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Thursday, September 23, 2010

Weird day

I've been through amazing mood swings, rotten moments and lovely ones, a complete mixed bag. Hardly know how to summarize.

Both classes went well. I didn't try to do the usual group work with them: I did more of a combination of lecture (providing the setting and some background info that helped them get oriented to what's going on in the Lopez essay) and whole-class discussion. Interestingly enough, students who've not wanted to speak up before, in the theoretically more friendly, supportive system, were much more forthcoming today. Today's students kept their scoffing at the music to themselves--and instead, understood why I played it. One of the weaker students in one class did a really good job on her journal (using the new form, which allowed her to have her confusions) and was so encouraged that she asked if she could see me for help. Yes! We have an appointment on Monday.

On the other hand, there is a huge bruhaha going on over when to have the committee meetings for one of the committees I'm on. Long, long story, but essentially, those of us who have been on the committee longest and know how it needs to work are at loggerheads with those who are either relatively inexperienced or brand-new. I understand their reluctance to have meetings when we usually hold them (I don't like it much, either), but they also don't understand how the process works. I'm afraid I rather lost my temper with one new member of the committee in an e-mail (I wrote the testy e-mail last night: apparently yesterday was a day for losing my temper), and I was still feeling ragged about the whole thing this morning. Had sort of calmed down, when Bruce ran into me in the hall this afternoon and begged me to come up with a compromise--but I'm not the chair of the committee, so it's not really up to me. I did let the chair know compromises I could consider--but we'll have to see what we can work out. Right now, it's very uncomfortable.

On the other hand, Bruce also told me how much he values my contributions to the department and made it clear he thinks highly of my input. That felt lovely indeed.

I'm pretty much falling over tired tonight--weirdly, I feel worse, more tired, after two relatively good night's sleep, than I did running on fumes. I will be on campus tomorrow: I've got two appointments tomorrow near campus, and the in the afternoon, there will be a ceremony to unveil a brick in the NCC memory wall, presented in honor of my dear, departed friend and colleague, Denise Broadhurst. It will be a happy-sad occasion: glad to have her memory honored--and I am very honored indeed to have been tapped by her family to be there as their proxy--but very sad that she is no longer with us. Still, it will be good to be there to take photos and copious notes for her family, so they can have the experience vicariously. Denise is greatly missed.

And here endeth the teaching week--though the work will continue all through the weekend, as usual....

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