… wrap up the semester at Private University with an out of class-time scheduled final review for four sections. Public University ends classes in two weeks. I think I can. I think I can. I think I can. Not looking forward to the five (total) sections of finals I will be grading here in a week or so. But, I am thrilled for the end of the month. Uninterrupted reading, research, maybe a jaunt out of Big, Overbearing City for a while.
Interesting new reading on my primary author that delivers the rare gift of unique, cogent and lucid observations. Every time I really hunker down into a new piece of scholarship that fascinates me, I am disappointed that I can only ever read for so long before other responsibilities force me to set the book down. Any time I really engage my research I want to crawl into my cozy research hole and disavow the rest of the world. Given my continued enthusiasm for reading, writing and learning (I scoff at you, burn out!), I think my project would move much, much faster if I could really give into it and clear my plate of the teaching. I’d miss my students terribly, though. They have a way of keeping me closer to the ground, less cerebral in my daily life and of much better humor (not to mention keeping my social skills honed).
When it all gets to be too much, the teaching, the keeping up with the research, I usually develop a temporary obsession as a pressure bleed off in my down time. The current obsession takes the form of documentaries (NOVA, things on physics, space) and I’m working through Hanks’s From the Earth to the Moon. Current Public Transit travel reading: Brian Greene’s The Elegant Universe.
What does everyone else do to bleed off the pressure when their minds just shut down?