Friday, September 11, 2009


Oh, dear readers. I’m sure the only ones of you still reading are the ones who subscribe to the feed. I’m sorry to be such a rotten blogger.

Suze told me that I don’t need to write big old long posts all the time and can just be short and sweet if I want. I fear getting stuck in the list format, but the time! Oh, the time! It just doesn’t exist anymore. If I am not in class, I’m reading, and if I’m not reading, I’m answering e-mails from students who may or may not have swine flu, and if I’m not answering e-mails, I’m trying to write book summaries, and if I’m not trying to write book summaries, I’m reading. And reading. And reading. Because, as I should have remembered about grad school in the humanities, they make you read a bloody library’s worth every week or so.

In spite of all that, I’m having a love affair with being back in school. I am especially having a love affair with my women/gender/sexuality studies class. (I’m planning to get a certification in that.) I forgot how much I love sitting in a room with smart and committed people talking about theory. I forgot how much I love being on a university campus.

I forgot how hard teaching kicks your ass.

I also forgot that graduate school requires a range of shoes. Or, perhaps I just interpret it that way. Perhaps I am a bit more hung up on shoes than I thought. I own very little ground between the sweaty running shoe area and the knee-high leather boot area. The sweaty running shoe area seems a little gross for a shared office, and the knee-high leather boot area, while conferring some hookey imagined mojo-type authority in the classroom (I am short and slightly built, ergo I compensate with footwear), is also, when paired with the occasional skirt, making me a little too popular with the bus driver. But I can never find basic flats that are, you know, me. I will look at a pair of flats on another women and think, those are lovely, I could wear those, and then I will try something like it on in the shoe store, and feel like an alien. I have to branch out before I turn into Boot Girl. The problem, of course, is that I am Boot Girl. I am not Loafer girl, or Tasteful Grown-up Mary Janes Girl. I have been Boot Girl since the Doc Marten days of the ‘90s. Boot Girl may have been in storage for the past few schleppy years, but Boot Girl lives. Also, Boot Girl has spent all her money on textbooks and a new laptop and has no remaining funds for new shoes unless she pawns her fawn-coloring leather riding boots, and you will pry those from Boot Girl’s cold, dead feet.

I’m not all that materialistic, really. I have this boot thing. That’s all. My clothes are from Goodwill. I even have some boots from Goodwill, but they make my toes go numb.

My gender studies course could probably have a heyday with that boot paragraph, but I’ll leave for the private recesses of SWJ. Which brings me to the privacy issue. As much as I respect the opinions of those who told me not to go private, I’ve also received some wise counsel from fellow academics who have encouraged me in that direction, and right now I think my plan is to just use Blogger’s privacy measures to limit readership of SWJ to those who have contacted me about it. But I haven’t figured out how that works yet, so for the time being, I’m doing jack, because I don’t have the energy to figure it out at the moment, and if I do manage to muster up some energy, I should probably spend it on reading this interminable book that I would so totally rant about if this blog were already private.

A wasp attacked me on Sunday; that’s my other big news. I was out at our compost bin, which is surround by a slight jungle, due to the fact that neither of us has bother about the pruning shears for a while, and suddenly there was a wasp on my hand. I thought it may have stung me, because it burned a bit, but as it turned out, that was just the warm-up, because after that it landed on my head and stayed up there, stinging me, while I whimpered like a frightened puppy. (I’m sorry. Don’t think about frightened puppies. It’s too upsetting.) Eric heard me through an open window upstairs and actually thought I was a dog. I crouched on the ground, trying not to move and freaking the hell out, until finally I realized that it was stinging the shit out of me anyway and there was nothing to be gained from letting it roost on my head indefinitely. I slapped at my head, trying to shoo it away, whereupon it stung me on the cheek.

Wasp stings on the cheek look sort of like cystic acne. I told Eric that it sucked that now everyone would think I just had a huge zit. He asked me why on earth it made any difference. I said that a zit just means you have bad skin, whereas a wasp sting means you have a story. He was not overly convinced. We both remained terrified of the compost.

That’s all for now, folks.


Jenn-Jenn, the Mother Hen said...

I don't see anything wrong with being "Boot Girl". Boots rock! Plus, now that it's starting to cool off, boots are the best thing to wear. If you still have your Doc Martens, you could pull those off with a pair of black pants, and still look nice.

And I'm sorry the evil wasp attacked you. I get really vexed when WASPs attack me, but that's another story and another context, entirely. :-)

Suze said...

I WANT to be boot girl. But I just bought the new "barefoot" shoes, so I think it's going to be a while before I can justify any footwear that actually looks cool. Sigh.

I got my first bee sting EVER IN MY LIFE last weekend. actually, I think it was a yellow jacket. Whatever. It hurt like a bitch. And Anya got a bee sting tonight! Must have something to do with the moon or the way the stars are aligned or something.

Lisa Marie said...

..because after that it landed on my head and stayed up there, stinging me, while I whimpered like a frightened puppy. (I’m sorry. Don’t think about frightened puppies. It’s too upsetting.) <<--- THIS cracked me up! Maybe I can relate, since I have puppies and all, tho =)

Thank goodness you are not allergic to wasp stings, tho. Has it started itching at all?

Steph said...

Lisa, yes, thank goodness for that! They only itched for a day or so afterward, and nothing too serious. The only real pain was the first night.

Heh. If I'd been thinking on my feet, I could have tried to out-WASP the wasp.

Lisa Marie said...

lol, ALTHO.....there ARE 61 definitions of WASP ya know? =)

Animal said...

You have knee-high leather boots?!? Oh, man, that's HOTT! I must never hang out with you at the right time, because I either imagine you barefoot or in some low-slung sneakery-type thing.

I bought boots this summer. Well, they were a b-day present from my mom, actually. Is that hip at all? Or, does that make me "Boot Dude?"

Dee said...

Don't give up the boots! I love boots as well, but I am so terribly picky about shoes, it takes a long time to find the right pair. You could find a nice heeled boot that was kinda short and could hide under pants so no one would know they were boots? or does that defeat the purpose of boots?

Dee Anna

Jessi said...

I am mary jane girl. Well, I'm kinda boot girl too. But I don't have any tall ones. I am ankle height boot girl. Mostly because I am never wear a skirt girl. Go with what you got.

Also, I had to laugh about your compost bin being surrounded by jungle. We don't have a bin, we have a "compost pile" and since I haven't stayed on top of turning it like I should, it's growing some really impressively tall weeds.