Tuesday, December 13, 2005

Yup, and now December is today.

A good day, too! Ordered pizza for a change--in fact, got it delivered. Another Lithuanian first. The boxes didn't read "Ginos" and Daniel didn't "make the call" and it came to the reception desk instead of "the guys upstairs" in dorm... but it was almost undergrad again. I'll admit it: I was trying to mentally transmogrify the paper piles in my office into poker and Braveheart (twice, in a row). It didn't work. All I could summon was a few twinges of guilt as the occasional student walked by the lounge... where fine, upstanding faculty members sprawled on leather couches, looking sheepish and using their ripped pizza-box covers as makeshift plates. Hmmm... remember Calvin, Hobbes, and their transmogrifier? I could probably use an upside-down cardboard box right about now.

*******

The end of an academic term always seems like some weird sort of vortex. I guess I've come at this from various angles over the years, but it's true. It's like when you pull the plug in the bathtub and the water lowers until suddenly a funnel appears and the rest of the water rushes out with a loud sucking noise. That last part always seems to happen twice as fast.

*******

Did I mention that Casey and I are thinking of moving into a new apartment, should we be able to find one? Apparently brand-new doesn't necessarily mean brand-name, quality-wise. It's not that the occasional leak in ceiling or window is that bad (unless you happen to have your entire American-exported library on your window-shelf--still feeling your pain, Casey), it's just that we're so far away from the action. Recently we overhauled our living-room layout--Anna and others insist it's too "modern." But we do all right, sprawled out on our respective couches (yes, lots of couch-sprawling, it fills in the gaps). Don't worry about us too much though: I asked Casey and even he admits the place is starting to feel more homey. Also, if you leave the windows open just a crack, there's no condensation.

*******

All of this to say that it's been an absolutely fascinating semester. Some months seemed to drag out forever (October), others didn't seem to want to show themselves (November), but the end of Semester Number One is now upon us. Sure, I have a hundred-some-odd hours of marking left (you were right Kate, never do the math... it feels better to exaggerate anyway :) but there's a strong feeling of accomplishment that's already beginning to build. Not to mention the grin that is at this point quite irrepressible: a certain someone is wandering around London as I write this. Ah certain someones :)

Anyway, the Master List of my Organized Week and I are currently locked in mortal combat. En garde! I've been using my powers to keep it at bay (its own powers are not to be underestimated), but this has been encouragingly easy to do, mostly due to my constant excision of list items: coupe! Or perhaps: fleche! (Adam? Is that the fencing term describing the move where you run past the opponent after launching off of your lead foot in an attack resembling an arrow? Just kidding: I already looked it up) But now I'm hopelessly entangled in a fencing metaphor, so we should move on.

Which means back to work. Rest assured, there is much more to come. Consider this a teaser-trailer for Prague, Austria, and a castle in the mountains. Ah the holidays.