As everyone has already mentioned… Fall Break was last Thursday/Friday. Again, as everyone has already mentioned, Butler students generally head into the break with quite a bit of homework. In lieu of working on the last paper left over from the break, I shall blog about my vacation.
I went to Chicago again, thanks to the marvelous hospitality of my boyfriend’s family. I played quite a bit of mahjong — and even won three times in a row! (Though I inadvertently cheated the first time. No one caught me, but I didn’t know you couldn’t complete an eye with a tile from the center before finishing all chows/pongs. I also don’t know how to spell any of this.)
So Fall Break was wonderful. I did quite a bit of homework:
- discussion preparation for Financial Fictions English class (required a short, 2 page writing)
- gym project
- 7 page paper also for Financial Fictions
- 6 page working draft for Shakespeare — this I still have to finish for tomorrow…
- Project on non-Western dance in society for Theory and Philosophy of dance — if you are desperate for something to do, you can view my slideshow about Filipino dance
- other sundry writings, none of which I finished
Homework isn’t all business. This is probably my favorite Youtube video I found while watching loads of Filipino dances. The dance is Itik Itik, a “duck dance” which in its most entertaining version seems to require small children dressed in yellow. Watch the poor girl in the back; she just stands there crying.
I don’t know why, but I love that video. I’ve probably been writing too many papers. Despite all the work, I very much enjoyed my vacation. Now it’s back to campus! And for me, back to Shakespeare writing before studying for my Teaching Analysis of Classical Ballet midterm.
Fall Break is here! When I was a freshman, I called this Thursday-Friday respite from classes “Reading Break” and opted to stay on campus to catch up on my homework. Little I did know that no one actually reads during Reading Break — hence the title “Fall Break.” I rearranged my dorm room instead.
Sophomore year I went home, but plane tickets are expensive: Definitely factor in the cost of travel when looking at schools! Junior year I came full circle by staying on Butler’s campus to finish the bibliography for my enormous Irish Lit paper. This year? I think I’ve attained a balance: I am desperate with schoolwork. I have two papers, two presentations, and a gym project due the Monday after Fall Break. However, I’m going to work on that while I visit my friend’s family in Chicago. Balance. That seems to be the best way to live. Does this mean I’m growing up?
Anyway, it’s Fall Break, which means we must inject a little levity, right? Thus, I give you…
The last slice only fits when flipped face down.
Despite immersing myself in criticism of contemporary Irish theater and reader-theory, I managed to enjoy myself this Fall Break.
Adventures I had:
- Thursday–I tried to make sweet potato and acorn squash soup, but something went slightly wrong. It wasn’t bad. It was just exceedingly watery. I conclude that I much prefer hearty, lump soups to smooth ones.
- Friday–I bike to a nearby coffee shop. I actually went on Wednesday as well to meet my Irish Lit professor, although it was raining all day. My brakes tend not to work when wet, so my roommates were kind enough to drop me off/pick me up. But Friday I biked and blogged and read this and drank Earl Grey, which I just recently started to enjoy.
- Saturday–I baked bread in the morning and had dinner with my friend A–, who never, never fails to make me laugh. Even if the rice in my risotto was more al dente than creamy plump.
Another dinner, another night. Pretty darn good, too.
Thus we find it wasn’t all Irish literature and libraries. There were friends and various other essays and I still need to do my physics homework as well. And food. And other excitement I’m not blogging about because I like to maintain an aura of mystery about my private life. Cue dramatic music. Michael Nyman, anyone?
[Pretend this is actually an embedded video. I'm having trouble with video embedding, so go here instead.]
Viva la Sunday afternoon before classes restart and The Nutcracker engulfs us!
To continue the theme from my tales of Fall Breaks past, I shall outline Fall Break: Junior Year Edition.
I think I’ve mentioned my Irish Lit class. Here is the full situation in bullet-pointed, semi-logical, stream-of-consciousness style:
- Senior English Lit majors at Butler must present a senior essay.
- I am currently registered as having a secondary major in English literature.
- I will almost certainly complete an English minor.
Following so far? Good.
- I signed up for EN 493-51, Contemporary Irish Literature,
- Which turned out to be a Senior Seminar,
- Which is not to say there are only senior English majors (we have a healthy sprinkling of graduate students, senior education majors with a concentration in English, and junior English majors),
- But which includes a long research essay that is mandatory for the senior English majors, since they need that long paper to graduate.
Still following? Okay, deep breath… in we plunge:
- Those who aren’t senior English majors (i.e. the vast majority of the class) have the option not to write the long paper.
- We can turn in two shorter essays, each about ten pages, instead.
- The first essay is due when the long paper’s annotated bibliography and abstract are due.
- (Which is this coming Monday).
- The second essay is due when the long paper is due.
- This means that one cannot decide at the last minute to write two shorter essays.
- Past this Monday, we are Committed. Capitalization is fully intentional.
Thus we have the situation. What do I decide to do? Write the long paper. Why?
- If I do miraculously finish the requirements for the English major, I will need that paper.
- I am extremely verbose. Length is not so much an issue for me.
- It might actually be more difficult to develop and research two separate ideas. (Except that happened unintentionally, but this is a different story.)
- It would be good practice.
- I want to see if I can do it.Does this line of reasoning make sense? I guess we will find out come Monday. I am staying on campus this Fall Break to research and start to write this behemoth of a project. Reader-theory, here I come! I’m currently reading this. Next to the dictionary my high school English department gave me.
My Irish Lit professor was kind enough to lend this to me.
I have so much to do. So instead of doing it, I shall proceed to complain about it. Even though I secretly love it all. (And I’d better, since I’m paying for it.)
But seriously, yo. It’s Fall Break. What have I read in the past three days?
- Jonathan Culler, On Deconstruction, preface, introduction, and section 1, omitting only pages 43-64. Next to a dictionary.
- Ronald Gene Roland, Divided Ireland: Bifocal Vision in Modern Irish Drama, preface, and chapter six prelude “The Beginning of the End of Gaelic Language and Culture” and the article “Friel’s Translations: the Ritual of Naming.”
- Josephine Lee, “Linguistic Imperialism, the Early Abbey Theatre, and the Translations of Brian Friel” in Imperialism and Theatre (antho. ed. J. Ellen Gainor)
- Melissa Sihra and Paul Murphy, “The Dreaming Body,” intro in The Dreaming Body: Contemporary Irish Theatre (anth. ed. Sihra and Murphy)
- also from that anthology, Eamonn Jordan, “Urban Drama: Will Any Myth Do?”
- also from that anthology, Paul Murphy, “Brian Friel’s Wonderful Tennessee, or What was Lost in Translations“
- Intro, chapter I “Theories of Reading: An End to Interpretation?” and chapter II “Response, Intention, and Motives for Interpretation” in Stories of Reading: Subjectivity and Literary Understanding by Michael Steig
Still with me? And because I had to have some down time, I read,
- John Green’s An Abundance of Katherines
Well, that was boring. My reasons for (inflicting) typing my book list for you:
- It makes me feel accomplished.
- I wanted to brag about said accomplishments.
- I need an annotated bibliography, so that was the first step of me getting some of the text out of my notebook and into my MacBook.
- If you ever want to write a paper about Brian Friel’s 1980 play Translations, about the subjectivity of text and/or standards of nationalism, or about Irish theater, I’ve just given you a nice little list of sources.
- SO OVERWHELMED, CAN THINK OF AUGHT ELSE… gurgle
But it’s all okay. I have my power song to keep me going.
The power of K'naan, that is...
Hmmm. Perhaps another list (you can’t escape!) is in order… a studying/pape-writing/watery-lentil-soup-making/being-on-Fall-Break playlist?
When I was a freshman, I referred to Fall Break as “Reading Break.” That’s what it’s listed as in Butler’s academic calendar, after all. (Actually, it’s Fall Reading Break, but whatevs.) Naturally, I assumed students stayed on campus and used the Thursday and Friday without classes to catch up on their schoolwork.
I spent the long weekend in the extremely quiet girls’ dorm, Schwitzer, most of my classmates having driven–or even flown–home to see their families. My weekend was not completely unproductive, however. I reorganized my side of the dorm room. I painted my fingernails and started to read the Four Branches of the Mabinogi (part of a collection of Middle-Welsh myths… in translation, obviously.). When everyone returned to campus Sunday afternoon, I was one of the few who wasn’t scrabbling to finish homework.
Still, the dining service hours were greatly reduced, and I’d never lived away from home for so long before, and I was very glad my parents were coming to see me during Parents’ Weekend. Except Parents’ Weekend was filled with rehearsals for The Nutcracker. You can see that my freshman year breaks were not very well coordinated.
When I was a sophomore, I went home for Fall Break, and my parents gave Parents’ Weekend a pass. This was a much better arrangement for an out-of-state dance major.
This year presented a unique situation, however. I use “unique” as euphemistically as I can, by the way. Stay tuned for updates. Sneak peak:
Studying on a bench!