ship_go_boom: (Default)
Dear Well-Intentioned Professor,

I appreciate your efforts to support small, local bookstores.  Admire them, even.  And, happily, the bookstore you've chosen to support is one I'm not allowed to enter without a chaperone, on account of how much money I can spend there.

But I pay a MANDATORY $395 Non-Allocable Segregated Fee every semester.  A considerable portion of this fee goes to paying for my rental textbooks.  Y'know, the ones that don't cost me a penny outside of what's automatically added to my tuition when I register for a full-time course load, no matter what my textbooks would have actually cost?  The ones which, if I remember university policy correctly, the bookstore is required to have a rental option on if the professor says the book is required for the class?

As you are doubtless a very intelligent person, you may have deduced that I am less than pleased by the email you sent out this afternoon, informing your students that there are FIVE required textbooks for your class, plus another three recommended texts, and that they are NOT carried by the university bookstore.  I am even less pleased upon discovering that, if the prices are even close to the price charged by this cool local bookseller (and they often are, where new items are concerned), the required textbooks alone will cost approximately $275, and adding on the recommended texts brings it up to $340.  That, by the way, is more than half of my current bank balance. 

Now, I am a very skilled bargain hunter.  I may be able to find cheaper.  But then again, I may not.  That really isn't the point.  My point this: 1) I have already paid for those required textbooks.  Which means you are making me pay for them twice.  Which means a small bit of justice to a local bookstore with a loyal clientele turns out to be a noticeable injustice to an unemployed student.

At the end of the day, I am perfectly fine - happy, even - to patronize a local bookseller over Barnes & Noble, especially if I pay roughly the same at either location.  But I cannot afford to pay $275 more just to go local, especially when I have, effectively, already paid for them through the university.


[Posted to the interwebs because, from what I can tell, I'm going to really really like this course and this professor - both as a person and as a teacher - and I namedropped one of his advisees to get permission to register for the class, and I'd feel really horrible if the first thing I dis was send him a really antagonistic email when he's very clearly trying to do the right thing.

This is maybe more distressing than it should be, because I never let my bank account go below $300 (mostly because I have to pay maintenance fees below that, but also in case there's an emergency), so in my head having $300 in the bank is the same as having $0 in the bank.  And after my rent check goes through I'll only have $609, which means that in my head these textbooks could sink me into negative numbers.  I think I'm going to send the book list to [personal profile] moss , because I'm too distressed and low-bloodsugary to start bargain hunting on my own right now.  I should send an email to the bookstore, see how much the books really are there.  Can't do it in person, even though it's only a few blocks away and would be faster, because I think if I had to look the proprietor of my favorite bookstore in the eye and tell him that I can't afford to give him my business, there's a chance I might burst into tears.  Which would seriously ruin my image.

Okay.  Time to calm down.  Dinner should have been hours ago.  I need to eat, have a beer, and watch some Supernatural.]

ship_go_boom: (Plan B)
...I'll be finished by Thursday morning. 

So that big ol' project I mentioned in my last bout of panic is finally starting to develop some sort of structure, which is good.

The presentation itself is tomorrow night, which is bad.  I have to make a poster presentation, as well. 

The presentation is about German cabaret performers and their sociopolitical role during the rise of the Third Reich.  So far a have a few one- or two-paragraph bios on various Kabarett performers, a few more on Friedrich Hollaender and Mischa Spoliansky, and a couple photos and posters from the FH official site.  I should have had more ages ago, but must of the useful (and scholarly) information is either written in German, or contained in books way too long (not to mention unavailable) for me to get anything out of in time.

The mini-bios are going to help, but more searching needs to be done (both for more info and for images).  What would be really useful would be if I could find out who among the imprisoned and/or killed Kabarettists were not Jewish, which would really emphasize the cabaret's ability to threaten the Nazi regime....  Fingers crossed, maybe I'll find out.

However well the next few hours of research goes, I'm still going to take the razzle-dazzle approach, and hope that nobody asks me any questions.  Eep.
ship_go_boom: (Fuck!)
Shite and buggeration!!!

So, I'm supposed to be writing a history paper on the early 16th century, using Niccolo Machiavelli's The Prince and Thomas More's Utopia as primary sources (along with the textbook).  Cool, huh?

There's just one problem.

My copy of The Prince has gone on walkabout!!!!!

Did I mention that this paper is already late?

::bangs head on desk::

I'm attempting to console myself by listening to the Bowie-narrated version of Peter and the Wolf.  It's not helping.  (Don't suppose any of you are psychic and can tell me what version was my favoritest of favorite things to listen to when I was little?  I'm a young enough whippersnapper that it may have been the Patrick Stewart, but I'm not certain.)
ship_go_boom: (Zombies & Walter)
Or, in other words: OMG PANIC!!!

Had my first car accident.  Meep.  The car is unharmed, and I'm a bit rattled but I'll recover.

This is what comes of being up before dawn.  You get up, stumble around a bit, get all dressed up in your new lacy goth skirt, pack your makeup and book and fluffy blankie in the car, and hit the road after only a few sips of coffee because otherwise you'll be late for the bus for your field trip to St. Paul/Minneapolis.  Then, five-ten minutes away from your destination, you hit a deer carcass.  It figures that I'd hit an already-dead deer.  You'd think it'd be difficult for something to sneak up on you if it's dead.

But no.  It was that weird not-quite-sunrise time when it's just light enough to make your dims pretty useless, but still dark enough that you can't see a damned thing.  Of course, I was following somebody, so I didn't have my brights on, plus the carcass was just over the crest of a hill.  Theoretically, I should have been able to figure that there was something in the road when the car in front of me swerved, but they were driving along the right side of the lane, so it was less of a swerve and more of a wobble (which I disregarded, 'cause as far as I knew they had sneezed),  whereas I was on the left side, and it's amazing how much difference two feet can make...  So in the time between seeing that I was going to hit something and actually hitting it, I was able to go "Oh, shit!" and take my foot off the gas, but that's about it.  I was close enough that the choice was deer or ditch, at 60mph.  I managed to get over far enough that the front wheel went over a leg, which only made me wobble a bit, but the rear wheel went over the body of the departed critter.  To all intents and purposes I lost control of the vehicle, although I managed to stay on the road, at no point traveled backwards (sideways, yes, but not backwards), and came to a rather neat stop at the side of the road...  the wrong side. :/

So, as I said the car is unharmed but deeply offended due to the various bits of deer (and remains of whatever it had eaten last - yech) now stuck to the undercarriage and around the rear wheel well.  I'm exhausted but okay, and strangely proud of myself.  I managed to keep my panicking confined to the 20 minutes or so between calling [profile] moss6886 and the policeman showing up, which I feel is good.  Sample panic: "OMG I'm missing my field trip and I'VE BROKE MY MOM'S CAR!!11!!"  As it turns out, the strange grating noise wasn't to do with the car, but was probably just something stuck in the wheel (bone, I'm thinking).  I didn't even knock out the alignment.  ::is impressed::

But I'm missing the field trip!  We were/they are going to go to see Tales of Hoffman and the Weisman Art Museum.  ::pout::  I was really looking forward to that, and it was timed just right so I could pretend it was a birthday trip... :(

I want to watch scary movies (got Alien Quadrilogy boxed set for my birthday), but feel I should be working on the thrice-be-damned speech instead.  Bleah.  Upside?  At least this way I won't miss my TV night (a nice, fluffy, Dr. Who ep sound quite appealing at the moment...).

And what am I supposed to do with an eight-foot-tall inflatable palm tree lamp, anyways?
ship_go_boom: (No Visitors)

On a more sad than panicky note, Tuesday was my last day of guitar lessons.  I would have kept going, because I'm still going to have Tuesdays & Thursdays free, but going into Eau Claire takes at least three hours out of a day, and I think I'm going to need that time to study.  And sleep.  I had a good last lesson, he tabbed out Tom McRae's Human Remains for me, showed me the weird tuning (has a name, but I forgot it) that has every string but B tuned to an E, and we finished up Dust in the Wind.  He also reminded me that he is in on Saturdays, and if I ever expected to have half an hour to kill, I could call and set up a one-off lesson.  Which I might do at some point, but it's still sad.  I've made a lot of progress since I started in January.

To comfort myself in all this drearyness, I've uploaded my pictures from Gatecon 2005 to Photobucket (more there; link to main album in sidebar).

In other news, the two youngest members of the St. Louis contingent (three, if you count Beak the Dog) are up for a visit, which is cool (although we need to figure out how to get Muggs up here, I haven't seen him in over a year).  Nunny brought both of her guitars.  She always brings the one, because classically trained guitarist do NOT skip practice for ten days, even if they're thirteen.  I made e-mail puppy eyes to get her to take along the electric.  The cousins are here because my aunt and uncle are going to a philosophy conference in the Dominican Republic (and yes.  Their flight was yesterday.)


ship_go_boom: (Default)
Cerys, The Great Whatchamacallit

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