Saturday, September 3, 2011

Salad, or Dessert? A Rochester Update

Salad, or dessert? The choice says a lot about you.

I am making a mango upside-down cake. Why am I making a mango upside-down cake? Because my graduate program is throwing the new PhD firsties a BBQ, with instructions to bring significant others, children, and, of course, a contribution of either salad or dessert. I am bringing dessert. Salads are quite nice. I eat and enjoy them. But the whole apartment smells like warm brown sugar and sweet, juicy mangoes. Which is why I’m making dessert.

After a week of classes, and twice that of TAing, I still can’t say much about the fancy art of PhD-getting. I am a photocopying expert. I have staked out a comfy chair in the graduate lounge. I’m tired. But not nearly as tired as I was as an undergrad, which has, perhaps, more to do with drinking less whiskey than with having less work. Hi Mom.

One thing I can say for certain is that I have come to believe in the sort of weird and whimsical fate that could shuffle a dozen or more people into and out of my life and leave me with exactly the ones I needed, but didn’t know I needed. The past eight months have worked out, somehow, with each difficulty and change forming together a new starting space that I think I will grow to love. It’s a new mathematics where the qualitative measures of the negatives magically fill in any lack with something that’s sweeter than space. To sum it up: this is where everything gets good.

In other news:
  1. We have added a raccoon named Jeb to our rotating schedule of woodland visitors. He likes to grab onto a branch that hangs close to the windows of our second-floor sun porch, and watch us play scrabble. He has yet to find a branch that will give him the vantage point to watch Doctor Who with us, but I believe that it may be his ultimate goal.
  2.  I have perfected the Swiss cheese omelet. Which is important, if not vital.
  3. Yesterday, I made note that my Christmas list consists of:
    •  Bob Ross’s The Joy of Painting, the complete DVD collection
    •  An electric hand mixer
    •   Fuzzy socks

And I realized these tell you everything you will ever need to know about me. There is no more.

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