Wednesday, April 24, 2013

Update on Crap:

From this post:

in which I struggle with the idea that I may have a true (but mild) case of ADD, a diagnosis I had blown off earlier.

I added this comment...
Update. Spring 2013: I have been taking a very low dose of methylphenidate during the work week for about a month. There is a clear improvement in my life.

1. I CAN concentrate better. It is not a panacea, it still takes effort of will. That balance of drug/effort eases my discomfort with the idea of a "crutch". I feel calmer and more "with it".

2. I don't just crash after work into a short-tempered, unmotivated mess. And I can still sleep.

3. I'm losing weight. I don't think it's the drug per se, since I was losing weight before I started taking it. I think it allows me to have a bit more energy to exercise, and a bit more cognitive power to resist comfort foods and fast foods.

4. It actually puts me at social ease, since I don't rely on coffee anymore to help me work. Coffee makes me really irritable, and there are times after drinking coffee that I just hate everybody.

Sabbatical Falling into Place 2: A Place to live there

Hub has a basement apartment in big Suburb where he spends three nights a a week. His lovely, lovely landlady has decided that she would like to go on a once-in-a-lifetime trip far away; buying a one way ticket.
She would like to rent the whole house out to us. We agreed. It's expensive, but a fair market price, AND importantly, it has a basement apartment... which can lessen our expenses by allowing us to host a live-in nanny. More on that soon.

Tuesday, April 23, 2013

Sabbatical Falling into Place 1: Our house

Our house: we have a 15 year mortgage, which means our monthly mortgage payment is higher than the market rental price for this size o' house. We were counting on taking a monthly loss on the house. Solution: enter a group of 6 (yes, 6) rising seniors who want to live together in an intentional community. Nice kids, I know most of them. They are like, WOAH, this house is BIG and CHEAP compared to the dorms! We are like, WOAH, we're going to have to charge more for such a big crowd! (mortgage covered!)

Hidden Losing

I offered to teach a summer course required for graduating seniors. After the enrollment period ended there was only one person enrolled. I assumed that running the course wouldn't even be considered by the university. The dean's office replied that I had the choice of taking on this student or not for an independent study. I don't know this person, so I said no, tentatively.

I would reconsider if the student showed initiative and was a strong student. If Stu would have shown up at my door earlier and asked about it or shown any sort of interest in the course that was obvious to me I would have told the Dean's office right away that I would take Stu. But I'm not going to reach out to Stu, asking this person to take a course from me over summer. 

I wonder if students realize that they *do* have some power over what seems like strict institutional guidelines? They do, at least in an institution like ours.