Here there be monsters (socratic) wrote,
Here there be monsters

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It don't seem fair

ARGH! Columbia.

I went in person to get an appointment with my advisor since she never responded to my email. At this appointment she proceeded to tell me that, basically, I have to go through the school of continuing education in order to take future courses at Columbia. That was it. She didn't offer to help me get into the classes I wanted OR contact the school for me, she said "go deal with them" and gave me an address and a phone number.

Wow! What great service! And they chided me for not using the advising services in the past. How could I have been so stupid, considering how helpful they are? I got information I could have grabbed off the website in 50 seconds and only had to waste an hour getting it. On my way out she told me that if I wasn't going to graduation I should give my commencement tickets to people who didn't have enough. That was the only actual advice she gave me, and it had absolutely nothing to do with helping me.

I called the school of continuing education and they said I'd have to apply through the normal process including sending them a transcript. That's right, I need to send a TRANSCRIPT from Columbia College to the Columbia University School of Continuing Education. I'm not sure if I should laugh or cry. I've chosen to laugh because that's the new me and I'm not going to let this BULLSHIT stand in my way. So now I'm applying for admission to the continuing education section of the school I'm graduating from Phi Beta Kappa this May.

Maybe I should have gone with cry.

I'll head down there on monday in person and berate them for forcing me to actually apply since I'm STILL REGISTERED AS A STUDENT AT THE COLLEGE. Damn hippies. It probably won't do any good. I'll have my application all ready to go on monday then.

There is a plus. I've found out that there's a second majors program at the school of continuing ed and one of the majors offered is FILM STUDIES. That is very promising. If I can get into that and get my second (well third, but I won't tell if you won't) major in Film Studies then all will be forgiven. It's still a horrendous bureaucracy.

Honestly the biggest problem here is that it's friday and I'll have to wait until monday to resolve these issues and know what I have to do. I need to study my ASS off this weekend and having this (the only thing I really care about at the moment) hanging over my head is not going to be conducive to doing well. I really need to get my shit together because the semester's basically over and I haven't done ANY work. I have like 2-3 weeks to write 60 or so pages of papers. I also have research to do and for the film project filming. This is not a good combination of things to have to do. Furthermore a week from monday I have to give a research presentation for one of my classes. HACHE MACHE. If I can read 3 books this weekend and get some more articles for my first ammendment paper I will be absolutely fine but I'll have to actually DO that. That's a different story from knowing what I have to do. To be honest I can probably get extensions on some of the stuff but I also have a final in my history class and ugh. My whole grade for most of these classes rides on the final, that's no gouda.

All of this amounts to a heck of a lot of pressure at the moment and I do feel close to bursting. I think I'll be okay but who knows. Whatever happens I don't want to fuck up GPA because it matters for this Continuing Ed application and some other stuff (like getting a job if I ever want one.)

I went to teacher training today for the GED program. What a complete waste of time. For one the semester's all but over, and perhaps more importantly we didn't actually learn anything about teaching while we were there but instead did a cognitive psychology worksheet of dubious value. I challenged the assertion that observation is not a type of perception and was looked at like I'd just said that Salvadore Dali is the head of the Catholic church. The rest of the training was touchy feely crap. There was this one actor in his thirties who was totally gung-ho about it, a few mid-twenties people including a cute girl who actually made the short dyed blonde hair and nosestud look work (she kind of resembled Kirsten Dunst), and a bunch of middle aged people who were not happy spending their Friday evenings listening to some Master's degree candidate give a slipshod presentation on Kolb's learning theory. It wasn't her fault, she tried hard and came prepared, it just wasn't the right lesson for this particular group. I vascilated between belligerence and intelligent participation, as I am wont to do, so by the end the woman who was running the thing was calling on me with trepidation, not knowing whether I would ask a difficult or nitpicky question or rescue the exercise by coming up with a plausible theory about how it could actually help teachers in the classroom. I did the latter, but I cushioned the succor by using the old "it could be argued" preface, which means "I don't actually believe this shit but it's what you want to hear and it will justify what you want justified."

I had two slices of pizza and two cookies for dinner, impressively moderate for me since when I eat junk food I tend to consume mass quantities, but recently I've learned to obey my stomach when it informs me that it's full, and chatted with a master's candidate in religion about crappy movies and the many faces of Jim Carey.

I want to write a short story but all my inspiration is for the sort of rich complicated world and plot that requires a novel or a screenplay. I would actually really appreciate if someone could throw out some ideas for a rather succinct and simple plot or premise that could be turned into something 5-7 pages long. That's around the length I'm shooting for but for the life of me I can't think about what I would do in that size range.

McDonald's has come out with a new Adult happy meal. It's basically a salad, some water, and some instructions on getting more exercise because you're about to die. The way I see it if you're an adult who's regularly eating at McDonald's they better give you some black tar heroin and a cute Thai hooker to do it with before they can declare it a "happy" meal.

Being funny is supposed to be appealing to people (internet guys declare 'cocky and funny' the third thing a woman looks for in a man, after money and appearance, of course their being internet guys sort of implies they don't know shit about what a woman looks for in a man) but is it possible to be so funny that you intimidate? Lately I've really been on my game humor wise and honing my delivery. Today during discussion section I said "The black laws prevented black men from being blacksmiths" and got a really satisfying delayed laughter bout. Everyone held it in for about 5-6 seconds while I kept talking and they processed the fact that I actually said it, that I intended it as a horrible pun, and that I wasn't going to be acknowledging it, and they just burst out laughing, including the TA. That's an example of a joke that is terrible if you read it but when delivered in the right circumstance and with the proper technique is absolutely killer material. It hasn't paid social dividends, which is fine since I'm all about the joke for the joke's sake, but it's one of the things one's supposed to do to achieve social status and it ain't done shit for me.

This has been on my mind since this kid who's like 6 years younger than me is coming down to visit Columbia and I'm expected to show him around. He used to idolize me back in the day when I taught him "Shave and a haircut, two pence" and what a cannoli was. Now not only will he see me fat and ill-kempt but if he wants to go to a party or hang out in a dorm I won't be able to oblidge. It's kind of embarassing really. Oh well, every hero must be destroyed eventually. The kid's like 16 now, got a 1480 on his SATs, and plays high school football. He probably had his 'the world actually sucks' cherry broken years ago.

Amusingly when the kid comes down to visit Columbia he will find it to be in the midst of a Graduate student strike. That's right, the grad students are striking because the University is being a putz about their vote to unionize and now can't give in because they are trying to join the United Auto Workers union and Columbia can't afford to shut down every time the auto workers strike (WTF are grad students doing in the UAW? Study labor politics for that little gem.) I'm going to lose at least one discussion section and have to face the prospect of Eric Foner grading my work. Oh joy. The whole thing is kind of silly and the strike is illegal due to the fact that non-union supporters weren't given a vote. Ahh students.

Bill O'Reilly's on TV chatting with some Frog about his 'boycott' of French products. That boycott has approximately zero effect on the French economy. Maybe O'Reilly himself doesn't buy some fancy French mirror so he can look at his own penis in the mirror and admire its pale suppleness, but that's not going to break a whole country. The right wing needs to be a little less laughable.

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