Oh my GOD the semester is almost over. How did that happen? I have a test to go for each class - well, three tests and a takehome essay thingy - and then I'll be done by, I believe, a week from Wednesday. Yesterday, for the first time since September, I chose my own book to read
I have two tests in a row with nothing but essay questions on Thursday. My hand is gonna fall off. So that should be interesting.
Almost all of my classes have been really great this semester, though, and I'm glad of it; I had a rocky couple of semesters beforehand, but I feel like I've finally settled in at USM and gotten the hang of the place. One of the classes has been a disappointment (Irish Literature and Culture - look, I may not be an expert, but I'm pretty sure that writers in Ireland in the first two-thirds of the twentieth century wrote more than just poetry, okay, and it would have been great to have read some of that too), but the other three (the class on Oscar Wilde I've mentioned a dozen times, Soc 101, and Word Wars I and II) have been really interesting and enjoyable. I've learned
a lot, more than I have since maybe my second semester at SMCC a couple years ago. It isn't the first time I've taken a Soc class, but it is the second try at it I've had since starting college, and here's a statement of the obvious: the professor makes all the difference in the world
. The first one at SMCC was a dry asshole who was always right and graded us on our fucking notes. I withdrew from the class like a few weeks shy of the end of the semester because I just couldn't take his shit anymore. This one, though, was an awesome woman who'd been teaching Soc in various branches for years, gave really absorbing lectures, and took care to give us different viewpoints, even unpopular ones. ESPECIALLY unpopular ones, so we'd have them to think about along with the standard stuff.
The professor from the World Wars class is one I had last semester for Western Civ; I really like him and his dry sense of humor and the fact that he is so grounded in the past that he calls photocopies "mimeos." It's endearing. And he, too, made the effort to include different perspectives on events. I think I'm going to miss him next semester.
The Oscar Wilde professor is teaching a class on gender and sexuality theory next semester that I'm taking. He assigns a lot of secondary essays written in Tiresome Academic Speak that make me want to hang myself, but next semester I'll be more prepared for it, thanks to having had the experience in dealing with it in this class. He taught the primary texts we read really well and I learned a lot about each of them, as well as the time period and the social and literary contexts for them. I look forward to taking another class with this guy; those stupid essays are worth it.
I look forward to next semester, in which I am also taking an English class about medieval popular culture, which should contrast nicely with the history class about American pop culture (note to self: talk to awesome history prof about possibility of History minor; might as well do something with all the history courses I keep taking), and have finally managed to sort my schedule out to get a class I need for a fine arts credit for a core requirement, Acting for Non-Majors. This is the third semester in a row I've tried to take that fucking thing, and I almost didn't get it this time around, except that someone was kind enough to drop out and I snagged their spot.
Of course, first I have a vacation, and I look forward to this too. Things to do during vacation:
* Work just enough to feed myself and pay bills; I should get either tax refund or student loan money or both in time to sort out my rent for next year, and I'm sick of wasting my winter vacation working enough to wreck it but not enough to cover rent. I need to start looking for a job where I can actually get full-time hours.
* Make dent in pile of books I have accumulated this semester. Start with Sweet Valley books; just because all the thinking and analysis has been fun doesn't mean my brain doesn't need the rest.
* Also dent stockpile of movies. Which got really big really fast.
* Rewatch The Thick of It
and write discussion posts for episodes. Vacation should be long enough for me to do about one a day. Maybe this will get people to give it a try.
stuff: get rename token for Javert and start playing him again now that I have figured out how to go about it a bit better; debut Jonathan after approval; either get things started with Clay or suck it up and delete him; let Cal and Applegate do as they will, within reason, and set up some threads I've been wanting to do for them.
. . . no idea how much of that I'll actually do, but I'm excited that I'll have the chance to do it.