Short Workout and Run

Run number two was pretty short.

45 minute strength training then a 15 minute 1.5 mile cardio add-on.

Happy New Year!

Ran Two Days Ago

Short 2 miler in the streets of rainy D.C. It wasn't a lot, and I wasn't able to access Wi-Fi all day at MLA (um...meetings and stuff), but I did get out and add to my nearly 4-5 miles of walking (long story).

I'm off to the gym right now for run #2.

Who else is going?


Most of you know about this

A lot of you who read this blog and comment already know about Stanford's iTunes website, but I think that what they are doing is worth emulating. For all of our discussion of aggregation, fit and finish (look and feel) count. If you can't make the experience easy in the ways that count, the types of interface complication that make us think (as Johndan's blog discusses) probably won't count. Building ethos may be complicated; but I think that most of us would agree that making the experience easier/more intutitive/automated when there is little but postmodern esoterica in store for the beleagured user who can't figure out how to *get* the content is a trust-building exercise.

I am often tempted as a teacher to blame my students for a logical step I forgot to make more clear or obvious, but I resist that. Later on, when I have increased good will (something that "Don't Make Me Think" mysteriously throws it's hands up at and declares unknowable and therefore irrelevant), I can then draw upon that good will. Of course, those of you in this game called teaching know that you usually don't have to instruct students to draw upon good will. These students are usually busy pouring in some of their own (to strain a metaphor).


Happy Solstice, Folks

For those of my seratonin-challenged virtual colleagues, (you know who you are), today is the shortest day of the year. We are now over the hill, and will be going down the Vitamin-D "sun-soaked" hill a little faster each day.

Sure, tomorrow we will have only 2 more seconds of sunlight (!), but just keep adding those sunny moments together.

Happy solstice.


Rosie and Friends

Found this very cool Library of Congress archive of WWII-era photos. This archive contains WPA black-and-white and color photographs. The black-and-white photos seem to be more iconic, but the color photos were much richer than I had imagined. Here is a nice photo of three women assembling a B-17 bomber (one of my all-time favorite airplanes, as it evokes the kind of nostalgic camaraderie that this photo exemplifies).


I saw the film adaptation of Phillip Dick's Paycheck a few nights ago. You know, the Ben Affleck, John Woo disaster. My money is on John Woo having a bender during the production...


Friday Teacher Blogging

The teacher I want to blog about today is...the weather.

Seriously, just when you think that you understand how things work, the weather teaches you just how little you know. This may strike people as a bizarre way of looking at things, but I'm a posthumanist who doesn't always try to boil agency down to the most humanoid-looking creature/thing in the room or hiding behind the curtain. I'm not even going to anthropomorphize this teaching-thing past giving it the "er" suffix. No mother or father here. It's just stuff that envelops and you learn.

Gotta say

I know this is sick, but if I didn't have to drive in this muck, I would actually be enjoying this snow storm. All of my desert rat buddies think I'm crazy, but I like snow. I don't mind the cold or walking around in it. I just don't like to have to navigate a vehicle out here...


Small Pleasures

So I was readin' this academic book when I came upon an impossibly smug factoid about how the British populace has more debt than ever followed by what is possibly my new favorite sentence. It consisted of one word--"Dreamy."

Can you still DO that? I started snickering after I read it and then looked around the room. It was one of those guilty pleasures that I wanted to simultanteously share and hide. Maybe it's the fact that I'm almost exactly halfway to my tenure decision, but I can't help thinking that some of the feedback on my Melvillian sentences could be addessed if I just had a bit more punch and, um...snark.

You think?


"So, where ya' been, doc?"

I've been getting emails from people wondering about the recent hiatus in blogging.

What I've been doing:

1. Getting through my third-year review. So far, so good on that front.
2. Went to the Lilly conference down in Miami and presented on Learning Communities.
3. Cleaning up some co-pubs and gearing up for some serious solo-pubs and book revision over the break.
4. Had the in-laws over for Thanksgiving. They brought some massive Mayport shrimp to appease the turkey gods. The twin vegetarians were able to coax a golden cider-brined turkey from the ether. Thanks for the shrimp...*wink*.
5. Grading, grading, and more grading.
6. The post-Thanksgiving guilty trips to the gym. I'm trying to weave together a good running, weight training, and ballet schedule. I still haven't hit the balance quite right. The marathon really messed with my metabolism and sleep cycle, and smashed up my feet, so I'm hoping that easing back into the routine helps me address these issues.

Thanks for the concern, friends and family.