Alas, I’m still very much online. Rotten habit. But this week featured an encounter of the strange kind that seemed notable enough, so here goes: Elle and I were sitting on the outside patio of a local coffee shop (not Starbucks, for a change), eating gelato and discussing relationships in Gilmore Girls, specifically those between Rory and Logan and between Lorelai and Christopher. For anybody who might have casually listened or overheard us and who was not familiar with the show, it might have sounded as if we were discussing actual relationships, real people. At the only other occupied table on the patio, a woman and a girl were playing a board game. When they packed up and left, the woman turned to our table and said, “this guy keeps texting me.” She said it completely out of the blue, and it wasn’t until after she’d left (while I just sat there like an idiot, Elle was enough on her toes to give some kind of reply) that I realized that the woman had probably thought we were talking about real people, perhaps even friends or coworkers, and now expected some kind of advice or input from us. I can’t really blame her–except for a few references to “plot” and “narrative structure” and maybe “dialogue,” it likely did sound as if we were talking about real people. English majors are weird like that.
For a few days now, I’ve been practicing the fine art of doing nothing. Okay, so there’s making breakfast and lunch and that kind of stuff, but for the most part I’ve been recovering from applying for jobs by reading completely uncanonized stuff. I’ll admit that I even consumed two and a quarter Nora Roberts novels–they really are well written, but predictable enough to be shelved before the heroine and the hero got it on in the third one I borrowed from the library. There, wasn’t that an elegant way to let you know that I didn’t actually spend money on trashy novels? If you’re into trashy (or well-written, whatever) romance novels, check out the site Smart Bitches, Trashy Books (thanks, Elle!). Very funny, very smart, and very comprehensive (I’m running out of veries here) site that reviews and comments on, well, trashy romances and absolutely refuses to apologize for any lack of literary content. My other reading material, less trashy, though purists might disagree, is Michael Connelly’s Harry Bosch series, currently the installment titled Angels Flight. It’s a safe bet that readers who like Sara Paretsky’s Warshawski series will like Connelly’s Bosch series, though the latter is quite possibly darker as it it consistently reveals corruption inside one of the institutions we tend to trust–the police department. Paretsky’s villains are typically powerful corporations or families, and while she sees her fair share of corruption in the police department, her heroine doesn’t nearly get as close to it as Connelly’s does. Comparing the two might make a nice paper…
Enough of that. Back to my novel, and I’ll be offline for a while.
Second interview today at let’s-call-it Brighton College with the president and one of the VPs. It was more like a pleasant conversation than an interview, and I take my hat off to them for the nice atmosphere. How did it go? All I can say is that it went well from my point of view. I’ll find out next week how it really went and then I’ll know for sure what I’ll be doing in the fall.
Here’s a summary of the last week or so: all signs support the notion that I will be able to continue at my present place of employment for another year. My name is even listed online next to the courses I’m scheduled to teach. However, I still don’t have a contract, which, I’m assured, is in the making. On the application front, I declined an interview from one of the colleges I’d applied to. On a similar note, I’m very close to withdrawing my application from let’s-call-it Drayton College because the workload would be absolutely insane, and while I love my job, I’d consider myself mentally stable. And just today, I got called back for the second interview round at let’s-call-it Brighton College. This second interview round makes me nervous. It means things are getting seriously serious. I’m happy that I’m in demand, but I also feel like I’m thrown off balance. Perhaps that’s what happens when nothing happens for weeks or months, and then they all call at the same time. Hmm, not to sound too smart here, but it’s pretty much what I predicted a few weeks ago. But, to be honest, I played the role of my own Cassandra and didn’t really believe it–it was an expression of hope rather than a conviction of things to come.
I haven’t been posting for the last few days because, frankly, I didn’t feel like it. There was also the bit about not having any particular news, other than: I did go to the interview on Tuesday. It went reasonably well, but I don’t expect an offer, and if I received an offer, I’m not sure if I’d want to accept it–that’s as much detail as I’m willing to go into.
The real problem (and this has been brewing for a while) is that this blog has lost its purpose–for now, at least. I started it because I wanted a sense of accountability as I was exploring networking and other career opportunities, but in the last two months or so it’s all narrowed down to teaching. While I’m happy with that decision, it has had a somewhat reverse effect on the dynamic of this blog: instead of exploring, the focus shifted to a kind of narrative reporting, so there was a lot sense of adventure. Or perhaps, as it became increasingly clear that I would keep teaching in higher ed (at least for another year), a sense of security outpaced that sense of adventure. Long story short, I’m trying to decide what to do with this blog: should I freeze it “as is” and keep it as a record of these past months, or should I rename it and use it as a “regular,” everyday-kind-of blog? I have also considered beginning a completely new blog and linking it to this one–my favorite solution right now.
A very happy I stayed up very late Thursday night to type up final comments for students’ portfolios and drove everything out to campus on Friday. Completely exhausted but also giddy and relieved–felt just like a student after turning in that term paper. So tonight an even happier I will occupy the couch with a low-brow novel and a movie of the same kind. Tomorrow I plan to switch gears and prep for the interview on Tuesday. Sounds much more professional, right?
Incredibly, I received a call from a college today where I dropped off an application several weeks ago (see blog post “Roadtrip”)–they wanted to know if I was still interested in interviewing for the instructor position. I said yes because I still have not signed a contract for the fall anywhere else. But I also said yes because I need the interview experience and because I’ll have to give a teaching demonstration in form of teaching a lesson, something I’ve not had to do yet. So three good reasons to take advantage of this interview opportunity. Information about the demonstration, I was promised, would be sent by mail. Hmm, now I can already think about the lesson I could teach…most likely, though, the information they send will help me make that decision.