12 March 2006

Stress Amnesia... Not All It's Cracked Up To Be

In high school, my friend Tara and I took turns taping Days of Our Lives. We generally only watched two or three episodes each week, but we got enough in to know who was sleeping with whom, which illegitimate children had been identified, and who had been written out of the will. Inevitably, every few months some beautiful girl blinked her eyes open in the hospital and tearfully sighed, "Who am I? How did I get here?" The handsome doctor at her bedside would reply, "I don't know but I'll stay right here until we find out." If she was lucky, she was claimed as the daughter of the town tycoon and was immediately transferred to a private hospital room set up in the family mansion. If she wasn't, she ended up in jail after the hot cop puts it together that this beauty is really the serial killer who has been on a spree in three neighboring states.

So I'm here rubbing the crap out of my eyes and trying to remember what the hell happened the past two weeks. Since I look too much like my parents to have actually descended from a bazillionaire from Buffalo, I really hope I didn't do anything too nasty during those missing days. And anyway, where's the hot doctor that's supposed to help me figure all this out?*

Based on the stack of papers on my desk, here's what I think I've been doing. Seems my students are reading Tristram Shandy at the moment and not doing so well. I've printed out pages from Cliff's Notes so I don't think I'm doing too well with it either. I have a sneakin' suspicion that they're working on a midterm that's going to be a real bear to grade. Wish I knew what moron decided to assign a take-home essay exam. There are some emails suggesting that I've been proofreading final copy of a newsletter that needed to be at the printers about a month ago. It's rather alarming that they let me make decisions about comma placement in an altered mental state. I'm also finding evidence of at least two conference papers that may match up with two travel reservations. It kind of makes me laugh to think that I'll be doing two conferences in two weekends, while grading those essay exams and explaining how Locke's concepts of time and duration apply to Tristram Shandy. Yeah, kind of makes me laugh... when it doesn't make me cry...

So, based on my highly scientific investigation, I think I've been too darn busy to breathe. No wonder I have a bit of a stress hangover at the moment. I think this little stress bender has been a nasty one.

But, there are two little words that are currently making it all better... SPRING BREAK. Five whole days with no lines at Starbucks, no jabbering of undergrads in the library, no lectures to give or papers to grade. Five whole days stuck in my cage at the library... ahh, does life get any better than this?

Yes, I'm being serious. That's how pathetic I really am. (See the matching SPRING BREAK avatar? Yep, Leslie the hipster library chic...)

But, since I'm resurfacing into the land of the living, I should post about knitting. Now, I know you're probably shaking your finger and telling me that if I've been too busy to wash dishes for three weeks (unfortunately this is not an exageration... very, very gross), I've been too busy to bust out the yarn. This whole work before play thing is really over-rated. Knitting before washing dishes... always.

Pattern: Crazy Aunt Purl's Co-Worker Scarf
Yarn: Lion Brand Wool-Ease Chunky in Denim; 1 skein
Needles: 10 1/2 Clover Bamboo circs
Date Started: Sometime in the stress daze of February '06
Date Ended: 9 March 2006
Notes: I changed this up a bit due to the difference in yarn and needles. You know, you have to take into account the little things if you're going to be a real knitting pro. So I cast on 20 stitches rather than 16 and did 3 seed stitch stitches on the edges. The center pattern is pretty simple: YO, K2tog all the way across. I didn't even block this because can you really block 80% acrylic and I liked the look of it "as is" right off the needles. Phreny the Phrenology Head likes it too, although he doesn't get to keep it. And the yarn, hey, I'm a simple girl. I like my yarn snobbery, but sometimes you've just got to get down with the Lion Brand. Wool-Ease ain't so bad. The heathery colors are actually rather pretty and the overall feel isn't too plastic-y like some acrylics. A quick and dirty gift that only took a few episodes of CSI and used up some of the stash.**

So now that my former life is coming back to me, there's something bopping around in the ol' rusty brain about the Knitting Olympics and a need to post a wrap-up summary of all my lessons learned. Sounds an awful lot like an essay exam, but I guess that's what SPRING BREAK is for after all.

And as the say, like sands through the hourglass, so go the days of our lives...

*For those of you who are curious (mom), the handsome doctor in my life has been doing night shift rotations so I'm not counting on getting help with figuring out much of anything. There's a law that residents can only work 80 hours a week, which means the hospitals try to only schedule them for 100 hours. Our last hot date involved a 30 minute debate on who has put in more work hours recently. The winner got to pick the movie and the choice for take-out. He beat me by 4 hours so we got Chinese and fell asleep after the first 15 minutes of Zorro. They didn't have that kind of romance on Days of Our Lives.

**Yes, I said STASH...no purchases yet. If I snuck into a yarn shop while in my crazed state, I haven't yet found the receipts so I'm guessing I'm still safe. Marcy's Ides of March are fast approaching. Will I cave? Will I finish my conference papers and decide to celebrate? Only time will tell...

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