Tuesday, January 10, 2006

start of quarter frenzy, and I'm not teaching or taking classes

How come I checked email every day all break and sometimes went days without a single message in my professional account, but when yesterday I visited a friend and flew cross-country I got bombarded by 800,000 messages (very slight exaggeration)?

Oh, that's right, everyone else has just come back from vacation and were busy purging their in-boxes into mine. Translation: The new quarter has begun.

So I've spent a large part of the day digging myself out. And I haven't even checked my snail-mail box yet. My formerly pleasantly vacant schedule has now become submerged in a deluge of meetings, seminars, talks to give, outreach activities, and a few social events. When the research and writing is supposed to occur, I'm not entirely sure.

I've been meaning to write another serious blog post (I've even got a title: "The proper name for a woman.") but instead today I'll just brain-dump and update you on my doings (in no particular order).
  1. Despite the sad occasion, our trip to Midwest was actually quite nice with some time with the in-laws and their whole extended family (making it feel a bit like Christmas), a quick visit to husband's best friend and a lovely day with Writer Chica and Toddler.
  2. The Northwest is truly home now. I experienced quite a bit of culture shock during the trip. I can't handle a life where au gratin potatoes are your only "vegetable" for a day or more, where the grocery store produce is pallid and limited, and the only place to get a Chai tea is referred to as "that hippie place." Granted, this was in an extremely small town, and by virtue of my profession, if I return to the Midwest it'll be to a (hopefully more enlightened) college town, but when I got to the gate for our last flight home, I found myself breathing a sigh of relief and thinking "These are my people." Yes it was pouring, and it is flooding again, but that only heightens my sense of belonging in this place.
  3. "Now the practice of yoga begins." Apparently that is the first yoga sutra (or something like that) and since I've now survived (enjoyed, even) my second yoga class I think its appropriate to mention it. The class is in my building, and there's something wonderfully satisfying and funny about doing stretches and napping (or whatever it is at the end) with a bunch of middle-age adults with whom I work.
  4. My research area gets filed differently at different schools, and I am finishing a job application for a 3rd type of department. This department is very applied, and its been interesting to think about which aspects of my C.V. I want to highlight in the cover letter and how subtle word changes in my research and teaching statements are needed to be appropriate for this job. I think I could handle this applied focus very well, but it sure is a different package to put together than for say, FancyPants University.
  5. I think I'll make a pumpkin leek soup tonight. We've had a pumpkin languishing on our counter since this fall, and I don't care whether or not my husband doesn't like pumpkin, I want to eat it. Plus, it'll be good for me.
  6. I've been struggling to come up with a proper blog moniker for my husband, having contemplated and discarding things like Mr. ScienceWoman. I think I've found one that's appropriate and that he likes: BusinessMan, BM for short. Whaddaya think?
That's all for now folks, I've got to replenish the healthy food stock from the co-op, read a journal article for tomorrow's seminar, cook that soup, and watch Gilmore Girls. Apparently it's delurking week, so if you've been visiting and not commenting, stop right now, hit the comments link and (a) tell me what you think of my husband's new moniker, (b) suggest a healthy recipe, or (c) say something else related to this post (or not).

15 comments:

yami mcmoots said...

I grew up in a "more enlightened" college town in the Midwest; the enlightenment doesn't really reach the produce section. At least not in winter.

post-doc said...

I like BusinessMan, but when I see BM, I think bowel movement. If that's just me, I'm humiliated because I can't recall where I picked it up! I don't know much about your husband, but I'm sure he's great. So if you go with that name, I'll get over my initial reaction, I promise.

I found Gilmore Girls to be very entertaining, so I hope you enjoyed it too!

delentye said...

Since it's delurking week,

BusinessMan (BM) sounds good :), I don't have any real recipes since I can't cook, and I've really enjoyed your blog since I started reading it a few months ago. I'm an undergrad in Biochem, and it's always interesting and educational to find out what the science (and real) world might hold in store for me.

Dr. Mon said...

I am with post-doc, BM reminds me of some childhood code for getting to the bathroom quick. But it's ur blog, we can get over it.

My Northeastern CollegeTown has terrible produce also. I visited a Midwest college town for Thanksgiving and the greens were equally depressing there. But perhaps I'm biased towards vegetable stands and growers selling fruit off the back of their pickups down south.

ScienceWoman said...

I guess I'll delurk on my own comments section. I hadn't thought about BM meaning bowel movement, I'll keep working on a moniker or maybe I'll stick with that one and find some other way to abbreviate it...

I believe I forgot to mention laundry on last night's to do list. I should have because it ate my entire evening. The pumpkin soup cooking will have to be tonight.

Anonymous said...

oh fine. i'll write a comment. i'm a female physical science postdoc on the job market and a recent lurker. i really liked your GIS-map of your application locations and thought of making one for myself.

Also a GG fan, though last night's episode was very disappointing to me... not happy with the Luke/deadbeat dad plotline. And Rory turning a potentially poignant meltdown into a comedy sketch. Do they have new writers or something?

ScienceGeek said...

Since you insist then I guess I'll de-lurk. I have a good tasty and healthy (I think) recipe for sweet and sour chicken which includes ketchup and grape jelly. Ya it sounds weird but it's tasty! However, it's at home and I'm in the lab so I'll have to post it later. So really my comment was about nothing. Oh well, you asked for comments.

gene-ie said...

I do like BusinessMan, but a different abbreviation would probably be better... maybe "Biz"?

If you make it to one of the Midwest college cities, the produce selection gets slightly better, but the greens just are never the same in winter...

ScienceWoman said...

Biz is good. Better than Busi which was the best I've managed this afternoon. Both of them have some element of a double entendre which I like.

Jane said...

Hi, I'm delurking! Looking forward to getting to know your blog better. :)

Answers:
(a) I like gene-ie's suggestion of "Biz" for your husband's nickname.

(b) One of my most favorite healthy recipes is African Pineapple Peanut Stew, from the "Moosewood Cooks at Home" cookbook. The ingredients sound gross together--crushed pineapple, peanut butter, onions, garlic, kale, hot sauce, cilantro, couscous--but it is my new favorite comfort food. (Email me if you want the full recipe and I can dig it up for you.)

ScienceGeek said...

Here's the chicken recipe:
http://www.lin.ca/lin/resource/html/Recipes/MissAmericanThigh.htm

Good thing I found it online so I didn't have to type it all out. I usually serve it with rice. It's very tasty and super easy.

ScienceGeek said...

Crap. That link didn't work.

Type "Miss American Thigh" into Google (that's the name of the recipe). The first couple links have the recipe

writerchica's sis said...

I'm so glad you had an afternoon with WriterChica and Toddler. You really made her day!
p.s. Biz sounds good.

whathuh said...

Like the Biz. I call my boyfriend TB for "the boy" though it occured to me later that it also reminds me of tuberculosis (sp?). Enjoying the blog...

Writer Chica said...

I like Biz. Great to see you on Monday! I have no recipes that don't include quite a bit of cheese. I like reading your blog. Happy start of the quarter to ya!