AWOWL • 8 February 2009

Long days at the desk, this term. I love it. I’ve rigged my little paper lamp near the window where, having finally won the game against the motion sensors, I sit otherwise in the dark. For a week it has rained, a static-dampening pour that sent my focus a little more inside and left the walkways around the quad still covered in sheen and flecked with new drops in the lamplight.

Campus Crusade for Christ meets at night: they wail next door in Josiah Royce Hall, echoing down the sandstone neo-roman colonnade where I watched Tom Hanks stalk back and forth, back and forth, for regrettable Angels and Demons takes that were supposed to be set in Italy. Their hollering, a good saccharine match for Dan Brown adaptations if a defilement of the building’s namesake, Royce, sounds an awful lot like Counting Crows. Shame what’s happened to Christian music these days: if they were still singing Old Time Religion maybe I’d sneak in the back and join them. I do miss singing with others; maybe that’s why part of why breathing with others means so much.

And so, in that spirit…. BAW accepted a large sum of skymiles and I’ve made cover to disappear from here for spring break and then some. I want to go far, to MY State of lOst childREn, to take a long view of my life from here forward. Given the options that have opened and those foreclosed, which drives and duties will I satisfy, and which will I cast off? How much does the collapse of the markets change everything, and how much do the old shoes thrown in to the cogworks just give me cover to contemplate the nothingness that I wouldn’t have time to notice otherwise? I don’t know; but soon I will.

Meantime, for all my allergies to the little imperialisms of LOHAS, it is time to pay my respects. Because come on. I love SKPJ and the thing he’s made. The first time I met him the foot-touching line made me shudder in revulsion, so here I am dumping horrible tons of carbon into the atmosphere and shirking my work to honor the system and its professor-methodologist while he’s still on this side of living.

I know it’s the hot season, but I’ve spent a year in a cardboard and zinc shack in one the most deforested zones of the Americas’ tropics. I know it’s the party season, but it’s ok if that’s what my spring break is about.

Meantime: much to do, in ways that reveal how much I’d love the scholar’s life if I can hold out in this deluge long enough to secure it. I don’t really want to think about spring break until I get there in another month. Everything's excellent here now and, in a way that feels right, I have a ton to do. But I'm mentioning the plans here in order to ask we not chat about it—at all—on the FB. My efforts to bring my life together there in a single digitized identity have been tested by this and found wanting. Too many professors friending me there, and I’m wouldn’t even know where to begin explaining the fact that I am going to Mecca. Hey! It's for research purposes!

Sort of. I’ll have enough trouble as it is explaining to you, let alone myself.