Well, I’ve had a relaxing few hours. In another life, they’d have counted as life-maintenance-work – i.e., the stuff you gotta do to keep on going. Dishes, laundry, shopping, bills, those sorts of things. But here in law student land, those become absolute pleasures; you have a physical task to do, you do it, it’s done.
This is very unlike most elements of my current life, where it’s hard to say whether you’re “completing” something. Even if there’s some kind of deadline (which is usually mutable), in the time leading up to the deadline you can always do more, prep better (but not over-prep), and then, once the deadline passes, you wait a heck of a long time (usually) to find out what the result is, and/or what the *ultimate* disposition of any legal matter will be. Sometimes sentencing is only the beginning.
Law school parallels this as well. Prep for the class, there’s always more, until the exam is done, after which you’re already deep in other classes before you find out how you did.
It’s not an environment that allows for easy self-assessment, in that it’s sort of like juggling. You just concentrate on the next toss, with some idea of what’s coming up. But the next toss must be done before anything else. While you’re in that cycle, you’re not spending a lot of time thinking about your last toss – better or worse, it’s done.
Thus, it’s so nice to break out of LS mode and simply do small things and have them go away. The jacket is sewn, the letter to a friend is sent, the bike tuned, the clothes washed. Not that there won’t be letters and jackets and bikes and dirty clothes in the future, but I don’t have to wait and find out about the result of my actions. They’re right here, I enjoy them right now.
I realize this must seem like an odd thing to blog about, but, well, there you have it.
At some point last night I got in touch with an old friend, Thinks Before She Speaks, and we did some chilling, some thinking, and some speaking. She gave, as always, good advice. Sometimes I worry that I’m too harsh in my assessment of things, so when getting advice, it’s nice to be able to tell your adviser a version of something that’s favored against whatever position you’re actually taking (i.e., you tell the story in a way that exaggerates your biases while minimizing others’ culpability) and then still have someone you respect find that yeah, your “harsh” assessment isn’t so harsh after all.
Is that even a sentence? I wonder. But not too deeply.
We now have a pirogue date sometime in the near future. Her old friend (the Artillery Woman) ‘s mother sent a batch. So I’ll be drawing on all my western European skills to come up with good preparation ideas.
My apt. has been hopping lately, and it’s caused me to reflect that I’ve now spent the majority of my adult life in non-owned housing (and if we count mortgages as “not owned,” then the amount of time living in owned places is 0).
The number of places I’ve lived is still greater than the number of years I’ve been doing this (i.e., the average amount of time I’ll spend in a given place is still less than one calendar year.) A well-off ex of mine used to give me shit about selling off my library, but when you live like this, there’s not much choice.
Apt. living has an odd dynamic to it. You’re intimately aware of your neighbors, but often do not know them at all. I wrote something about it a few year (7) back, and thought I’d repost it, with some small revisions.
When reading this one aloud, it’s easy to, by inflection, indicate that the first line of he poem means something like - the postcard has “The weather’s fine here,” written on it, and it’s signed “Upstairs.”
The Postcard Pinned to my Door Reads:
The weather's fine here.
Now that it's spring, I haven't heard the pipes clang
as you whap your sole against your radiator's regulator,
nor have I heard your evening curses, percussion
of implements in mixing bowls and the crescendo
of pans clattering into your sink
as yet another omelet goes awry.
In fact, it's been rather quiet lately, and I wonder
if your excitable dog is dead, kenneled
or has been educated.
Its been weeks since I've abandoned playing The Clash
at full volume over his yapping, and even then,
five minutes later, I'd just hear The Dead Milkmen blaring back.
How is it we've never met?
I've often thought you might be the blonde
with the terrier, whom I saw one day reading Keats
in the laundry room, and for that alone, never
called management, even during your midnight
Valentine's Day bash – all those hard paired heels clacking. . .
though I suppose, in an odd twist,
you could be the matron with the poodle.
Why are you home alone recently,
always by six, in for the night?
I flip the postcard; a picture of Roman storied-apartments
recently excavated from under a volcano's flow.
Bright frescoes, some ledges, little clutter.
Plaster cast from an ash hollow, a gecko drapes
his underbelly over a pear in a wicker basket.
In the corner, a ladder leads up, out of the photo.
It's so quiet. What message are you sending?