i don’t think i’ve ever read so much in 24 hours as i did today. after knocking out approximately 325 pages, i’m done with new grub street by gissing. it is quite possibly one of the most depressing books i’ve ever read. which means i loved it.
it’s probably just as well that i didn’t get out today. it rained most of the morning. since houston is built on a swamp, any steady rain will flood the streets. when i was driving to the movies monday night, there were moments when i wasn’t positive that my tires were actually touching the asphalt. the water had reached at least one-third of the way up my car door. dr. wolfe said the solution is to buy a dog and a frisbee. apparently, when roads are impassable, people take the opportunity for some quality canine time.
once again, the military has lied to me. they told me i had to have danny’s christmas package in the mail by the second week in november in order for him to get it in time. of course, it has arrived already. i knew that would happen. and apparently all of the other families-in-the-states not only knew it would happen but acted on their speculation, because danny is apparently the only one in his division to have already received a christmas box. i’d marked on the front that he shouldn’t open it until christmas, but its early arrival has led to a series of emails debating the pros and cons of just opening it now. i am decidedly on the “con” side, mostly because i foresee some christmas day depression if he opens the package before thanksgiving has even come around. but the whole ordeal has just made it glaringly un-ignore-able that he won’t be around for the holidays, which just sucks. in so many ways.
also, one of the guys who lived on his hall in the barracks was killed by an IED last week. he was a linguist, working in fallujah. i think this might be the first casualty of someone danny really knew. freaked him out. freaked me out, too.
but enough of the bedtime morbidity. it helps that he’ll be home in about four months. well, maybe six months. bah. who the hell knows. i don’t think they send soldiers home as quickly as they send christmas packages to baghdad.
to conclude… some things i’m considering undertaking:
1. attending rare book school at the university of virginia, either this june or next june
2. learning how to cook pot roast (although presently i’m afraid of such a large hunk of beef)
3. auditing a history class next fall with a very respected (read: intimidating) victorian scholar at rice
4. sending another batch of my stuff to some lit mags
5. getting a pair of glasses that i’ll actually wear, which also requires overcoming the conviction that i look horrible in glasses
6. re-embarking on my epic battle with americorps, re: my scholarship that they claim i can’t use
7. polishing my 19th century seminar paper to the point where i wouldn’t be ashamed to present it at a conference
8. finding and purchasing a semi-trendy pair of shoes, since most of my shoes were manufactured circa 1995