimes little boys' camouflage army outfits, not the pleated skirts and Mary Jane shoes I wanted to wear.

I'm Athena. What Goddess Are You?

~Athena~ You are most like Athena, the goddess of
wisdom. Though you do not seem to possess the
warlike aspect of her personality, there is no
doubt that you possess her intelligence. You
don't have much of a care for companionship,
only for knowledge. Go lose yourself in the
New York Public Library--it's going to take
even you quite a while to get through
everything in THERE...

What Goddess Are You?
brought to you by Quizilla

Goodbye, Olympe.

Today I found out that on February 6, a friend of mine, known on the Ms. message boards as Olympe, committed suicide. We really only knew each other online, but I did meet her face-to-face once. For nearly two years (that I know of), she had been very, very depressed, so much so that she spoke of living as unbearable. We (the Ms. boards community) knew it was likely that she would take her own life--she talked about the moral and philosophical implications of suicide a lot, especially here (I warn you, this is a very emotionally draining thread). I've been brooding today, just thinking about her, hoping she's not in pain anymore. I don't know what else I can say about it right now.

Edited to add: I can't stop thinking about her, about this. I've had the most morbid, disturbing thoughts, imagining what she did right beforehand. What was her last meal? Did she play music? I keep thinking of the scene in Girl, Interrupted when Daisy has hanged herself; the 45 of Skeeter Davis's "The End of the World" plays over and over, and then Susanna finds her. What other things did Olympe do?

I also feel this urge to knit a shroud for her, which is probably the most morbid thing. She was found on 6 February, so whatever they did with her remains has already been done, so why do I have this foolish need to knit something for her?

My Friday the 13th and Valentine's Day

Yesterday, I woke up crushingly depressed for absolutely no reason. I had parts of "Me and Bobby McGee" in my mind:

Freedom is just another word for nothing left to lose...

I'd trade all my tomorrows for one single yesterday...

These lines were playing in a continuous loop, over and over like a pathetic scrolling marquee. Then I was absently flipping through a copy of BUST and saw a personal essay by a woman who had run away from home at age 15 and started hitchhiking all over the place. She said,

I left because my skin was on fire and everything broke my heart. I left because I could hear lust in the screech of a tire and craved it. I left because I was 15 years old and I was done with being a child.

Since the dark cloud was already there anyway, these sentences joined the marquee. I rarely get like that, and the first thing I want to do when I feel that way is try to shake it off. So I loaded my Winamp playlist of songs that cheer me up: "Let Me Blow Your Mind" by Eve featuring Gwen Stefani, "Family Affair" by Mary J. Blige, "Hypnotize" by Biggie, and "Head Over Heels" by the Go-Gos. (That Jerry Lee Lewis-esque piano solo will usually do the trick.) It didn't work. I tried to amuse myself by imagining making my students do silly things in class, stuff we used to do in my church youth group, like trust falls. That made me chuckle, but still didn't really get me over the hump. However, today I woke up determined to give my entire apartment a vigorous cleaning. I applied scalding, pine-scented, soapy water to everything, and now I'm much better, quite relieved. Here, then, is my valentine to myself:

Conversation heart maker via Feministe.


Why am I so tired all the time? All I want to do is sleep. I have plenty to say...a lot to blog about, which will have to wait until tonight or tomorrow, which is my lovely off day. For now, I'll just give you a little too much information, but I see this as a case of "personal is political." Here goes: About six or seven weeks ago, I stopped shaving. I now embody one of those stereotypes (heh), and am actually loving it.

I've moved!

Just a quick post to say that Jess and I have moved to a very nice apartment in St. Paul that I LOVE. We have no internet access right now (won't be able to get that hooked up until a week from tomorrow), so I won't be blogging for a while. Wow, I hope I can get caught up in my Women's Studies class, do my syllabus for the (new) class I'm teaching, and get all this other stuff done by the 20th. Yikes. I feel like I'm going to have to work 14-hour days for the next two weeks. On top of all that, I'm really homesick. I've decided that I'm going to try to find work in the south after I finish my degree--the other day when my mom took me to Birmingham to the airport, I was nauseous in the car during the entire drive. As soon as my mom drove away, I started bawling and didn't stop for a good hour and a half. Ugh, I'm not happy to be back here. Is this what burnout feels like? I have so much to do and no desire to engage any of it.

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