Have you ever had that numbing fear that makes the pit of your stomach do the back flip with 2 and a half twists?

I think it just dawned on me how big is what I'm setting out to do. It's like putting the rest of your life on hold to pursue something that may or may not be an attainable or even a realistic goal

But my mom was right. As scared as I am at least I'm acting proactively rather than letting things happen to me. Whether I'm accepted or not I have the satisfaction of trying, even if I don't make it the first time.

As Dave Lowry writes in his article anger is a luxury, so is fear. I can't let myself be afraid, not until I've done my best in fighting this battle. There is no fear in loosing, only in not trying

Priorities and questions

Beyond the Sea
Bobby Darin

Somewhere beyond the sea,
Somewhere, waiting for me,
My lover stands on golden sands
And watches the ships that go sailing;

Somewhere beyond the sea,
He's (She's) there watching for me.
If I could fly like birds on high,
Then straight to his (her) arms I'd go sailing.

It's far beyond a star,
It's near beyond the moon,
I know beyond a doubt
My heart will lead me there soon.

We'll meet beyond the shore,
We'll kiss just as before.
Happy we'll be beyond the sea,
And never again I'll go sailing!

I think that's one of the things that Tim brought up that I need to seriously consider, again, as I move forward with whatever the hell it is that I decide to do.

"Where is your relationship life in comparison with personal and work" (badly paraphrased but close enough).  At first I said that I wasn't really interested in relationships, that I had subordinated relationships and, to a degree, my personal life to the altar of work. But as I de-emphasize the amount of time that I dedicate to work, I find a growing hole in my life... can't tell if it's a professional (there is plenty of frustration to go around), relationship-based (maybe), or even personal (triggered by one of the other 2) or if it's all 3 hitting the fan at the same time when I'm not in the best position to rebuild or more specifically, rebuild what?

I want to clear something. Where I said professional in the paragraph above. it was deliberate: I don't equate work with professional growth, particularly not in the situation I currently find myself at work.

I was at a conference in Salt Lake City, UT most of last week. The conference was awesome and really motivating; yet it is the motivating aspect that makes it depressing as hell. It's really hard for me to look at all the awesome things that people are doing when I know that by the time I present ideas to Scott, Laura and Kathy it'll be "that's awesome but we don't need that kind of work here at this time so we won't even give you the time to research it." Granted, that's what I'm hearing and not necessarily what is being said, but without a bigger picture, what other conclusion can I draw?

As I wrote in my response to the review I had I said I wouldn't do any "extra curricular" activities as it seems that they are interfering with my work for the University. Now I'm bored to tears 90% of the time and busy as hell the other 10.  And to top it off, I am having to deal with a very difficult faculty member who's letting everyone know how unhappy she is with the way things are being handled, conveniently forgetting to mention that I wasn't given any way to deal with the problem, she didn't get a reply in what she thought was a fair timeline and then she raised all 27 kinds of hell (apparently 9 were not enough)

For the first time in ages, I'm dreading CATS (the conference I'm going to next week). I am looking forward to seeing the people and but not to getting in the "damn, that sounds to nice, wish I could be doing that kind of development" funk that I got while I was at the SVU conference.

Detachment... I think that's the best way to define it. Detach the conferences from your job and your work-related interests.  Also detach your work-related interests from your actual job 🙂

You can still have your interests that are related to your job; you just can't use them at your current job but, at the same time, you don't want to let them rust because of lack of use...  I'm coming to terms with having to start from scratch as a trainer. That's the price I've had to pay for what I'm doing and for having enjoyed it for a couple years.  Now that I'm reinventing myself some of the choices I've made don't look all that smart after all.

Yet that is the issue, right?  In talking with Tim I've learned that there is no such thing as a wrong choice.... The choices you make are correct in as much as you think they are; they are the best decisions you can make with the information that you have available. And perhaps the most important part of all, they are always subject to revision and change 🙂

There are 2 areas where this has become important: Relationships and Expectations about life.

Expectations are a tricky part. What your expectations and goals are tend to shift, morph and evolve but, at least for me, the expectations of myself and what it is that I want to do and how I want to do it are hard to change.  I mean, I invested a lot into my theater life before one series of bad encounters made it clear to me that as much as I love theater and as much as I wanted to continue working there, it wasn't for me.

Instructional Technology is getting to the same level. Can't tell if it's the job itself or if it's the discipline that I'm tired with. One of the things that I'm looking at is where do others see my position going in the next 3 months, 6 months, and 1 year. If it matches what I'm looking at it being, then I may consider waiting, but I also have to keep reminding myself that I probably will not be the only person competing for the job so I have to be realistic and keep my options open. If it doesn't match then I can fully dedicate to graduate school with a clean conscience.

At least I'm getting a better idea of what questions to ask and a better idea that it might be me who's causing the problem. SK is right when he says that one way or another we will have to work together and that the options are to be miserable while doing it or to really step out of my comfort zone and look at who I am and how I relate to people. 

An interesting exercise will be to stop and write down the ways I relate to people. Stop and write it down no matter how weird it sounds or how weird it looks to people around you.  At the end of the week, reflect on what you wrote and plan accordingly. I think you can and should do this periodically and see if this changes over time or not but the first time is going to be the hardest. Perhaps having an outside person who understands the field I'm working on and/or who knows me well enough can offer an objective review of what I write and help me improve.

(4/3/2008) Does she really fucking want my job? I agree that we need to do better training but if you think you need to jump up and decide how to train DLT students then, by all means, be my guest. One less thing that I need to worry about and more time I can dedicate to what I really enjoy doing... research.

On that note, I have decided that I can't live with the uncertainty of not applying to Grad School in GA. I know I've seesawed on this one for a while but I feel that if I don't apply to UGA and/or USU now I'll always be wondering what if I had applied, what if I had been accepted and how would that have changed my life and that of the people I care about.

I have to be strong in the focus of my life. What is important and what can I live without be it people, places or situations.

What is important?

  • Right now I think I want stability so I can prepare myself for the challenges ahead. Even if it gives the impression that I gave up, I need to dedicate and concentrate my energies to do well on the GRE and the application
  • Mentally prepare myself for the GRE, take it twice before the end of November
  • Complete the applications to USU and UGA
  • Continue to cultivate friendships and relationships while I'm still here
  • To be honest with myself and whit those who have pissed me off as to why they have pissed me off and what I want to do about it

What I can live without?

  • People who think they are the center of the universe. Particularly those who are not even close to being important in my life and who let others make choices for them
  • Unneeded stress
  • Arguments for arguments' sake. I love a good debate and a healthy exchange of ideas between mature people who are open to get their egos bruised and will learn from the experience. It's when people take it personally and make their responses personal that I draw the line

What's next?

I think that the main thing is to get off my ass and do things rather than say I'll do them and sit on them.

  • Take the GRE. It doesn't matter how well or poorly you do... just do it
  • Apply to UGA and USU.  Again, it doesn't matter if you get accepted or not, just do it and get it over with rather than be stressed about it (application to UGA started)
  • Continue to try and work things out with the team here. As long as I'm here I need to do the best job I can, regardless of how much I like or hate the job. Perhaps being miserable occasionally is the price to pay for doing what you love in the long run

But going back to the relationship part. What's more important, long term or right now? myself or both of us in the relationship?

Find the river

Hey now, little speedyhead,
The read on the speedometer says
You have to go to task in the city
Where people drown and people serve
Don't be shy. Your just deserve
Is only just light years to go

Me, my thoughts are flower strewn
Ocean storm, bayberry moon
I have got to leave to find my way
Watch the road and memorize
This life that pass before my eyes
Nothing is going my way

The ocean is the river's goal,
A need to leave the water knows
We're closer now than light years to go

I have got to find the river,
Bergamot and vetiver
Run through my head and fall away
Leave the road and memorize
This life that pass before my eyes
Nothing is going my way

There's no one left to take the lead,
But I tell you and you can see
We're closer now than light years to go
Pick up here and chase the ride
The river empties to the tide
Fall into the ocean

The river to the ocean goes,
A fortune for the undertow
None of this is going my way
There is nothing left to throw
Of ginger, lemon, indigo,
Coriander stem and rows of hay
Strength and courage overrides
The privileged and weary eyes
Of river poet search naivete
Pick up here and chase the ride
The river empties to the tide
All of this is coming your way

It's been an interesting week

May you live in interesting times and be noticed by people in high places

I think I'm finally understanding why this is a curse or at least why it has been such a stressful week. Being hit with so many things so quickly and what still seems to me like petty bullshit was just disconcerting.

It's made me think a lot about priorities and what it is that I want to do. I think it's time to get serious about life and pursuing what I want to do rather than what bosses or other people think I should be doing.

As I posted elsewhere, I'm applying for Graduate School at Utah State. I decided that the only way of not being pulled into so much BS is if you are in control; granted then the BS comes from below you... It also aligns better with my longer-term goals of teaching or doing research in educational technologies so it's a win-win situation for me.

Chasing Cars
Snow Patrol

We'll do it all
On our own

We don't need
Or anyone

If I lie here
If I just lie here
Would you lie with me and just forget the world?

I don't quite know
How to say
How I feel

Those three words
Are said too much
They're not enough

If I lie here
If I just lie here
Would you lie with me and just forget the world?

Forget what we're told
Before we get too old
Show me a garden that's bursting into life

Let's waste time
Chasing cars
Around our heads

I need your grace
To remind me
To find my own

If I lie here
If I just lie here
Would you lie with me and just forget the world?

Forget what we're told
Before we get too old
Show me a garden that's bursting into life

All that I am
All that I ever was
Is here in your perfect eyes, they're all I can see

I don't know where
Confused about how as well
Just know that these things will never change for us at all

If I lie here
If I just lie here
Would you lie with me and just forget the world?

There are pros and cons to it. I'm scared to death and back a couple times about the change. I've always been really sensitive to failure and even more so this time with so much hanging in the balance....

Computer Haiku Humor

Someone forwarded this to me...and I thought it was kinda funny. There's a few different versions going around...I like this one.

If computer error messages were written in Japanese Haiku, here's what they would look like...

Stop where you are
Illegal operation
Repent and restart.

Lay off the substance
Brain cells will come in handy
When password slips mind.

Password incorrect
Access to all files denied
Lay off the ganja.

Regret, sweet Regret
Trash can emptied hastily
No undoing that.

Words writing themselves
Screen has gone haywire, oh no
Coke on the keyboard.

Download all you like
But when all drives are full up
Invest in more RAM.

Finally online, but
Parental supervision
Means no fun today.

Blasted web page takes
An eternity to load.
Pray for DSL.

Thesis near complete.
Save now and make hard copy.
Thunderstorm warning.

Time slips far away
While important deadline looms.
Solitaire be damned.

Bored with your CD's?
RIAA not looking.
Thank God for Napster.

"Ready" reads "Rredy"
Only one "z" in "hazard"
Forgot to spellcheck.

Random DC stuff off the net

Words of Wisdom from Dr. Tom Frost

"Why is that important to you?" TF's favorite question.
"You talk, I listen." - TF
"Teenagers often confuse knowledge with wisdom." - TF
"When parental ties are severed early on, it can send a young person searching for love and acceptance in a variety of destructive ways" - TF
"Psychotherapists don't put much stock in coincidence" - TF
"You're not done, not even close. We've just opened this door, we're just starting to make sense" - TF, on my last day of therapy

Words of Wisdom from my friends... some of the most important things I've learned weren't in therapy...

"I think that you should never go backwards when you can go forwards. " - Drue Valentine

"I've been here before, Jen. At least close enough to know that it only happens once and you better take a second to think about what that's gonna be." - Joey Potter

"Not all therapists know what they're doing. They're just as fallible as auto mechanics. Probably even more so" - Jack McPhee

"Don't you remember when we used to look for not run from each other?" - Andie McPhee

"In the end you always turn back to who was there at the beginning" - Andie McPhee

"Feelings can change, passion will fade, partners will come and go, but through it all, one thing remains sacred: Friendship." - Dawson Leery

"I see now that the only thing more beautiful than Jen Lindley is the reality behind her magic." - Dawson

Things seem to be slowing down some… for a little bit and just slightly slower, not much

Paranoid mode off... for about 30 seconds.

Por que cresta parece que todo se calma es que todo se va a la chucha con alevosia y premeditacion? Creo que no hay nada mas que decir sobre eso, aparte de que estoy apestadisimo.

Speed Of Life
Sugarland (Twice the speed of life)

We drove all night to get to Corpus Christi
My parents slept right through, they never missed me
We were far from sleepin’ when the truth began to creep in
That we weren’t going home anytime soon
The morning light sure took us by surprise
We grabbed our clothes, watched a beautiful sunrise
We were one together and we must have talked forever
And it was then and there I realized

I don’t want to wait even one more night
It’s hard to slow it down when it feels so right
Knees buckled, white knuckled, we’re holding on tight
We’re traveling at twice the speed of life

We worked our way through college waiting tables
Bought a little white house with a picket fence and cable
I asked if he was ready to become a mom and daddy
And then I found my answer in his eyes
And he said...

// Repeat Chorus //

Now our oldest girl is almost grown
She’s got a boyfriend of her own
I heard her sneaking out with him last night
And if she is anything like me
She’s desperate to be wild and free
We know now it’s just a matter of time
‘Til she says...

// Repeat Chorus //

Then it hits you…

I used to wonder how come that people cycle so quickly if Chico is such a wonderful place to work at? Now I know why.

At least for me there are healthy and unealthy stress levels and I'm hitting new marks in the "bad" stress category. I'm getting frustrated more and more often and I don't like doing that; There are people who think that because they said something about a project, said project should have been done much quicker than it actually was. And, to boot, she went directly to my boss... that killed it; if I can't work with someone putting conditions lilke that perhaps it's time for me to seriously think if I want to stay or not.

I know it's kind of a moot point with my applying to Grad School but I need to get it out of my system and, this time, play it closer to the vest until I'm ready to leave. I can do better and going to school is going to help 🙂

The Great Beyond

Ive watched the stars fall silent from your eyes
All the sights that I have seen
I cant believe that I believed I wished
That you could see
Theres a new planet in the solar system
Theres nothing up my sleeve

(chorus 1)
Im pushing an elephant up the stairs
Im tossing up punchlines that were never there
Over my shoulder a piano falls
Crashing to the ground

And all this talk of time
Talk is fine
And I dont want to stay around
Why cant we pantomime, just close our eyes
And sleep sweet dreams
Being here with wings on our feet

(repeat chorus 1)

(chorus 2)
Im breaking through
Im bending spoons
Im keeping flowers in full bloom
Im looking for answers from the great beyond

I want the hummingbirds, the dancing bears
Sweetest dreams of you
Look into the stars
Look into the moon

(repeat chorus 1)

(repeat chorus 2 2x)

Im breaking through
Im bending spoons
Im keeping flowers in full bloom
Im looking for answers from the great, answers from the great
Im breaking through
Im bending spoons
Im keeping flowers in full bloom
Im looking for answers from the great, answers from the great, answers

Grad School… here I come!

I'm applying for USU's Doctoral program in instructional technology. I know I'm probably overreacting but after last week I decided that the level of stress and finger pointing is not worth it.

I'm at a point where I'm really having to motivate myself to go to work and actually get things done. People keep saying you don't need to do everything on your own but they keep bitching when things don't get done. It's that stressful double standard that is making me want to leave. I'm at a point where I can't really tell if what people are saying is sincere or just to get me to push a little bit harder and just get that one last little thing done.

The other trigger that made me apply was the fact that people who were years behind me at Central already ahave their doctorates; hell they completed medical school and their residence before I barely completed my MA... It's brought me back to thinking that if I'm going to do it I better do it sooner rather than later.

Addedndum (9/11/2006)

I wish I could say FY2 without feeling guilty


Thursday 7th September 2006
Xerox reveals transient documents 11:04AM

Xerox has lifted the veil from some of its research and development work in the field of printing. The cutting-edge research highlighted at a press event involved current projects that are expected to see the commercial light of day within 18-months, including a twist on the theme of invisible ink.

Mario Jarmasz, an engineer from one of the company's R&D centres, in Grenoble, was speaking at the launch of the Xerox's entry-level A4-only multi-function printers. As well as a looking at 'print infrastructure mining', which brings the techniques of data mining to enterprise print logs to better optimise the flow of print jobs around an organisation, he also demoed the very intriguing 'transient documents'.

This offers the prospect of reusable paper in the sense that the content is automatically erased after a period of time, ready for fresh printing. Inspired by the fact that many print outs have a life-span of a few hours (think of the emails you may print out just to read, or the content you proof read on the train journey back home), the specially prepared paper will preserve its content for up to 16 hours.

The paper has a photochromic compound that changes from a clear state to a coloured state under ultra-violet light. This can create the print face, which will duly fade with time. Further research is being undertaken to give the option of subsequently preserving the content if the user desires, which might literally involve warming up old data through the heating of the paper.

Returning to the Xerography roots of company founder Chester Carlson, the purplish printing can nonetheless support a 1200dpi printing resolution.

Jarmasz also demonstrated the company's work on mobile document imaging, for example capturing data from business cards through a process of OCR compression and then transmission. Possible developments of this work include expanding email interfaces to incorporate handwritten input and the management of distributed forms.

Xerox, of course, is legendary for its Palo Alto Research Center (PARC), which claims credit for developing Ethernet and laser printers as well as the first personal computer. Having developed the machines, the researchers then wanted to connect them and then to print, and the rest is history.

Alun Williams

*Laughs* Aint it the truth

A Little Learning Is an Expensive Thing


September 5, 2006

Op-Ed Contributor New York Times

Palo Alto, Calif.

When I was a college president, I was never able to give incoming freshmen the honest talk I wanted to. But had I done so, here’s what I would have said:

HELLO to you first-year students. I’m Laudable’s president. The next time we’ll see each other is when you graduate.

Most likely, that won’t be in four years, but in about 55 months. That’s because a good many of you won’t finish on time. And, because college presidents last only about six years and I’ve already been on campus for two, perhaps I won’t even be here.

I know you’re worried about money. I’m not telling you or your folks anything new when I say that Laudable looks expensive. The tuition increases here, just like those of our competitors, have outstripped the rate of increase in the consumer price index for years. This fall, tuition, room and board averages almost $32,000 at Laudable and other private colleges, and more than $15,000 at public ones.

But hold on. Most of you and your parents don’t pay for everything yourselves. In public four-year institutions, some 4 in 10 undergraduates get financial aid. At private places like Laudable, more than 80 percent of you do. Just like the auto industry, we have a sticker price and we have the price people really pay.

And like car dealers, we force you to borrow money to help make up the difference. You will probably owe more than $20,000, on average, when you leave Laudable. Graduates of public institutions will owe, on average, more than $15,000.

How will many of you begin your adult lives?

In serious debt.

We certainly take a lot of your money. But we ship money back to you. How much? This year, Laudable will spend more than $41,000 to educate each of you. At public institutions, it will be more than $31,000 per student. Some schools have huge endowments that help them generate the money they need to educate you (Harvard has more than $26 billion to count on). But most schools are like Laudable: we need your tuition dollars. Bottom line: money in and money out.

Laudable could be cheaper, but you wouldn’t like it. You and your parents have made it clear that you want the best. That means more spacious and comfortable student residences ("dormitories," we used to call them), gyms with professional exercise equipment, better food of all kinds, more counselors to attend to your growing emotional needs, more high-tech classrooms and campuses that are spectacularly handsome.

Our competitors provide such things, so we do too. We compete for everything: faculty, students, research dollars and prestige. The more you want us to give to you, the more we will be asking you to give to us. We aim to please, and that will cost you. It’s been a long time since scholarship and teaching were carried on in monastic surroundings.

Laudable’s surroundings, by the way, will remind you of where you came from. That’s because your financial circumstances are pretty much the same as those of your classmates. More expensive schools have students from wealthier parents; less expensive schools draw students from families with fewer financial resources. More than half of the freshmen at selective colleges, public and private, come from the highest-earning quarter of households. Tell me the ZIP code and I’ll tell you what kind of college a high-school graduate most likely attends.

After paying (and receiving) all this money, please finish up and get out. Colleges like Laudable are escalators; even if you stand still, they will move you upward toward greater economic opportunity. Once you leave us, you’ll have a better chance for a good job and a way to pay off your debt and to give us more money when we call on you as alumni.

So don’t flunk out; you’ve got too much invested in us, and we have too much invested in you.

As for the way Laudable spends its money, I can assure you that your professors aren’t overpaid. But I am. I take home more money at Laudable than anyone else (save some of the clinical physicians over at our hospital and several coaches). My pay is about five times greater than an average faculty member’s. That’s because I’m thought of as the chief executive of the university and chief executives get paid a lot in America.

But I know I’m not really a chief executive because I don’t hold that kind of executive power. The professors here are Laudable’s most important asset, and they, not I, are the ones who run the show (just ask Larry Summers). Laudable could save some money by paying me less.

I welcome you all -- those of you who will heed my advice, and those who will waste their dollars and ours. Whatever, count yourself lucky. Now you know about the money. See you, maybe, in 55 months.

William M. Chace, a former president of Emory and Wesleyan Universities, is the author of "100 Semesters: My Adventures as Student, Professor and University President, and What I Learned Along the Way."