Sunday, April 19, 2009

Some weekends are just like that, I guess

Really, not productive. So not. At all.

I've read for Survey this week, which means that I've technically finished my class reading for the semester. I do have some optional/recommended stuff to get through (i.e. finishing a novel of which I've only assigned a part, in case the students read all the way to the end, as I know some already have--not a problem, really, since I love this novel), but that's it. And after this week, the teaching itself is minimal: We're watching "Monty Python and the Holy Grail" for my Arthurian seminar next week; there will be exam review and exam in Survey; and "wrapping up" and/or conferences in Comp. So yeah, it's just about done.

Grading, clearly, Is Not Happening this weekend. Feh.

But I have this accursed Presentation. It's for a weekend event at the college, so it's not for students or faculty, and it's on sustainability--a subject in which I am interested enough to agree to do the talk, but on which I am not at all an expert. I'm not sure why my name was suggested to the organizer, but whatever. So I have to give a 45-minute talk, and I'm putting together My First Powerpoint, and I can't wait for this sucker to be behind me. I currently have a fairly long and irritating outline (I don't know why it's so irritating to me, but it is); a couple of books are stacked up on my desk waiting to be incorporated--honestly, I am probably close to finished with this thing, but I am actively avoiding it.

Part of the problem, I think, is that it feels intellectually dishonest, somehow. I'm not putting much work into learning about the subject--I have a general knowledge and I've read some books, so I'm not totally faking it, but neither am I being particularly scholarly. Yesterday I flipped through a book I've read before just looking for interesting facts to drop in. Yeah, I know--it's like the worst undergrad research paper techniques all arising from me at once. I do a Google search and don't even go beyond the first page of results. That kind of thing. Yech. I feel icky.

So, yeah, it'll be adequate, but weak. It's not supposed to be High Scholarly, or anything; this is not an academic audience. (And to be honest I have yet to see anything that is High Scholarly at Field. We do not have specialized lectures hereabouts. Sometimes this makes me sad. And when I actually do some scholarly work of my own--real work, not this lackadaisical halfassery--I realize that I miss using my brain in that particular way, and wonder how long it'll be before I've lost my research chops altogether.)

This post wasn't supposed to turn maudlin or self-pitying. Mostly I wanted to say that I've been a lazy so-and-so for two days, and this week'll consequently be a little stressful, but since it's the last really stressful week for a while (I'm deliberately blinding myself to the busy-ness of the grading-+-Kzoo-preparation period), I'm finding it difficult to alarm myself into activity.

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