Monday, 14 July 2008

The Cycle Continues...

It's been another week of impractically short trips to London, copious lesson-planning, and not enough sleep, which continues tomorrow with a double-header of two introductory courses to Pop Culture as Knowledge for students who just want to test the waters, followed by a two hour drive into London, fifteen minutes at the Philippine Embassy picking up my passport and visa, and a two hour drive back to Oxford. Yay! The upside is that I've learned many things along the way, as detailed below:

1. I got breakfast with Leana at the Lazy Daisy Cafe in Notting Hill on Saturday, then we walked around the Portobello Market and I had to restrain myself from buying antiques and magnifying glasses that were pretty but probably not worth buying two weeks before I'll have to pack up my life and go to Southeast Asia. (I did splurge and buy a brick of the best bread pudding I've ever eaten, although I had to throw the gooey core of it away because I was eating it so quickly that it was beginning to hurt.) The skill share in London was awesome, to the point where I thought about driving into London weekly next year to volunteer at the place where it was held. I haven't found that level of feminist/queer engagement since I left Harvard, and sitting on a floor and eating vegan stew and picking apart theory there was the most therapeutic, reenergizing thing I've done all summer. And then I raced back to grab a drink with everyone at the KA, but didn't do any of the Pride parties because I couldn't find Imperial Royale and finally gave up and went to bed.

2. Yesterday, Sarah and I got G&Ds, wandered around Christ Church Meadow, and picked up milk, bus tickets, and her leftover groceries before we parted ways after our Summer of (Platonic) Love. It was sad, but also, she left me a half-packet of crumpets (in the tradition of Erika's granola and Abby's pasta, apparently) and I'd never had crumpets before and they're crazy delicious. They're my bedtime snack of choice at the moment.

3. Today, I had my guest speaker for my class, who was AWESOME. (It was David Hendy, who wrote a history of Radio Four that everyone should go read.) My students seemed to love him, and then we all finished watching About a Boy afterwards and it's one of my favorite movies. And I'm about to watch it again, because I have to wow the class with a close reading of a scene before we pick it to pieces on Wednesday. I'm thinking something about the production of identity through the consumption (or refusal) of pop songs, furry sweaters, sneakers, scalp massage, McDonald's, and rap. Barring that, I'm going to make them all decide whether the final scene is an embrace or refusal of heteronormativity. They'll forgive me at our globalization-themed tea party on Friday.

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