Friday, December 21, 2007

The Long Weekend

After having a couple year's worth of adventures in a semester, I am back at Absurdist Paradise. A new situation to be sure -- but very much absurdist. To sum up: An academic jumps off track to live with her lover and cat in a cozy RV by a duck pond on the way outskirts of Urban Home City. (I hear the pond is stocked with fish, so we won't starve.) I'm calling this period of my life The Long Weekend (yes, this is what the movie or TV show will be called), because the RV is called a Weekender. I'm sure it was never meant for full-time use. Tough luck. This is where we are for now.

Internet is spotty at Duck Pond Campground. There's some internet guru there, of course, but the range on his wireless pretty much sucks. We're likely going to buy him an antenna to boost the signal. If that fails, Absurdist Lover (aka Love and OPL) is preparing to lay hundreds of feet of ethernet cable -- all so I can keep YOU updated on our (mis)adventures. Okay, so he really wants to "show me" World of Warcraft. Uh-huh. Been there, done that. Have I told you about my game-addict ex-husband? Well, Absurdist Lover is not like that. (And if he is, then I'll have more time to blog! So there!)

So my goal for spring semester is to keep myself underemployed with adjunct or other part-time work (test prep centers? language schools?) while I figure out whether I want to jump onto the Casey Jones tenure track or find something else that will allow me to have more of a personal life or what. But more important, I'm going to write. In an RV. While I figure out what to do with my life. With the man I love. And a cat. Oy.

Because we don't have internet at Duck Pond, I'm currently at the Corporation. I worked on my comps in one of these big chairs, listening to the steaming of milk for overpriced over-delineated just-as-you-like-it coffees. I'm in a town on the outskirts of Urban Home City where there are Corporations at every strip mall. It's pretty scary. This place reminds me so much of the suburb where I grew up. Out the window from where I'm sitting, I can see the scrawny trees propped up with dowels in the center island of a wide street -- the tract house development on a slight rise on the other side. The kids have nowhere to go but down to the local pizza place to hang out. The people who can afford to be sitting here in Starbucks on a weekday afternoon, even right before a holiday, are not the ones who live in those houses. People who live in those houses don't have the freedom of independent wealth or the kinds of jobs that would allow them to work at home. Those people are tied to jobs they serve everyday -- and probably not in the academy. I don't want to be them, those people who spend more time in their cars and offices than at home. Of course, I have no idea how make the kind of life I would like to have. I would like to have a small house with a big garden someday, but I'm getting to an age where I better work toward "someday" soon, if I'm serious.

Right now, I've just gotten off a plane, unpacked my bags, and settled in to the RV. I haven't even seen my folks yet. Absurdist Lover and I haven't had any time to figure out what we're doing. Maybe after we get home from Dreadful Conference we'll be able to figure things out.

***Update 3:12pm, mere seconds after I pressed publish***

A guy just came up to me and started talking Mac. When he asked me whether I used it for work, I said yes -- of course I realized that I'm actually unemployed and had to explain that I was "between things" right now, but said I was a writer and professor. And he recommended this Guru seminar (the second person to recommend it), then I asked if he were a writer. He said he'd written like "15 books -- nonfiction. That's not writing -- those are just long term-papers. Fiction -- that's writing."

Even in Suburban Ticky-Tacky Houses, there are crazy writers. I stand corrected.


Sisyphus said...

You're back, yay! And it looks like the long swim back up to the surface went well. (Don't get the bends, now that you're back, though.)

BTW, your to-do list over to the side is crazy! But crazy in an amazing, inspiring way, not scary-homeless-person-following-me home way.

Wow --- writing without a net. Just out there. I'm so timid, I'm not even sure I want that or to deal with that kind of riskiness, of freedom (like how my friend said about _Easy Rider_: absolute freedom, for some people, is the most terrifying idea there is --- that's why the film ends with such violence.)

But I am totally amazed and appreciative of it in other people, that's for sure! Go you!

k8 said...

Glad you had a safe return! I'm sensing a possible novel in your descriptions of life around you. Or maybe not. I don't really know your preferred genre(s).

medieval woman said...

Hey, welcome back! Such new things - are you going to stay in the RV indefinitely or look for a rental spot??

Keep us updated on all the new and scary/fun things you're doing!

Anonymous said...

I am a first time visitor to your blog (found you through your recent comment on Clashing Hats' blog) and, well, do you really expect that I will visit again given how difficult your blog template is to read? Small coloured type on such a dark background ...

I know that this is only my $0.02, but I thought that I would share my initial opinion (because I didn't even try to read a single word of your blog after seeing how difficult it would be).

Jane D said...

Yay! You're back! I can't wait to see you!

I've gotten behind on reading your blog, but you can bet I'll visit again, and again, and again.

Meagan said...

Glad to see you made it back-- it sounds like you're feeling very positive about things-- as uncertain as the future may be.

Unknown said...

Well, I'm glad you're back on home soil... even if it's in an RV... and as for that cranky person who grumped about your font, good grief. Some people aren't happy no matter what.

Happy New Year.

Maude said...

oh earnest, i miss you!! where are you?? what's going on with you?? why is there no internet for you to regularly update?? i'm lost without you dear earnest!