"You sound to me as though you don't believe in free will," said Billy Pilgrim. "If I hadn't spent so much time studying Earthlings," said the Tralfamadorian, "I wouldn't have any idea what was meant by free will. I've visited 31 inhabited planets in the universe...Only on Earth is there any talk of free will." -- K. Vonnegut, Slaughterhouse-Five

Tuesday, August 02, 2005

90 Degrees, But Not For Long

Monday, August 01, 2005

90 Degrees, But Not For Long

One month until school starts. I am in a constant state of attempting to "prepare" which, in theory, consists of making lists of the books I need to find at used bookstores (or more likely, on the internet), finding an apartment (signed the lease last week!), and slowly working my way through The Birth of a New Physics (loaned to me by Eli, in consideration of the fact that my knowledge of ye olde physics is pretty limited.) I even bought a notebook (Mead Five Star, of course) and have taken some notes in it. I went to lecture last month at the U entitled: Where Have All the Babies Gone? Clearly, I am totally prepared to be a graduate student.

The problem is this: I love biking to the coffee shop in the morning, taking out my computer, checking my e-mail, reading the New York Times on-line, sending e-mails to friends at their jobs -- all while drinking coffee and listening to coffee shop music (today at Blue Moon: Bright Eyes followed by the Shins). Meanwhile, my brain is nagging me, reminding "Jecca, maybe you should do something SCHOLARLY now". I hope that when I have to read the books, I will be able to convert some of my blog-reading time into a close reading of Episodes from the Early History of Mathematics or Greek Science after Aristotle.

It's been so hot this summer. It was over 90 degrees for almost two weeks straight. With no air conditioning and a road trip to Intonation Fest in Chicago, there was no relief in sight. I know that today I am sitting in a sweltering coffee shop in my child sized wife beater, but in a mere six weeks I'll be digging out sweaters and longing for the days it was too hot and I could read leisurely all day long.