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Not happy

Okay, let's list the good stuff:

New house--good. Maybe let's stay here a moment on this thread.

I was never wild about the place on Old River Road. When we visited it I thought it was in a pretty spot, nice house. But I said, privately, to Morguhn and Rowan, "It's too big. It needs too much work. The upkeep will be a monster, including the yard. And it's too far from work and practice." I never changed my mind about any of those things.

Ironically, I finally started thinking of that Caer as "home" just a couple of weeks before the house killed Morguhn. And, yes, that is how I think of it. Is the reality that Morguhn's tendency to take some shortcuts are what killed him? Probably. I still blame the house. The house I didn't want. Sue me.

The new house has issues. It isn't perfect. For one--it's in Utica. But, that aside, it has virtues of location (see above), manageable yard space (see above), is pretty (see above), and each of us has a manageable space. The upkeep will be a bit of an issue (it is over one-hundred years old, after all), but I really think I've traded up. And, did I mention, I am no longer TRAPPED in my home. It is now a refuge, but I can leave it after dark to drive to the store, a movie, campus…if I choose. That is huge. As is the fact that the mortgage is more than covered by what I used to pay in the oil bill and gas for the car. I win.

More good--my job. I love my job. I love teaching. I love my students. It took me a long time to get here, but now I am, and it's good. It isn't perfect. But it's good. I have some wonderful colleagues.

Health. Pretty decent for a 58 (*gasp*) year old American. Need to see the dentist, but otherwise, pretty solid. Minor complaints, some chronic, some new, but, hey, compared to others I know, and family history, I'm putting this in the "win" column.

Social. Good, high quality friends. Some of whom live in the same city (though you'd never know, given how little I see them physically). That's partially my fault, but not entirely. They are good friends, but we have very different…social comfort zones. I've come to accept that. There are other friends I have, in other cities, who I know I would spend more time with if we lived closer. But we don't, so there's no sense in whining about it.

So why am I in such a pissy mood.

Partly I blame Obama. And Cuomo. And, no, I'm not being ironic. My profession, my life's endeavor, is under attack, but in such a subtle way that many people don't realize it. I calculate about another 12 years in the profession, if my health holds out. I think I can tolerate it that long. I feel genuine pity and fear for my younger colleagues. We had a Senate meeting today, and two of my colleagues--one faculty female, one non-faculty male (one of our accountants no less) who were so passionately opposed to something that the State is doing to higher education that they nearly had everyone in tears.

I am so over-extended that I can't believe I let this happen. I know HOW it happened, but the "chickens have come home to roost" this semester, and I'm at my wit's end. I am lucky that both my Dean and my Vice President like and value me, but there are unintended consequences of that. Fortunately, my Dean is one of the best human beings I know. He agrees with me that I am doing too much, and we talked today about people, more junior faculty, who A) need the work for promotion purposes and B) would be capable to step in and take over some of what I do.

And…well. My social network in Utica….Not really. Good. I miss people I can just hang out with and feel safe. And talk about ideas. Truth be told, I miss the kind of relationships I had in grad school. Where "after work" we'd hang out, and talk, and laugh. Occasionally do things as a gang, or hang out in each other's living rooms. And that happens in some academic communities, but not MV's. And my SCA friends in Utica, well…sometimes they're a little too…acerbic…for my taste. I don't mind trashing dead philosophers as much as I mind trashing living strangers. It's just me, I know. But, well…

So, there you have it. I'm in a pissy mood, and when you look at it objectively, I have a pretty great life.

Tomorrow will be better. After all, tomorrow I get to torture my students with another film they'll hate. ;-)


( 2 comments — Leave a comment )
Mar. 4th, 2015 02:46 am (UTC)
I wish you lived closer; your kind of preferred social setting is also mine, and much of the Tribe's. Not that we don't sometimes get a titch acerbic, but it's only a full lifestyle choice for a few in the group these days. That being said, my door is always open for a visit any time you need something new to do.

Edited at 2015-03-04 02:46 am (UTC)
Mar. 4th, 2015 02:03 pm (UTC)
I understand the social thing too. I have lived in the Harrisburg general area for 13 years and it has been only in the last 5 that I have found people that I am comfortable enough with to be myself.

Friends I can be silent with, who don't think there is something wrong. Friends that I can be silly with and not worry that they are going to take something the wrong way. Hell, I can't do that in my own home.

I wish you were closer, as I think you would be one of those friend too.

BTW, I envy your teaching of Film Classes. My undergrad major started out as Theater and Film, with the emphasis on Film at Penn State in the mid 1980s.
( 2 comments — Leave a comment )