Sunday, November 28, 2004

Scraps: after writing up three assignments and feeling silly

Thanksgiving in Vermont was great--a good break from most of our routine habits--all except (say it with me, folks):

GRADING PAPERS

One of my sisters-in-law is an engineer and a scrapbooker. She has a two-page spread in her family scrapbook called "What Exactly Does R Do as an Engineer?"

If I ever get around to scrapbooking, my two- page spread will be called "Grading Papers" and will feature photos of me hunched over papers-- in Vermont,at home at the local Starbucks, on planes flying to conventions, in meetings, on buses, in trains, asleep in bed, in front of the television, in grocery stores, restaurants, doctors' offices, backyards, frontyards, townhouses and outhouses, on horseback, at weddings, at funerals and christenings, birthdays and Bat Mitvahs, at baseball games and rugby tournaments, on and off of golf courses--

in my green sweatpants and ratty Tshirt, with a cup of coffee or a bottle of cola by my side.

All around me, people will be living lives (some may even be scrapbooking)--laughing, crying, fighting, arguing, negotiating, singing, dancing, skiing, playing baseball--

and there I'll be. I have no doubt that when I die, they'll have to dig a cube-shaped grave to acommodate my stiff, cross-legged body, my fingers wrapped around a purple pen. And sticking to my elbow will be papers.


27 Comments:

At 4:48 PM, Blogger Nick said...

I spent Thanksgiving in Vermont too. Though I wasn't grading papers while there (I'm not teaching this semester). I brought a cookbook manuscript to edit; my aunts are making a cookbook of favorite recipes collected from everyone in the family, some of them pretty much family heirlooms. Others more or less cribbed from other cookbooks. I'm editing and typesetting it for them.

So the weekend turned out to be all family all the time, which was nice. It was a classic Vermont November in the Bennington/Pownall area -- rainy, muddy on the dirt road where my mother-in-law lives, with consistent drizzily rain, occasional thunder in the distance, and some swirling snow thrown in.

The house sits across from an apple orchard, and it was good place, with a good view, to sit inside with a woodstove and edit.

Of course, between the food, the company, and the chores -- caulking windows, fixing burned out Christmas lights, replacing garage door springs -- not much editing got done.

 
At 8:48 PM, Blogger jocalo said...

By way of contrast, I read no papers, edited no books, did nothing of an English teachery nature for four straight days and on Monday morning I was groggy and did not feel well enough to make it to campus. Maybe my brain was starved for language that needed shaping and judging. Or maybe it's the difference between Vermont and California.

 
At 12:02 AM, Blogger clc said...

I also didn't do anything work-related over the Thanksgiving break. Rosa, shame on you!

One of the things I have learned is to frontload my classes as much as possible so that by this point, students are doing most of the work. They are polishing final drafts for portfolios primarily or working on fairly late revisions. Of course, next week the portfolios will start coming in for grading, but that is a less onerous task I find than initial responses to drafts during the semester.

 
At 12:40 AM, Blogger Rosa G. said...

My bad, clc. I did manage to get out for a long walk on Thursday and ran into this "cookbook editor" caulking windows and repairing garage doors. I skedaddled out of that apple orchard right quick ; )Seriously, I walked down the long street in Okemo enjoying the fields, the old houses, and the silence except for a few neighbors playing Johnny Cash on their CD player. Across the street from our lodge was a store where we could load up on Vermont maple syrup, Australian wines, Doritos and guns.
Inside the cozy inn, all of the other women were knitting, cooking or scrapbooking--or discussing all of the really interesting books that they're reading that I don't get to read because I'm an English teacher and we never get to read anything good during the semester. BooHoo. So, while they gathered around and knit, I did my own kind of piecework.

Nick--the cookbook sounds like a great idea. A few years ago, when my husband ( a terrific cook)turned forty, I asked everyone to contribute a recipe and a memory for a scrapbook that I surprised him with at his party. People were really creative and gave photos, old anecdotes about his childhood and so on. He loved it and uses it to this day.
Jocalo--you? sick? Nahhhh.

 
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At 1:10 PM, Blogger Smallman said...

I skim a lot of blogs, and so far yours is in the Top 3 of my list of favorites. I'm going to dive in and try my hand at it, so wish me luck.

It'll be in a totally different area than yours (mine is about scrapbooking idea) I know, it sounds strange, but it's like anything, once you learn more about it, it's pretty cool. It's mostly about scrapbooking idea related articles and subjects.

 
At 1:30 PM, Blogger Smallman said...

I skim a lot of blogs, and so far yours is in the Top 3 of my list of favorites. I'm going to dive in and try my hand at it, so wish me luck.

It'll be in a totally different area than yours (mine is about free scrapbooking idea) I know, it sounds strange, but it's like anything, once you learn more about it, it's pretty cool. It's mostly about free scrapbooking idea related articles and subjects.

 
At 2:56 PM, Blogger Smallman said...

I skim a lot of blogs, and so far yours is in the Top 3 of my list of favorites. I'm going to dive in and try my hand at it, so wish me luck.

It'll be in a totally different area than yours (mine is about scrapbooking idea) I know, it sounds strange, but it's like anything, once you learn more about it, it's pretty cool. It's mostly about scrapbooking idea related articles and subjects.

 
At 3:14 PM, Blogger Smallman said...

I skim a lot of blogs, and so far yours is in the Top 3 of my list of favorites. I'm going to dive in and try my hand at it, so wish me luck.

It'll be in a totally different area than yours (mine is about free scrapbooking idea) I know, it sounds strange, but it's like anything, once you learn more about it, it's pretty cool. It's mostly about free scrapbooking idea related articles and subjects.

 
At 12:04 AM, Blogger Smallman said...

I skim a lot of blogs, and so far yours is in the Top 3 of my list of favorites. I'm going to dive in and try my hand at it, so wish me luck.

It'll be in a totally different area than yours (mine is about scrapbooking idea) I know, it sounds strange, but it's like anything, once you learn more about it, it's pretty cool. It's mostly about scrapbooking idea related articles and subjects.

 
At 12:23 AM, Blogger Smallman said...

I skim a lot of blogs, and so far yours is in the Top 3 of my list of favorites. I'm going to dive in and try my hand at it, so wish me luck.

It'll be in a totally different area than yours (mine is about free scrapbooking idea) I know, it sounds strange, but it's like anything, once you learn more about it, it's pretty cool. It's mostly about free scrapbooking idea related articles and subjects.

 
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At 7:41 AM, Blogger nope said...

Hi,

I'm sorry for being intrusive in to your blog. But I am Melissa and I am a mother of two that is just trying to get out of an incredible financial debt. See my hubby is away in Iraq trying to protect this great country that we live in, and I am at home with our two kids telling bill collectors please be patiant. When my husband returns from war we will beable to catch up on our payments. We have already had are 2001 Ford repossessed from the bank, and are now down to a 83 buick that is rusted from front to back and the heater don't work, and tire tax is due in November.

I'm not asking for your pitty because we got our ownselfs into this mess but we would love you and thank you in our prayers if you would just keep this link on your blog for others to view.

God Bless You.

Melissa K. W.
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At 9:42 PM, Blogger Selina said...

Interested in Cooking? Need a new recipe for Thanksgiving or an unusual present for Christmas for the cook that has it all? Let me tell you about a cookbook that is older than you and me together, but still has more value that most cookbooks that are out on the marke these days. It is called America Cookery. It is the first cookbook of American authorship to be printed in the United States. Numerous recipes that adapt traditional dishes by substituting native American ingredients such as corn meal and squash are printed here for the first time, including "Indian Slapjack," "Johny Cake," and "Squash Pudding." Simmons's "Pompkin Pudding," baked in a crust, is the basis for the classic American pumpkin pie. It is awesome. I bought it and y family and friends loved and envied the sudden knowledge that I displayed and the tasty treats that I was able to make with this treasure. Thank you to the person who made it available for immediate download. Happy holidays from Selina and family.

 
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