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My not-so-digital life

It turns out the physical world still very much affects me. I don’t mean that I still have to walk around or that I still bump into things and bruise myself. I mean that things like DVDs, papers, and Cubs tickets still muck up my plans.

I’m on vacation in Okoboji, Iowa, and I thought I’d packed well. I thought wrong. I forgot to return some DVDs to Blockbuster on my way out of town, and I’m pretty sure I’m now the proud owner of The Long Kiss Goodnight and the not-at-all-proud owner of How to Lose Your Lover. Yes, I could just send them back to the store from here, but that would require effort I’m not sure I have the energy to muster.

I also forgot that my syllabus for “Getting Started: GSIs Teaching Graduate Students,” a Center for Research on Learning and Teaching (CRLT) orientation I’m teaching in late August, is due next week. Luckily, my very helpful officemate, Jun Zhang, was kind enough to send me all the papers I’ve gathered in preparation for writing that syllabus. UPS delivers to this remote area where DHL and FedEx fear to tread, and my papers arrived today. I guess that means I’ll write a syllabus in the next few days. It seems strange to call a workshop plan a “syllabus,” but that’s what the guy at CRLT called it.

Two more things – Cubs tickets and more DVDs. I forgot to turn on my vacation status thing on Half.com, and someone bought my West Wing DVDs. Thanks, Chris, for getting into my apartment and sending those off for me! My eBay reputation stays unblemished this year; we can almost forget about that phone snafu from a while back Thanks to Nicki, I don’t have to worry about the Cubs tickets I also forgot in my apartment. She got them off via USPS to my cousin’s waiting family. I wouldn’t be able to forgive myself had I ruined a 3 year old’s chance to see a Cubs game. Unforgivable!

So what have I learned during the last few days?

  1. My friends are wonderful people (well, not learned, but reminded).
  2. My need to send and receive postal mail increases as my distance from my apartment increases.
  3. I do need more than my laptop to get work done.

I think I’ve sent and received more postal mail in the last 5 days than in the 5 months before that. Well, wait, I was the lucky recipient of a number of fantastic post cards. Maybe I deal with mail more often than I notice. It just seems odd to me that I’ve had to arrange for the delivery of so many items in the last few days. Of course, I haven’t even mentioned Harry Potter. I had the last book sent to my parents’ lake house, and it took until very late Saturday afternoon for the darn thing to arrive. 749 pages is too many. My eyes are tired, but my curiosity is sated.

Now that I’ve managed to blather on about mail for an entire blog post, I invite you to check out my Okoboji vacation pictures. You’ll be jealous!


One Comment

  • Rick Wash |

    As one of the of the other people teaching that same seminar, I too forgot about my syllabus. And I am on vacation in Wisconsin right now, so I won’t get to it for another couple of weeks. Oops.

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