the trick is to keep breathing
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Below are the 10 most recent journal entries recorded in the "ericflee" journal:
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wow, am I still blogging?|
Even though my reader base on this blog may be gone by now due to my perhaps annual post, I still decided to write a short post to document this important change. I have news to report--I just got a postdoc in California (at UC Davis) doing some fluid flow modeling in plants. Woohoo! I start in September, so I have to finish up everything at Cornell in the next few months. It's gonna be a lot of work, but I think that this new job on the horizon will provide the motivation to do so.
I think that it is time for a change; I was starting to think that life in Ithaca was getting a bit stagnant and had lost the spark that it once had.
I've never been to the west coast, but I've heard people are super cool and say like a lot. Maybe there will be good (americanized) Mexican food again too. Oh, how I have missed you, sweet chimichangas.
I'm so angry at this insurance agent! Completely furious, in fact. I got in a bike wreck (when a car hit me) a couple of months ago, and now they claim they have a witness saying that I was riding on the sidewalk before I entered the road. I know that this is not true because
1) I'm pretty sure there is not even a sidewalk at this intersection
2) I never ride on the sidewalk with my road bike. Ever.
But now he says that he's only paying 75% of the bike's cost because of it. I think that it's an arbitrary number, and I'm guessing that insurance agents can't just make up a number like this, since I was issued no ticket for riding on the sidewalk, while the car that hit me was issued a ticket for "failing to yield".
I want to check the intersection again to make sure that there is no sidewalk there (as I think), but otherwise I want to talk to this supposed witness that they have.
It's not even that it's that much money; I just hate when people lie. There are various scenarios going through my head of how this guy got the info on me riding on a sidewalk, but I'm guessing that he asked a leading question to the witness, who just agreed with him. ARGGH. Why???
More freecycle excitement|
Most of you have probably heard of Freecycle, and in fact, I think that I posted about getting cool stuff on it before. My best finds so far have been a hybrid bike, a set of cross country skis & boots, and most recently, a Christmas tree stand for our house's tree.
I decided to give back to the community by posting an old computer that I recently replaced.. it runs windows 98 and is really slow, but this didn't stop the masses from wanting it! From my ad, I've gotten tons of responses, varying from this sad note:
Hello again. I know I already wrote you once, but I wanted to hurry and try to this much more urgent note (never mind how she sent this note if her computer really had crashed)
to get it sent out before you got too many replies on it. So now I want to
write and explain better and why I would like it. I am a stay at home mom with
three children and my boyfriend is the only one working, and they haven't had
much work for him so for a 2 week pay check he brought home $104.00. And all
my oldest daughter has asked for her birthday and Christmas were a computer
to help her with her schooling. So if you still have the computer I would VERY
much like it and it will be greatly appreciated. Thank you!
I AM INTERESTED IN THE COMPUTER MINE CRASHED PLEASE LET ME KNOW IF YOU STILL HAVE to the modern chatspeak (complete with a 'ty', which I don't even understand)
Hi I am very interested n this 4 my daughter ty I couldn't decide for a while, but I eventually chose to give it to another graduate student who was looking for a computer for his son. Maybe out of empathy for fellow grad students. I wish that I had twenty of these things to give away!
Current Location: Temporary office to avoid asbestos!
Current Music: Janis Joplin
So I haven't written in ages. I've been alternating between feeling pretty down and pretty happy lately. Down in that I failed my A exam a month and a half ago, and I can no longer get a doctorate; instead I'm finishing a master's thesis this semester. At first, I was shocked and disappointed, and I cried a lot; there had never been a disappointment like this in my-so-called-career. I knew that my research wasn't going all that well, but I guess that I just assumed that after spending 4 years at a university, there was really no way to fail. In fact, no one else in my class has failed besides me, so that made it all the more difficult.
On the bright side, I am excited to move on to new things, whatever they may be. I am happy to be done with a very frustrating research project; something that I had long ago lost passion in.
I've had to revise my long term goals.. while I had always planned on becoming a professor with a focus on teaching, without a Ph.D., I am limited to community colleges and high schools (I really have no desire to teach any group younger than that over the long term). I don't think that this is necessarily a bad thing, for I am thinking that I will be happier just doing what I really enjoy, which is teaching, rather than feeling obligated to teach at a research university because it would be beneath me to work at a teaching college. But then the options are so many! Different options include the following--
-Apply to community colleges : this is more time consuming because jobs are generally only advertised on the website itself
-Peace Corps : work abroad in teaching for a couple of years. The pro is that it's not hard to get into.
-Math for America/Knowles Fellowship : two cool 5 year programs which pay for a master's at columbia/bard/nyu (maybe other schools for knowles) and then are followed with 4 years of teaching math in secondary schools in nyc
-Prep schools in northeast : most of the older prep schools in the northeast offer 1-2 year fellowship programs
-TA in Qatar at Cornell?
-Something else completely?
My dad told me last night that teachers "teach because they cannot do." In other words, he thinks that my career interest is not a good one. He suggested that I work for the Nuclear Regulatory Commission (NRC) because the government is building a lot of nuclear plants in the near future. After he said that, he told me that I was free to ignore his advice. I'm glad he offered that option.
every once in a while, a song comes along that I just really get addicted too, and I listen to it over and over. this just happened to me yesterday when I discovered the first song on Sufjan Steven's Illinois album "Concerning the UFO Siting Near Highland, Illinois". I just kept listening over and over, certain that the song was exactly the right song at the right time. I actually got chills all over during one listen. I wonder if I'm the only one who does this, but I suspect not since there seems to be a repeat button on a lot of cd players.
I can think of three other songs that have had this same effect on me in the past:
Death Cab for Cutie-Brothers on a Hotel Bed
Margot and the Nuclear So & So's - Quiet as a Mouse
Pearl Jam - Release
The last one was because of the lyrics.. it really fit what I was feeling in high school. I'm not as sure about the others. Maybe I'll submit them to a psychologist.
Current Music: Sufjan Stevens-Come on Feel the Illinoise
It's finals week at Cornell, and I can hardly notice the difference. I just saw a girl walk by with a "Got Beer?" shirt. I overheard her say on her cell phone, "Yeah, let's totally get shitfaced tonight!", and then she giggled in glee.
Has another year come and gone already? Have my surroundings changed? Have I changed? Would I notice if I had? Am I warped because I've now been in a college environment for 8 years? Will I ever leave college?
Current Music: Air--Premiers Symptomes
Finally, the saga of the camera is over. After attempting to sell my camera on ebay, starting some time last month, I finally am done. My first bidder did not even contact me, so I contacted the next bidder after a week had passed (ebay rules), who agreed to buy it. However, I discovered to my chagrin that he had a shipping address in Russia! He thankfully agreed to pay extra for shipping, rather than the low price that I had foolishly advertised, assuming that everyone who used ebay lived in the U.S. After receiving payment from my new Russian buyer through some intermediary in Florida (don't ask questions: it was SKETCHY), I set about to mail the package this morning.
As luck would have it, this morning featured a charming 8 inch snowfall (and it's still snowing!). First, I went to the on-campus post office. Then, I realized that you can't use credit cards (of course, I had little cash). Then, I went on a mad search for an ATM, taking leads from strangers on the street, until I eventually found one that was my bank. After returning, the post office lady says, "Oh, russia? I'm sorry, but you must fill out a customs card. On the top of this lengthy form, it says something about the fact that "we have the right to open your package and search through the contents." As it's going to Russia, I'm certain that the authorities there will take the opportunity to do so. Actually, my friend from Colombia told me that nothing sent through the U.S. Postal service ever arrives in Colombia because the postal workers steal it. I wonder if this is true in Russia.
Anyway, next, the woman at the post office inquired into my choice of box: "This isn't a wine box, is it?" I pleaded with her, saying that it was not. In reality, it looked a lot like a wine box, and I'm not entirely sure where it came from (I just found it lying around the house). The good news is, I am finally free from this camera, which took ages to sell. I almost don't care if some Russian postal worker steals it.
oh, how I love the south|
This is from my dad (I think in a local newspaper)--
"Debra Jackson said that she likes shopping at the Dollar Palace because it is convenient and casual.
'I don't have to get all dressed up like I'm going to Walmart or something', she said."
Current Music: bjork - debut
|The CD that I cannot live without right now: Ratatat Classics
|I've discovered that I really like the feeling of being hungry.|
I feel like I'm lean, without stuff to slow me down. Maybe I could outrun a cheetah if I tried.
Perhaps it's the latest in a series of neurotic leanings.
Perhaps I'm insane.
Current Location: My office
Current Music: Band of Horses
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