So, I ordered business cards from the university because I thought it’d be cool to have business cards to hand out when I am out and about either for school or not. I mean, the nature of the degree will have me out and about interviewing folks about their work, their lives, and their opinions/views. I think it’d be a nice touch to be able to hand them a card that says, “Oh hey! I say I am a student of USC, but here’s a card that confirms that.” Good idea, right?
Yeah … right … I think …
I don’t know what I am going to do with so many of them …
It’s been about a week. I’m just as exhausted but there is one thing new.
I had always been a bit of a gamer. When I was really young (maybe 12?), I often pleaded with my mother to be allowed to go to the corner arcade where I tried (and usually failed) to play Galaga. I never really hit the top-five scoreboard, but I sure had fun trying. I guess it was a sign of things to come.
Fast forward to when I first discovered the Internet, I also happened to discover Internet gaming. It started with text based and 8-bit local games like Digger and online games like MUDs (or Multiple User Dungeons). I moved on to Diablo and Starcraft later on and ended up with things like Unreal Tournament, Baldur’s Gate, and Sacred before my friend Jenny turned me on to World of Warcraft (beyond which, there was no looking back).
I am still a gamer. I wouldn’t call me a hardcore gamer because I do have other interests. I mean, I am blogging again which is not something I think I’d be able to do were a hardcore gamer. I think a hardcore gamer spends as many of their (free?) waking moments as they can playing games. I like to think I am not like that. It’s worse now that I am in school. I don’t have as much free time as I might have otherwise.
The thing is, though, that I’ve rediscovered the first MUD I ever played: Discworld MUD. It’s a text-based role-playing game that is based on the novels of Terry Pratchett. I have to admit I’ve never gotten around to reading all in the series. That’s bad. And I should stop calling myself a reader since I can’t even work up the motivation to read the books one of my favourite games is based off. But while I enjoy playing the game and envisioning my own little world within which I exist, I really am not all that enamoured with the story. Is that bad? I feel like that’s bad.
Anyway … here I am again and it’s August 2016, and I am sorely addicted to two games. Not a happy place to be in if I am heading into an intense graduate degree program. Although, my student advisor thought it was a good thing to help me do self-care. The gaming will be stress-relief for those days when I just so burned out on reading and learning about things like gender disparities and neurobiological developmental delays.
Right now, though, they are only serving to help me procrastinate finishing my final two assignments of the semester. I must do better. /nod
It’s nearing the end of a semester and I am feeling the burnout.
University of Phoenix did their stuff using weeks and they did 5 weeks of intense everyday activities and no synchronous activities. There was a ton of group work and you had to engage asynchronously at least 4 out of every 7 days. It was quite annoying; especially when group members waiting until Saturday morning to engage with you on stuff that needed attention all week. For me, in the latter classes especially, that was reduced somewhat by the presence of my dear friend Jenn. But it still didn’t make the experience any less annoying. I was happy to be done with that whole mess.
I was remembering my brief stint at Colorado Tech online with it’s once-a-week live sessions with fondness. Enter the University of Southern California Virtual Academic Center and my attempt to do a Masters in Social Work. ( I know right. Such a drastic change from everything I’ve done up until now. ) I thought it’d be great to have a full 15–16 weeks worth of once-a-week class time with the other students and the possibility of less group work.
Sure, there is less group work, and class time is awesome ( when there isn’t a ton of noise outside, I’m not tired, and Rusty isn’t whining to go out and play with the other dogs ), but the intense schedule is maddening. I have two classes on right now. On any given week, I have about 5–10 pieces of reading to do for that week’s class plus right now, I am working on a group presentation and an individual paper as final papers … due in about 3 weeks. I haven’t even started the individual paper yet because last weekend was a quiz that took altogether way too much out of me and the presentation where I felt like I had to go learn everything all over again just to be able to add my stuff in.
I am tired. I have 3 weeks left … nay 2!!! And I am so very very tired right now. I don’t know how I am going to manage when I have 3 and 4 classes in a semester.
This election cycle has been more exhausting and traumatising than any that I can remember. Not even our most violent elections in Jamaica come close to how traumatised I am right now and we still have another 4 months to go before it’s over.
I feel beaten down and sore. There is so much violent rhetoric everywhere and nothing anyone says can be taken on face value. No one is trustworthy and everyone is corrupt and a liar. Some more so than others until you talk to someone who actually supports that one and then … not so corrupt. It’s exhausting. The number of media houses who are willing to examine this race from an objective perspective is slim and people stick to their preferred outlets even when they know how biased they are. I really wish that the public was more discerning than they are.
I don’t even know how I got so gung-ho about voting either. I haven’t been this interested in voting since I was first able to vote as a young adult in Jamaica. And that was a pretty disappointing experience. I voted for a woman I thought would have more interest in contributing to bettering the community than anything else. Boy was I disappointed. Whatever progress was made was invisible to me and it tainted my view of politics and government for years afterwards.
As I grew older, though, it became clearer to me that politics was less about me and more about community, the most needy, and optics. And it is that last bit that poses a conundrum for me because I am of the opinion that it really should not matter what people think of you, but at the same time I am very much in favour of not behaving like a complete numbskull in public either. Which isn’t necessarily contradicting stances, mind you. One can be one’s true self without being an ass so long as one is not actually an ass.
And this brings me to this whole 2016 election. We’ve got an ass and a hardass as choices. I dunno … it’s kind of shitty that the one year I decide to be good citizen, my choices are between Tweedledum and Tweedledee. And while I am of the firm opinion that one of these is worse than the other (and I am not here to say which that is), I really am tired of the way in which people have taken these elections and turned it into an excuse to belittle one another, alienate one another, and shut one another down.
As someone on a friend’s Facebook thread said, this election season is way too long. Most marriages can’t last with this level and duration of vitriol. Why are we doing this to ourselves?
It’s been so long since I actually wrote here that I didn’t even realise when the site went completely dark and I don’t know how long it’s been dark. I sort of doubt anyone else noticed either. Blogging hasn’t been a huge focus of mine for so long that I don’t think anyone comes here anymore. Nevertheless, this morning I was inspired to blog again. I don’t know how long it’ll last, but I guess that’s part of the benefit of having a permanent place of my own. No pressure.
I’ll save today’s post for tomorrow or so when I’ve had a chance to proofread the brain-dump that it is. I just wanted to peep in and see what’s been happening here (which is nothing).
Gotta love those 500 errors. You never know what it means but it sure does give a nice boost to the ego when one figures it out and can fix it.
Lots of good things happening for me this year. I’ll expound on that as the year moves on; some of it I can’t talk about just yet, but you’ll all know when the time comes. I promise.
It’s already almost the end of January. It is just me, or do the years just seem to go by faster now? I came to the blog to just make sure that things were as I left them and realised that I hadn’t posted in a month. There was a time when I posted multiple times per day. I don’t have much of an explanation other than social media is taking over our lives. ? I spend a lot of time on Facebook. I am trying to do better at that because Facebook is truly a time sink of the worst kind. I want to spend more time on Medium, or in Pocket, or even reading or writing offline. It hasn’t happened yet. But it is a new year – maybe I’ll manage to discipline myself better this year.
So, Happy 2016 to those of you who still read this blog. I’ve had tons of ideas of how to revamp it but none have really taken … yet. We’ll see what 2016 holds.
Of course, that’s going to be harder than ever what with me getting into USC for a Masters in Social Work. It’s the full time, 4 semester program too. I may not have time to scratch my ass much less blog. We’ll see though. One never knows.
That’s my good news of the month, by the way. ? I struggle with the notion that I am too old for a masters degree now and I’ll be paying off student loans when I’m on my death bed. Meh. I’m gonna do it anyway. It’s a calling. One I missed in my youth and one I refuse to give up on again. It might be too late to be a forensic psychologist, but I sure as hell can still be some kind of mental health practitioner. ? More on that as the year unfolds.
In the meantime, I’m heading back to my television where I am currently running Criminal Minds marathons.