bintlog v2.0
Tuesday, February 28, 2006
Tuesday, chubby Tuesday
Celebrating Mardi Gras by eating paczkis. Lick paczki, stick directly to hips. Erg.

Saw a nice-looking grey-haired man on the El wearing a hat that said "Geezer Jock".
Sunday, February 26, 2006
Road trip
I woke up Saturday morning with an overpowering urge to go somewhere, so we took a road trip to Utica to see the bald eagles at Starved Rock State Park. I hadn't been to SR since high school, which is silly because it's so close (under two hours) and really nice. Much of the park is on bluffs overlooking the Illinois River, and it has several canyons and waterfalls. We did see eagles, too, though I think their season in IL is ending and they're migrating back north. We watched them perch regally (the wind ruffles their feathers and ruins the regal effect :)) and do a bit of fishing near the dam. Also saw blue herons nesting. Didn't get any pics of eagles, unfortunately - too far away.

Just now I did a google search for "b-goddess" to see if anyone else is using it - I'm very pleased to have a nickname that is entirely my own and would be very grumpy if someone else picked it up! "Lorelei", for instance - how many Loreleis are there in the world? But it appears that my name remains mine so far. Was amused though by the occasional link to my "what is a bint" page, and the various search engines that pick me up in their topical searches. Also found a search engine that picked up one of my few Voyager fanfics - it was searching on "gods" and "grass" for some reason. I reread the story for the first time in years. It's not terrible, I think. It made me kind of miss my old fandom, just for a moment.
Thursday, February 16, 2006
So apparently the can't-miss, any-moron-can-do-it protocol is too complicated for me. Why the fuck am I still here?!? I mean, I had a good job, I was well-paid and happy enough. Why couldn't I just read books about biology if I wanted to learn more?

Feeling pretty low today. Just when I thought things were looking up.
Friday, February 10, 2006
Could I *be* any more obvious?
Had a dream last night that I somehow decided to collect plants in central South America, then cursed my decision as the logistics became horribly, shockingly real. I had a geophysical globe with the route traced in orange from Chicago to something like western Argentina, and I needed to collect soon, but I just couldn't imagine how such a thing could be accomplished. Should I drive? Should I fly? How long will it take, and how much is it going to cost? My husband shook his head and said "You'd better just get in the car and go," and I started to think of all the things I wasn't ready for, like how do I cross the borders? do I have permits? what am I even collecting? do I have batteries for the camera? I guess part of my trip was also to include a visit to a Darwin Shrine in the Andes, and I saw myself there in a forest clearing full of hippies and campers, everyone leaving flowers or gazing fondly at a white shape that apparently was the shrine. The white shape was actually a giant version of the crazy humidifier I saw online yesterday. It all comes full-circle.

Hmm, anxiety about projects and collecting? Go figure.
Thursday, February 09, 2006
Scary stuff
There is a blog I read regularly (having become utterly addicted to RSS over the last year or so - how did I ever live without it?!) by a woman who, like me, is somewhere in the late beginning of a PhD program in the biological sciences. I enjoy reading her candid comments about prelims, depression (which I occasionally wonder if I also have), the agonies of feeling unmotivated and just plain not smart enough to be in school, etc. etc. Today, though, her post indicated that her department found out about the blog, and while she never names names and seemed the pinnacle of discretion, she perhaps said some things that another person took umbrage at, and now she's facing at best the displeasure of her department. Yikes.

Not that anyone actually reads this thing, but I have so many times wanted to rant about people and situations and classes and always have stopped myself for just this reason. Even comments made in very general terms, if their subject were to become aware of them, can be offensive or libelous (slanderous? never got those straight). Just when I think I should become more bold in my public opinions, I am once more reminded why I should just keep my opinions to myself, save them up until I get home and then regale my poor husband with them. I have no idea how so many bloggers (and other print-type-media people) strike a balance between tact and candidness and legality, but I think that balance is beyond my ability to strike. I will remain purposely vague and dull and safe because the last thing I need in my life is a situation that makes it even harder to pass my prelims.

Now I will go extract some DNA and hope that my students don't want to see me during office hours so I can go home early. Oh dear, can I get in trouble for saying that?

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