Thursday, April 21, 2005

Raccoons, dairy artisans, a BK song, and GTF woes

But not in that order.

I am eating cheese that I purchased from the guy who made it. An honest-to-God cheese artisan. It's delicious, if expensive, and another peek for Erica into the world of agriculture. Cheese comes from jug-eared, lanky guys in rural Oregon, not the grocery store. It's chipotle cheddar. This guy has a blue cheese that's backordered until 2006 -- it won best blue in 2003 in the UK. My Wallace side came out in full force at this guy's booth.

Also: I could probably eat Dijon mustard with a spoon. Love it.

Studying at the library last night, a raccoon looked at me through the window (cutely) and disappeared. I was in the quiet room, so I couldn't squeal with delight. But I wiggled a bit in my chair and grinned like crazy.

My grandfather sent me a very heartfelt write-out of his family's history in Hungary/Transylvania. I shouldn't have read it at work. With his inimitable good humor and thoughtfulness, he outlined the family tree and how Rothmans, Mannheims, Bolgars, and others survived (or didn't) the Holocaust. We still email in German, at least partially. "Wir haben, "schrieb ich "eine mutige Familie." Suddenly, studying German has taken on a lot more significance.

Before I read that today, I visited my GTF for this survey course that I care about less and less every minute. She gave me a lame grade on a pretty good paper with some cryptic and pointless commentary on the sides and back about "political context" (not in the prompt) and arguing "more vigorously" to justify leaving out a particular line of this sonnet. It was an unsatisfying visit. She stood by her nonsense. To her credit, there are two points that I needed to draw out. I'm almost glad I went because of that. Now I know how nitpicky she'll be. But she seemed to think that it was the grade that bothered me. What bothered me (other than the fact that her point scale was ridiculous -- taking "a few off" of a 15 point paper and a 30 or 50 point paper makes a difference to the ratio, despite her allegations that I can make it up. If the whole class is 115 points, that's way slim) was that she didn't respond to her invalid criticisms. I think I may have frightened her, though; it was early, so I was in the "not talkative, somewhat somber, straight-faced" mode, and she got pretty uncomfortable toward the end of our little office hours session.

Bottling the Knockout Girly Beer tomorrow.

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