So yesterday was really…

So yesterday was really pretty damn productive. Finished Hobomok, and an essay by Carl Sederholm on certain aspects of it -- much fun, because Carl is actually an advanced grad student friend of mine; this essay has clearly been developed for publication, and it's just really nice to get the sense that the essay-writing we do in class has the potential to *go* somewhere. Then re-read two major Derrida essays; I think they were slightly less confusing than the last time I read them. We'll see how well I follow the class discussion. There are times when I feel that I would adore Derrida if I just understood him a teeny tiny bit better. Perhaps. Although I already have a mongo crush on Roland Barthes, so perhaps I just better be careful of these French theorists...they could get a girl into trouble. Saussure is pretty seductive himself.

The essays were dense enough that they took much of the afternoon; I read a few stories for workshop and then it was 8 and time for Angel. What a fun show! It was a good season premiere and only made better by the fabulous Lord of the Rings trailer in the midst of it. So far, all lights are green on this movie; my fingers are crossed so hard they hurt hoping they keep it up. I curled up in bed afterwards and read the chapter in the midst of the Fellowship over again, the one where they're all in council in Elvenhome, and the reports are coming in from all over of how bad things are getting in the land, and they're trying to figure out what to do with the Ring that Sauron wants and that Sauron is willing to go through anything and anyone to get...and on the slim chance that you haven't read The Fellowship of the Ring (GO! GO NOW AND READ, YOUNG JEDI!), I will refrain from rehearsing the conclusion of that chapter but it's so good, so very good -- Tolkien just had these moments of unmitigated brilliance, when everything that he's been juggling clicks into place, and there's a small figure at the center, holding it all together... Damn, I want to be able to do that.

In the evening, I ended up unexpectedly on the phone with a friend, talking about some of my faults. Ick. Not the most pleasant of conversations, but he had good reason for bringing them up, and I think that at the least he learned some things about me, which isn't all bad, I guess. I hate having faults. I hate having 'issues', having 'things' in my life that I don't do well, don't handle well, that I need to work on -- especially the ones that are hard to work on, that I'm not quite sure how to work on. I think I must have very early on absorbed this sort of Heinleinian idea of the competent human -- y'know, the bit where his character Lazarus Long says, "A human being should be able to change a diaper, plan an invasion, butcher a hog, set a bone, comfort the dying, take orders, give orders, solve equations, pitch manure, program a computer, fight efficiently, die gallantly. Specialization is for insects." Somehow I took that and got from it the idea that I should a) be very competent at many things and b) deal with my damn issues and get rid of them. I'm not actually sure how b followed from a, actually. I'm actually not bad at a; there are a fair number of diverse things that I'm at least minimally competent at. I can change a diaper, comfort the dying, take orders (though I don't like it), give orders (I like that), solve equations (or at least I used to be able to), and some other stuff that didn't make it onto his list. I suspect I could do some of the things on his list if they came up. Maybe. If I had David to advise me on the invasion planning, at any rate. I do okay playing Diplomacy.

I'm wandering. The point is that I have some issues, that I dislike having them, that I wish they'd just go away, and that I'm, when I can, working on them. I'm stunningly bad at dealing with my finances sometimes; I just go into denial about bills and pretend they're not there, or that my income is something like double what it is. I have a tentative plan for being over the worst of it by Christmas, though (my friends may have to settle for cards this year :-), so slowly but surely, progress is being made. I guess I just have to hope that eventually I'll be able to get rid of all of these nasty issues in a similar way. Fingers crossed.

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