Tuesday, August 31, 2004

heavier things of fall

Autumn is in the air today. As soon as I stepped outside of my door this morning to walk to class, I sensed it, and it felt so very Heavier Things. I couldn't explain it. It wasn't a feeling I was looking for or even remembered until that moment. So I guess it feels like September outside, at least in the cooler moments. Whatever it is, I've never quite had this same experience with an album. Except maybe the autumn end-of-the-week afternoon feeling of Better Than Ezra's This Time of Year. But it was so overwhelming and out of nowhere this morning. And comforting.

Sunday, August 29, 2004

the obligatory concert post

I have thirty minutes left to work at the Hart lab. Okay, I know I complain about the Applied Science lab, but I like it much better. I'm not sure why. Maybe because I am here at night, and I can't get any technical assistance no matter how hard I try because my boss is at church and the help desk is closed. And the other lab workers are as clueless as I am. I am not very familiar with this place, so I can't find anything. And I cannot make myself do my homework. I haven't even opened my backpack. And in these last thirty minutes, I don't plan on changing that situation.

So this weekend. Wow. Wonderful times. I figure I have to at least give you a little run-down on the Johnity.

We thought we were not going to make it there on time. With twenty minutes until show time, we found ourselves backed waaay up in some exit ramp traffic. Fifty minutes later, we roll up at Starwood, and many thanks to the powers that be, the show didn't start until about 8:00 instead of 7:00. We didn't miss a thing, and man, our seats were awesome. We were in the fifth row, but because of the way the stage curved and such, we were in about the third row. I have way too many pictures, all of which I will probably print and cherish forever. The set was great, and he played some songs that kind of fall into the untouchables category. The third time's a charm, let me tell you. During the encore, we got a sit-down campfire-sing-along version of Comfortable, a bong-must've-been-involved rendition of Voodoo Chile, and the song I've been wanting to see live for so long, Neon. It was over-all great even though the punches came at the encore. Maroon 5 was a fun show with slinks and pelvic thrusts abound. It was a hot and sweaty stagnant pool of body odor and alcohol (beautiful imagery, I know) up in there, but it was quite worth it. As always.

Well, I'm about as hungry as hungry can be. When I bust up outta here, I'm gonna go pick up Jackie to go to WalMart and order my pictures. I'm going to swing by the ol' apartment so she can see, and then I'm heading back to Springer to give Holly her gift. Yes, happy birthday, Holly. I hope I didn't have too much critical homework to do for tomorrow. It sure didn't get done.

Thursday, August 26, 2004

come, thou fount of every blessing

Come, thou Fount of every blessing, tune my heart to sing thy grace;
streams of mercy, never ceasing, call for songs of loudest praise.
Teach me some melodious sonnet, sung by flaming tongues above.
Praise the mount! I'm fixed upon it, mount of thy redeeming love.

Here I raise mine Ebenezer; hither by thy help I'm come;
and I hope, by thy good pleasure, safely to arrive at home.
Jesus sought me when a stranger, wandering from the fold of God;
he, to rescue me from danger, interposed his precious blood.

O to grace how great a debtor daily I'm constrained to be!
Let thy goodness, like a fetter, bind my wandering heart to thee.
Prone to wander, Lord, I feel it, prone to leave the God I love;
here's my heart, O take and seal it, seal it for thy courts above.

the day that never was

Okay, I gotta quit this Tuesday/Thursday nap business. I'm taking waaay too much advantage of it. But I shouldn't happen too much longer, I guess. Today, I ended up with much more free time than I intended to. From now on, I will have three classes on Thursday, but this is what today boiled down to: No Shakespeare at 9:30. No lab at 1:30. And my 11:00 earth science lecture? Lasted about ten minutes. The professor gave us a quiz that he gave us all a 100 on, then proceeded to have a nervous breakdown in front of us when his Power Point projector wouldn't work. Something about his daughter is living with his ex-wife and is planning on running away from home, his girlfriend's son is in traction at a hospital in Paducah puking at the moment, and he is driving a rental car because his transmission went out. He then dismissed us. At Winslow, where I discovered my declining balance hasn't been activated and I had to pay cash again, I saw Geco, and he said earth science with this professor of mine is a breeze. Well, it certainly seems so.

I've procrastinated long enough. I have homework that needs to get done, especially because I'm not going to have much time to do it this weekend. I am counting on being able to read A Midsummer Night's Dream at work on Sunday night, but there are about a million other things I need to do, too. I also need to clean. I mean, it is really beginning to look pretty rough around here. I need to go WalMart, but maybe I should hold off on that until I get back from Nashville. Hmm? I also need to pack for Nashville. And I cannot, cannot, cannot forget to charge my camera battery. The last thing I need during a concert in which I am three and a half inches away from John Mayer is a camera that doesn't work. We're also fearing the prospect of rain during the show tomorrow night, but Justin told me this morning that Starwood Amphitheatre is covered. And now that I think about it, I'm kind of remembering seeing that somewhere. I just hope it's not a million degrees. And of course it will be. But sometimes, you just have to tough it out for those you love.

Wednesday, August 25, 2004

lab lullaby

One hour of "work" down, three to go. Ol' Applied Science computer lab ain't hoppin' at 8:00 in the morning. Well, there have been five people come in, and they have all miraculously known how to work the whole account log-in system. Woo hoo. I've basically just been sitting here looking at my Spanish book when I take the notion, which isn't too often. I also brought along the thrity-seven-thousand-pound tome, also known as my Shakespeare textbook, to read on A Midsummer Night's Dream. We'll see if that happens. At this point, I'm just trying to keep myself awake. I have a feeling that is going to be my biggest challenge. Not sleeping. Nothing but the quiet hum of computers and clicking on keyboards in the wee hours of the morning. Sounds like a lullaby to me.

So, um. Yeah. What can I talk about to occupy my time? There is not much to say, but I gotta do something. It looks like I'm going to be writing a lot of blogs that are even more boring than usual just to have something to do.

Oh, here's a note. If you ever have to print something at an on-campus computer lab, be sure to choose the black and white printer under the print options. The color printer is default, and it costs 25 cents as opposed to black and white, which is 5 cents. And they have the system like they do in the library where you drop money in the machine to pay. Fun times. It's almost like riding the quarter horse in front of the grocery store. But not quite.

So this computer I have here has some old school MSN messenger on it. It's from back in the day when it didn't even have the feature that tells you that you have a new email. Pretty ghetto.

Okay, now that I've totally wasted both your and my time with this sad, sad entry, I guess I'll try to do something productive like studying Spanish, read the Shakespeare play, or go to sleep. I like that last one best.

Tuesday, August 24, 2004

quick and dirty

Hello. It's not even ten o'clock and I am pondering the thought of going to bed. As a part of the many new things this semester is bringing, I believe one will be an early bed time. I have to be at Applied Science tomorrow morning by 8:00 for the first day of my first job. (How sad is that?) But I'm looking forward to my attempt at getting a decent night's sleep. I haven't done that in a while, and it's time I've made up for it. With one day of class under my belt, I can already see that this semester is going to be insane, so I'll probably never go to bed early again. But it's a nice thought.

I probably messed up all my chances of actually falling asleep as I took a big ol' nap this afternoon. It was so hot and sticky outside and by the time I got back to Brentwood, I thought I was going to die. I cranked up the air and sacked out on the couch for a couple hours. I haven't had a nap in who knows how long, so I thought I'd start the new school year off right.

Classes were all right. Shakespeare was a good time, partly because when I introduced myself as a graduate of Webster County, Dr. Brown asked me about ol' T. Roy. That class will be challenging, but I think I'm really going to like the professor. Earth science, on the other hand, is like descending into the pits of hell. I hate science, and I knew I was putting off taking a course of it for a reason. The night class is going to be good, I think. It's finally taking English and education and putting them together. It's about time.

I guess that's the quick and dirty on today's events. Good night.

Monday, August 23, 2004

welcome rain

*sigh* John Mayer Guy just ain't what he used to be, ain't what he used to be. But we'll pretend that he's not gross and all that. I can't handle such a rapid turnover rate of excitement and disillusionment.

I didn't give my freshmen the campus tour today. Murray decided to be Murray and sporadically rain all day long, so I called it off. I'm such a bad FYL. All my girls are going to get lost tomorrow, cry, and go home. All because of me. But four of them did show up for Realities on Campus. Maybe because I threatened them with their lives if they didn't.

So, yeah. Classes start tomorrow. I get to have class with all kinds of fun folks. As a matter of fact, I believe I already know at least one person in each class I have this semester. Tomorrow, I have Shakespeare, and ol' J. Matt is in there. I have the dreaded earth science all the way over in Mason Hall, but I've the lovely Justin Downing and Alisha Perry to accompany me for that one, which makes it all better. I also have the teaching English night class, and my friend Jennie is in it. Yay for classes. Or not. We'll see.

I went to my computer lab supervisor meeting thing tonight. I think it's probably going to be the easiest job that ever was. At least I hope so. But all that whining and crying I did about going to the hypnotist after my meeting, I didn't go. It was pouring down rain, and I decided I didn't care that much. So I got to walk to my car without an umbrella in the downpour. Okay, so I parked at Fifteenth & Olive. But I still got soaked. Welcome to Murray.

Sunday, August 22, 2004

persist: there is no cent in quitting

A bookstore plastic bag from long ago is laying in the corner, and its persist campaign slogan keeps catching my eye. That thing will never die. Do your part and throw away at least a dozen food service napkins at a time.

This place is a wreck. I haven't been here for more than thirty minutes at a time over the past several days before I would leave again or go to bed.

The load of towels and other such things that I dried three days ago are still in the dryer. It looks like a hurricane of FYL materials blew through my living room. My blanket from the October Sky outdoor movie is still just kind of hanging out in the floor, all up in the way. Any kind of office-type materials I've pulled out in the past couple days have just stayed where they landed when I finished using them. I have a nice roadblock of textbooks, still in the bookstore plastic bags. There are about fifteen million empty Sam's Choice water bottles hanging out everywhere. Dirty dishes have been that way and will stay that way for a little while. There is little chance of me cleaning this up tonight. Maybe, maybe, maybe I can get everything sorted out and liveable before class starts.

It is hard to believe school is getting ready to start again. It feels like it never stopped.

a moment to breathe

This is the first time I've really had the time to slow down since all this FYL stuff has been going on. I am quite tired. It is sad, though. Today, I didn't see a one of my freshmen. They seemed halfway enthusiastic yesterday, but none of them were joiners today. So I teamed up with Jenny and her group. Many of my girls did express an interest in the campus tours tomorrow, so they will probably all show up and use me to drag them all over to find their classes. Oh, well. Oh, well.

Today was good though. I did meet the wonderful Homer Hickam. Chantel and I went to the book signing, and we were both giggling, excited geeks. We went up and talked to him together. We chatted it up for a couple minutes about ourselves, Rocket Boys, October Sky, and of course, Jake Gyllenhaal. He commended Chantel and me for being education majors because teachers are his heroes. I also told him that I like to write and truly enjoy the memoir genre. He wrote as a part of what he signed in my book this: "Can't wait to read your 1st book!" I know it is just an impersonal note, but it is inspiring. He is a living example of what a few encouraging words can do to motivate a person toward his or her passion. A girl from the Murray State News was there and took our picture. Maybe we'll grace the pages of the first issue.

There is a kid who apparently lives in Franklin that scarily resembles John Mayer. I've probably freaked him out because I think he's caught me staring at him about ten times, but I'm so amazed. Anyway, I can't believe that the concert is in less than a week. Come Friday, I'll be at my third John Mayer concert. All of this makes me a disgusting person with a teeny bopper fanaticism. Ew.

I bought my books today. Yes, that is $285.55 less in my bank account. Nothing like a seventy-dollar paperback book and a thirty-dollar password to make a University Bookstore cashier grin with glee as you sign away your life's savings for textbooks. I know I'm happy.

Just a thought. You know when every time you need to go to dictionary.com, which is so very much for me, you start to click the home button on the browser, you have a creepy, creepy relationship with words.

Well, I guess it's back to Springer-Franklin for a little RCC cook-out action.

Tuesday, August 17, 2004

hermitess: a female hermit

in my head
third day
artist: third day
song: consuming fire

Okay, here it is. Yet again, the new background. This time my change was not really my choice, but spurred by the advent of Blogger's Navbar. I don't know how it happened, but it really messed up my design. I decided that the easiest thing to do, short of choosing a standard issue Blogger template, was accommodate the blasted thing. Conniving little web designers... Anyway, so it wasn't entirely simple to leave my layout how I had it and scoot everything down to make way for the intruder and keep everything I wanted on the page without requiring a bit of scroll down action. *sigh* I know. You're telling me. And I don't even know how much I like this design, so it probably won't stay long. I care way too much about this thing. But at least the tool that caused all this trouble is somewhat neat. I'm not so certain about the functionality of the Google search, but the "Next Blog" button will take you to a random blog, which is tons of fun. It has already caused me something like seven hits today. That's probably because I've published my blog that many times trying to get it all the kinks out. (Hint: By "next blog," it means the next blog to be published.)

I took a walk on campus today. For that, you can see my cheesy post about anticipation.

Tomorrow, I get to feel a little human again. By that, I mean the non-hermit type of human. FYL training starts. I know it is the first step toward making my life a crazy, chaotic mess of things, but I'm thankful. At least tonight, I am.

I received an email from my computer lab boss guy. I've been stewing because I knew our employee meeting before school starts is supposed to be on Monday night, but I didn't know what time. It just so happens that the performance by the hypnotist that makes an appearance on campus every year during Great Beginnings, that I have yet to see but would really like to, is also on Monday night at 8:00. I just knew our meeting would be then. Turns out, the meeting is at 6:00. And it shouldn't last two hours. So I am excited. About a hypnotist. No wonder I am a hermit.


08.17.04, 4:51 pm

There is something comforting about this campus. It has a different air, a different aroma than the rest of Murray. I felt it as soon as I crossed Main Street and hit the sidewalk along 15th, by Sparks Hall.

I'm sitting on a bench in front of Blackburn. The building shades the afternoon sun. It is quiet today. There are birds in the magnolias. There is a car starting or a door shutting or the whir of a bicycle clicking by or sometimes somebody talking as they pass. But for the most part, the noise is distant. There is still a bubble around this campus.

It isn't necessarily sacred or holy, but there is something about it that just feels right. Maybe it's just the stillness that has settled here for months.

But tomorrow, the first batch of students will seep onto campus for early check-in. And this weekend, everyone arrives. The buildings won't be empty, at least not as still as they have been.

Tuesday is when it all really comes alive. Classes begin. The sidewalks will be busied with students who haven't yet figured out where they are going and students who haven't yet understood that come two weeks from now, they will quit going to those classes. But the quiet murmur that abides here now will nevertheless be heightened to a roar over the next week. But the comfort that I find here right now will not be drowned out. Were it not for the absent roar, I might not notice this murmur.

Monday, August 16, 2004

leaving coalwood

I just finished Rocket Boys three minutes ago. And I'm doing all I can to keep from crying, and I'm not sure why. I'm not certain if I feel some sort of relation to the story or what. And I can't discern whether they are tears of joy or ones born out of mourning. I guess it's both. There is nothing like the paradox of bittersweetness to get me emotional.

Sunday, August 15, 2004

summer 2004: life 101

When I started to see this summer on my horizon, it scared me. I knew from last summer that this one could not be spent the same way, so I started by deciding that I was going to spend it here in Murray. That thought alone was enough to make me shudder, but at least I wasn't going to spend my time at home accomplishing nothing. I knew that whatever this summer would bring, I would learn a lot. But I didn't know how much.

No, not wild animals, but things like apartments and jobs. I know I complained a whole lot about not being able to find either one very easily. The apartment came to me with more ease, but as with so many things in my life, Brentwood was the last place I wanted to go. Curiously, the thing that originally turned me off about it is the same thing that made me go for it: location. I've learned that I cannot trust my own instincts about decisions, that's for sure. As for the job, I never ended up with one for the summer. And when I wasn't looking, the position I found for the fall fit just perfectly. I'm glad I found it before Arby's called me back. Hopefully, this lab supervisor gig will be good. And the opportunity for tutoring that I kept neglecting to find came to me through an offer from my professor. I guess hunting sometimes really just means waiting.

They change. And change is, more often than not, for the best. My decision to not only live in Murray for the summer, but also to live on my own in the fall has affected several of my relationships. It has made my physical closeness to my family and friends more of a challenge. Facing the fact that I no longer live at home has taken my relationship with my parents to a new and bittersweet level. The reality of the empty nest has set in with my parents, and the reality of attempting to be on my own has knocked me square in the forehead. You would think going off to college would do that, but the summer away has made it perfectly clear.

Time and circumstance have a way of changing relationships for you. Sometimes, this seems unfair, but at least this time, I don't believe I could be more grateful.

I have never quite been the connoisseur of financial things. And I'm still not, but I'm learning. I balanced my checkbook for the first time in my life this summer, and it amazingly balanced exactly. (Intimidated by such succees, I've yet to balance it again.) Writing checks for large amounts has become a habit, and I don't like it. Especially when I don't really have something to replenish my account with. I've also learned that money can cause more problems than the lack of funds. It is the root of all kinds of evil.

The reason, supposedly, that I've been here this summer. I got six hours of credit out of the way, and I truly gained knowledge in both classes. I believe I was very lucky to have Dr. Binfield as a professor before he left Murray State to teach in England. His class, British Literature from 1760, was the first that has felt like a real college class. He did not only teach us about the poetry of dead men, but he also taught us how to think on our feet. I may not have agreed with many of his views, but he offered me the ability to form my own--a valuable lesson. And my special education course was the first education class I feel has been worthwhile. I guess any class is only what you make of it, but this is the first time I actually sat in the classroom and applied what I was learning to my philosophy of education. Personal success in the course was not the letter grade in the end, but having a deeper understanding of all students in my future classroom.

I have learned that I can do some things that I wasn't so sure I could. One of those is living by myself. Despite any confidence I might have displayed, I was not fully convinced I could do it, but I also knew that if I buckled down, I could do anything. With that, I successfully made it to my 8:00 am class every day. Small victories, folks. Small victories. I also learned that my writing is somewhat publishable. A slightly edited version of my short story "Gravel" will appear in this month's issue of The Divinity School that is supposed to come out tomorrow night. I'm such a prolific fiction writer. Maybe one day I'll write something else.

In the corniest sense of it all, I've done a lot of thinking in pursuit of "finding myself," but I believe we all wonder who we really are. And maybe it is a vain pursuit. I have rolled thoughts around in my head, trying to put myself into some category that would give me direction. We seem to think that if we can figure out who we are, we will know what to do. I've nearly caused myself to go into a nervous breakdown about my major and my future, and that's when I knew I was letting myself worry too much. That's also when I realized I was PMSing.

Things in life come full circle. In all the reflecting I did, I could see how it has all been working. And this summer, learning about myself fell hand in hand with learning about God. That is where I found myself. For the past eight or nine summers of my life, I have gone to church camp or Kentucky Changers, and those are great times of retreat. But this summer, I have not found God contained by a week-long event. This marvelous understanding of grace and life itself is not a product of a summer program's spiritual high. It is the peace and joy found in rediscovering a mystery. I've learned that no matter how many doubts I have, there is an immovable faith within me that knows that God is real. I've learned that grace is a gift, and there is nothing I can do to change it. All I can do is accept the gift or decline it. This summer, I've learned that who I am, where I am going is defined by all of this. Call me crazy, but I am accepting this grace. And by doing this, I am not giving up on real life, but I am finally finding it.

Thursday, August 12, 2004

before the end of summer

Thank you, high school freshman English.

As summer draws to a close (looking back at my recent posts, this is a theme), I'm starting to think about what exactly the fall semester is going to bring. First, I'll have the First Year Leader business to deal with. [Note: That previous sentence is an understatement.] On the Monday before class starts, I'm supposed to have lab supervisor training. Class starts on Tuesday, and work starts on Wednesday. My schedule is one of the scariest things I've seen in a long time. (I'll address the other scariest thing I've seen in a long time momentarily.) Three days a week, my work/school day starts at 8:00 am and ends at 3:20 pm, and that includes one one-hour break. One day it starts at 9:30 am and ends at 3:20 pm. Another day starts at 9:30 am and ends at 8:30 pm. I do have a break that day from 12:15-5:30, but it is possibly going to be reduced by a tutoring job. I'm not exactly complaining. Afterall, I am the one who made this schedule, but I'm beginning to feel threatened by this disease that has taken over my mind and convinced me that I need to take on as much responsibility as possible.

The spending of money is getting ready to kick into overdrive. I owe this to two things specifically. One, lovely, lovely textbooks. I had forgotten about them in the midst of the terror that is my second, much larger problem and also the other scariest thing I've seen in a long time: my computer. The "lid" and frame around my screen is a big mangled mess. You know in the robot movies when one of them gets damaged and all the inner-workings that are supposed to be concealed by the protective and relatively attractive outside are exposed and dangling? That is what my computer reminds me of right now. The ol' Compaq is running comparatively well at the moment, but just yesterday it was only cracked. The rate of damage has risen expontentially, and I'm anticipating a fatal malfunction at any time. I have saved pictures and documents to a CD-R, begun the new computer search, and hoped for the best.

With all that stress and destruction having been addressed, I'd like to continue onto the real entry I was planning on composing. However, I feel that particular subject needs its very own entry. And I need to be doing some non-blog related things, so I'll do it later.

Coming soon: A hopefully more creative title for an entry about all the things I have learned during this seemingly insignificant yet profound summer.

Saturday, August 07, 2004

back to school nostalgia

I am at home. I've had a good time thus far. Thursday night was Jeri's in Clay, of course. Last night, Mom, Dad, and I hit the town for a little bit. This morning, I saw Sissy and Victoria for a little while, and then today, Mom and I did the Evansville thing. It has been so long since I've done some successful shopping, but today fixed that. I got two more books. *blushy face* I finally got some decorations for my poor, barren walls, but sheesh, that stuff is expensive. I've decided that I'm going to have some of my photographs developed and framed to hang. Maybe that'll be cheaper. Know that my motive for hanging my pictures on the walls has nothing to do with pride in my work; it's the fear of blank white walls and the lack of funds. Anyway, I did get a few decorative items including a clock and the much needed doormat (obviously not a wall-hanging). I also got a cute shirt and a pair of jeans. Oh, I found some good one-subject notebooks at Target for 39 cents a piece, so I stocked up. There is the extent of my school shopping.

I love school shopping even though the traditional sense of it kind of ends when you get to college. You just pick up in a notebook where you left off, and you don't buy new tennis shoes and underwear for the big debut. And I've always loved the first day of school. I know. I'm weird, but I'm used to it. But I do love it. And I got excited when I popped over the hill on Thursday and saw that WebCo had already started back. I wasn't prepared for it. There is such a buzz of excitement that surrounds the first day of school. And it's so weird that even though school is starting earlier and earlier every year, the weather still conforms. It doesn't matter that July hasn't been over three seconds, that first day of school morning has to be foggy. On the way home from Evansville this evening, I saw a cloud of fog hovering over a cornfield. To me, that is nostalgia.

Well, I'm kind of distracted, and I know that anything I say will be worthless.

Wednesday, August 04, 2004

the real summer

Today marked the end of summer course numero dos. It is hard to believe that I have already finished two courses, a total of ten weeks, and summer is almost over. But it seems like it is just beginning for me. Kind of. There are officially twenty days until school starts. There are two weeks until I will report for duty as First Year Leader. That is if I ever find out if I'm actually going to be one. *sigh* I'm going to be a little frustrated if it turns out I'm not needed. Not because I want so desperately to guide unsuspecting freshmen into the wonderful collegiate world. Pssh. I want my University Bookstore discount. I don't want to find out that I'm not getting 10% off when it is too late to order textbooks from half.com. Maybe I should go ahead and do that anyway. I need to do a little math to see what would be best.

The remainder of my summer is not planned. And I think I like it that way. I'd like to do some more reading, of course. I had more time to leisurely read this five-weeks, but somehow, time slipped right on by me and I haven't read too much. At least I've read more for pleasure than I have in who-knows-how-long. Just not as much as I had hoped. But enough to rekindle my love for books. I had previously riddled my wish-list with DVDs, but I've decided that if I'm going to spend my money, I'd much rather buy books. And for the most part, they are cheaper. That is if you buy used ones, and I am by no means above buying a book with an "English Department, Indian Hills High School" stamp-mark on the top. But what I need is a bookcase. A real one. I do very much so enjoy my "CD tower" from Target. It is a lovely piece of furniture, but my book collection has generously exceeded the shelf's capacity. That is a good feeling.

So what else will I do with these fleeting summer days? Well, I'm going home at some point tomorrow. I'll stop at my sister's and help her with a yard sale, and then I'll be on my way. I plan on staying there several days. (That means John gets to go on a trip. Every time I mention coming home, Mom never fails to remind me that I'm bringing the fish, too. I don't believe I'm going to forget him.) I don't know what I'll do while I'm there. Probably not much. I'm pretty sure my church is having a youth revival of some sort, so I'll more than likely go to that. I keep hearing about the new youth minister and that I would really like him and his wife (or is it fiancee?), but I haven't met them yet. So this looks like an opportunity for that as well. Mom keeps trying to schedule me a dentist appointment for Monday. (Aren't I too old for my mom to be making appointments? If so, I don't really have a problem with it.) But if I do get in, what a delightful addition to my time at home. I should be back here by Monday or Tuesday, if not only because I know that will be enough time there before I claw my eyes out. Upon returning, I guess I need to read Rocket Boys for the FYL gig (because Ken will care), and I know I keeping saying this but I have to revisit my Spanish book. The last thing I'm going to need this semester is starting 201 already behind.

Alright, well, I'm going to enjoy an evening free from the burden of homework, studying, and projects. There is one joy in not having something due the next day. There is another joy in not having a class at all that will require anything of you for an extended period of time.

Monday, August 02, 2004

to bring out the best

"So here's what I want you to do, God helping you: Take your everyday ordinary life--your sleeping, eating, going-to-work, and walking-around life--and place it before God as an offering. Embracing what God does for you is the best thing you can do for him. Don't become so well-adjusted to your culture that you fit into it without even thinking. Instead, fix your attention on God. You'll be changed from the inside out. Readily recognize what he wants from you, and quickly respond to it. Unlike the culture around you, always dragging you down to its level of immaturity, God brings the best out of you, develops well-formed maturity in you."
Romans 12:1-2, The Message

Sunday, August 01, 2004

hello, august

I've decided a couple things over the past couple days.
  1. I am isolated. I hardly see anyone down here during the summer. I don't mind being by myself, but for such long periods of time in the summer ghost-town of Murray, meaningful human contact is rare. I don't like that so much. Maybe if I had've been able to acquire a job, it wouldn't have been so bad, but it seems my summers are never right no matter how I spend them.
  2. I need a vacation. Something different. It's not that I feel like I've worked so much, so I need relaxing getaway. A change of scenery and a change of schedule would be much appreciated.
  3. I complain too much. (See bullets 1 and 2.) I really don't have anything to complain about. I've been doing enough this summer to keep me from being bored and not too much to make me feel like I haven't had a summer at all. But I have been going to class for two months and I'm restless.
Wednesday is my last day of class. I'm very excited. It is hard to explain, but it is almost like summer classes put more of a strain on things. Like during the school year, you have a full schedule of classes and other school-related things to attend to, and that is the normal, accepted way of life. But during the summer, it's as if you can have your three-month holiday as long as you show up for class every day. Kind of like getting a full night's sleep but waking up every five minutes. You still get close to eight hours of sleep, but it's constantly being interrupted. I don't know. See bullet 3.