Saturday, November 28, 2009
Busy, busy, Fun, Fun!
8:30 Meeting of a committee I'm on that gives away course releases and funds -- rewarding but tough decision-making and required some extra reading -- applications -- during the week
10:00 Colloquium on Indigenous Knowledge and its place in the Academy, presented by two academic colleagues and a First Nations elder as part of a series hosted by our Faculty (Arts and Humanities). Very thought-provoking, inspiring, challenging, and fairly optimistic. I love getting to hear our Elder whenever he speaks -- requires such a particular kind of observant listening which, in turn, makes me aware of how impatient our listening often is. He told a story, partly in the local native dialect (a variation of Coast Salish) and closed with a song, which he accompanied on a hand drum.
11:30 Zipped back to the car and headed off-campus to a quiet sushi place where I settled in to read the Agamben material up for discussion in the afternoon theory group. Managed to pick up some tea (Russian Caravan, loose leaf) in the specialty shop nearby.
1:00 Settled in with my colleagues for a two-hour engagement with Agamben's ideas. Again, really challenging, but it's surprising how some kinds of work can be hard enough to be exhausting yet instead cause such an energizing buzz. Part of the energy probably also comes from a recognition of my good fortune -- being able to gather with a few people who share my interests and my need for rigor. Gratifying today to hear one of the two or three students who attend this series speaking up -- tentatively, at first, but gradually realizing that her tentative ideas had real merit. It's so easy for me to criticize the academic world, and there's much that deserves criticism, but it also offers me rich rewards, and it provides me with a niche I missed before I ever knew what that niche might look like.
3:10 Managed to catch the ferry home where I hauled out some oil to try to de-clank the chains and cogs and gears and what-not that were seizing up on my bike, thanks to mud and rust courtesy of this month's deluge. Then a brief nap and some wardrobe-thinking so that I would be ready for
6:00 Back in town again to meet a friend and attend another friend's vernissage. She and two other artists have been renting a small studio, collaborating on a show. Many of the works were triptychs, each of the three artists having contributed one panel, and it was fascinating to see where the interpretations of the theme differed and where they overlapped. I ended up buying a painting which I'll get round to showing you later -- for now, I'll just say it's got me dreaming of Morocco. . . After viewing the show, my friend and I stopped for a glass of wine and a bite to eat, and then I headed home on the 9 ferry to pack because
I'm going to the opera (Norma) with Pater in Vancouver. Sadly, I've already missed one ferry, having realized just as I was ready to park my bike, that I'd forgotten the opera tickets! (I've always wondered what they'd do for Series Ticketholders who forgot/lost tickets, but decided I didn't want to test those waters). So now I'm back home, writing to you, and crossing my fingers that the 10 ferry from our little island might allow me to catch the 10:30 BC ferry at Departure Bay -- it's unlikely, but maybe if you're all crossing your fingers for me. . .
And in case you're curious, I'll be wearing this (Linda Lundstrom, black velvet dress) to the opera. If Pater's any good with the camera, I might even show you what it looks like on me. I'm packing red patent stilettos, classic pointy-toed pumps, and I'm packing the sparkly flats I showed you here. Not sure yet which I'll wear -- Pater will probably help me decide.
So that's what's happening around here -- I was feeling a bit stressed with it all, but I'm trying to remind myself that it's all fun stuff, and that if some other stuff (mostly household) doesn't get done, that's okay. No marking 'til next week, so time to have fun before I get sent to the corner with my green marking pen . . .
Now I'd better try to catch that ferry. And don't worry, this time I grabbed the tix. Have a good weekend!