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Showing posts from December, 2007

Weather, Foot, Stress

I am definitely a hypersensitive individual — physically (and emotionally). The cold weather of Minnesota forces me to wear more clothes, including hats, gloves, and even a face mask at times. Thermal pants for the windchill are also required some mornings. I itch. I scratch. I get annoyed. It's like sandpaper all over my body. I'm sure the dry skin caused by the cold, dry air, isn't helping matters. Both of my index fingers are cracked and have been bleeding, despite using a special petroleum jelly lotion. And in this cold, annoying weather I have managed to yet again fracture a bone or two. This time, in my right foot. Last year, it was my ribs. Mix school stress with the weather and my foot's sharp pains and you can understand why what I really want more than anything is to sit quietly at home, at my desk, writing and playing.

Midterm Gone Bad

November 29, 2007, was a lousy day. I did poorly, very poorly, on an exam in statistics. The damage to self-esteem was fairly deep. I'm not supposed to do poorly on any test, in any class. I've seldom done well with written tests — it is painful to write for any length of time. As an undergraduate, I would write as much as I could before my hand and arm were too sore to continue. The alternative, and equally unsuccessful approach, was to write slowly. Either approach resulted in an incomplete test. I was sure graduate school would be different. First, most classes don't have tests! This is a great thing, since papers and research projects seem a lot more meaningful. In my opinion, a timed test is more a test of dexterity than knowledge. The notion is that if a student knows the material well, he or she can quickly write answers or do the necessary calculations. What if you know the material but can't write? Timed tests prove nothing at all. My fear of tests