It’s Always Foul Weather Thursday, Nov 15 2007 

The day didn’t start out so bad, really.  I got to class, and we worked in groups (which isn’t so bad), but the activity was looking at spectrograms and figuring out what they might be (which I am not especially good at).  Nevertheless, it wasn’t too terrible, though our victorious semi-completion of the task will probably not stand when we go over it on Friday.  Then it was off to French history, where we discussed Descartes and Pascal.  The discussion itself would have gone better if we had been stoned (though that is not something I do anymore), as there was a lot of “how do we know we exist” crap.  In both 17th and 21st century French, yet.  After French, I went to see my former (and future) Syntax professor, to ask what was going to happen in next semester’s class.  I also planned to ask him for a recommendation, but I chickened out.  I shoveled in some lunch (or rather a snack in lieu of an actual lunch) and signed up for classes (my last undergraduate semester!).  Then it was Phonology time, which I still seem to be following without the “ow, my brain hurts” moments.

Then it was off to work.  It wasn’t so bad, but I’m disenchanted with the whole reflirting with GSS.  We were both busy, so I can’t truly be sure, but I think he is tired of me.  I can’t say that I blame him; I’m getting tired of me.  I’m also finding it not worth the effort to put that much care into my appearance.  I’m probably going to give it up, and just go for hygienic.  After all, I think it has been established that nothing is going to happen with GSS, and there isn’t anyone else on the horizon.  My classes are filled with punk kids, and I have no interest in cougar-dom.  I can use that extra half an hour for studying or something.

If that weren’t enough, my laptop (Lappy Jr.) was acting out.  It is better now, but I worry that Lappy Jr’s days are numbered, and I simply haven’t been able to sock away money for a new laptop.  I haven’t been frittering away the money, but I think there could be some belt-tightening.  However, I feel that I’m getting more and more demands on my time, my money and my energy from others.  I feel like I’m being pulled down by a panicky swimmer that I’m trying to save.  I feel resentful, and that makes me feel like a terrible person, which makes me feel worse.

Oh, and there were flurries as I was going home tonight.  So by the time I got home, I was in a crabby mood.  I need a pleasant surprise to perk up my mood.  Unfortunately, I doubt I can count on that.

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A Nerd Flirts (Then Flirts with the Dark Side) Wednesday, Nov 14 2007 

I have confessed that I have started flirting with GSS again, and today was no exception, though I was quite busy, making my flirting limited.  I did, as I passed him to get my stuff to go, lightly touch his back.  This is (along with the whole phone number thing) what I consider his incontrovertible evidence that I have a raging crush on him.  I do not touch anyone else at work.  I once swatted a coworker with an article I was reading, but that’s it.  So the possibility that he is just that clueless seems impossible.  But I digress.  As I was grabbing my stuff to go, he came over to me.  He had the handout from my historical linguistics class that I had loaned to him.  He had made a copy so he could look it over.  I apologized for my cryptic and useless notes scribbled on it.  After all, I never imagined that I would share it with a work crush.  Who would?  It was a brief (for us – 1o minute) conversation, but there is a part that I simply must share, as it shows me as being a tremendously nerdy flirter.

GSS: (discussing his paper)…so I went to [the big campus] library on Saturday to double check.

TSS:  Hey, I was at the library on Saturday, too!

GSS:  I was actually there on Friday, as well.  [Bibliography management program] would have been helpful, but I’m not not registered at [his grad school] this year, so I don’t have access, and I’m not willing to pay the [insanely overpriced] fee.

TSS:  I have an account – maybe you could piggyback on mine.

GSS:  Well, but then I’d need your log-in information, and log-in as you.

TSS:  I don’t know.  Maybe there’s a way it can be done.

GSS:  Don’t you use it?

TSS:  Oh, sure.  But you can set up different folders for different projects, so you wouldn’t have to wade through my crazy list of francophone creole literature.

GSS:  That might be entertaining.  I’m going to see if there’s a way I can sign up through the university.  But if you can have a dummy log-in, it might work.

That’s right, I tried to flirt using bibliography management software.  I am that much of a nerd.  As I was waiting for the bus, I asked myself if I had really done that.  And I had, and I was embarrassed for myself.

As I was riding the bus to class, it became a toss-up on whether I would bother going to class today.  The class had the potential to be my favorite, and now I was contemplating bagging it.  I have not missed a class at all this semester, and blowing off class is not something I do.  I’m not saying I’m never tempted, but I go nevertheless.

In fact, it wasn’t until 2:32, when I actually entered the class and sat down, that my presence in the class was guaranteed.  That’s right, two minutes late.  Of course, one of my many beefs with the class is that we often start late and go late.  In fact, I beat the professor there.  Honestly, I could have missed the class and not missed anything.  Heresy for a nerd of my nerdiness.

One moment of victory, then back to work! Tuesday, Nov 13 2007 

Last night, I mused that I suspected my Phonology epiphany may have been illusory, as I toiled for several hours on the assignment, and still made what I considered to be “guesses”.  I was worried when we went over the assignment, but it turns out that I was on the right track after all.  It wasn’t perfect, but my crackpot guesses were actually based in some sort of knowledge (I was hoping they were, but you never know).  It made me think that I do know what I’m doing after all.  This is nothing but good news to me.

However, I had to add several things to the Grid, which is depressing to me, as the Grid is plenty full as it stands.  Nevertheless, if I don’t add things to the Grid, they won’t actually get done.   I suppose that it is just as well that GSS is ambivalent toward me, because I really can’t imagine fitting anymore activity into the Grid.  Of course, if I thought there was a shot in hell of getting laid, I’m sure I’d make time.

I did make a big show about how I only do things if they’ll help me in my ultimate goal (for this year) of getting into grad school.  I may have overplayed my hand, but I doubt that that matters.  Still, as I joked to KSP Saturday night, he’s either too much of a distraction, or not enough of one.

Speaking of distractions, this blog certainly counts as one.  I need to read a book of poetry, and choose a poem for my much-feared presentation in the grad class.  It is a task assigned by the Grid, and I think I’ve adequately established that I must not disrespect the Grid.

Do I get it? Monday, Nov 12 2007 

Yesterday, I consulted the Grid to see if I could meet KSP for a drink.  KSP is riding high these days, and a drink and some conversation was in order.  Our regular place once again forgot that it is the size of a freight elevator and insisted on blasting music, making conversation impossible.  We batted around some ideas, but as it was the final Football Saturday, many options were simply not going to do.  On a lark, I suggested a place that I often pass, but have never gone in.  Mercifully, it was not too busy, and it turned out to be a great place for actually having a conversation.  This is a rare commodity in bars.  We squealed a bit about KSP’s good fortune, and I admitted to her my new dark secret.

I’ve started flirting with GSS again.

I know it is a bad idea, though he started it.  But quite frankly, even though the Grid is marvelous for organizing my life and time, it is not very interesting company.  I do have my friends, but they have a lot on their respective plates, and they simply cannot be on call 24/7 when I’m a little bored.  Plus, I am…squirrelly these days.  None of these things are an excuse, but there you have it.

I have posted that I feel that I finally have had my Phonology epiphany, though I’m not so sure.  I struggled through the homework for tomorrow, and I think I may have come up with explanations, and they might be pretty clever, but I’ve been burned on that before.

 Alas, the Grid indicates that I still have some reading to do, so I’d better go.  I wouldn’t want to disappoint the Grid.

Living and (possibly dying) by “The Grid” Friday, Nov 9 2007 

I had a minor “episode” earlier this week, when I discovered how much academic crap I had to shovel before the end of the semester.  I was convinced that I would never be able to finish it all.  But, as I was saying to GSS at work tonight, my mission is to get accepted to grad school (first choice: Berkeley), and so I have to do everything on my schedule, or I will not be accepted to graduate school (maybe not even Bob’s Bait Shop and School o’ Languages).  With that attitude, I made myself a grid, with everything that needs to be done (and when it needs to be done) getting a slot; I also made a grad school application matrix.  I assigned certain tasks to certain days, making sure that I don’t over-schedule on Wednesdays and Thursdays (which are late days at work).  It is a thing of beauty, and if I keep to it, I should be okay.

So, when on the horns of a dilemma, I will ask myself, “what does The Grid say I should do?”  I think my life may have gotten easier.

Laissez tomber (parti deux) Thursday, Nov 8 2007 

I’ll sum it up like this:  some weirdness, but ultimately, no big whoop.

And that’s the end of that tale.

(What tale?)

There’s a hole in my stomach Tuesday, Nov 6 2007 

Here I am, on Monday night, and I can feel the stomach acid ‘a brewin’.  Two causes:  one is an impending presentation tomorrow (en français) that I do not feel especially prepared for.  (Yes, I know, I shouldn’t be scribbling down my inane thoughts – I should be working.)  The other:  well, let’s just say that tomorrow is likely to be the day that I find out how bad the backlash is from Phonenumbergate.  Either way, I would be happier to just stay in bed tomorrow.  But that wouldn’t solve anything.  I’d have to take a 0 on the presentation (and I can guarantee you that is not an option).  And if I don’t show up to work?  Aside from losing a day’s pay (also unacceptable), I would be giving this whole…incident…more weight than I should.  What am I really worried about?  That there will be some whispering and gossiping (and quite possibly an uncomfortable discussion with my boss).  All of those things I can live with.  I would prefer not to have to, but if it comes to it, I will.  Giving in and taking to my bed with “the vapors” makes everything a bigger deal than it needs to be.  This is why I was so cheesed about the possibility that the “incident” became a topic of discussion.  It didn’t have to be a big deal, but here I am, blogging about it and generally making myself physically uncomfortable.  If he had just blown me off, I wouldn’t have had this problem.  Seems counter-intuitive, doesn’t it?

I have my fingers crossed for an uneventful day.  If that happens, I will jump for joy, blog that nothing happened, and never speak of it again.

Oh, and by the way – when in God’s name am I supposed to do all the damn work I have to do in the next 7 weeks?  I suppose this means I had better shut up and get cracking.

Life in the Clubhouse Monday, Nov 5 2007 

I admit, the blowback from my most recent glame adventure in flirting has made me a little cranky.  I have been running the scenario by some people, to see if I have missed anything, and sure the sample is obviously going to be skewed toward a pro-Senior Senior, anti-GSS result.  I would hope, however, that my friends would let me know if I did something even slightly off the rails.  I may have even spent some time thinking of synonyms for GSS.  Don’t worry, I haven’t wasted that much time on it.

Today, I have been trying to think of interpretations that would not leave him being a douchebag in this scenario.  After all, I still have to work with the guy, and if there is some way that he did not behave in the tool-like fashion of which I suspect him, I would prefer to go with that one.  Maybe I’m being paranoid, and he didn’t pull co-workers aside and reveal to them I gave him (unbidden) my phone number, or that I have an unrequited crush on him (sure, I do, but at least I have the decency to blog about it semi-anonymously, and not flaunt it all over work).  I would rather not have my errors in judgement trumpeted around the workplace for all to gossip about.  Maybe it was just a coincidence.  I realize that it is not the most likely scenario, but I would prefer not to be betrayed.  I would prefer to have my business be my business, unless I decide otherwise.  I would prefer to think a grown man would not act in a needlessly juvenile fashion.

Of course, I need to wait until Tuesday to find any of this out.  Well, I suppose I could try to force the issue earlier, but I would rather not.  It is my belief that a few days for simmering down is in everyone’s best interest.  Also, if he was spooked by the phone number incident, an e-mail from me is only going to be creepier.  I suppose blogging about this is a smidge creepy, but I do try to change the names to protect the guilty (no one’s innocent here).

It is the end of an era, so to speak.  I really dug having a crush; the will-he-or-won’t-he aspect turned out to be the least interesting part of the process for me.  It was nice to get up and feel that I had a reason for looking my best (though it is my thought that my primary reason is that it makes me feel better).  It was nice to feel excited about something – I have so much that is much of the same, that a little mild electricity was good for me.

All these years, I’ve assumed that I’m not very good at flirting because I am, at heart, still the chronically nerdy 13 year-old girl I once was.  That may have been true once, and at times, may still be true intermittently; I think the real issue is that I’m not one for gamesmanship.  I prefer directness.  It means a career in politics is out for me, thank God.

Ow! My Foot! (Another Glame Adventure in Flirting) Friday, Nov 2 2007 

Welcome back to another fable about flirting!  This one’s more of a cautionary tale, though.

Once upon another time, there was a young(ish) woman.  As you may remember, she had a crush on a young(ish) man, who tended to send her what she considered to be mixed signals.  Sometimes he seemed interested, other times he did not.  The young(ish) woman had discussed these things with a friend, who gave her encouragement.  Emboldened, the young(ish) woman bragged, “One of these days, I’m going to slip the young(ish) man my phone number.”  Her friend heartily endorsed this plan, saying, “If you do, I will drink a shot in your honor.”

One afternoon, the young(ish) woman came into work.  Her workload had been light all week, so she started to make some notes on a project she had for a class.  The young(ish) man came up to her, with a stack of paper.  It seems as though he had been working on a project himself, and now wanted her fresh eyes to look at his paper.  The young(ish) man had warned her that it was dense, which it was; however, it was a subject that, though she was not extremely well-versed in it, she did have some background knowledge, and made short work of the paper.  He asked her to read it once for content, as her pencil was already twitching to mark it up (as that was what she did for her job).  They talked a bit about it, and then she read it a second time, giving suggestions where appropriate, adding commas, underlying confusing sentences….When she was finished, the young(ish) man sat down next to her, and they went over her comments.  He thanked her, and complimented her on her abilities as both a reader and a writer.

The young(ish) man’s appreciation of her abilities was flattering to the young(ish) woman; she was even more pleased when he stayed at her table and talked to her for about an hour.  It was a very good conversation; it covered everything to funny accents to politics to pretentiousness.  The young(ish) man got up to leave, stopping off in the little office to pick up his stuff.  Emboldened by the conversation and the flattery related to the editing of the paper, the young(ish) woman took advantage of the young(ish) man’s absence to write her name and number on a small piece of paper, which she stuck in between the pages of the young(ish) man’s research project.  Immediately, the young(ish) woman had some buyer’s remorse, but knew there was no way to undo what she had done without looking suspicious indeed.  After all, what was the worst that could happen?  He could turn her down, which was nothing, really.  The young(ish) man returned, grabbed his project, and put it in his bag.  The young(ish) woman saw no piece of paper slip out, and figured the number was going home with him.  It occurred to her later that she might have waited to do this on the last day of her week, instead of the middle.

In her mind, the young(ish) woman already anticipated a you’re a nice person, but… type of response.  She was being realistic; after all, if he was that interested in her, he probably would have made a move already.  Nevertheless, she was a little nervous when she went in to work.  Would it be weird?

When the young(ish) man came into work, he was a little distant; the young(ish) woman took this to mean that he was not thrilled about the phone number, and was more comfortable ignoring the whole issue.  The young(ish) would have preferred the you’re a nice person, but…response, but being slightly awkward, she certainly appreciated the perspective that it just might be easier to ignore the whole thing.  In her mind, she had her answer.  And you know what?  That was okay by her; sure, it would have been nice if something developed eventually, but in a way, he had already accomplished his task:  the young(ish) woman was finally over The Man She Wanted to Marry, and now could move on to bigger and better things.  Like Edith Piaf, she ne regrette rien.

Or so she thought.

Later on, she noticed some of her coworkers behaving slightly differently.  She didn’t think anything of it at first.  She then left work and went to class, where she realized that one of her professors was kind of an ass, and it left her crabby and fuming.  She realized that she was in a foul mood, and really didn’t want to go back to work.  But she did anyway, and hoped, for the first time in the past few weeks, that she would not run into the young(ish) man – in her mood, it wouldn’t have sat well.

Alas, that was not meant to be.  As she walked into the little office, she saw the young(ish) man, talking to a coworker.  Both stopped talking, and it occurred to her that they were talking about her.  Then she started to wonder if he had told others about what she had done.  It had felt very awkward all day.  She could be over-exaggerating the problem, but the young(ish) man seemed very uncomfortable.  She started off being a little angry – it would have been more sporting to either ignore the whole thing, or let her know first that he had been a little weirded out.  But then, as the young(ish) woman had an active imagination, she could see how he could have gotten a creepy interpretation of her actions.  The creepiness wasn’t in her intentions, but she could see the other side of things.

She then started to worry.  How many people had he told?  How had he framed the narrative?  Most of her coworkers had known her a lot longer; she would have hoped that they might have given her the benefit of the doubt in this, but if he chose to tell the story in a way that made her look particularly unhinged, it might be harder for them to give her that benefit.  Worse yet, what if he went to her boss?  The young(ish) woman was horrified to think that her job might be in jeopardy because she had made a short-sighted error in judgement.

And that’s what disturbed her.  That he wasn’t interested?  Feh.  That he might think she was a little creepy?  A little uncomfortable, but not too bad.  That her other coworkers would lose respect for her?  Ouch, that hurt.  That her boss would be forced to have an unpleasant talk with her, that the esteem that her boss had for her would be damaged, as would her ability to do a job she enjoyed?  That made her physically ill.  As the time passed at work, and later on the bus, she felt the stomach acid rise up her esophagus.  What in God’s name have I done?  And for what?  To give my phone number to some guy I barely know.  Good God, I’m such an ass!

The young(ish) woman was distraught, and she did not know where to turn.  Her friends were otherwise occupied.  So she turned to the one person she could count on:  her mommy.  Thankfully, in this case, a girl’s (or a young[ish] woman’s) best friend is her mommy.

“I’m sure you’re overreacting,” she said soothingly.  “And if he did tell other people, what a big baby.  You didn’t do anything wrong.”

And although what the young(ish) woman did could not be undone, that she had to wait until next week to see if she would become a pariah at work, she knew that her mommy didn’t think what she did was so bad.

But what a shitty Thursday, no?

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