I have my new computer! …

I have my new computer! (And I have e-mail at home, huzzah!, which explains what I'm doing typing at 5:45 a.m. (well, that and having trouble sleeping)). Will chat more once I get my tea ready...oh, I've missed being able to do this!

E-mail and tea,
e-mail and tea,
mornings are nicer and
Mary Anne is brighter as
the sky gets lighter
with e-mail and tea!

Okay, I'm back. I suspect there are some grammar problems in the previous paragraph, but I'm not even going to look at it again; I'll have plenty of those to contend with in the hours to come. Yes, grading again! But it's much more interesting grading individual research papers. It's funny; the papers are twice as long as the last batch, but it's so much more pleasant reading about 20 different topics in a class instead of 20 biotech papers (especially when almost all of them espouse the same very conservative viewpoint!); I'm not dreading the work nearly as much as I did the last time.

I am nervous about getting them done in time. I did a class over the weekend and started the second class; I said I'd try to have them back by Friday, so they could look over them before they handed in their group projects on Monday. Not sure that'll happen, though -- yesterday was also the deadline for Aqua Erotica, so I've been flooded with short stories to read. I read 30 of those yesterday! I finally understand why editors start just reading first paragraphs. I was still reading through every story, but really skimming the weaker ones -- and not because they weren't salvageable, but because by yesterday I knew I'd have enough good stories that the problem would be choosing between them and polishing them (thank the goddess) rather than bringing weaker pieces up to snuff.

Maybe the reason editors don't nurture authors the way they used to is not because of pressure from above (as the companies are bought by big corporate conglomerates) but simply because they don't need to. Oh, a fabulous story is still a rarity, but I think there are a hell of a lot more people writing good, solid stories (with plot and character and tension, oh my!) than there were in the 50's.

And I can hear Karen and Jed and Columbine and Heather wailing -- "ah, born too late!" Poor munchkins. Miniver Cheevy's, all. :-)

Hmm...do people know Miniver these days? Let me introduce you, just in case. He's quite a character -- you shouldn't miss him.

Miniver Cheevy

by Edwin Arlington Robinson
Miniver Cheevy, child of scorn,
Grew lean while he assailed the seasons;
He wept that he was ever born,
And he had reasons.

Miniver loved the days of old
When swords were bright and steeds were prancing;
The vision of a warrior bold
Would set him dancing.

Miniver sighed for what was not,
And dreamed, and rested from his labors;
He dreamed of Thebes and Camelot,
And Priam's neighbors.

Miniver mourned the ripe renown
That made so many a name so fragrant;
He mourned Romance, now on the town,
And Art, a vagrant.

Miniver loved the Medici,
Albeit he had never seen one;
He would have sinned incessantly
Could he have been one.

Miniver cursed the commonplace
And eyed a khaki suit with loathing;
He missed the medieval grace
Of iron clothing.

Miniver scorned the gold he sought,
But sore annoyed was he without it;
Miniver thought, and thought, and thought,
And thought about it.

Miniver Cheevy, born too late,
Scratched his head and kept on thinking;
Miniver coughed, and called it fate,
And kept on drinking.

Heck, who am I kidding? Not you guys, surely! You're undoubtedly quite aware that I've spent plenty of my days as Miniver myself. :-)

Well, this is the sort of nonsense you get when I type these entries at home, in the early morn. And now you're going to claim you missed it? Pfah! Pfooey! You can't fool me...

I suppose I should attempt a paper or two. You may find me back at odd hours during the day; I'll be working from home until 2 or so (then theory class, then office hours, then work at home 'til bedtime -- boy, this'll be a fun week! :-) and will undoubtedly be playing with baby pretty often. (And if you're curious about the specs, baby is a Macintosh (of course) G3, 64 M of RAM (need more), lots of hard drive space, built-in CD-ROM which is not nearly as useful as the missing disk drive that I'll have to buy, 14.1 inch screen, and absolutely beautiful (just like all babies). I got her used, but she's still awful purty, and I won't love her any less just 'cause she's been passed around a bit...)

One last thing -- good article at TIME -- the mainstream cluelessness lessens, apparently. Though they still have their moments, even in this article...why can't just ONE of these reporters read _The Ethical Slut_ first, before writing the article? Or hang out in alt.poly?

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