Bits of Early Summer

Over the past few weeks, I’ve been pushing out some papers and tending to my mentoring and editorial duties, while also trying to get as much rest as I can before I start summer teaching. So I’ve been reading a lot; Kindle app informs me I’ve read 63 books since the start of the year, which makes it just under 3 books per week on average. In reality, it’s definitely been fewer than that during the semester (1-2/week at the most, with some weeks skipped completely) and more since the classes ended (4+/week). I’m getting my money’s worth out of Kindle Unlimited and then some. It’s funny, I moved from TV and movies to reading almost exclusively; I don’t know if all this reading is a consequence of or a reason for reduced video entertainment. It seems like there’s nothing good on Netflix or Amazon Prime. OK, I know that’s not true, but most of the time that’s what it feels like, because I usually browse and come up empty. (Except for Danish and Norwegian shows. I will watch any show cooked up in the far north; I don’t care about the genre. I want them all!)

Otherwise, my group has been moving labs. We have some new undergrads starting out, some internal money coming in. I still have a gazillion pending grants, and we’re entering that humiliating stage where they’ve been pending for 6+ months and I am starting to get my hopes up, whereas it will turn out that  all this has been is one giant administrative delay after another on the road to inevitable declinations. 

In fiction news, some nice acceptances. I wrote like a fiend in 2020, then some pretty disheartening grant declinations took the wind out of my sails and I wrote very little and very poorly in 2021. I am pleased to report that I might’ve gotten my fiction mojo back, at least for now, and the stuff I’m producing is of higher quality than before, so it appears some leveling up might’ve happened. This goes to show that periods of hibernation, of reduced activity, are necessary for growth and development.  This holds for fiction as well as research, and I’d say probably for any creative endeavor. Or any human endeavor, really. Big changes require a lot of stored energy. 

Last but not least, Eldest has graduated college (!) and Smurf has finished elementary school (!). Long-time readers might remember that I posted about Smurf’s birth on the now-defunct Academic Jungle blog back in 2011. Well, Smurf will be 11 this month. (Inset the obligatory “Time flies!” quip here.) 

How’ve you been, blogosphere? What’s been on your mind? Let me know in the comments. 

Till next time, here’s some Twitter-sourced levity. 


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