Riding It Out

I got on my bike today for the second time in four years. The first time was two days ago. That may not sound odd unless you were once used to cycling upwards of 40 or 50 miles a day. I was, before I started my doctoral program. I rode a measly 11 miles two days ago and I thought I would die. My quads […]

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Me and the Boys from Bangalore

I was hours away from finishing the final qualifying paper, AKA comps, for my doctoral program. It was 10:30 p.m. and if I stuck with it, I could get the citations done before dawn. I was working on a big, graphic-heavy document and Word was acting finicky– I’d started getting messages that my disk was running out of space, which was pretty much impossible, I […]

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When I Decided to Unplug

Part 1  Going Deep I went cold turkey. Just, went onto Twitter & announced a week of being unplugged, didn’t blog or check email, logged into Facebook only once, to leave a message for my mother that I’d arrived safely in the land of the golden sun. (O.K., so I also Facebook-whined about the disappointing temperature, but after the pounding New York took this past […]

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Best Things December 2009

Rather than make resolutions for 2010, I’ve decided to keep track of the positive things I’ve done for myself each month. I’m doing this  for a couple of reasons. First, it’s a way of tracking progress or seeing a trend in my interests. Second, and maybe most important, it’ll force me to focus on the positive when I get head-down into work on my doctorate […]

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Beyond FAIL

So, who failed this past semester? That’s the thought that’s been wandering through my mind. Me, for teaching a couple of classes I didn’t think were great? My students, for being different from previous students? After some reflecting, I’m going to argue for a third perspective. The word fail is so harsh, so final. It feels lousy. It makes it seem like the best option […]

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In a Bubble

I surprised myself a few days ago. Not only did I create an account on a free online journal, I went back the next day and shelled out a whopping $20 for a pro account. The journal site itself, Penzu.com, is nicely done. It’s easy to use and there’s a big emphasis on privacy. But that’s not why I joined, not why I paid for […]

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Giving Thanks for Community

Thanksgiving day was so glorious weather-wise that my husband and I headed out for a long hike. We made a pretty steep climb to the top of a ridge paralleling the Hudson River. Although most people don’t usually pick November as a favorite month, I love how you can see the bones of the earth– the stark outlines of terrain– that show through the bare […]

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Put Down that Baseball Bat NOW!

It’s been a long time since I’ve felt this way about my teaching, i.e., not so great. Nothing’s horrible. My students seem to like me; I like them. There’s a nice feeling in our class. They work hard and we’re getting through the stuff they need to know. It’s just…not right. Like any good teacher, my first response to less-than-perfect teaching is to dig out […]

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What’s love got to do with it?

The other day, in my Writing Nonfiction class,  I heard myself say, “You don’t have to love, er, like each other, but you must honor and respect each others’ writing and processes of learning.” That word love slipped out before I could catch it and I felt a little embarrassed. It’s just not the kind of word we use in education. But isn’t that kind […]

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