Wednesday, November 10, 2004

Blogging as Class-Prep Avoidance

See, the reason I am a bad blogger most of the time (one previously failed attempt to keep a regular blog) is that I tend to use it as an excuse for not working, as though this recording of my thoughts and activities is actually important (therapeutic, yes; but important?).

So right now, I have class in about an hour and I need to review my notes for the lecture, but I am struggling to stay focused on it when there are so many wonderful websites to peruse that are more interesting to me, at the moment, than my lecture. For someone who was very self-motivated and a straight-A student through school, I have some surprisingly awful work habits and still manage to try to coast into success (in whatever I do) with last minute effort. Problem is, it has always worked for me, even after school, as a professional. Part of me thinks I just work well under pressure, so waiting until the last minute makes me work harder in that minute than I would have otherwise worked leading up to it. Part of me knows that's bull and that I just have a problem with my work ethic.

Morning routine: I always come in early -- I'm in my office by 8:15am because I have to drop Number One Daughter off at school in the morning anyway (and let me tell you, I am NOT a morning person, so getting up before 7am every day is beginning to wear on me). Once in the office, I check e-mail, maybe respond to a few and send a few I need to send, and then I put off the ones that I don't want to think about yet (you know, those "yes, I have to make a decision on that, but no, I don't plan to do it right now, because somehow it makes me feel better just letting it sit in my inbox, festering like an infected sore" e-mails). Then I hop on the web and go through a list of sites I am addicted to checking every day. Some of these are related to my field/industry, but since I am a filmmaker, that means some of those 'related' sites are just movie sites, so it's not like they demand my daily attention.

But I am a web addict, and I can admit it. Anyway, I spend a good 30 minutes to an hour or more doing this some days before I finally buckle down and work.

On days when I really have not prepped adequately, I don't have any problem ignoring the web and getting myself ready for class, so I guess I'm not a full-on addict. But I still fear I fritter too much time away on there.

Today's News: I have declared a self-imposed ban on reading any more post-election commentary, as the 'rhetoric' being thrown around on both sides jusst serves to make me more and more angry. I've been in a pseudo-morose angry state for several days just because I am annoyed at things being said, want to write or say something in response, and feel (know) that I am shouting into the whirlwind -- no one will hear or care, and I will be just another voice pissing someone else off. So -- self-imposed ban, silence, 'get over it' (that's directed at me, not at any of you, though there are some of you out there to whom....)

See, I'm starting up again. Post-Election Mode officially turned off...


At 9:20 AM, Blogger chutry said...

I think a lot of us who are disappointed in the outcome are trying to come to terms with what "went wrong" or how we can have better results next time. There's a lot of soul-searching among liberals and lefties right now, and some of that translates into anger, frustration, whatever that our political commitments will have little representation at the national level. In my discussion on my blog, I've been trying to think about new ways of talking about critical thinking that won't create such defensive responses in people, but I think the Crossfires of the world (among other things) have really helped to produce an incredibly polarized public. And given how "defeated" liberals actually seem to feel, it's important to remember that Kerry *did* get 48% of the vote, a larger percentage than Clinton got in 1992 (around 43%). In addition to the post-election malaise (on both sides), I think academics are just plain tired (I know I am).

I consider blog surfing to be a kind of "processing" activity where I sift through other people's ideas. I usually don't feel like I need *that* much time to prepare for a composition class, so I wouldn't worry too much.

At 11:15 AM, Blogger TerminalMFA said...

Chuck -- I didn't mean to malign you in my comments. Your post-election comments have been among the most reasonable I've read in any of the blogs I've been reading. You disagree with people who voted for Bush, and you want to understand why people chose to vote for him. If you think people who voted for him are morons, you haven't said so -- I guess my point is this: you don't seem filled with hate. It makes it easier for people to talk in a rational manner about the issues.

But once again, off on politics again -- back to the main point of this post: I find I need less time to prep as the semester goes on. So I worry less about it now than I did when I was just getting started this semester... but it's still one of those things.


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