Odd Impulse?

May. 17th, 2009 02:19 pm
arguchik: (Default)
Am I a weirdo, or would you have this impulse too?

I'm reading an essay by a fairly well-known scholar, about the Bodyworlds exhibit(s). In the essay, the scholar, as is very standard scholarly practice, refers to the work of another scholar who is considered an expert on this subject. "Other scholar" is Jose Van Dijck, Professor of Media and Culture at the University of Amsterdam. Now...seeing the name, what would you assume about "other scholar"'s gender? "Author scholar" assumed that Van Dijck is male, but in fact she is female. Here is a link to her faculty bio/profile, picture included.

I get that "Jose" is a male name in Spanish-speaking contexts, but it seems like one of the responsibilities of scholarship is to look into the matter before making assumptions and embedding those assumptions in a published essay. For that matter, I'm surprised that none of the peer reviewers caught and corrected the error. So I have a very strong impulse, right now, to send "Author scholar" a friendly, fact-correcting email.

Would you feel this impulse? Would you follow through on it?

FWIW, I probably won't follow through on it, because the issue has virtually no bearing on the content or import of this article; and I have no way of knowing that the error was made by Author scholar anyway. I feel like I would just come across as...that person. KWIM? LOL.
Interval 1 (9 mins running): Kind of a slog, especially the first 5-6 minutes. I felt old and mildly decrepit.

Interval 2 (2 mins walking): Phew! Stretched my arms and upper back. Yawned a lot. Legs started to feel a little bit springier.

Interval 3 (9 mins running): Nice, even, and smooth, like I could keep going at this pace all damn day if I wanted to. I felt like a "real runner" again, for the first time in a couple of years. I run an out-and-back course, and usually turn around about midway through this interval; today I had to go an extra block beyond my usual turnaround point (which means I got to that point about a minute faster than usual).

Interval 4 (2 mins walking): Legs felt a little twitchy, like..."Why are we walking, again? Who's idea was this? Can I speak with the manager, please?"

Interval 5 (9 mins running): Pure play! Legs wanted to sprint and frolic. When I got to the end of this interval, it was hard to convince myself to walk the rest of the way home.

That concludes week 6 of the plan. Next week, I'll be doing 9 minute running intervals broken up by 1 minute walking intervals. I really, really like this plan. It allows me to focus on the running rather than my watch. I do best when I don't have gadgets intruding on my consciousness too often. But also, by emphasizing time spent running rather than distance covered, it seems to short-circuit my tendency to push myself "just a little bit further" than I ought to go.

I'm amazed at the difference it is making, in my body and my mind. I am starting to feel more gregarious again, less inhibited or anxious about socializing with people. Better still, I am feeling genuinely interested in, and excited by, my academic work again.

Now I'm off to shower, and then to Essential Bakery Cafe to meet Sarah for our Destination: Yarn jaunt.

now what?

Jun. 12th, 2007 01:24 pm
arguchik: (classroom)
i turned in my grades yesterday. today i'm feeling crappy...sneezy and tired. little cold bug? allergies? i'm not sure, but i slept like a log last night, woke up late (for me--it was 9:30am), and now it's 1:30 and i still haven't lost that puffy-sleepy eyes feeling.

i accepted a job working as a TA for an upward bound class. the pay is decent, it's 12-15 hours per week, and lasts 5-6 weeks (from june 27-august 2). the class meets every day, but due to the 4th of july holiday and the two friday field trips the students will be taking, there's only one week that will meet for 5 solid days. there will be a total of 23 instruction days. it seems like a good gig. i'll earn some extra money, and i'll get some new, interesting teaching experience. upward bound students are high school students from local schools with low college attendance and completion rates. i'm nervous because i've never taught this age group before (14-18 years old), but i think it's important work, and i'm excited about it.

every day from 8:30-9:30 the whole group of students (and TA's) will meet for a large lecture class; then from 9:40-10:40 the quiz sections will meet. i'll be expected to attend lecture and lead one of the quiz sections, in which my goal will be to support what happens in the lecture. i'll also be paid for one hour of prep time per instruction day. this class is being taught by a woman who recently (?) finished her ph.d. in english (literature) at the university of arizona, with a primary focus in native american literature. she is also an upward bound alumnus, and is moving to seattle to take a tenure-track faculty position at seattle U. i'm excited to meet her and the other TA's, and to see what we'll be reading, how we'll be approaching the material, what kinds of activities we'll be doing, etc. i've been told that the course theme is "monsters in literature." LOL. it sounds like a blast.

but i have this lovely, lovely expanse of 2 empty weeks before that job kicks in. it feels so luxurious. i'm planning to crank on some dissertation work. but not today...today is for lolling...though i do have a strong urge to bust out some books i haven't had a chance to look at yet. also, in today's NYT there is an article about dog genetics that is giving me new ideas for one of my chapters. here's a provocative excerpt from the first page of the article:

Free of most of the ethical concerns — and practical difficulties — associated with the practice of eugenics in humans, dog breeders are seizing on new genetic research to exert dominion over the canine gene pool. Companies with names like Vetgen and Healthgene have begun offering dozens of DNA tests to tailor the way dogs look, improve their health and, perhaps soon, enhance their athletic performance.

But as dog breeders apply scientific precision to their age-old art, they find that the quest for genetic perfection comes with unforeseen consequences. And with DNA tests on their way for humans, the lessons of intervening in the nature of dogs may ultimately bear as much on us as on our best friends.

“We’re on the verge of a real radical shift in the way we apply genetics in our society,” said Mark Neff, associate director of the veterinary genetics laboratory at the University of California, Davis. “It’s better to be first confronted with some of these issues when they concern our pets than when they concern us.”

novel reading

Mar. 12th, 2007 09:03 am
arguchik: (meat chica)
finished marge piercy's woman on the edge of time this morning. what a fascinating novel. i really enjoyed it. i'm just jotting some notes about it here because i think i might like to write about it at some point. caution, spoilers behind cut )

class diet

Jan. 29th, 2007 09:09 am
arguchik: (jupiter)
i don't have a lot of time right now, but i wanted to post a link to this article about the cost of healthy eating vs. the buying power of food stamps. this phenomenon is one of the things i'm trying to address in my dissertation: the ways in which bodies (embodied subjects) materialize at the articulation points of various forms of hierarchically structured social difference. that's a jargon-y way of saying that systems of privilege and power reproduce themselves, ensuring continued privilege and power for the dominant group(s)--written in and on the very body of the classed subject. (could also be a raced or a gendered subject--and obviously these factors combine in various ways. nobody is only raced, classed, or gendered, after all.) in this particular context: economic class determines access to "healthy food," with lower economic classes forced by affordibility factors to eat food that's more likely to contribute to obesity, diabetes, cardiovascular disease, etc. the difference in embodiment, in turn, reinforces the privileged position of the "healthy" body. what would it mean, what would it look like, to resist this particular determination of embodiment and class privilege? it's an ironic question: in this case, resistance seems to require class privilege. or radical change...

ideas i would like to flesh out further...pun absolutely intended.

just heard back (via email) from my advisor about the prospectus draft i submitted to her, and she had very positive things to say. she said, "it sketches out a rich and exciting project."

well. it seemed rich and exciting to me, but when you've been agonizing over something for so long, and you're so wrapped up in it, it's virtually impossible to see it in a larger frame. later i'll be able to, but for now it is deeply reassuring and gratifying to hear (read) her words of support and encouragement.

it is still very "drafty," though, so hopefully she'll give me some advice about honing it. it's also way too long, at 30 pages.

(heh. i said "honing.")

on vision

Oct. 18th, 2006 09:27 am
arguchik: (jupiter)
yesterday was all about eyes and vision. i went to the eye doctor for that exam in which the optometrist dilates your pupils and then looks into your eyeball with a special scope. it turns out i have a small retinal anomaly in my left eye. in the lower left quadrant of the eyeball, the clear layer on top of my retina has detached slightly, forming a small bubble over the retina. my eye doc doesn't think this is a problem, i.e. it wasn't caused by trauma to the eye, and it's not degenerative. he wants to reexamine my eyes in a year just to make sure it's either getting better or staying the same, and not getting worse.

i've never had the pupil dilation exam before. i was not prepared for how screwed up my vision was, while the drug was still active. it took quite awhile to wear off, and it was unsettling to be so light sensitive, and so completely unable to focus on text or anything else close-up. my eyes felt bruised afterward, and they still feel a little beat up this morning. like they ran a hard race yesterday. what a weird sensation.

as if that weren't strange enough, i picked yesterday to purchase a digital camera. i ended up buying a canon sd-600. 6 megapixels, 3X optical zoom, nicely compact and user-friendly. unfortunately i had my eye appointment at 5pm, on my way home from work. wouldn't you know it? i got home, and i couldn't read, couldn't see small details. that meant i couldn't play with my cute new toy!

going to see electric 6 tonight. can't wait!

i decided to stay home and work on my prospectus this morning. i got up early to run, but was greeted by a few too many raindrops for my taste. so...i'm going to spend another hour or two on my prospectus and then hopefully head out for a run before i have to shower and get my fanny to campus.


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