a blog so you can keep with him

Seattle! Day 2

Happy New Year, folks! I promise to write more than just my travelogue as time permits – but time was not permitting today, it was quite fun and busy.

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Filed under: Books, Travel

Seattle! Day 1

I landed last night for a few days with my best friend K in Seattle. I unfortunately cannot access the photos I’ve taken so far, because of some nice little connectors and cords that are waiting for me in Olympia. But, I can still talk to you about how it’s going!

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Filed under: Photos, Travel

¿Qué tal?

A little bit over a week later, and I haven’t made as much progress as i’d like to with school – strange how things seem to move out of focus when you’re not physically with them. Instead my books have been physically away from me and I’ve been getting all sorts of things done, with family and friends; prepping thoughtful labored gifts, reconnecting over divergent paths in art, and saying goodbye to the many people of Austin whom i might not see until this time next year.

prepping for a school time away has somehow become less big than looking at a summer away from here; maybe it’s that i’ll be finding a place to live or that i’ll be using Oly as a base for travel (to Detroit! and not Austin. Or it might simply be that a year is quite a bit longer when there’s no way to segment it down and say “it’ll be fine, i’ll see you in three months”. we’re speaking about 52 weeks now, instead of 8, maybe 20. it also makes honest in chrono- and psycho- sense what geographically was already becoming apparent to many: i’m moving away from Austin, and that’s something that even seeing many of my austinite friends and family in a year won’t shake; there’s a permanent change coming that i’m terrified that i’m actually capable of and ready for. i won’t be an austinite returning at the end of 2010, most likely. i’ll be a friend and a relative, yes, but i’ll also be a visitor, have lost my local eyes and connections.

lots of questions arise out of this prophecy i give myself. will it come to pass? will i be an olympian by then? who will i be in a year? but, there’s time for all of these to answer themselves. for now, i have some books to talk about in a week at school, a plane ticket to meet, and some people to give very large hugs to in the next few days.

Filed under: Evergreen, Startup

Recharged – Go Go Go!

And we’ve reached the end of a quarter – Today, I, for the first time in over 3 months, did not have anything pressing to do when I woke up. Naturally, things’ll get done this break, but damn it all, I plan to make Austin a vacation as well.

Also, I have time to publish and reflect on a number of things from over the quarter, and what’s coming in the near future. My winter readings shaping up to be enjoyable: a mix of school (Chilean and Brasilian history, with a Donoso novel in for the mix; this course is looking fantastic), comics (Comics Journal issues, Sam’s Strip, The Photographer and Asterios Polyp), and hopefully some headway into the always intimidating “to-read” stacks that tower at home for me.

Music? Oh yes, music.

Akwaaba Sem Transporte, Zombies For Money, Buraka Som Sistema… basically a very large kuduro kick, with all sorts of things taking me home.

And this post is all a buildup to something else: here’s a draft (possibly the final one I’ll touch) of the manuscript I produced over the quarter. I’ll leave the commentary to the work itself.

Poem & Errata

Filed under: Books, Evergreen, Music

A Draft

I believe I have a draft of the manuscript finished. Here’s my working cover. More about the manuscript at a later point – I’m kinda very tired of it right now.

Filed under: Books, Evergreen, Photos

Beckett, Pavo y Mi Educación

Hi all –
I have been seriously weighing some of my different options for next quarter, and I’m growing increasingly interested in “Literature and the Cultural Politics of Democracy in Brazil and Chile”, but I’m conflicted. There’s a demand from the class for a very immersive experience that I don’t know I can meet with my current commitments. But, it’s organized (here’s the website), upfront, and full things that are of interest to me – what to do?
I’m debating it over this break, by reading parts of the winter reading for the course, and thinking about what sort of schedule I might want next quarter. Then, it’s back for two weeks of very busy, very exciting activity – helping with a student election, putting together a 50-page manuscript, a 10-page essay, a tutor portfolio, registering for winter, and yakkin’ ’bout Beckett. I’ll probably be back in Austin towards the end of eval week, around the 17th or 18th. K and I’ve discussed it more, and we’re envisioning this for the end of winter break – I fly up to Seattle on 30 December, we hightail it to Bellingham on the 31st and spend a few days there before getting back to Olympia (by Seattle) for classes on the 4th: But what class am I taking? Where is this going?
Well, hopefully somewhere con Español.

Filed under: Uncategorized

How to Be Busy, How to Stay Busy

It is now the middle of Week 7 of fall quarter at Evergreen, and I haven’t written anything directly reflective since before I got on a plane towards Olympia. How has this happened? What changed this quarter, compared to the spring?

Well, to begin, I believe a little thing called summer occurred – I didn’t hold myself to any sort of posting (or writing) schedule over those three months, and this blog’s scant activity reflected that. I suspect this related to the reality of who I felt that I’m writing this for: My family, who’s away, but I know would like to know what I’ve been able to find rewarding in both my education and my life, and (hopefully) many friends of mine. When I was living again with my family (knock that group off the list of “not knowing what I’m up to”, in other words), and when many of my pals were at a far remove, I somehow managed to forget them as an audience, perhaps because I was no longer seeing them daily. I’m sorry, folks. I’ve had some experiences recently that have illustrated to me how out of touch I’ve been with many of my close friends: I’m sorry I didn’t know until I was two weeks late, E, and I’m very happy for you J, and B.

But most of all, this quarter’s revealed how easy it is to lose contact with myself – something that I think reflective writing like this really does alleviate, and something I feel I wasn’t practicing enough of.  The largest appeal Evergreen has always had for me is its honesty, in some pockets of it as an institution, that everything that’s active in your life affects and contributes to your learning; something I almost tried to forget this quarter. Y’see, I’ve been busy. Really busy. So busy, I spent several weeks straight waking up, getting in one mindset for class, jumping out of it for the Geoduck Union, jumping out of that for the Writing Center, jumping out of that for a Slightly West (more on what these terms even mean at a later point) meeting, and slinking on home to essentially change bikes and develop a manuscript for an hour or two, and at some point eating and sleeping. The easiest coping mechanism for all this was to pretend, somehow, that these activities could be separate, merely because the people I saw at these different places and contexts didn’t show up elsewhere! I had taken myself out any awareness, or equation; in the process of doing so, I also took out my effectiveness, my energy, and my education. I was defeated, deteriorating, and delirious instead.

It took a few different things to jar me out of this rut, which I won’t go into right now. The importance of the matter is – this past weekend, I feel that I had an opportunity (which I took) to become re-centered, empowered in my learning; this change of feeling is going to require some reevaluation and change on my part for the coming quarter, and year, though. Think of this as my drafting out of possible New Year’s Resolutions, if you feel so obliged.

  1. I will not be in Logopoesis next quarter.
  2. I will be studying a language next quarter – Linguistic study gestures most closely at what I feel my aims in college are at this juncture.
  3. I will reevaluate commitments as they continue to develop – I am not tied down to anything, any longer than it is healthy for myself. An important feature of this is active reflection – I will post here frequently.
  4. My education is, and will continue to be, informed by a sense of the society and communities it is shaping and unveiling for me.
  5. Long lasting relationship- and community-building can surmount individual challenges.
  6. My life can have synergy. I can be renewed in heterogeneous efforts by finding the points of intersection.

But really, why must I talk so? It’s already been done in comics

Filed under: Books, Evergreen, Startup

September 19, 2009

It’s a later date than when I last posted here – a combination of my lack of summer break discipline, and a lack of breaking summer news has kept me from writing much at all; this, fortunately, did not bleed into other habits, and I did manage to feel productive at the end of this three-month venture back to Austin.

So, what all did I do, you might ask? Good question!

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Filed under: Books, Evergreen, Music

On A Whim

I added myself back into the world of today. I’m al_batross on there (it’s a long story), and if you’re on there (or if you’re not), feel free to drop me a line.

Also, it’s my birthday today! I’m 19 now. I got a kitchenware set from my family, and a new hard drive! Exciting, yet practical – hopefully, this year can turn out like that too.

Filed under: Uncategorized

I’ve Been Reading

Unfortunately, but expectedly, Ulysses is taking a while to get through – a good sign is that I’m already further in than when I gave in last summer. But, I have settled back in to a summer in Austin, so I’ve developed a weekly sort of schedule. I’m volunteering at the Harry Ransom Center with their film collections – this currently means cataloging promotional stills from old 50s and 60s flicks, but we’ll see where it goes. I had the fun of discovering that the job market is dismal, especially when you’re only around for 3 months, so I’m taking what I can currently, and enjoying this volunteer gig.

I’ve been reading other things than Ulysses as well, as the column on your right shows, and I’ve been catching up with folks over plenty of music, movies, and board games. There’s not much else to say right now, but I’m sure I can update a little more as the summer continues.

Filed under: Books

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